Monday, April 9, 2012

Jean Pierre Makosso

Jean Pierre Makosso. Actor, performer and storyteller. Taken September 21, 2011

Jean Pierre arrived on the Sunshine Coast of BC in 2001. He was an instant sensation, giving performances of traditional storytelling and dance at festivals and cultural events. I first met him shortly after he arrived when he visited the Grantham's Landing community hall. His presence could not be contained by the small room. In addition to his stage work he is a director and author who has just released his third book of poetry.

We talked of his home in the Congo and his face lit up when he mentioned that he had been invited to perform in Paris. "Paris? Paris!!" But the truth of a trip to Paris was more complex, he would probably have to turn down the invitation unless he could be certain that he would be able to return to Canada. He also wanted very much to return to the Congo to visit his inspiration and the source of all his stories - his mother.

Here is Jean Pierre's web site

Here is an index of portraits.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Book Twenty-one

This could also be called the book of crows as there are so many flying through the pages. 

It was also during the tenure of this book that I created a set of stamps for the imaginary kingdom of Akshara. The book contains notes on the designs, and the mythology which underpins the commemorative issue. Here is the first day cover with a return address: Kingdom of Akshara Royal Postal Service Overseas Philatelic Bureau.

They were triangular - the most exotic shape of stamps. But triangular stamps are very very difficult to perforate, and I trashed quite a few sheets before I got it right. Here is the layout of the stamps on a sheet.

Here are some close ups of the individual stamps.

The book also contains this poem:

In the springtime there is air
and the bite of foliage:
transactions of weather and
hesitant abundance.

Certain clouds are without
youth or age, no age but
impermanence, no youth but

I once knew a man could 
forecast with a mirror, save
halos and vapours in amber
forsaking the light bodies of 
dead insects, as everyone knows
the dead are without souls.

If I awake sometime past 
November, we must negotiate
the year; times of harvest and
repentance. For each of us 
there is a season, for every will
an August, for every soul
a disturbance in the air.