Welcome to the swamp! Here, lurking in the muck, where creativity spawns, you'll find Mrs Crocodile, aka Colleen Dunkel, a costumer and teacher based in Basel, Switzerland.


Monday, May 30, 2011

Art Basel at the Crocodiles: part 2

Heart by Alla Crocodile, 2011

Introducing: Gallerie Muc: the latest of Art Basel's spin off events.  Gallerie Muc's founder, Coco Crocodile, speaking in an unidentifiable accent from a country-formerly-called-home, had this to say about the gallery's upcoming show, Pushing Buttons: "This show deals with pressing issues I feel the world needs to know, like why you should never show a six-year-old how to use the enlarge function on your color photocopier."  
The show is set to coincide with the opening of Art Basel.  We contacted the artist, who prefers to be known only as Alla and asked where she gets her ideas: "I tried pushing buttons.  I didn't know what I was doing actually.  I can't read.  Very well.  But my mom showed me what all the buttons do and then how to enlarge stuff and well, now I'm famous.  Mom keeps complaining that the budget for toner has gone through the roof and that it's cutting into the mac and cheese budget.  I think she thought kids were just supposed to sit around playing Fruit Ninja on her iphone till we grew up". 


So there you have it, six years old and they go and stimulate the rest of us out of our creative muck.  We now leave the swamp where we go back to Basel in eager anticipation of the ART.


Submitted by Mrs Crocodile's PR team


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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Crocodiles are ready for Art Basel, part 1

"Untitled" by Alla Crocodile, Basel, 2011,
"I was kind of thinking maybe I might like to try my hand at art.  Oh never mind!"  Just throw your hands up and realize that Resistance is Futile.  One day you wake up, and all your friends are doing some kind of art or creative job and you have to jump in too, even the children rope you in there.  I have tried to get Alla and Kazam to clean up their messes, but the "messes" just keep getting more creative.  When Alla was 12 months old it started with spaghetti sauce in circles on the wall next to her high chair and has continued till I realized last night that Alla had a roll of masking tape in her hand and was taping a paper towel to the bars on the balcony.  Once she finished she stepped back form her work and declared, "Mommy, you are not allowed to clean this up, you have to watch it blow in the wind."  The tone of her voice was the thing that brought me back to the here and now and I was able to respond, "Oh!  How perfect.  It's almost Art Basel."
Yours,
From the balcony,
Mrs Crocodile


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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Are you a Lebenskünstler?

One of my all-time favorite words in German is "Lebenskünstler".  Direct translation: "an artist of life".  Well now doesn't that just sound nice?  Not only because I have found no English equivalent, but because it is one of those words that can't decide if he's got a positive or negative connotation.  He doesn't know if he's coming or going.  Perhaps best described as resourceful, a Lebenskünstler is a person not an adjective.  He has something of the "letting go" of the artist, something that says, "Well yeah, you want such a big house and such a big car and such a big wife, husband, kids, etc..  But I am happy with what I have so I'm chilling out and enjoying life here.  I take my time.  I do not allow myself to be stressed.  I use my potential.  I live in the now.  I'm an artist.  I'm a soul."  But it rings less like Dr. Suess narrative than my description does.

So since Spring has hit in all her Glory, I encourage you to be a Lebenskünstler (masculine) or Lebenskünstlerin (feminine), at least for one day or maybe for the rest of the year...

Yours,
Mrs Crocodile


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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Take me or leave me...

There is a special place in my Croco heart for the character of Joanne from RENT.  Imagine in a few years, when Joanne and Maureen have smoothed out the first years' jitters of a new relationship, Joanne will be on the boards of directors of almost every organization campaigning for women's rights in New York City and will therefore be very busy, because she makes lists in her sleep.  Meanwhile Maureen will be a very good artist and business woman.  But for now they are still in the "There-will-always-be-women-in-rubber-flirting-with-me" stage of the relationship.

Joanne does defend herself and say to Maureen: "I'm not a theater person" But yes, you are, my dear Jo Ann (different spelling intentional here), you are more theater than most of us.  And we love that!  In Semi-Circle's production of RENT, Joanne will be played by Ariane Wildberger. 

Now if Mom-Won-One and Mom-Tu-Two don't comment on this post, I will disown them,


Yours, I'm dead serious, and it's almost my birthday!!!
Mrs Croco


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Monday, May 2, 2011

The King, The Crocodile and I...

Surviving the aftermath of a Royal Wedding and trying to clean up crocodile muck...Here is the burning question: if they bottled the stuff that goes into relationships and sold it on a shelf at the supermarket, how long would it take you to choose Charles and Camilla Brand over the Cate and William Variety?  A tough decision: just slightly harder than the difference between L'Oreal and Nivea.  The fact is, most of our relationship histories look a lot more like the tried and true love of the Charles and Camilla Brand.  I would, though, bet the francs I spend on shampoo (but not the ones I spend on mousse, hair-spray, conditioner, hair-mask and hairdressing) that most of us would want our hair to be better than the reality and go for the new fresh love of Cate and William.  Well, you know, the packaging is nicer, even if, "Gasp!" he's balding.
I'm only writing this to help my readers stave off total and complete depression from not yet having found a prince or princess.  So:
1)  Get out of your lonely tower and stop cleaning and start watching the trees grow.  This is enormously satisfying, as long as you stay in one place long enough.
2) Watch that bit where he puts the ring on her finger.  Wasn't that great?  In Hollywood, the ring slips right on.   Isn't it nice that it was so hard for William to get in on?
3) You can always be happy!  Because your first, second, third, forth and fifth weddings combined, will never be as expensive as theirs.
4) Brighten up! Because if Wills doesn't start with some kind of hair-enhancing product soon, we will have Yul Brynner as the King of England, now wouldn't that be nice?  We could all sing!
5) Don't worry!  You will find your prince or princess.
Yours, singing and cleaning up the muck, talking to birds and mice and generally acting like a princess
Mrs Crocodile



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