Go, Sens!

gasthaus switzerland in the snowUpon arrival in Ottawa yesterday morning after a sleepless night on Air Canada, the falling snow did not cheer me up. Brrrr. (Yes, I’m staying at a B&B called the Gasthaus Switzerland; it’s campy, with cow bells and posters of the Alps.) Perhaps I was meant to live through a mean yesterday to provide contrast to today, a wonderful, sunny day made for walking around outside.

CIMG1343.JPGThe National Gallery of Canada is an awesome place. I snapped this photo from my table in the Rotunda while snacking on a light lunch. From the outside, the architecture of this end of the gallery echoes the spires of the Parliament Library just to the right of the taller tower of Parliament itself. Art galleries make me creative, and I jotted down pages of thoughts during lunch.

The contemporary collection on the second floor blew my socks off. It’s a combination of the familiar and the experimental, housed in enormous, airy rooms. This Jackson Pollock…

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…is transparent!

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Check out the scale of this building! Enormous, sky-lit inner courtyards are great for meditation.

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Duchamp’s Readimades are well represented here. He said art is like dope; too much and you’re in trouble. So in spite the opportunity, he limited production of the Readimades.

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The Byward Marketplace neighborhood is riddled with passageways. That’s where I found this great dancing bear. Pauta Salla, an Inuit hunter, carved the bear. Son of a legendary Inuit leader of Baffin Island, Salla sculpted his abstract bears to supplement his income.

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A short stretch of Rideau Avenue, about three blocks from the Gasthaus Switzerland, is host to seven tatioo parlors. They also function as head shops and gathering places for strangely ornamented youth. Some shops also remove tattoos. All do piercings and (don’t think about this one) body modification. The two shops in the photo share space with a souvenir place that celebrates drunkenness and a branch of the Church of Scientology.

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I’m in Ottawa to interview a fellow who set up the best implementation of web-learning 2.0 I know of for the informal Learning Fieldbook. I’m also here to advise small manufacturers on establishing and maintain successful communities of practice on the shop floor.

Tuesday morning, I’ll be in Orlando, delivering a “Power Hour” presentation to the CLO Symposium on Orchestrating Change. My red Hawaiian shirt is ready, and I may offer the CLOs some zaniness by wearing the hot-sauce shirt with the white suit I bought for travel in South America.