September 30, 2020


If you're new here, well howdy! Welcome to my weekly blog about Houston arts and culture, plus whatever else I wish to share from my brain. Scroll to the very bottom for more about it.

I'm having a blast doing two weekly Facebook Live chats on my Facebook page: MONDAY MEDITATION CHATS at 10am (the latest one is here) and WEDNESDAY NIGHT LIVE arts & culture chats at 9pm (the latest one is here). Tune in!

A special note if you're a parent or caregiver: be sure to follow my GISH PICKS page for not only my KID PICKS but also my CAMP PICKS (holiday day camps). Special for the pandemic, I'm also publishing EXPLORE PICKS (school year enrichment programs) -- my latest blog is here and includes programs by organizations such as Adventure Learning Program, Alliance Fencing Academy, and the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center.

As you read, please note that all the words in purple are linked to websites.

WHAT'S ON MY MIND THIS WEEK? This week something happened that brought me the gift of gratitude and remembrance. My "second dad" Charlie McCarthy passed away -- you can see my tribute to him here.

As I pondered what to write about it in this blog, I realized that I had to mention Charlie -- someone who ignited my love for the arts as I was growing up. Every Saturday afternoon at his house, The Metropolitan Opera live broadcast was on. And the Rice Media Center repertory calendar was always hanging in their kitchen. There was talk about the Houston Symphony, Houston Ballet, Houston Grand Opera, The Museum of Fine Arts, and more among the McCarthy family and mine.

I was very lucky to be surrounded by arts and culture. And I'm so grateful to be able to write about it and talk about it on a weekly basis to hopefully inspire others to enjoy it. I want to pass on what was given to me.

Let's pause here and talk about opera for a moment. It's not for everyone and I have to admit that as a kid I didn't like it much. But I am really enjoying it now! The Metropolitan Opera is doing an amazing thing during the pandemic: they are posting new pre-recorded shows *every night* right here. Each week is focused on a different composer (this week is Mozart week). And the Houston Grand Opera is presenting HGO Digital, where you can watch live performances via Marquee TV. Enjoy!

Be sure to check out the show "Say Their Names," on view outdoors at Emancipation Park through October 13 from 10am-7pm daily. It's a traveling memorial of photographs to honor Black lives lost to racial injustice -- very moving and important. I look forward to seeing it. That park is the oldest public park in our city and in our state, and was founded by 4 formerly enslaved people. It's got quite a history!

And -- it's voting season. Check to see if you're registered and get all the info you need at The largest voting block in the 2016 presidential election was NON-VOTERS. Please exercise your right to vote! Early voting starts October 13 in Texas and the deadline to register is October 5.
LET'S CONNECT! If you are wondering wassup with me, my offerings are below. If you'd like to keep up with all my doings, please click here to get a sorta monthly newsletter from me full of info about my events and more, including my IGNITE YOUR LIFE! art project. Be sure to follow my Facebook pages too -- Gish Picks Kids and Gish Picks Adults. I'm always throwing words and pictures around somewhere!
My ARTS PICKS Spotlight️ this week is the The Menil Collection, which is now open Wednesdays through Sundays from 11am-7pm. Admission is always free, however right now you must get your timed tickets in advance here. They have several exhibitions on view, which you can see here, and their public events (mostly online) are listed here. The next event is In Dialogue: Helen Frankenthaler’s Abstraction on Tuesday, October 6 at 6pm.

If you've never experienced The Menil, it's a treat! The wonderful history and mission is here and you'll see that there are no long didactic panels about each piece -- founders John and Dominique de Menil wanted visitors to access art on their own. While you're in the neighborhood, be sure to enjoy the beautiful adjacent park, the nearby Rothko Chapel (now open too!), the buildings on the Menil Campus -- the Menil Drawing Institute and Cy Twombly Gallery -- and the nearby Richmond Hall at 1500 Richmond Avenue.

And now -- the two virtual events I am PICK-ing this week. Please note that even my VIRTUAL PICKS are always Houston-based because I am very committed to Houston arts & culture.

➡️ Virtual for ADULTS: the Houston Symphony has re-worked their schedule to present "Live From Jones Hall" concerts every other week, with limited in person seating options for 2 shows and a virtual option for 1 show. Clyne, Haydn & Dvořák's in person shows are standby only, but you can get your tickets to the virtual show this Saturday, October 3 at 8pm here. Tickets are $20/each.

➡️ Virtual for KIDS: Houston Center for Contemporary Craft ain't gonna let a pandemic stop them from doing their monthly "Hands-On Houston" family craft days. Their "HOH To Go" events are still on first Saturdays -- this Saturday, October 3 from 11am-1pm, families can pick up free at-home kits for "Polymer Clay Monsters" fun.
HIRE ME! If you want help getting centered -- or for focusing your life -- here's how I can help (I'm available for groups too):

  • One-on-one labyrinth walks or nature mandala-making sessions (or both!), all done with masks and physical distancing. The fee varies based on what we are doing.
  • Virtual Life Path Sessions; see more about those hereIt's $50 for 45 minutes during COVID
  • Virtual meditation lessons for up to 30 minutes. I've been doing weekly Monday Meditation Chats and was interviewed on Great Day Houston about fun ways to make sounds for meditation (see that here). The fee varies based on what we are doing, and all ages are welcome.

To book me for anything, please call me at 713.492.1173 or email me. I'd love to help you find PEACE in this crazy time.

In non-pandemic times, and since I started publishing my blog in 2004, it has been a space to promote my curated list of unique live Houston area cultural events (PICKS) on the weekend for adults and kids. Because of COVID-19, those haven't happened since mid-March so I originally re-worked the format to focus on 5 Houston-based arts & culture organizations in my (Almost) Daily Dose of ARTS PICKS blog each of the NINE weeks of quarantine. You can see each edition - and read about 45 arts groups! - here.
And now I'm bringing you an ⭐️ARTS PICKS Spotlight⭐️ each week -- featuring an arts & culture space that is open -- and you'll get info about all of their activities and sometimes a video to bring them to life. Alongside that, I'll also be PICK-ing one local virtual event each for ADULTS and KIDS

I'll keep doing all of that until public events start happening again on a larger scale and I can start curating live event PICKS again.

In the meantime: please enjoy my weekly Spotlights and VIRTUAL PICKS, and please stay healthy!


Sarah Gish

P.S. If you want to IGNITE YOUR LIFE now or anytime, check out my list of "12 Ways to Ignite Your Life Daily" -- and watch the 12 videos I made about each Way here. I'm very proud of that list and my work and I hope it will help you live a fully creative life. Meditation, taking care of yourself, enjoying life, and laughing -- plus more! -- is what will get us through this global pandemic. 
Gish Creative |