Beleaguered in Bothell – 23 December 2017

Musings in Winter: Rebecca Solnit

“Drifting across the vast space, silent except for wind and footsteps, I felt uncluttered and unhurried for the first time in a while, already on desert time.”

Art for Winter – Part I of III: Susannah MacDonald (American, contemporary)

Below – “Empire State Building”; “Viva Las Vegas”


Remembering a Documentarian on the Date of His Birth: Born 23 December 1968 – Manuel Rivera-Ortiz, a Puerto Rican documentary photographer who records people’s living conditions in less developed nations.

Below – “Tobacco Harvesting, Vinales Valley, Cuba”; “Widow of the Mines, Potosi, Bolivia”; “City Dump, Yamuna River Slum, India”; “Altiplano Slum, Bolivia”; “Tilling the Land, Pinar del Rio, Cuba”; “For Ladies Only, Bandra Train Station, Mumbai, India.”

Art for Winter – Part II of III: Isaac Maimon (Israeli, contemporary)

Below – Untitled; “Le Cafe Nuit”; “Waiting Ladies”

Musings in Winter: Loren Eiseley

“And there was no longer a single race who bred blindly and without question. Time and its agonizing nostalgia would touch the heart each season, and be seen in the fall of a leaf, or, most terrible of all, a loved face would grow old. Cronos and the Fates had entered man’s thinking, and try to escape as he might, he would endure an interior Ice Age. He would make, and then unmake fables. Then at last, and unwillingly, comprehend an intangible abstraction called space-time, and shiver inwardly at the endless abysses of space as he had once shivered, unclothed and unlighted before the Earthly frost.”


Art for Winter – Part III of III: Merrill Mahaffey (American, contemporary)

Below – “Grand Canyon” (oil on canvas); “Bright Angel Cliffs” (oil on canvas)

Remembering a Writer on the Date of His Birth: Born 23 December 1926 – Robert Bly, an American poet and essayist.

“The Great Society”
By Robert Bly

Dentists continue to water their lawns even in the rain:
Hands developed with terrible labor by apes
Hang from the sleeves of evangelists;
There are murdered kings in the light-bulbs outside movie theaters:
The coffins of the poor are hibernating in piles of new tires.

The janitor sits troubled by the boiler,
And the hotel keeper shuffles the cards of insanity.
The President dreams of invading Cuba.
Bushes are growing over the outdoor grills,
Vines over the yachts and the leather seats.

The city broods over ash cans and darkening mortar.
On the far shore, at Coney Island, dark children
Playing on the chilling beach: a sprig of black seaweed,
Shells, a skyful of birds,
While the mayor sits with his head in his hands.


This Date in Art History: Died 23 December 1983 – Colin Middleton, an Irish painter and illustrator.

Below – “Woods in June”; “At Drumrush”; “Gipsy”; “Girl Calling”; “The Life Everlasting”; “Evening Landscape with Boats.”

Musings in Winter: Lucy Maud Montgomery

“Don’t let a three-o’clock-at-night feeling fog your soul.”


This Date in Art History: Born 23 December 1939 – Nancy Graves, an American sculptor, painter, and printmaker.

Below – “Camouflage Series #1”; “Camel Vi, VII, VIII”; “Independent Energy”;Clash of Cultures; “Xola”; “Nefertiti” (bronze).


Worth a Thousand Words: Eight reindeer and a pony. How interesting. On a completely unrelated matter, I have been VERY nice this past year, just in case someone who was making or checking a list needed to know.


Contemporary American Art – Rhett Lynch

In the words of one writer, “Always seeking to expand his visual vocabulary, Rhett consistently experiments with various materials in order to bring more power, life, and intensity to his art. Rhett’s broad range of subject matter: the human form, animals, landscapes, icons, archetypes, myth and legend, are depicted realistically to pure abstract, whimsical to mystical. Rhett refers to his work as a visual journal, recording his experiences as a tourist of life. His work is a testament to the deeply powerful symbols found in the well of his Indigenous heritage. His work conveys a universal message, which crosses all cultural boundaries. Although varying greatly in medium and subject matter, all of Rhett’s work contains a common thread, intensity of color interwoven with multifaceted intent.”

Below – “Night of the Long Grass”; “Dragonflies”; “Secrets of the Corn”; “Cold and Hot Running Water”; “Hummingbird”; “The Arrival of the Star People.”

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