Archive | November 2013

Today Is Your Day To Dance Lightly With Life

Today is your day to dance lightly with life,
sing wild songs of adventure,
invite rainbows and butterflies out to play,
soar your spirit, and unfurl your joy.

Today is your day to paint life in bold colors,
set today’s rhythm with your heart-drum, 
walk today’s march with courage,
create today as your celebration of life.

Today is your day to practice whimsey,
skip on the beach, and play with the waves, 
watch wondrous cloud animals parade your story, 
find a magical white bunny down every rabbit hole.

Today is your day to laugh at life,
laugh at what’s funny – laugh at what’s sad,
laugh loud – laugh often,
laugh at me – laugh at you – laugh at life.

Today is your day to honor your being,
release each and every struggle,
gather strength from life’s storms,
relax into the arms of spirit.

Today is your day to see in yourself the face of god.
Your mind sparks, your soul sparkles.
Your peace is counterpoint to the clamor of life.
You are a magnificent gift to the world.

  by Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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The Seven Wonders of the World

The list of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World was originally compiled around the second century BC, 

although Herodotus wrote about the idea aslong ago as the 5th century BC. 

The final list of the Seven Wonders wascompiled during the Middle Ages. 

The list comprised the seven mostimpressive monuments of the Ancient World, 

some of which barely survived tothe Middle Ages. 

The Great Pyramids of Giza 

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The Great Pyramid of Khufu (Cheops) was built by the Egyptian pharaoh Khufu of the Fourth Dynasty around the year 2560 BC. 

The structure consists of approximately 
2 million blocks of stone, each weighing more than two tons. 

When it wasbuilt, the Great pyramid was 481 ft high. 

It ranked as the tallest structure on Earth for more than 
43 centuries. It is the oldest and only surviving ‘wonder’. 

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Hanging Gardens of Babylon 

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Terraced gardens adjoining Nebuchadnezzar’s palace said 

to rise from 75-300 feet. Supposedly built by the king 

about 600 BC to please his wife, a princess from the mountains,

 but they are also asssociated with the Assyrian Queen Semiramis. 
Most descriptions of the Gardens come from Greek historians, 

but Babylonian records stay silent on the matter. 

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Statue of Zeus at Olympia 

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Carved by Phidias, the 40-foot statue marked the site of the original Olympicgames in the 400s BC. 
It was constructed of ivory and gold, and showed Zeus on his throne.

 It wasregarded as the greatest work in Greek sculpture. 

Today nothing remains atthe site of the old temple except

 the foundation of the buildings, and fallen columns. 
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Temple of Artemis at Ephesus 

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Constructed of parian marble and more than 400 feet long

 with over 100columns 60 ft high, it was begun about 550 BC

 and took some 120 years tobuild.

 It was decorated with bronze statues sculpted by the most skilled artistsof their time:

 Phidias, Polycleitus, Kresilas, and Phradmon.

 In 356 BC a mannamed Herostratus burned the temple to ground in an attempt to immortalizehis name. 
Mausoleum at Halicarnassus 

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Erected by Queen Artemisia in memory of her husband

King Mausolus ofCaria (in Asia Minor), who died 353 BC. 

It stood 140 feet high. 

The beauty ofthe Mausoleum is not only in the structure itself,

 but in the decorations andstatues that adorned 

the outside at different levels on the podium and the roof.

All that remains are a few pieces in the British Museum 

and the word’mausoleum’ in the English language. 

Colossus of Rhodes 

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Gigantic bronze statue of the sun god Helios (or Apollo);

 it stood about 117feet high, dominating the harbour entrance at Rhodes.

 The sculptor Charessupposedly laboured for 12 years before he completed it in 282 BC. 

It wasdestroyed by an earthquake about 226 BC. 

It has long been believed that theColossus stood in front of

 the harbor straddling its entrance. 

That isimprobable and recent studies suggest that 

it was erected on the easternembankment of the harbor. 

Pharos of Alexandria 

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Marble lighthouse and watchtower built about 

270 BC on the island of Pharosin Alexandria’s harbour.

 Possibly standing 400 feet high, it had, at the topstage, 

a mirror which reflected sunlight during the day 

while fire was used during the night. 

Its reflection could be seen more than 35 miles off-shore. 

Ofthe six vanished Wonders, the Light house of Alexandria was

 the last todisappear. 

It was destroyed by an earthquake in 1375.

Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures. ~Henry Ward Beecher

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The paintings of J. Kote are symphonies of light and color. They are lyrically stunning and romantic, edgy and current. Kote achieves this delicate balance of seemingly contradictory qualities through his complete mastery in technique, and through years of experimenting to find his own unique style.  With the lightness of a true master’s hand he combines classic academic and abstract elements, fusing these, literally letting them run into each other with dripping rivulets of riveting colors and light. 

Kote’s trade marks are his bold brush work and sweeping strokes of vibrant colors applied – more often than not – with a pallet knife, while other areas of the canvas are left monochromatic and devoid of detail creating a negative space that lets the eye drift to infinity. The results are paintings that tremble in stillness with energy and light. 

Influenced by many places where he lived, Albanian born artist J.Kote began his journey towards artistic self-discovery in his youth and never looked back. 

From very young age he was endlessly drawing and had the innate urge to create. By the age of 13 he had made up his mind to become an artist and devote his life to the arts. He focused on getting accepted into the finest art high school of his native Albania. Ultimately, after competing locally and nationally, he was awarded a coveted spot at ‘’National Lyceum of Arts’’ in Tirana. 

In 1984 Kote followed this amazing feat by being accepted into the  ‘’Academy of Fine Arts’’ of Tirana, where J.K was educated in the traditional approach of the old masters.  Yet even as a student he wanted to brake loose of the limitations, he wanted to experiment and grow, sometimes leave paintings seemingly unfinished, shatter the boundaries of classic realism.  While still in school Kote also worked at a movie studio, and made a small but well received animation film Lisi. 

In 1988 Kote graduated with a diploma in painting and scenography.  The years of practice and his 8 year solid art education had prepared the young artist well to pursue his life’s quest of living and breathing art.  It had set him on his lifelong journey to find his own unique style and language, to create stupendous paintings pulsating with the light and energy that he sees all around him.

Kote began his professional career as a scenographer at the Petro Marko Theatre in Vlore, but in late 90-s the 26 year old artist grew restless and decided to debark to Greece, where the warmth of the Mediterranean sun and brilliant light infused his paintings in tone and style and lent them a more impressionistic air.  

Highly respected, the young artist did well and received many important commissions, including in 1998 The Meeting of the Leaders for the Hellenic Cultural Union in Thessaloniki which depicted the Assembly of the Founders of Modern Greece, and a portrait in 2000 of the former president of Greece, Konstantinos Stephanopoulos, for the Greek community in Toronto.

After a very successful 10 years in Greece, Kote was weary to rest on his laurels, and he moved to Toronto.  Already renowned for his beautiful portraits and scenic paintings, Kote now garnered additional kudos for his gorgeous urban scapes, and snow scenes.  His color and style moved away from the impressionistic influence toward a more expressionistic feel.  The paintings from this period, many of them masterpieces, are a clear indication of the continual development of Kote’s style and his fluidity and growth as an artist.  Thanks to a host of avid collectors worldwide Kote saw his dream and years of labor come to fruition.  Achieving this goal, however, only made him strive for higher ones.

Like a rolling stone Kote moved to New York, The Big Apple, in 2009.  Here his paintings and style morphed again.  The colors grew bolder and his style became so unique that it cannot be ascribed to an existing genre.  This highly prolific painter, who works on his craft almost daily and long hours, is never satisfied, always seeking, always experimenting, and always growing. 

Only the future will reveal the great heights his art will ascend.  Certainly one thing holds true for all of Kote’s master works: they capture shimmering moments in time and space and are filled with light, energy and love for whatever subject he chooses to portray.

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