Sunday, 29 December 2013

2013 Has Been a Good Year for Boye By Red

Hello all!!!

2013 was somewhat of a strange year for me. First seven months were stressful and both happy and sad. I was either ridiculously ecstatic or really sad. And whilst I don't do middle of the road when it comes to emotions, I have to admit even I was surprised by my yo-yo like feelings. I now realise that nursing a heart that was not exactly mended as I previously thought it was and having a stressful job is not exactly a great combination for a happy life. But being an eternal optimist, I knew I'll get to the right place in my own time.

And then I went back home to Bosnia in August and things changed. Nothing like swimming and sunbathing every day; eating good food; spending time with family and people you love and reading. A LOT. 
I came back to my London home and things fell into place. My job changed and I could not have been happier. I now look forward to going to work every day. It gives me an enormous pleasure and satisfaction to spend every day with some of the most wonderful people in the world.

I reconnected with a friend I did my Masters degree with few years ago, and we created a short theatre piece about destitute immigrants in the UK, called Welcome to Dreamland. I've been working on it on my own for quite a while but I needed someone I can trust to join me in the adventure and put a bit of their knowledge, experience and magic into it. Not only did it have an amazing reception at the Manchester Museum, but it has also given us a big push to continue working on a full production of the piece. And, the biggest bonus, our friendship grew stronger! I cannot wait to resume with our rehearsals and see where the next installment takes us. I feel 2014 will be a good one for Welcome to Dreamland.

I have also seen some great theatre performances. Joseph Mercier's Rite of Spring tops the bill. You can see more here:

Natasha Davis's Internal Terrains was another great live art performance and I strongly recommend you catch it. It has been playing around the UK for the last 12 months and I think you'll still be able to catch it next year somewhere around the country. 

For someone who used to not like musicals much, I have been converted and really enjoyed West Side Story and Singing in the Rain.

I also read A LOT of books this year. The ones that are still with me are Refugee Boy (Benjamin Zephaniah), 26a (Diana Evans) and Zoo Time (Howard Jacobson). All strongly recommended.

The last five months turned out to be the happiest of my life. In particular, the last six weeks. I've been spending time with people I love, living in the moment and enjoying every minute of it. 

Here is my year in pictures. (As ever, click on the picture to enlarge):

As my regular readers know, I always have flowers on my coffee table. If there are no flowers in my house, something is seriously wrong. These were my favourite this year:

I took some blurry images and shared a coffee with a friend or two:

I have been very fortunate and received so many presents throughout the year. This one has inspired me to continue with The Barbie Massacre project I started this year.

I have been photographed and drawn quite a few times this year. I love them all. These are just two that make me smile.

I haven't seen as many art exhibitions as I would have liked to, but Georges Seurat's Bathers took my breath away when I saw it again at the National Portrait Gallery in London. I always liked it, but after studying it in detail this summer, I now love it.

And to finish off, here are a few moments from Welcome to Dreamland performance at the Manchester Museum:

This has been an unusually long post, but it is hard to put a whole year into two sentences and a few pictures. 
Having thought about 2013 I realised that it has actually been a very good year for me. Spending time with friends, making new ones, working on Welcome to Dreamland and working hard to better myself, has paid off. 

I'll leave you with one of my favourite quotes that I try and honour every day:

"To be alive is to totally and openly participate in the simplicity and elegance of here and now." 

I wish you all a very happy, healthy and positive new year. Enjoy the moment.

Red xx

Balloons photograph taken by Louise O'Gorman. Visit her website:


Anonymous said...

Congrats on your project, that's an amazing achievement and as for the happiness, well what a wonderful gift - it's something we can never chase..

Natalia | Fashioned by Love said...

Wonderful round-up, darling! Wishing you an even better 2014! x

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

So happy that your year has ended so well, I hope the 2014 goes from strength to strength. Keep well and keep enjoying life. Diane

Mary Jo said...

Dear Red, reading your post leaves me with the words, what a wonderful life. There is stress and heartbreak, but in the end it's always so great to be alive and you have made your own dreamland come alive and I'm so impressed. Can't wait to hear how your project progresses and your barbie massacre project makes me laugh! Wishing you many good things and lots of flowers in the coming year!!!
xo Mary Jo

p.s. thank you so much for all your many lovely comments, they definitely make my day, especially over on my new blog Magical Mined :)

Jane and Lance Hattatt said...

Dearest Red,

Gosh what a year you have had. No wonder you have been away from the Blogosphere. Oh dear, we are all becoming rather absentee bloggers but it is so good when we reconnect and catch up. I do so hope that there will be windows of opportunity in your schedule this year to share a few details with your blog mates. We shall look forward to that very much.

The Dreamland project sounds to be particularly interesting and wonderful that you have someone to share the project with. It is always so inspiring and uplifting working with someone with ideas close to one's own and it does sound as if you have found your artistic soulmate. We are happy for that.

Thank you so much for the warmly welcoming comment which you left for us. It was much appreciated.

Hoping you are keeping well. Wishing you a joyful weekend. J and L xx