from 40 to 45 / on becoming who i am…

“The same chemicals were used in the cooking as were used on the composition of her own being: only those which caused the most violent reaction, contradiction, and teasing, the refusal to answer questions but the love of putting them, and all the strong spices of human relationship which bore a relation to black pepper, paprika, soybean sauce, ketchup and red peppers.” ― Anaïs Nin

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above / from salon dinner #1, Feb 2011 to salon dinner #95, Oct 2016 ~ and in between tom’s 70th birthday at alice’s…

“There are two great days in a person’s life
– the day we are born and the day we discover why.”
~ william barclay

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how are you going to live your dash, we going to live our dash, i going to live MY dash? i had never heard it expressed in such a manner before ~ until one day, at a screening in SF at ILM, I sat in front of werner herzog’s documentary Into the Abyss and the prison guard asked that, or said it both as a question and a command, and this was some 3 or 4 years ago and i think of it, intermittently, to my self, and ask others ~ “how are you going to live your dash”… the dash is, of course that space between one’s day of birth and one’s day of death  ~ the literal dash on one’s gravestone that is both all that you wish to accomplish, do, be, become. we change lives and professions these days like we choose our partners who we may un-love, divorce, re-marry, fall in love again, and see ourselves in… the year saw the release of my friend Josh Marston’s Complete Unknown where the main character continually reinvents herself, becomes another ~ sees herself continuously, reimagining who she in fact is ~ through others’ eyes, and through her own. That act of complete transformation is not too dissimilar of how i see myself from time to time, but there is in fact a thread.. a thread to a previous self that makes absolute sense in its reinvention from art historian to anthropologist to fashion designer to salonniere to costume designer and producer… its the thread that matters, is significant and the clear identifier of what makes meaning matter. it’s our core and it is this core that from year to year as our numbers climb and we become married, become mothers, become that which we are in fact meant to be  ~that we see ourself in the things that we said we have done, were part of ~ created, collaborated, conspired. 

below ~ a meditation on this past year of being 44, and becoming 45… and all the collaborators and visionaries and believers in me and us and the world in which we live ~ to make it a more beautiful and more generous, accepting, tolerant, inspiring place to be. 

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lapham’s quarterly FASHION, Starline Social Club / “art of gathering,” Yerba Buena Center for the Arts / “Four Walls,”ARTHOTEL

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becoming me,” Around the World with Oscar at De Young Museum / garden party in Venice Beach / NaNoWriMo gala

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Bay Area Book Festival’s International Authors Dinner / NYC salon dinner / WorldWideWomen Girl’s Festival Fashion Show

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She-Can GALA, curator / The Deep Sky, feature film (Costume Designer/co-producer)/ Prince Edward Island Film, Food & Idea Festival


a party /nov 26th 2016 / oakland 

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“Youth is happy because it has the ability to see beauty.
Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.”
– Franz Kafka

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above / turning one; my 40th birthday at chez panisse; royal at cafe fanny 3 days old; a rainbow, “on set” photo: frazer bradshaw 


“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take,
but by the moments that take our breath away.”
–Maya Angelou

i am so grateful to everyone in my life who has been part of all these beautiful breath-taking moments ~ however big or small… 


1 Comment

  • Reply November 28, 2016

    Claudia K

    This is a gorgeous post Cari.
    Wishing you a beautiful year.

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