A different display...

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A different display...

Post  jgeanangel on Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:53 am

Hello all, Each Spring the Bonsai Society of the Carolinas creates a display for the Southern Spring Show in Charlotte, NC. I had the good fortune to once again be invited to a create a display.

The display consisted of a long row of alcove stlye enclosures.


my empty alcove...



The completed display...


without the flash...


I know...
No stands...
Trees overlap each other...
The trees are in front of the image...
The image is too large...

Does it work?

Thanks,
John

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Re: A different display...

Post  fiona on Wed Mar 03, 2010 1:05 am

So it isn't a "traditional" Japanese display! So?

I like it, especially if that is the lighting effect that was present all the time.

You wonder if the image is too large. I find myself wondering what it would like like if the image covered the entire back of the alcove as it looks from your pics as if it doesn't. (Is it a 90 x 90cm alcove?) There are so many permutations of what might work best - image filling entire backdrop in square alcove / smaller image in rectangular backdrop which would allow for some black on the backdrop. And so on.

How I wish I could see this in real life and not just in a photograph.

Keep up the innovation, John.

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Re: A different display...

Post  Seth Ellwood on Wed Mar 03, 2010 2:46 am

I like that the images protrays a few different effects or moods. One is the end of another day in the struggle for survival as the sun sets on the mountains so does another day in the survival of a tree in the mountain.The beginning of another full night of creatures that are rarely seen during the day come out to stake their claim on the earth.The second mood or effect ( or first just depends on your perspective) The begining of another day of survival of the trees in the mountains the night has passed and the new dawn approaches.All the creatures of the night are winding down for their slumber and the day shift is just begining to wake up for their day of survival and wonder what the day ahead brings. I find peace in this composition but also understanding of the rigors of everyday life in a setting such as I have just described. I say even if it is not a "proper" display it is the emotion one can draw from it that really matters. Well done.

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Re: A different display...

Post  jgeanangel on Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:18 am

Thanks Fiona and Seth... I appreciate your comments...the last picture was taken with the ambient light.

It is interesting that at last year's display, Ken and I were the first to venture out of the box and use a photograph instead of a scroll in our displays. This year 5 of the displays used images or framed art work. It was difficult to get good pics of the rest of displays but I hope to have some better pics soon. I will added more pics when good ones come available.

Thanks again,
John

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Re: A different display...

Post  Jay Wilson on Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:41 pm

It works for me John. Funny though, Seth saw the sun setting over the mountains. I saw the sun rising over a swamp Smile
Love the idea.

Wonderful trees.

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Re: A different display...

Post  Rob Kempinski on Wed Mar 03, 2010 6:05 pm

It's an artistic presentation - with the winter silhouette in front it works. Definitely sets a mood more palatably than a traditional asian display. The wrinkles in the fabric are bit distracting.

My most exotic display when I ran a Florida annual convention display was to show a root over meteorite Ficus suspended in a room covered in black plastic with rotating light shining various colored stars and a smoke generator simulating the cosmos. It's the truth.

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Re: A different display...

Post  Smithy on Wed Mar 03, 2010 7:00 pm

I liked that very much. Really nice colours without the flash. I am more attracted to this kind of display than the traditional.

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Re: A different display...

Post  Guest on Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:21 pm

I like this display too. It could just be the colours but it has a warmth to it. I can relate to this composition a lot better than I can a Japanese display but I still like to see the whole image of a tree uninterupted.

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Re: A different display...

Post  chris on Wed Mar 03, 2010 9:38 pm

I think the display is fantastic, I love the trees I love the backdrop great idea to use the two trees, why are there creases in the material and why are there no stands or slabs?. maybe a light colored slab would lift the lower part of the composition? Great image.
Regards Chris

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Re: A different display...

Post  jgeanangel on Thu Mar 04, 2010 12:32 am

Thanks for the positive feedback.

One thing that is not very apparent in the picture is that the trees are on stands...of a sort. Perhaps, platform would be a better description. The fabric is wrinkled because it is draped over the platforms which are just pieces of plywood cut to match the shape and size of the pot. The platforms are also different heights. The forest is raised about 2" and the cedar is about 4.5" off the bottom of the alcove. I think this works well in person, but I can see where it is difficult to make out from the pictures.

I apologize for the pics...the room was dark and I didn't have a tripod to stabilize the image so most of the pics were just bad.

Rob...the asteroid display is a very original idea...I seem to remember seeing pictures of that at some point.

Will...in reference to your thought about "the whole image of the tree uninterrupted"... I considered this deeply, and several well-respected bonsai friends also questioned the spacing of the trees as I was putting the display together. In the end, I decided for "this" display I wanted the trees to over lap for simple reason that this is the image that matched the inspiration I had in mind. Where I live there are many examples of literati style pines which grow to a height just above the deciduous hardwood forests... these images seem to always attract my attention in winter.

Thanks again to everyone for the feedback!
John

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Re: A different display...

Post  Gæst on Thu Mar 04, 2010 6:14 am

The idea is good but a little critique from me. My personal taste is that the colours steel my attention to the trees, and I think the important parts, simplicity and peace are a bit absent. I can see the idea behind this display, but I do think it is necessary to have all the focus on how to present the bonsai, and to many other elements brings this out of balance for me. I like the idea of trying out different ways of display and it is very difficult to achieve a good display, even in the old fashioned way. That's my humble input.

Mr. Walter Pall did some new a few years ago with a painting behind a bonsai that worked extremely well. It was peaceful and in harmony, still something very new and refreshing. I do not have any pictures of it, but will try to set up something likely this coming weekend. Then we can see if it works for me. Shocked

Best regards
Morten Albek

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Re: A different display...

Post  sulrich on Thu Mar 04, 2010 7:31 am

Hi,

morten albek wrote:Mr. Walter Pall did some new a few years ago with a painting behind a bonsai that worked extremely well. It was peaceful and in harmony, still something very new and refreshing. I do not have any pictures of it, but will try to set up something likely this coming weekend.

FWIW, there are two pictures in this AOB article:
http://www.artofbonsai.org/feature_articles/artgetsbetter.php
and one more from a German forum:
http://www.bonsai-fachforum.de/download/file.php?id=3727

Best regards,
Stefan

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Re: A different display...

Post  jgeanangel on Thu Mar 04, 2010 2:38 pm

Thank you Morten for your thoughtful evaluation.

I have been enjoying the pics you reference from Walter for a couple of years.

I think all of the pics can be found here..scroll down they are near the bottom of the page. http://walter-pall.de/germanbonsaifertig.jpg.dir/index.html

John

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Re: A different display...

Post  mike page on Thu Mar 04, 2010 5:12 pm

John, I love to see inovation in the art of display, and you surely have inovated. That being said, I also belive in the validity of the artistic principle, "less is more". I think I would have just used the bonsai closest to the art background, and moved it to to the left.
Anyway, good job, and thanks for giving me some ideas.
Regards

Mike


Last edited by mike page on Thu Mar 04, 2010 6:43 pm; edited 1 time in total

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New Bonsai Display

Post  Peter Adams on Thu Mar 04, 2010 6:20 pm

Hi John,

I think your arrangement is really significant in the display of bonsai in the west. Its feeling of a winter sunset and the solitude of the scene distil for me the qualities Japanese poets try and capture. As a lyrical statement its hard to beat -- well done indeed! Of course you can refine it -- but its the idea that counts!

Best regards ........ Peter Adams

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Re: A different display...

Post  kenduncan on Thu Mar 04, 2010 11:59 pm

Good job John, here is the pic I took.
Ken

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Thanks!

Post  jgeanangel on Fri Mar 05, 2010 12:45 am

Thanks Mike!

Hey Ken! Thanks and your pic is certainly better than mine.

Mr. Adams, I am very honored and humbled by your comments...Thank you!!!

John

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Re: A different display...

Post  MartinSweeney on Fri Mar 05, 2010 4:00 am

Jgeanangel,

Another interesting and innovative display. I wish I could see it in person. I think we are loosing something in the pictures, although Ken's picture showed more depth and an overall less confused display. The display, as well as all the pictures shown of it so far, are very evocative of North Carolina winter scenes that I have seen. (Perhaps this year should have featured some snow?) I thank you for that. If you have pictures of the other trees in the display, I would enjoy seeing them too.

Regards,
Martin

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Re: A different display...

Post  mike page on Sat Mar 06, 2010 12:23 am

John, you inspired me to do something different.
The scroll is by Susanne Barrymore of Santa Barbara, CA The pot is by Michael Hagedorn. The tree is a good old USA Kingsville boxwood trained by your's truly. The haiku is also by your's truly.

SUNSET THEN DARKNESS
GLOOM OF NIGHT MOON RISING
A TIME FOR MAGIC

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Re: A different display...

Post  jgeanangel on Sat Mar 06, 2010 11:21 am

I like it Mike!!! Very nice!
John

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