January Offerings – Part XXVIII: Something to Delight both Head and Heart

American Art – Part I of IV: Alice Neel

Born 28 January 1900 – Alice Neel, a visual artist and portraitist.

Below – “Dana Gordon”; “Beggars, Havana, Cuba”; “Andy Warhol”; “9th Avenue El”; “Circus”; “Cows, Vermont.”

American Art – Part II of IV: Jackson Pollock

“Abstract painting is abstract. It confronts you.” – Jackson Pollock, influential American painter and a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement, who was born 28 January 1912.

Below (left to right) – “Convergence”; “Number 1 (Lavender Mist)”; “Full Fathom Five”; “Blue (Moby Dick)”; “The Deep”; “Portrait and a Dream.”

28 January 1813 – Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” is first published in the United Kingdom.

Some quotes from “Pride and Prejudice”:

“There are few people whom I really love, and still fewer of whom I think well. The more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and every day confirms my belief of the inconsistency of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of merit or sense.”
“A lady’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment.”
“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book! — When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.”
“Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.”
“For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors, and laugh at them in our turn?”
We are all fools in love.”

American Art – Part III of IV: Jenny Morgan

In the words of one writer, “Jenny Morgan is a contemporary artist who creates large paintings. She was schooled at the School of Visual Arts in New York and the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design in Colorado. Jenny has held several solo shows throughout the Denver area and has participated in numerous other shows across Colorado and New York.”


Nobel Laureate: Joseph Brodsky

“Life, the way it really is, is a battle not between Bad and Good but between Bad and Worse.” – Joseph Brodsky, Russian poet, essayist, and recipient of the 1987 Nobel Prize in Literature “for an all-embracing authorship, imbued with clarity of thought and poetic intensity,” who died 28 January 1996.

“Odysseus to Telemachus”

The Trojan War 

is over now; I don’t recall who won it. 

The Greeks, no doubt, for only they would leave

so many dead so far from their own homeland. 

But still, my homeward way has proved too long. 

While we were wasting time there, old Poseidon, 

it almost seems, stretched and extended space.

I don’t know where I am or what this place 

can be. It would appear some filthy island, 

with bushes, buildings, and great grunting pigs. 

A garden choked with weeds; some queen or other. 

Grass and huge stones . . . Telemachus, my son! 

To a wanderer the faces of all islands 

resemble one another. And the mind 

trips, numbering waves; eyes, sore from sea horizons, 

run; and the flesh of water stuffs the ears. 

I can’t remember how the war came out; 

even how old you are–I can’t remember.

Grow up, then, my Telemachus, grow strong. 

Only the gods know if we’ll see each other 

again. You’ve long since ceased to be that babe 

before whom I reined in the plowing bullocks. 

Had it not been for Palamedes’ trick 

we two would still be living in one household. 

But maybe he was right; away from me 

you are quite safe from all Oedipal passions, 

and your dreams, my Telemachus, are blameless.

Below – “Reunion of Odysseus and Telemachus,” by Lucien Doucet.

In the words of one critic, the art of Spanish-born Venezuelan painter Chelin Sanjuan “stands out for its polished technique. Her drawing is clean, with steady and secure lines, while dynamic, showing a balanced and serene usage of color, mainly warm tones. She copes with easiness in the most realistic pictorial lines, but also in more imaginative and surrealist fields. Each painting is an unique world, magical, intimate, with hidden elements and transparent shapes that mix with softness.
The characters -women, children and animals, particularly cats- that appear in her paintings have an interesting close relationship between them, always showing a small point of humor. Figurative art, of sharp and polished shapes, but delicate in the topics and always lively in the contents, without doubt a very personal style, not influenced by gestural and pseudodecorative artistic trends. ‘A flower in the desert,’ I thought the first time I saw her works.”

American Art – Part IV of IV: Ryan Mendoza

American painter Ryan Mendoza (born 1971) is a graduate of Parsons School of Art and Design in New York City. He now lives and works in both Berlin and Naples.
Portrait of Wallace Stevens Wearing a Suit

A Poem for Today

“Domination of Black,”
By Wallace Stevens

At night, by the fire,
The colors of the bushes
And of the fallen leaves,
Repeating themselves,
Turned in the room,
Like the leaves themselves
Turning in the wind.
Yes: but the color of the heavy hemlocks
Came striding.
And I remembered the cry of the peacocks.

The colors of their tails
Were like the leaves themselves
Turning in the wind,
In the twilight wind.
They swept over the room,
Just as they flew from the boughs of the hemlocks
Down to the ground.
I heard them cry — the peacocks.
Was it a cry against the twilight
Or against the leaves themselves
Turning in the wind,
Turning as the flames
Turned in the fire,
Turning as the tails of the peacocks
Turned in the loud fire,
Loud as the hemlocks
Full of the cry of the peacocks?
Or was it a cry against the hemlocks?

Out of the window,
I saw how the planets gathered
Like the leaves themselves
Turning in the wind.
I saw how the night came,
Came striding like the color of the heavy hemlocks
I felt afraid.
And I remembered the cry of the peacocks.

Irish Art – Part I of II: Eileen Healy

In the words of one critic, “Eileen Healy is mainly a figurative artist who works from life. A strong believer in the practice of drawing she believes its this practice of working from life that keeps her work fresh and alive.
She uses models as her source of inspiration working with various lighting, investigating the effects of light and shadow on the body and face both with nudes and portraits.
Her finished pieces mostly show the figure in isolation, she rarely uses props or themes as the main focus is mainly on the person seated or lying in front of her.
Working in a variety of mediums she enjoys developing her skills in both pastel, oil and sometimes acrylic.”

Irish Art – Part II of II: Bob Quinn

In the words of one writer, “Born in 1948 Bob Quinn enjoyed a long career within the Irish advertising business as a commercial artist, designer and as the head of a successful design and production company.
He now works full time as a sculptor in Blackrock Co Dublin where he lives with his wife and two daughters.”

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