Beleaguered in Bothell – 30 November 2017

Remembering a Writer on the Date of His Birth: Born 30 November 1667 – Jonathan Swift, an Anglo-Irish satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer, poet, cleric, and author of “A Modest Proposal” and “Gulliver’s Travels.”

Some quotes from the work of Jonathan Swift:

“When a great genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign; that the dunces are all in confederacy against him.”
“We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another.”
“I never wonder to see men wicked, but I often wonder to see them not ashamed.”
“Laws are like cobwebs, which may catch small flies, but let wasps and hornets break through.”
“You should never be ashamed to admit you have been wrong. It only proves you are wiser today than yesterday”
“May you live every day of your life.”

Below – Charles Jervas: “Portrait of Jonathan Swift”

Art for Autumn – Part I of II: Sam Gilliam (American, contemporary)

Below – “Bursting”; “Solstice III”; “Along”

Remembering a Nobel Laureate on the Date of His Birth: Born 30 November 1874 – Winston Churchill, British statesman, army officer, writer, and recipient of the 1953 Nobel Prize in Literature. Whatever else one might think of or write about Winston Churchill (like everyone, the man had his failings), he must be credited with helping save Western Civilization from barbarism – at least for a time.

Some quotes from the work of Winston Churchill:

“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”
“If you’re going through hell, keep going.”
“You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.”
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
“For myself I am an optimist — it does not seem to be much use being anything else.”
“Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak. Courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.”
“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
“Nourish your hopes, but do not overlook realities.”
“Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense.”

Art for Autumn – Part II of II: Patricia Leroux (French Polynesian, contemporary)

Below – “Memory”; “Femme Turpuoise”

For Your Information: 30 November is National Mousse Day in the United States.

Contemporary French Art – Linda LeKinff

In the words of one writer, “In the bold and vibrant creations of Linda LeKinff, elements of her beloved masters permeate her highly original visions, embuing them with a force greater than the sum of their parts. Yet, when a body of her work is gathered for an exhibition, there is no mistaking that such a collection is a coherent outpouring of one very focused and original mind, drawing on a diverse treasure of artistic influences and personal experiences. Drawing from her travels, dreams, reading and imagination, Linda Le Kinff has taken her place among contemporary artists whose work frees us from the mundane reality of everyday life, not with elaborate fantasy but with a sure-handed rendering of beauty and elegance in line with her personal view on painting.”

Below – “ Welcome”; Untitled Woman; “Noemie Des Iles”; “Spectacles”; “Double”; “Eclypse.”

Remembering a Writer on the Date of Her Birth: Born 30 November 1874 – Lucy Maud Montgomery, a Canadian writer, poet, and author of the series of novels featuring Anne Shirley, beginning with “Anne of Green Gables.”

“A Request”
By Lucy Maud Montgomery

When I am dead
I would that ye make my bed
On that low-lying, windy waste by the sea,
Where the silvery grasses rustle and lisp;
There, where the crisp
Foam-flakes shall fly over me,
And murmurs creep
From the ancient heart of the deep,
Lulling me ever, I shall most sweetly sleep.
While the eerie sea-folk croon
On the long dim shore by the light of a waning moon.

I shall not hear
Clamor of young life anear,
Voices of gladness to stir an unrest;
Only the wandering mists of the sea
Shall companion me;
Only the wind in its quest
Shall come where I lie,
Or the rain from the brooding sky
With furtive footstep shall pass me by,
And never a dream of the earth
Shall break on my slumber with lure of an out-lived mirth.

This Date in Art History: Died 30 November 1982 – Peter Blume, an American Painter and Sculptor.

Below – “Cow in Pasture”; “The Rock”; “Study for Boulders of Avila”; Autumn”; “Passage to Aetna”; “Light of the World.”

Worth a Thousand Words: One of the three Greek temples (circa 600-450 BCE) in Paestum, Italy.

American Art – David Byrd (1926-2013), Part I of II

Artist Statement: I don’t know what school of painting I am in, if any.  It doesn’t matter to me because I have some talent for likenesses and I stick to that. And I find all of my restlessness in life can be put into a composition on canvas or expressed in a sculpture.  For me, painting is a matter of religion; to keep on painting is the main thing.”

Below – “25 Cent Elephant”; “Three Houses”; “Carnival”; “1/2 Door”; “Balcony with Screen”; “Card Players.”

Remembering a Writer on the Date of Her Death: Died 30 November 1998 – Margret Walker, an American writer and poet.

By Margaret Walker

When I was a child I knew red miners
dressed raggedly and wearing carbide lamps.
I saw them come down red hills to their camps
dyed with red dust from old Ishkooda mines.
Night after night I met them on the roads,
or on the streets in town I caught their glance;
the swing of dinner buckets in their hands,
and grumbling undermining all their words.

I also lived in low cotton country
where moonlight hovered over ripe haystacks,
or stumps of trees, and croppers’ rotting shacks
with famine, terror, flood, and plague near by;
where sentiment and hatred still held sway
and only bitter land was washed away.

American Art – David Byrd (1926-2013), Part II of II

In the words of one writer, “Although David was prolific, he never exhibited his work and rarely showed it to anyone. His light filled home in Sidney Center contained almost every work of art he ever created. David had great difficulty forming lasting relationships. Late in life he became reclusive and lived a largely invisible life.
A chance meeting with a neighbor in the fall of 2012 led to David’s first professional exhibition seven months later. He was 87 years old. David Byrd – Introduction: A Life of Observation at the Greg Kucera Gallery in Seattle, Washington, featured 85 paintings, three sculptures and numerous drawings. By the end of the exhibition most of the work had sold. Finally David received the recognition that had eluded him all his life.”

Below – “Crystal Lake”; “Chapter Four”; “Man Waving”; “Michigan Upstairs”; “Stairway”; “Self Portrait.”

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