Neighborhood: Santa Teresa
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Neighborhood: Santa Teresa
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Yesterday, I posted the blog “Celebrating Jean-Michel Basquiat: Royalty, Heroism and the Streets”. I thought it would be nice to post some videos to get a real taste of Basquiat’s grace, genius and elegance. Tamara Ayon, an art lover and former gallery manager in south Florida left a comment about how Basquiat’s work continues to inspire her today:
“Basquiat was a true genius in the art world. His images had such intense emotion. The work was not elaborate or overdone, but it was raw and one of a kind. He took the pretty out of it and gave it depth, when so many other artist were more concerned with popular opinion. Basquiat was talking directly to each individual who saw his work. I have not made it to Paris yet, but I promised my daughter to put this trip on our adventure calendar! I would love to see Basquiat’s work up close. I ran art galleries for many years in Miami. I taught art at a children’s art center in South Beach. I am not an amazing artist myself but my passion for it and admiration for [artists] is an inspiration which has never faded. Basquiat was instrumental in lighting that artistic flame inside me.”
Sundance Film Festival – Official Selection, 2010
Summary: “In 1986 filmmaker Tamra Davis shot one of the only interviews with her friend Jean-Michel Basquiat, who went on to become one of the most significant artists of the 20th century.”
This video is a treat! Vintage Basquiat. Aybee from @deepblak records shared this rare 1979 interview of Basquiat on TV Party, a local show on a NYC public access channel. The show was hosted by a young Glenn O’Brien before he started a career with Rolling Stone. It is a gritty video and the quality dates back to pre-historic times before digital and HDTV. But, watching this video is like going back in a time machine. O’Brien also produced and filmed Downtown 81, a movie where Basquiat plays himself and gives viewers a peek inside the NYC art and club scene in the 1980s.
I keep hearing people reference and connect Basquiat and Kid Cudi. It seemed a little random at first. But, when I came across this video something about this combination works. I love this video because it highlights many of Basquiat’s popular paintings through a slideshow with Kid Cudi’s “Pursuit of Happiness” playing in the background. I also love seeing a smiling Basquiat!
Please visit basquiat.com for Upcoming Events and a List of Public Collections in the U.S., Europe, Asia and Canada.
On another note, could Basquiat and Kid Cudi be twinsies? LOL!
You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.
Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.
Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own back yard.
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?
Out of the huts of history’s shame
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
“Your crown has been bought and paid for.
All you must do is put it on your head.”
Here in the United States, the month of February is considered “Black History Month.” It has been observed since 1976, but it was started by Carter G. Woodson, a historian back in 1926. The purpose was to educate Americans about the history, cultural backgrounds and achievements of African-American people, since this information was often deliberately suppressed and left out of history books. Sometimes people ask if Black History Month is still necessary or relevant since race relations have improved greatly over the last 50 years, especially since the U.S. has its first black president, Barack Obama.
But, even today, some states go out of their way to rewrite American history, attempting to silence the stories and events that comprise the soul of American history. As recent as this year, the Board of Education in Texas and a group of activists in Tennessee sought to remove references of slavery and information regarding former American presidents owning slaves. Even though America had a dark period in history with slavery and the Jim Crow era, there was still beauty, greatness and genius that was born out of those painful times. So, this month, we will honor this tradition of Black History Month and explore various people who have impacted America (and the world) with their diverse and unique expressions of spirit. After all, as American author, James Baldwin wrote, “Your crown has been bought and paid for. All you must do is put it on your head.” So, we will! Happy Black History Month!
P.S. If you have not read any works by James Baldwin, well, you haven’t really lived yet! Here is a list of some of James Baldwin’s most important and popular works. Enjoy!
Just Above My Head
Go Tell It On the Mountain
The Fire Next Time
The Devil Finds Work
No Name in the Street
Notes of a Native Son
Tell Me How Long the Train’s Been Gone
If Beale Street Could Talk
Earlier this week, we introduced our tribe to Joseh Garcia, singer, song writer and consultant in music psychology from Natal, Brazil. Watch Joseh perform the song “Mensagem de Amor”, which was playing in the background during our interview with him. If your heart resonates with his music, then treat yourself! To preview and purchase songs by Joseh Garcia, visit josehgarcia.com and let the musical sound healing begin. Enjoy!
Invite Your Inner Critic to Sing and Play!
Obrigada Joseh! Thank you for sharing your gifts with the world!
I have never met anyone so passionate about bossa nova, until I met Joseh Garcia. It was fate.
We attended the show and were captivated by the performance of Joseh Garcia. He sang beautiful Bossa Nova songs, shared stories with the audience about growing up in Brazil and provided a context and history about the roots of Brazilian Popular Music (MPB).
Joseh is a PhD in Psychology who has researched and studied the psychological transformation that music has on its listeners. He gives concerts, lectures and workshops about sound healing and various styles of Brazilian music. Join Joseh at his upcoming workshop, “Music Alchemy – Changing Self -Criticism through Music”, Saturday, October 22, 6:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. at the Hanuman Center, 4450 18th St., San Francisco, CA.
We sat down with Joseh at Delores Park in San Francisco for a talk about music’s healing properties.
Today, I was visiting the Prison Yoga Project facebook page and found this article about the benefits of yoga for people suffering from PTSD. Anu Bhagwati, a former Marine Corps Captain founded Yoga for Vets in New York. Anu shares her story about how yoga saved her life.
“After leaving the Marine Corps in 2004, I was emotionally wounded and physically broken from multiple injuries. Diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and depression, I didn’t think I had anything left in me. Practicing and teaching yoga to veterans helped save my life.”
If there are veterans in your community, please consider sharing this article with them. Often, we see the physical costs of war. However, the emotional and mental tolls that war and military service takes on a person and their family is not talked about enough. Yoga may be able to help offer comfort and support to those with PTSD. Check out Yoga for Vets, which offers a free search around the U.S. for yoga programs for our military personnel.
Kimberly Johnson is an American ex-pat living in Rio de Janeiro, teaching yoga, raising her daughter, offering doula services and hosting yoga retreats. However, when we met Kimberly, she had just come off her Brazil album release party a few weeks earlier for her CD “Saudades da India.” Kimberly’s CD takes listeners through a musical journey of Sanskrit chantings perfect for meditation, asana practice and deep relaxation.
Kimberly’s yoga practice and music have been largely inspired by many of her teachers (Rodney Yee of Oakland, CA, Trish O’Reilly, Richard Freeman and Brian Dorfman), as well as her time in India where Kimberly studied Vedic chanting in Sanskrit with J. Jayraman, the librarian at Ramana Maharshi ashram.
My favorite track on Saudades da India is” Samba Sivaya” which blends the Brazilian-samba sound with the popular, ancient Sanskrit mantra “Om Namah Shivaya.” For more on Kimberly, check out her interview in Yoga Journal – Brasil, where she made the cover!
This summer, Keme and I had a chance meeting with Kimberly, while we were staying in the Santa Teresa neighborhood of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It turns out that we all shared mutual friends and acquaintances from what is affectionately known as “the island” by those whose paths have crossed at the Island Experience in Ilha Grande.
For more on Kimberly, check out her interview with Glimpse TV.
This summer during our retreat into Ilha Grande, Brazil, we met Jude Rowe a sparkly-eyed, joyous yogi visiting Ilha Grande from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Jude is a fun-loving, grounded soul, who grew-up climbing mountains and paddling through streams in Montana, developing a love for nature. During the retreat, Jude was full of expert hiking tips, as we all trekked across the various challenging and rugged terrains of the Atlantic rain forest. Jude is also a very seasoned kayaker, who has led kayak expeditions in Alaska. Presently, Jude is a yoga instructor at High Desert Yoga in Albuquerque.
Jude traded in her desert yogi life for an island adventure. Jude spent six weeks traveling through Rio de Janeiro, visiting the funky, artistic neighborhood of Santa Teresa; living the turbulent and mesmerizing island life on Ilha Grande–Bananal and Lopes Mendes Beach–while exploring the small fisherman villages and colonial towns of Abraao, Paratay and Angra.
After teaching yoga classes at The Island Experience in Ilha Grande, Jude ended her Brazilian adventure near Leblon, a posh neighborhood in Rio next to Ipanema Beach.
While in Ilha Grande, we interviewed Jude to discuss what spirituality means to her. She encourages people to “…carefully examine deep inside on a personal level to discover for oneself what is true.”
We also talked with Jude about her spiritual practice and how she connects with spirit. Jude offers some insight to people just starting to explore their spiritual path.
We look forward to having Jude as one of our guest on “Work Your Magic” radio show in the future, so stay tuned! If you are in Albuquerque, New Mexico, then check out one of her beautiful yoga classes! Grab a mat and connect with Jude at High Desert Yoga studio, where she teaches Sunrise, Women and Seniors yoga classes.
Today, we are releasing the first video in our series on questions of spirituality. What is it? Why is it important? Is it important? On Tuesday night, during our “Work Your Magic” radio show we asked the question “What does it mean to be a spiritual person?”, we played several answers from our interviews with various people around the world. People were candid, honest and spoke from the heart about what spirituality means to them. The answers are interesting and diverse. What do you think? What is your definition of spirituality? What does it mean to you in your life? We want to hear from you! Contact us or leave a comment on facebook !
In the meantime, meet some of our Mawu Angels tribe….introducing Joseh, Damian, Jude and Amparo-kindred souls from different corners of the globe– from Brazil to Spain to the United States–all answering this question!
Stay tuned as we continue this conversation and keep exploring this question. Part 2 of the series coming soon! Remember to subscribe to our YouTube channel, so you can get up to date videos!