Spring Fête Galante

Pat Oleszko as the May Pole surrounded by frolicking Fellows,
including Karin Fleischer (on the right)

Last week VCCA Fellows Pat Oleszko and Karin Fleischer, along with assistance from other VCCA Fellows in residence, staged an idyllic fête galante on the green between the swimming pool and woodshed. 

The area was beautifully decorated with streamers and bunting, complemented by Karin’s rice paper haiku posted to trees and an Arcadian feast she prepared, spread out on the great stump of a tree felled by the Derecho of 2012. 

For the final bucolic touch: a flock of sheep, crafted by Pat from folding chairs and curled strips of paper.

Pat engineered and directed the performance aspect of the afternoon, providing handmade headwear to Fellows and staff–crafting several bespoke pieces on the spot.  Elaborately outfitted as a tree, she led a streamer-waving group procession preceded by composer Eric Moe on didgeridoo.  Writer Tom Piazza provided a banjo soundtrack during the leisurely picnic, which included a generous punch bowl of sangria.
A beautiful May feast prepared by Karin Fleischer

For the final touch of late May Day theatricality, attendees danced, skipped, and cavorted around a Maypole—which in this case was Pat—until she was entirely wrapped in brightly colored ribbon.

The whole would have been approved by the 18th-Century French artist Jean-Antoine Watteau, practitioner of the fête galante genre of painting.

Is there a better way to spend a lovely late afternoon in spring?

No, dear Reader. No indeed.

                                -Guest Blogger


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