Sentient in San Francisco – 30 May 2019

This Date in Art History: Born 30 May 1867 – Alexander Archipenko, a Ukrainian-born American sculptor.

Below – “The Kiss”; “Woman combing her hair”; “Venus”; “The Gondolier”; “Flat Torso”; “Dancers.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 30 May 1899 – Cornelia Otis Skinner, an American novelist, biographer, essayist, playwright, and screenplay writer.

Some quotes from the work of Cornelia Otis Skinner:

“It is disturbing to discover in oneself these curious revelations of the validity of the Darwinian theory. If it is true that we have sprung from the ape, there are occasions when my own spring appears not to have been very far.”
“All I have learned about horses is that they are beautiful overrated creatures and are all born quite insane.”
“Emily and I have now reached the time in life when not only do we lie about our ages, we forget what we’ve said they are.”
“The French have no such expression as ‘killing time.’ In their more philosophical vocabulary the term is ‘passing time,’ which means savoring all moments of it each to his individual enjoyment. While we battle with time, they relax with tempo.”
“There are compensations for growing older. One is the realization that to be sporting isn’t at all necessary. It is a great relief to reach this stage of wisdom.”

Below – Gladys Rockmore Davis: “Portrait of Cornelia Otis Skinner”

Contemporary Australian Art – Martine Vanderspuy

Below – “Wild Seas”; “Forever Summer”; “Breaker”; “Ocean Rip”; “Mystic Seas”; “Yellow Mellow.”

A Poem for Today

“The Water Carriers”
by Angelo Giambra

On hot days we would see them
leaving the hive in swarms. June and I
would watch them weave their way
through the sugarberry trees toward the pond
where they would stop to take a drink,
then buzz their way back, plump and full of water,
to drop it on the backs of the fanning bees.
If you listened you could hear them, their tiny wings
beating in unison as they cooled down the hive.
My brother caught one once, its bulbous body
bursting with water, beating itself against
the smooth glass wall of the canning jar.
He lit a match, dropped it in, but nothing
happened. The match went out and the bee
swam through the mix of sulfur and smoke
until my brother let it out. It flew straight
back to the hive. Later, we skinny-dipped
in the pond, the three of us, the August sun
melting the world around us as if it were
wax. In the cool of the evening, we walked
home, pond water still dripping from our skin,
glistening and twinkling like starlight.

Contemporary Canadian Art – Stefanie Leigh Kirby

Below – “Effloresce”; “Wonderland”; “Candy Colored Field”; “Field of Dreams”; “The Unruly Garden”; “Morning Dew.”

Musings in Spring: Rachel Carson

“One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself, ‘What if I had never seen this before? What if I knew i would never see it again?’”

Contemporary American Art – Fred Bell

Below- “Atwater Beach 4”; “Little Trees”; “At The Farm”; “Country Grounds 22”; “Eight Trees”; “Striped Vase.”

A Poem for Today

“After a Rainstorm”
by Robert Wrigley

Because I have come to the fence at night,
the horses arrive also from their ancient stable.
They let me stroke their long faces, and I note
in the light of the now-merging moon

how they, a Morgan and a Quarter, have been
by shake-guttered raindrops
spotted around their rumps and thus made
Appaloosas, the ancestral horses of this place.

Maybe because it is night, they are nervous,
or maybe because they too sense
what they have become, they seem
to be waiting for me to say something

to whatever ancient spirits might still abide here,
that they might awaken from this strange dream,
in which there are fences and stables and a man
who doesn’t know a single word they understand.

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