September Offerings – Part XIX: Something to Delight both Head and Heart

American Art – Part I of V: Brian Biedul

In the words of one critic, “Brian Biedul was born in Colorado Springs in 1955 and soon thereafter moved to Europe with his family. He spent the better part of his early youth in Europe where his love of art began. While living in Paris he was enrolled in his first art class under the instruction of Siegfried Hahn. After returning to America he spent time in various cities across the United States including New York, Chicago and Los Angeles where he later settled. In 1984 he graduated with a BFA from Art Center College of Design where soon thereafter taught Saturday figure drawing classes.”

Here is one critic describing Mexican painter Victor Rodriguez (born 1970): “Victor is considered to be the leader of the new generation of hyperrealist artists working internationally today. He has exhibited extensively internationally, including the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, the Flint Institute of Contemporary Arts, the Museo de Monterrey in Mexico and Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Monterrey MARCO.”

From the Music Archives – Part I of III: Chubby Checker

19 September 1960 – Chubby Checker’s “The Twist” reaches number one on American popular music charts.

Here is one critic describing the background and artistry of French painter Catherine Gran (born 1966): “She began her academic studies with courses in History of Art at the Sorbonne University, Paris. She then went on to the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, from where she graduated in 1992. Her paintings are enigmatic, conveying an atmosphere of strangeness and eccentricity through unexpected perspectives and unusual objects combined with the commonplace and the fantastic. She continues to explore her favourite enigmatic themes of the bizarre and the surreal represented by the incongruous relationship between objects, form and figures. Yet at the same time she paints in a scrupulously detailed manner to give a hallucinatory sense of reality.
Her work borders on the surreal and is often concerned with organic and sensual form and also, on occasion, symbolist, characterised by visual expression of emotional experience. The elegant figures, smartly dressed almost theatrical in demeanour, retain their nobility and quirky expressions. They are the cognoscenti basking in their appreciation and love of life and the arts. Gran’s paintings, with their unusual perspectives and ambiguous combinations of shapes, objects, and figures are depicted in a singular painterly style, reinforcing her ability to create disorientating realist imagery which is thought provoking and compelling.”

From the Music Archives – Part II of III: Gram Parsons

Died 19 September 1973 – Gram Parsons, an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and pianist, who worked in several notable bands, including the International Submarine Band, the Byrds, and the Flying Burrito Brothers.

American Art – Part II of V: Bettye Lane

Born 19 September 1930, Died 19 September 2012 – Bettye Lane, a photographer, photojournalist, and journalist who was known for photographs which documented major events within the feminist, civil rights, and gay rights movements.

From the Music Archives – Part III of III: Skeeter Davis

Died 19 September 2004 – Skeeter Davis, an American country music singer best known for her crossover pop music songs of the early 1960s.

Here is part of the Artist Statement of South African ceramicist Elizabeth Balcomb: “I love the smell of paper clay in the kiln at 200˚C. It reminds me of lemon creams.
This is one small aspect of the picture within the landscape of ceramics within which I find myself. I could say that clay is part of my destiny… it’s tempting to see it that way. I could also say I stumbled upon it. Either way, here I am, with a new universe to explore… a fantastic adventure.”

American Art – Part III of V: Sandra Fisher

Died 19 September 1995 – Sandra Fisher, an ex-pat figure painter living in London.

Below – “Kitaj” (Fisher’s husband); “Cosima in a Black Hat”; “Days on the Water”; “Little Venice.”
(c) Pallant House Gallery; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
(c) R.B. Kitaj; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation
(c) R.B. Kitaj; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

Died 19 September 1927 – Michael Peter Ancher, a Dutch impressionist artist.

Below – “Will He Round the Point”; “A Stroll on the Beach”; “Appraising the Day’s Work”; “Children and Young Girls Picking Flowers in a Field North of Skagen.”


“All modern men are descended from wormlike creatures, but it shows more on some people.” – Will Cuppy, American humorist, literary critic, and author of “The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody,” who died 19 September 1949.

Some quotes from the work of Will Cuppy:

“It’s easy to see the faults in people, I know; and it’s harder to see the good. Especially when the good isn’t there.”
“A hermit is simply a person to whom civilization has failed to adjust itself.”
“We all make mistakes, but intelligence enables us to do it on purpose.”
“If an animal does something, we call it instinct. If we do the same thing for the same reason, we call it intelligence.”
“Armadillos make affectionate pets, if you need affection that much.”
“Just when you’re beginning to think pretty well of people, you run across somebody who puts sugar on sliced tomatoes.”
“He had also learned that there is no use murdering people; there are always so many left, and if you tried to murder them all you would never get anything else done.”
“The pre-frontal region of the Peking man resembles that found in some parts of the Middle West.”
“Aristotle was famous for knowing everything. He taught that the brain exists merely to cool the blood and is not involved in the process of thinking. This is true only of certain persons.”

Died 19 September 1967 – Zinaida Serebriakova, a Russian painter.

Below (left to right) – “Harvest”; “House of Cards”; “Lit by the Sun”; “Self-Portrait Wearing a Scarf”; “Self-Portrait.”


“Too much good fortune can make you smug and unaware. Happiness should be like an oasis, the greener for the desert that surrounds it.” – Rachel Field, American poet, writer, and author of “Hitty, Her First Hundred Years” (which won the Newbery Award in 1930) and “Time Out of Mind (which won one of the inaugural National Book Awards as the Most Distinguished Novel of 1935), who was born 19 September 1894.

“Something Told The Wild Geese”

Something told the wild geese
It was time to go.
Though the fields lay golden
Something whispered,-‘Snow.’

Leaves were green and stirring,
Berries, luster-glossed,
But beneath warm feathers
Something cautioned,-‘Frost.’

All the sagging orchards
Steamed with amber spice,
But each wild breast stiffened
At remembered ice.

Something told the wild geese
It was time to fly,
Summer sun was on their wings,
Winter in their cry.

“If Once You Have Slept On An Island”

If once you have slept on an island
You’ll never be quite the same;
You may look as you looked the day before
And go by the same old name,
You may bustle about in street and shop
You may sit at home and sew,
But you’ll see blue water and wheeling gulls
Wherever your feet may go.

You may chat with the neighbors of this and that
And close to your fire keep,
But you’ll hear ship whistle and lighthouse bell
And tides beat through your sleep.
Oh! you won’t know why and you can’t say how
Such a change upon you came,
But once you have slept on an island,
You’ll never be quite the same.

“The Animal Store”

If I had a hundred dollars to spend,
Or maybe a little more,
I’d hurry as fast as my legs would go
Straight to the animal store.

I wouldn’t say, “How much for this or that?”
“What kind of a dog is he?”
I’d buy as many as rolled an eye,
Or wagged a tail at me!

I’d take the hound with the drooping ears
That sits by himself alone;
Cockers and Cairns and wobbly pups
For to be my very own.

I might buy a parrot all red and green,
And the monkey I saw before,
If I had a hundred dollars to spend,
Or maybe a little more.


American Art – Part IV of V: Martha Holmes

Died 19 September 2006 – Martha Holmes, a photographer and photojournalist.

Below (left to right) – Jackson Pollock; Natalie Wood; Salvador Dali and his wife Gala; Brother and Sister on the Phone, Talking to Santa Claus; Un-American Activities Hearings, 1947.


A Poem for Today

“A Little Language,”
By Robert Duncan

I know a little language of my cat, though Dante says
that animals have no need of speech and Nature
abhors the superfluous. My cat is fluent. He
converses when he wants with me. To speak

is natural. And whales and wolves I’ve heard
in choral soundings of the sea and air
know harmony and have an eloquence that stirs
my mind and heart—they touch the soul. Here

Dante’s religion that would set Man apart
damns the effluence of our life from us
to build therein its powerhouse.

It’s in his animal communication Man is
true, immediate, and
in immediacy, Man is all animal.

His senses quicken in the thick of the symphony,
old circuits of animal rapture and alarm,
attentions and arousals in which an identity rearrives.
He hears
particular voices among
the concert, the slightest
rustle in the undertones,
rehearsing a nervous aptitude
yet to prove his. He sees the flick
of significant red within the rushing mass
of ruddy wilderness and catches the glow
of a green shirt
to delite him in a glowing field of green
—it speaks to him—
and in the arc of the spectrum color
speaks to color.
The rainbow articulates
a promise he remembers
he but imitates
in noises that he makes,

this speech in every sense
the world surrounding him.
He picks up on the fugitive tang of mace
amidst the savory mass,
and taste in evolution is an everlasting key.
There is a pun of scents in what makes sense.

Myrrh it may have been,
the odor of the announcement that filld the house.

He wakes from deepest sleep

upon a distant signal and waits

as if crouching, springs

to life.

Below – “Cowpuncher’s Lullaby,” by Frederic Remington.

American Art – Part V of V: Darrell Hill

“Born 1941 in Hillsborough, Illinois and raised in California, he received formal art instruction at the College of the Sequoias, Fresno State University and Brooks Institute, School of Fine Art in Santa Barbara.”

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