The Art and Opinions of Heidi Celeghin, Aesthete

Madame Butterfly Graces Houston

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Last week, I attended Madame Butterfly at the Houston Grand Opera (HGO).

Here is a YouTube video posted by the HGO with some more information about the opera and the Houston production:

It is exciting to see the level of thought that went into creating this version of Madame Butterfly.

The show was truly outstanding.  When the curtains came up and the set was revealed, I was immediately transported into another world.  The stylized tree branches reaching over the stage gave the impression of a Hiroshige print.


The decision to employ a “sliding wall” as it were to indicate the house was also a brilliant idea.  At first, I was afraid that the constant moving of the wall would be a distraction but the overall effect was not distracting at all.  It allowed one to create indoor and outdoor spaces which were constantly being reversed and violated.

Ana María Martínez’ was magnificent.  She truly captured the subtleties of Cio-Cio-San’s character and her voice was beautiful.  Her performance was powerful and heartfelt.   Moreover, her voice worked very well with Joseph Calleja’s (playing Pinkerton).

HGO Website:


Author: Heidi Celeghin

ARTIST’S STATEMENT The theories guiding my art practice are largely defined by my academic background in Decadence and Aestheticism. I am concerned with the status of the image: seductive, unknowable, dangerous, and immortal. The image exists in a liminal space between illusion and reality, lies and truths, life and death. As such, the image represents the sublime. Once created, the image exists beyond the artist – it grows independently from the artist and is constantly being recreated. On the one hand, it captures a single, exquisite moment in time and therefore holds the valence of stasis and death. On the other hand, the image’s perpetual recreation means that it captures the myriad of experiences Walter Pater discusses in the conclusion to The Renaissance and therefore, it holds the valence of metamorphosis and life. It is particularly fascinating when the distinction between Art and reality begin to fall apart. Is it Art that imitates life or life that imitates Art? Major Events and Public Projects: Houston Zoo, painting-for-conservation initiative (June 2011-present) Barcelona World Race, Team Neutrogena artist (December 2010-May 2011) Select Exhibitions: Singapore via INSTINC artist residency, solo exhibition (June 2012) Limb Design, Houston, Texas, group exhibition (April 2012) Jack Hanna Gala, Houston Zoo, solo exhibit (October 2011) Watson Gallery, Houston, Texas, group exhibit (October 2011) Norma R. Ory Gallery, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, group exhibit (2011) Hobby Center for the Performing Arts, Houston, Texas, Awty International Gala (2011) Willard Straight Art Gallery, group exhibit for Forword Literary Magazine (2009) Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, group exhibit (2009) Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, group exhibit (2008) Hayloft Gallery, Reliant Center, Houston, Texas, group exhibit (2006) Hayloft Gallery, Reliant Center, Houston, Texas, group exhibit (2005) Art Fairs: Affordable Art Fair, Hong Kong (2013) Affordable Art Fair, Singapore (2012) Affordable Art Fair, New York (2012)

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