Posts Tagged: Berkeley
Ever been to the Burning Man Festival and checked out the art cars?
No, and no.
But last Sunday at the Berkeley Marina, we saw an art car that looked as if it could have been at the Burning Man.
It was the wheel deal.
And a car that an entomologist could love.
Assorted insects, including a stylistic blue ant, decorated the car. Excitedly different. Curiously surreal. Marvelously eccentric.
Wikipedia defines an art car as "a vehicle that has its appearance modified as an art of personal artistic expression." The owners are sometimes called "Cartists."
We've seen a yellow Volkwagen painted to resemble a bumble bee. We've seen the Oscar Meyer Wienie Wagon cruising down the street. Singer Janis Joplin ("Oh, Lord, won't you buy me a Mercedes Benz?") drove a psychedelically painted Porsche. John Lennon of the Beatles wheeled around in a paisley Rolls Royce. (Perhaps it should have been a Volkswagen Beetle?)
The art car parked at the Berkeley marina, however, looked like a buffet of art, someone's leftovers turned into a heaping plate of static and dynamic creativity that begged attention. Put a fork in it and it's done.
We don't know where it had been or where it was going. Or, maybe it wasn't going anywhere any time soon.
That blue ant, though, made us think the cartist is an entomologist. Specifically, a mymecologist.
An stylized ant on the art car. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Time will tell. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Art car holds many treasures. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
The end. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
The yellow-faced bumble bee, Bombus vosnesenskii, is back.
We spotted some overwintering queen bumble bees gathering nectar on a hebe bush last Sunday at the Berkeley marina.
Distinguished by their yellow faces, yellow head pile, black wings, and a bold yellow stripe on their lower abdomen, they bumbled around the hebe as if they were newbie pilots.
The warm weather invited them out of their underground nests. RSVP accepted. The hebe proved to be a good host, enticing them with the sweet scent of nectar. Soon the queens will be starting rearing a colony, and the worker bees will emerge.
Hebe (genus Hebe), a native of New Zealand, grow wells along the coast. Gardeners who tend the marinas around the San Francisco Bay seem to favor it.
So do the bumble bees.
Queen bumble bee nectaring a hebe at the Berkeley marina. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Queen bumble bee is aglow in the afternoon sun. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Distinguishing yellow stripe on the lower abdomen is barely visible. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)