Weather Phenomenon Breaks Our Arts

When I was very young and living in England, where the story I am about to tell has more relevance, I learned a saying that not only bred an attitude to life but also improved my spelling. 

Whether the weather is hot, 

or whether the weather is not 

I will whether the weather 

whatever the weather

whether the weather is hot

or whether the weather is not

With our tiny island issuing a severe weather warning this weekend and postponing all planned outdoor events, and even indoor performances, such as the concert we had planned to see on  Friday evening, the Yaiza Municipal Band was also called off. 

Still, if the weather had settled by Sunday we could take a soothing stroll around a beautiful home / art gallery in Orzola in the north of Lanzarote.

These occasional openings of her home / gallery by Claudie, a busy and influential artist, are always calm and civilised events allowing you to browse the eclectic arts described on our poster image.

Claudie is a gracious hostess offering a glass of cava as you wander round the various rooms. She never intrudes but is always delighted to explain how and why a particular piece came about or to generally discuss with her guests the state of the arts today.

We have visited several times and now have several Claudie pieces in our home, from paintings to photographs to fridge magnets of unique style, and many examples of found objects sometimes known as the French ‘objet trouve’, an object which is retrieved or bought by an artist for its intriguing or aesthetic properties. Some artists have transformed found objects into works of art, while others have derived inspiration from collected items.

Visitors are often amazed by Claudie’s keen eye and creativity and the vision that turns broken pieces of wood into works of art.

Both Claudie herself, and her creations, are willing to engage and to take their place in the real world and her wonderful works are affordable and accessible.

This was the last exhibition of the current season. She will re-commence her invitations to her arts in the summer and I have no doubt there will be new additions on display.

When it came to ´Sunday Morning Coming Down´ our home town of Playa Blanca at the very south of the island was shadowed and chilly despite being under the duvet  of a low, heavy black cloud that stretched as far as we could see but at nine thirty it had not yet brought the thunder and lightning, very heavy rain and high winds that the weather warning had threatened so we set off for Orzola in the hope of spending a couple of hours with Claudie and her friends, stopping for a meal on the way back home and getting home in time to unload whatever arts purchases we had made at the gallery, and getting them safely into the house, and Lord, ¨Let It Rain, Let It Rain, Let It Rain.

However, the black cloud seemed to be descending even lower and growing ever more dense. As we headed through Macher the wind was increasing and speed quicker than we were slowing down and we passed a car that had over-turned  was laying on its roof some twenty yards away on the rocky roadside. Police and emergency services were in attendance but we later learned this had been a fatal incident in which the driver had died.

We grimly soldiered on but just as we arrived in Arietta the cloud seemed to be resting on the shoulders of the ghost of the wind toy installation created by Manrique and its all-moving parts were dancing up a storm. As if it were some sort of mystical rain dance the heavens opened and huge rapid-fire raindrops were instantly blurring our vision. Aware that the next and final leg of our journey to Claudie’s meant following a road close to the shoreline, we imagined high waves coming in and even stronger winds, and so did a full turn at the roundabout and headed back home.

On our return journey it seemed that whole island was under deluge. It looked as if Las Breñas had been devoured by this monstrous cloud and the road up Femes from the camel roundabout had become almost invisible. Rain water and pebbles and stones were rolling downhill in front of us, and then heading back towards us as we drove uphill. On the so-called flat stretches of the LZ2 there was standing water everywhere and even as we arrived back in Playa Blanca conditions were far too horrid to consider parking and going for a meal so instead we drove the final mile home and as we pulled up into our parking spot, the rain stopped, the wind died and up above was a beautiful blue sky and a hot sun. 

Once back in the house we texted Claudie to explain that we had tried to reach her, but the weather had forced us back, and we were sorry we wouldn’t see her for a further few weeks yet. Her cheery reply said she had several visitors there already and the weather in Orzola had been beautiful all morning !!

There is always consolation here on Lanzarote as the arts calendar is so jam-packed with interesting events. That means that next week, God willing and The Creek Don’t Rise, we will be able to bring you a review for our next concert. 

We will be seeing a piano and two-violin recital of Bach music played by a trio made up of Javier Diaz at the piano and the two violinists Diego Bermudez, who we reviewed on these pages last week as part of a Bach Family collation and a the brilliant Iya Zhmaeva, about whom we have written several times on these pages over the years. 

Iya is not only a beautiful player, but also she employs those skills to raise money for good causes.

The concert is at El Fondeadero, and we usually take the water taxi over the sea from Puerto Calero to Puerto del Carmen  as part of the concert experience. You can be sure we will be listening to the weather forecast before we set off.