'I'm always looking for the Hows and the Whys and the Whats,' said Muskrat, 'That is why I speak as I do. You've heard of Muskrat's Much-in-Little, of course?'
'No,' said the child. 'What is it?'
- The Mouse and his Child. Russell Hoban.

Go here to find out more.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Announcement: Next Exhibition. Hawkes Bay Views by Caudwell and Steeds

There is just under one month to go until the next exhibition at my gallery-house 'Cottleston' on Friday the 27th February (2015).
This next one will be a glorious medly of landscape photographs from the camera of Andrew Caudwell, probably three gallery-room's worth, maybe four ...
And I have a small, pared-down nucleus of my own landscape oils that have never before been shown in public, for another room's viewing. So, something a bit different this time.  Not a sign of a bee. ◊ Please consider this an open invitation to attend the opening night pre-viewing drinks and nibbles from 6.00pm onwards. Or pop in anytime* between 11.00 am and 4.30 pm any day 28th - Sunday 8th March.

The weather has been very hot here in the sunny Bay of Plenty, but as summer progresses gently into autumn, the last few days have been just about the most perfect temperature imaginable: a max of 23 - 26°C ( 73°F - 79°F) and down to an extremely pleasant 17°C (62°F) at night. 
You see? It's a perfect time to visit Tauranga, New Zealand. But that's not all! If you email me in the next 24 hours, you may win a free three-day stay in the last remaining wing of the house-gallery! The red room has its own sitting-room and ensuite. Freshly laundered sheets and towels, home-made chocs and a pitcher of cold real lemonade on arrival, plus the use of the kayaks to have a leisurely paddle up or down the river, with a lunch picnic hamper full of goodies, come with this offer! So if you are far away, book those seats! Get on that plane! And if you are really lucky, my daughter the flight attendant, will serve you your cuppa and bikkies on the last leg from Melbourne to Auckland.

Andrew Caudwell is a photographer based in Napier, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand. He especially enjoys getting up early and heading out to seashore, river or lake, and capturing the sublime beauty of the night sky and breaking dawn. 

My landscapes capture the essence of typical North Island New Zealand back-country farming. Flown in a light plane, off the usual routes, the hills folded green or gold; small intimate pockets of rarely-seen land. 

◊ Back to bees in the middle of winter - to cheer us with images of flowers and sunshine in the coldest days
* open other hours by appointment. Contact me: art@katherinesteeds.com

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Lime and Lemongrass Panacotta

Years ago I went up to Wharepuke - a restaurant and accomodation complex near Kerikeri. We stayed in a small cabin in a clearing in the sub-tropical forest, and ate a wonderfully sublime fruit called a casimiroa which we found under a tree, and which I have never tasted the like of before or since. One evening we had a meal in the restaurant. I don't recall the main, but the lime and lemon grass panacotta was heaven. In fact, the whole place was heaven... One day I'll return.

(This is a photo from a Facebook friend who went there recently.)

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Just mowed the Lawns

Happy Christmas everyone - from my place to yours.  And wishing you a wonderful 2015

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Granny's Mince and Macaroni

Part of the process of getting a house turned into a gallery is the Compression of Belongings and Throwing out of Stuff.  And this means I sometimes stumble across things I haven't seen for years, sometimes decades.
For example, while doing the digitisation of my recipe book, I found this tiny drawing that son James, now 28 and living in Germany, did 24 years ago, stuck on the bottom of a recipe of Granny's.
The recipe is much older, probably dating back to when I stayed at the homestead after we came back from our OE in '79 (I know this because it was only a few weeks that I didn't realise Phyl was spelled with a 'y').

It's such a neat drawing.  It has the most important bits.
And by the way it is a really easy, comforting and tasty dish too.

Monday, 1 December 2014

Eye Candy Day: TLVD Phenomenon Revisited

On the 1 September of my first year of blogging, I began the blogging series 'Eye Candy Day'.  On the first of the month, each month, for the following four years, without missing a single one, I posted, usually without comment or hint as to who it was, an image of a pretty or handsome human.  In my opinion, of course, and not always a truth universally acknowledged.
They were self-confessedly shallow, and possibly even slightly offensive to some, and justified by the words 'my Eye Candy Day should just be taken with a pinch of ..er.. sugar. I am usually so overly and deeply sensitive to others' feelings, once a month I have to redress the balance. :-)' 
Today I thought I would repost the first one as a tribute to my tenacity in the face of enormous public pressure (actually they often got more jocular comments than other posts, and, once he got used to them, even from Yorkshire Pudding to whom they seemed a direct testosterone-infused glove slap).

So without more ado, here is the face and the link to that first Eye Candy Day.  Many Happy Returns.  Maybe …

Eye Candy Day 1

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Why I've not been Blogging

But wait …. there's more!
Information about the exhibition here
And a walk through the gallery during my last exhibition here
And a free set of steak knives here.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Chimps and Bees

It wasn't all that long ago that Jane Goodall discovered that chimps use tools, thereby ruining what had until then seemed a lovely definition of the uniqueness of Homo sapiens.
So then someone suggested we were unique in the animal kingdom because we could use signs to communicate, and what's more, could  communicate abstract ideas.
But Karl Von Frisch shot both down at one fell swoop, by proving that bees communicate abstract ideas (direction of nearby food source taking into account the change of sun direction during the intervening minutes) using sign (the 'waggle' dance).

Yay bees!  You rule!
The cooler thing is that so far, only chimps have come near bees for these amazing abilities.

And us of course.

There is however one thing bees can't do that we can.  Lie.

Sketching honey bees (Apis melifera) for my upcoming exhibition
"Our Bees" with Yaniv Janson.