American Art – Part I of III: Mark Beard
In the words of one writer, “Mark Beard (born 1956) works in prints, paint, and as a sculptor, in addition to being a noted stage set designer. His portraits, nudes, bronzes, and handcrafted books are exhibited all over the world.”
From the Music Archives – Part I of IV: Jimmy Clanton
Born 2 September 1938 – Jimmy Clanton, an American “swamp pop” vocalist.
A few quotes from the work of Paul Bourget:
“At certain moments, words are nothing; it is the tone in which they are uttered.”
“It is vain to try to sacrifice once and for all one’s youthful ideals.”
“One must live the way one thinks or end up thinking the way one has lived.”
“The landscapist lives in silence.” – Henri Rousseau, French Post-Impressionist painter working in a Primitivist manner, who died 2 September 1910.
From the Music Archives – Part II of IV: Joe Simon
Born 2 September 1943 – Joe Simon, an award-winning American vocalist and musician.
Died 2 September 1996 – Emily Kame Kngwarreye, an Australian Aboriginal artist.
British Art – Part I of II: Jane Lewis
Artist Statement: “I do not dream, my paintings are waking dreams. The pictures are a personal narrative of visual, musical and physical obsessions.”
In the words of one writer, “Jane was born in London in 1953 and attended Hornsey College of Art and the Slade.”
From the Movie Archives: “A Trip to the Moon”
2 September 1902 – The French silent film “A Trip to the Moon,” directed by Georges Melies and generally regarded as the first science fiction movie, has its theatrical release. In the words of one historian, “Inspired by a wide variety of sources, including Jules Verne’s novels ‘From the Earth to the Moon’ and ‘Around the Moon,’ the film follows a group of astronomers who travel to the Moon in a cannon-propelled capsule, explore the Moon’s surface, escape from an underground group of Selenites (lunar inhabitants), and return with a splashdown to Earth with a captive Selenite.
The film was an internationally popular success on its release, and was extensively pirated by other studios, especially in the United States. Its unusual length, lavish production values, innovative special effects, and emphasis on storytelling were markedly influential on other film-makers and ultimately on the development of narrative film as a whole.
‘A Trip to the Moon’ was named one of the 100 greatest films of the 20th century by ‘The Village Voice,’ ranked 84th, and in 2002 it became the first work designated as a UNESCO World Heritage film.”
British Art – Part II of II: Helen Masacz
In the words of one critic, “Helen Masacz (born 1968) is a painter with a growing reputation, having been selected for exhibition in the BP Awards at the National Portrait Gallery in 2004 after completing a BA Honors in Fine Art, and she was selected again in 2010. She lives and works in London.”
From the Music Archives – Part III of IV: Billy Preston
Born 2 September 1946 – Billy Preston, an American musician and vocalist who worked with many famous artists, including Little Richard, Sam Cooke, Ray Charles, The Beatles, Eric Clapton, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
From the American History Archives: Great Smoky Mountains National Park
2 September 1940 – President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signs the bill that creates Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
From the Music Archives – Part IV of IV: Rosalind Ashford
Born 2 September 1943 – Rosalind Ashford, an American vocalist known for her work as an original member of Martha and the Vandellas.
Italian Art – Part I of II: Luca Alinari
“Since Auschwitz we know what man is capable of. And since Hiroshima we know what is at stake.” – Viktor Frankl, Austrian neurologist, psychiatrist, Holocaust survivor, founder of logotherapy (a form of existential analysis), and author of “Man’s Search for Meaning,” who died 2 September 1997.
Some quotes from the work of Viktor Frankl:
“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
“Don’t aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one’s personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one’s surrender to a person other than oneself. Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. Then you will live to see that in the long-run—in the long-run, I say!—success will follow you precisely because you had forgotten to think about it”
“Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.”
“The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of a trick learned while mastering the art of living.”
“Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather must recognize that it is he who is asked. In a word, each man is questioned by life; and he can only answer to life by answering for his own life; to life he can only respond by being responsible.”
Italian Art – Part II of II: Davide Puma
Davide Puma (born 1971) lives and works in Imperia.
From the History Archives: Pheidippides
“Joy to you, we’ve won. Joy to you.” – The last words of Pheidippides, hero of ancient Greece who ran from Marathon to Athens to deliver news of a military victory against the Persians, who died 2 September 490 B.C.E. (traditional date).
Below – Statue of Pheidippides along the Marathon Road.
Canadian Art – Part I of II: Juan Carlos Martinez
In the words of one writer, “Juan Carlos Martínez is an award-winning artist living in Toronto, Canada, whose work has been featured in various publications and exhibitions around the world. He was trained classical atelier and works in what is now considered the classical realist tradition. Juan studied in Toronto, Canada, and Florence, Italy, under the tutelage of master painter, M. John Angel. Prior to that period he had been, among other things, a lawyer, but gave up that life to pursue his vocation as a professional classical painter.”
“Time goes, you say? Ah no!
Alas, Time stays, we go;
Or else, were this not so,
What need to chain the hours,
For Youth were always ours?
Time goes, you say?-ah no!” – From “The Paradox of Time,” by Austin Dobson, English poet and essayist, who died 2 September 1921.
“To A Greek Girl”
With breath of thyme and bees that hum,
Across the years you seem to come,—
Across the years with nymph-like head,
And wind-blown brows unfilleted;
A girlish shape that slips the bud
In lines of unspoiled symmetry;
A girlish shape that stirs the blood
With pulse of Spring, Autonoe!
Where’er you pass,—where’er you go,
I hear the pebbly rillet flow;
Where’er you go,—where’er you pass,
There comes a gladness on the grass;
You bring blithe airs where’er you tread,—
Blithe airs that blow from down and sea;
You wake in me a Pan not dead,—
Not wholly dead!—Autonoe!
How sweet with you on some green sod
To wreathe the rustic garden-god;
How sweet beneath the chestnut’s shade
With you to weave a basket-braid;
To watch across the stricken chords
Your rosy-twinkling fingers flee;
To woo you in soft woodland words,
With woodland pipe, Autonoe!
In vain,—in vain! The years divide:
Where Thames rolls a murky tide,
I sit and fill my painful reams,
And see you only in my dreams;—
A vision, like Alcestis, brought
From under-lands of Memory,—
A dream of Form in days of Thought,—
A dream,—a dream, Autonoe!
Below – William Adolphe Bouguereau: “Autonoe”
Canadian Art – Part II of II: Arthur Lismer
In the words of one writer, “Arthur Lismer was an English-Canadian painter, known for his involvement in the Group of Seven. Lismer was born in Sheffield, England. As a child, he worked at a photo engraving company, which peaked his interest in the arts. Lismer received a scholarship to take courses at the Sheffield School of Arts. In 1905 Lismer moved to Belgium to study art full-time at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp.
Before the Group of Seven became fully developed, Lismer spent some years moving around Canada. Lismer worked at the Victoria School of Art and Design in British Columbia and Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in Halifax. In 1918 Lismer returned to Toronto, where he became the vice-president of the Ontario College of Art and Design.”
A Poem for Today
“Cutting the Sun,”
By Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
After Francesco Clemente’s “Indian Miniature #16”
The sun-face looms over me, gigantic-hot, smelling
of iron. Its rays striated,
rasp-red and muscled as the tongues
of iguanas. They are trying to lick away
my name. But I
am not afraid. I hold in my hands
(where did I get them)
enormous blue scissors that are
just the color of sky. I bring
the blades together, like
a song. The rays fall around me
curling a bit, like dried carrot peel. A far sound
in the air—fire
or rain? And when I’ve cut
all the way to the center of the sun
flowers, flowers, flowers.
Below –Francesco Clemente: “Indian Miniature #16”
By Louise Gluck
Remember the days of our first happiness,
how strong we were, how dazed by passion,
lying all day, then all night in the narrow bed,
sleeping there, eating there too: it was summer,
it seemed everything had ripened
at once. And so hot we lay completely uncovered.
Sometimes the wind rose; a willow brushed the window.
But we were lost in a way, didn’t you feel that?
The bed was like a raft; I felt us drifting
far from our natures, toward a place where we’d discover nothing.
First the sun, then the moon, in fragments,
stone through the willow.
Things anyone could see.
Then the circles closed. Slowly the nights grew cool;
the pendant leaves of the willow
yellowed and fell. And in each of us began
a deep isolation, though we never spoke of this,
of the absence of regret.
We were artists again, my husband.
We could resume the journey.
American Art – Part II of III: Frank Gardner
“Frank Gardner was born and raised in Poughkeepsie, New York. He graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1986 with a BFA in painting. A desire to find true inspiration for his paintings eventually led him to Mexico in 1990. His studio is in San Miguel de Allende, where he resides with his wife and daughter.”
A Third Poem for Today
“Whose Mouth Do I Speak With”
By Suzanne Rancourt
I can remember my father bringing home spruce gum.
He worked in the woods and filled his pockets
with golden chunks of pitch.
For his children
he provided this special sacrament
and we’d gather at this feet, around his legs,
bumping his lunchbox, and his empty thermos rattled inside.
Our skin would stick to Daddy’s gluey clothing
and we’d smell like Mumma’s Pine Sol.
We had no money for store bought gum
but that’s all right.
The spruce gum
was so close to chewing amber
as though in our mouths we held the eyes of Coyote
and how many other children had fathers
that placed on their innocent, anxious tongue
the blood of tree?
“Searching for Sea Glass,”
By Raymond A. Foss
Hidden amid the rocks, the shells
under the seaweeds, the driftwood
sitting proudly on the sand
Clear, green, brown, or blue
smooth, cloudy, from the tumbling
rolling in the surf
Waiting for my eyes, my fingers
falling into my bucket, bag, pocket
a shell, my hands, whichever I choose
to join others at home, treasures all
But it is the leisurely searching
lingering in the wet sand
by the water’s edge
that is the great escape
American Art – Part III of III: Romare Bearden
“The artist has to be exactly the opposite (of people singing the song ‘I’ve Gotta Be Me’) and transcend himself as he makes judgments.” – Romare Bearden, American painter, who was born 2 September 1911.
Below – “Circe Turns a Companion of Odysseus into Swine”; “Out Chorus”; “The Evening Boat”; “Manhattan Suite”; “Cattle of the Sun God”; “Martinique Morning”; “Blue Snake”; “Near Three Rivers, Martinique”; “Calypso’s Sacred Grove”; “West Towards New Jersey.”