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Hi!

Welcome to my blog. As an interior designer, design is in my blood. Design affects how we live, how we function. It can have a profound effect on our happiness and productivity.  I wish to inspire you with my stories about great, good and not so good design. About exteriors and interiors. About colours and art. In short, the things that we surround ourselves with. 

Vivaldi and Interior Design

Vivaldi and Interior Design

Vivaldi and interior design you ask? Yes there is a connection. Read on. By the way, the home shown above was Vivaldi’s home in Venice (Source: Getty Images).

As y’all know I joined a blog challenge at the beginning of October this year. The purpose of this challenge is to stretch yourself in the blogging field. Each day I receive a suggestion about a topic. Each and every one of these suggestions is great, but most of them do not apply to what I write about. I kept writing about my field of expertise: interior design. I wrote one blog per day for a number of days and then life got in the way - as it often does, right? I fell off the challenge wagon. Yep, I was not able to write one blog per day. It all started when I fell behind doing something for a friend that took more time than anticipated. I thought I could make up the missed days, but since my articles involve a lot of research and thus a lot of time, that did not happen. All of a sudden I found that the blogs were taking over my life. I was researching from early morning till late in the day. There was little room for anything else. It became stressful and I decided that enough was enough.

 Interior With Violin by Henri Matisse (1918). Oil on Canvass. 36”x46” +/-. Wouldn’t this piece make a great addition to an foyer or a dining room? A copy that is, of course….

Interior With Violin by Henri Matisse (1918). Oil on Canvass. 36”x46” +/-. Wouldn’t this piece make a great addition to an foyer or a dining room? A copy that is, of course….

It is one thing to try to give great information and images to my readers, it is another thing when life becomes about nothing else but blogging. As a professional designer it is my obligation to provide accurate and up to date information and that takes a lot of time. Today, however, the email I received from the challenge organizer suggested an article on a favourite song or piece of music as a topic to write about. And, hey I can whip up an article on that easily. And, there is also a connection to my profession of interior design.

 A beautiful, traditional landing with a collection of violins adding to the atmosphere of the space. Source: Unknown

A beautiful, traditional landing with a collection of violins adding to the atmosphere of the space. Source: Unknown

I love music like most people do. My favourite music is classical music. My radio is tuned into classical music stations every day. My car radio is programmed with stations which predominantly air classical music. Most of my CD’s are full with classical music. I wish I had learned to play an instrument in my youth. I am trying to remedy this by self teaching the violin - not easy!. One of my most preferred pieces is Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, one of the most played compositions ever, but not the original piece. Yes, it is beautiful and relaxing to listen to. However, my go-to piece is Max Richter’s Recomposition of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons.

 A miniature violin maker’s workshop in an old open violin. A work of love. Source: Unknown

A miniature violin maker’s workshop in an old open violin. A work of love. Source: Unknown

I discovered it accidentally. The year was 2012. It was late August and I was on my way to meet a client. I had to show some changes I made to a set of house drawings and drop off a set of copies for my client’s use. As I was driving along the Four Seasons was playing on CBC Radio 2, a Canadian radio station which plays classical music in the mornings with host soprano Julie Nesrallah.

You know how when you listen to a piece of music or a song that you know really well, you anticipate certain notes and runs or lyrics? Well, I was expecting exactly that while driving along. But surprisingly the run I was waiting to hear did not appear. How weird was that! I started to pay attention. The interpretation of the Four Season I heard was really different and so beautiful. I arrived at my destination and parked my car leaving the door wide open. My client and I had our meeting on the hood of the car. I did not want to miss the music. Not one note of it.

 Inviting - sit down and play me a song. Source: Unknown

Inviting - sit down and play me a song. Source: Unknown

I found out that it was Max Richter’s recomposition of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons played by the Berlin Konzerthaus Kammerorchester with Andre de Ridder as conductor and Daniel Hope as the first violinist. Max Richter is a modern, contemporary, and amazing composer who creates very interesting music. Daniel Hope is a wonderful, first rate violinist and Andre de Ridder an accomplished conductor. These three people make beautiful music together. Max Richter’s interpretation of Vivaldi’s Four Season is so interesting. It is different and intriguing. I purchased the album when I returned to my office. I was so excited I called my son in Germany to tell him all about it. I researched where I could listen to it in person and I found a concert planned for October 5th, 2012 in Munich, Germany. It was the only one….. There was no concert in North America. Max Richter is well known in Europe, less so in North America, although people are discovering him here!

My son and I started making plans for me to fly to Germany for the concert. I was going to book tickets for the both of us and we would meet in Munich. It would be for one weekend only. Friends of ours lived not too far away, so we could pay them a visit as well. It was really important to me to attend this concert with my son so we could experience it together. A lifetime memory.

I never got there.

We never heard Max Richter’s Four Seasons played in person. Shortly after making plans my son was offered a job back in Canada by the company he worked with while he was an engineering student in Toronto. He flew back to Canada. The concert flew out of the window. This piece is now my “one-that-got-away”!

The section of the album I like best is no. 13, the last part of three winter sections. Winter has arrived here. Today the temperatures dropped below zero. Max Richter’s recomposed winter season by Vivaldi seems a good fit to listen to. Here is part 13.

Since the discovery of this album there is no other piece that gets me into the design zone better. I put the music on and immediately I get carried away into my head and I begin creating. I hear the cold of a vast open land, I hear snow falling, I hear winds, I hear icicles. I hear loneliness. I become one with creativity. Do you have a piece of music or a song that does something like that for you?

 Source: Pinterest

Source: Pinterest

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