The secret gallery’s blog

Maybe the first secret gallery in Doolin, Co. Clare, Ireland

Archive for February 2010

Mushrooms Rock!

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Pencil, Biro and pigment on paper    “Mushroom Field”        Marianne Slevin 2010

It is funny when you discover the same thing coming from several different sources at round about the same time. Today has been a lot about mushrooms for me. How mushrooms can help save the earth. I just watched a great video on TED T.V by Paul Stamets about solutions to help save the earth. They grew Oyster mushrooms on some land where there was toxic waste and the mycelium, a fine but strong branch like network covered the land producing mushrooms actually revived the land and soon there were insects and birds and it was an oasis of life once again! Fungi uses radiation as food, Mycelium can absorb oil, it can even brake up rock.

The drawing above was from the idea of mushrooms saving the earth but done before I had seen the video more about my imagination then facts. This morning one of the Tweets I was reading jumped out at me so I followed the link about this discovery that mushrooms may save the planet. It totally inspired me. This drawing is like an elaborate doodle, very enjoyable to draw! I think there will be more to come on this amazing fungi at work!

Sketch book drawing of Mycelium by marianne Slevin 2010

Written by Marianne Slevin

24 February, 2010 at 12:03 am

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Valentine’s Roses

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Written by Marianne Slevin

16 February, 2010 at 12:16 am

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Standing On The Earth I See

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Standing on the earth I see,

That you are quite the same as me,

We are both like leaves from an apple tree,

I think I am I, but I don’t even exist

surely I am, without the I added in

I look at you, as if you are you through and through

but we are all made from the same sodding goo!

Oh no that’s not right cause it’s  not goo at all

it’s something that’s no thing at all!

Now I am no wiser I have just down sized me

to a ant that is beside me,

Then I realize there is no separation at all!

For I am as large as the planet which is still rather small

And I am not sure if my cousin is the moon!

Poem by Marianne Slevin

Written by Marianne Slevin

10 February, 2010 at 2:04 pm

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Some Little Things That Make Me Happy

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Me wearing part of Elenor’s Demetre costume, from our wedding, without it’s contents as a hat.         Photograph taken by Jude

Yes I promised and here some of them are! I want to try to keep these little things and not the major obvious ones like Loving my Family dearly, and art and music and poetry! Stars and the moon and nature and big trees and flowers on the table!

Bonfires! I adore them, camping, cooking ones and big tidy up ones.

Early mornings when everyone is still asleep having this kind of “extra” time for a long coffee.

Completing things, even pots of jam, filling them or emptying them! so I can tidy it away, as this is rare for me, things generally get half done constantly!

When things flow really easily, like getting the perfect car space, and things feel effortless.

Planting seeds in the garden, and eating from it later on.

First primroses, well all primroses really.

Dancing with my husband.

When I don’t burn the toast! (while I am dancing with my husband!)

Having just the right amount of something. (or sometimes more!)

Letters and cards from friends and family. (parcels are great too!)

Hugging the ones I love. (and kissing you know who!)

Long walks through places I have never been before.

Laying on the earth. Grass or warm rocks or sand or bog.

Getting a tan. It has been a couple of years now without a summer.

Watching my horse when she is happy leaping and bucking, and riding her when she is calm!

Seeing and hearing wild geese.

My Birthday!

Eating outside or eating lovely food inside.

The smell of incense, honeysuckle, coffee, foreign places, Edgeware Road with all it’s different types of food, the ground in Connamara smells of sweet wild flowers and clean sea.


Looking at our wedding photographs again.

Sorry this is probably getting boring! Not for me because I could go on all day!

Written by Marianne Slevin

9 February, 2010 at 5:01 pm

Little Things That Cause Snarl Face To Appear!

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Me at Halloween Photograph by James Slevin

I like to try and keep a relaxed happy expression on my face but some things provoke the snarl face! I thought it would be fun to write some of them down and share my own pet dislikes and foibles.

Some of them are:

Things that are actually designed to brake after you have them a while, so you probably will buy a replacement, stupidly I usually do!

When you transfer money from one account to another in the same bank it actually vanishes for a couple of days, while the bank charges you a fee because the money did not reach the other account on time!

The time trick of there being actually no hours between midnight and 7am, or is that just a Doolin phenomenon?

Mud, I try to appreciate the earth but not fully there yet!

Wind, especially when it blows the car door open with such a force that it nearly knocks us all over, naughty Husband says that it is the only time the car gets cleaned out! Hair over eyes and in mouth so snarl face is hidden.

Rain, this I really need to work on over coming as there is just so much of it living in a cloud most of the time!

Spell check and its lack of understanding me!

Cables, hundreds of cables every where!

Last but certainly not less “stuff” everywhere, growing by the day, toys and loads of stuff I just cant throw away!

Once while I was having a snarl face episode I stopped and realized how lucky I am and suddenly became really grateful instead and I was no longer irritated just very happy! I must remember that the next time!

Tomorrow I will write about little things that make me feel very happy just to keep a balance!

Written by Marianne Slevin

8 February, 2010 at 9:51 pm

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Drawn Together

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“Maroon marker finds little maroon marker lid”                     Marianne Slevin 2010

It is funny the things one notices when tidying up the house. Something that I notice quite often is that similar things seem to be draw together. Just after I started writing this a recovery man came to fix or tow away our car, our car is a Lada Niva from Russia, the man is from Moscow and owns lots of Lada Nivas! He even offered to buy it he loves Ladas! I am intrigued by these more obvious snippets of organisation that are happening secretly around us all the time. It is quite entertaining the way the universe works sometimes. Maroon marker finds little maroon marker lid.

A while ago, I noticed some delicate art that had been given to me by a friend, assembled itself onto of the envelope addressed to the same friend. How did it end up there. I would like to have filmed all of the staged and what happened on its journey to get there. Why does to same not apply to sock, I ask myself?! Does the universe have a slightly wicked sense of humor?!

Written by Marianne Slevin

8 February, 2010 at 12:33 pm

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Practicing Honesty While you Art!

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Just imagine that every time that we felt blocked or uninspired  it was simply that we weren’t being ourselves. We think all kinds of stuff that isn’t true, such as what we think is expected of us and what other people think, I do anyway. My Husband and Muse, James says that when I am not flowing it is probably because I am not being honest: I am trying to hold certain things back and working so hard at blocking what I don’t want to think or talk about that I cant flow. This would make sense for art too. Censoring so much that the creative muscle just gives up through exhaustion.

Many of us have a stupid notion that we are not good enough so we may think that what we do in an very honest way can’t be very good so we try to be “better” then that. Everyone is good enough it is just realizing that. We often dont really know what we are doing but if we try to see inside of ourselves and look at who we really are then it is bound to lead somewhere. It is often the pieces of art or scraps of creativity that we cringe at and don’t want to show anybody that can be the most interesting, not the  bland mediocre ones that we like to show the world instead. It reminds me of photographs of ourselves; the ones that don’t really look like us we  like but the ones that have captured us, we shy away from. Truth can be a little uncomfortable sometimes. The good thing about it however is that there is an endless source.

Some questions to ask ourselves that might help;

What do I really feel this minute?

Who am I this minute?

What do I think is missing in the world right now?

What could I do being me the way I am this minute, feeling how I feel, do to help fill what is missing in the world/my world?

Thinking outside of the box is really good for freeing up possibilities. For example many days I could absorb myself in painting but today I could feel different and need to do something that I have never done before. It could take a little while to know the answer, but for me I know when I start to feel teary that that is the one, one of them anyway. Today, I miss beauty, I think in our society we have forgotten about how beautiful things make people feel better. Maybe I like to paint and draw what I think is beautiful, such as horses and trees. What everyone sees as beautiful is different. What do you see as beautiful?

Written by Marianne Slevin

5 February, 2010 at 5:14 pm

Posted in Thoughts on art, Uncategorized

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