The Wall Street Journal has a new series called “My Week” and we can think of no better to way to start off our week than a week in the life of artist Maira Kalman.

Monday. Fly to Krakow, Poland. Visit Auschwitz. Despondent. Desolate. Will never recover. Cannot speak. 

Tuesday. Return to New York City. Read the obits. Everybody dies too young. Everybody. 

Wednesday. Walk with my friend Elizabeth in Central Park in the early morning. Encounter the identical twins with long gray hair and Coke-bottle glasses. Thank God they are still alive. Encounter the glorious dogs, trees, birds, people, fashion, frenzy of New York.

Coffee afterward. Then bus down Fifth Avenue to go to the studio to work. 

Go to Proust reading group in the evening. 

Grateful. Very grateful. 

Maira Kalman
Maira Kalman

Thursday. Read the obits. Everyone is too young. Too young. Very agitated.Go to tai chi class. Regain serenity. Pasta afterward. Time to think about serenity while eating pasta. While eating pasta, decide that I have too many things and too many clothes. Decide to burn all my clothes. Take them out of the closet. Too lazy to set them on fire. Return them to the closet. Disappointed in myself.

Friday. Walk with Elizabeth in Central Park. Encounter the Rasputin look-alike walking with the redheaded man who’s recovering from a stroke. Thank God they are still alive. 

Maira Kalman
Maira Kalman

Go to the Metropolitan Museum to look at paintings and sketch. Stop for a cup of coffee. Walk downtown to the studio to work. Grateful grateful grateful.

Saturday. Go to the farmers market. Look at fruits and vegetables. Encounter many different types of sprouts. Difficulty deciding which sprouts to buy. 

Have a coffee at the bakery. Go to the studio to work. Go to bridge class. Understand nothing. Return home. Eliminate two things from my too many things: a button and a jar.

Sunday. Walk up to St. Thomas Church. Listen to the glorious music. Sketch people praying. 

Profoundly grateful. For the earth and the sea. The sun and the stars. The people, the dogs, the trees, the fish, the buses, the paintings, the coffee, the music and the unstoppable energy of all of those who are alive.

Maria Kalman
Maria Kalman

Kalman’s tree and Man with Wings from Completely via the New York Times; Rabbit from The Principles of Uncertainty

With thanks to Amanda and  Susan Dworski!

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