Wandering in Woodacre – 21 February 2021

Contemporary American Art – Randall Mattheis

Below – “Forest Floor with Orange Pine Needles”; “Wet Sky Over Pacific Rainforest”; “Saplings Filled with Life”; “Palm Trees at the Edge of a Beach”; “Early Snow I.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 21 February 1962 – David Foster Wallace, an award-winning American novelist, short story writer, essayist, author of “Infinite Jest” and “The Pale King.”

Some quotes from the work of David Foster Wallace:

“You will become way less concerned with what other people think of you when you realize how seldom they do.”
“If you worship money and things, if they are where you tap real meaning in life, then you will never have enough, never feel you have enough. It’s the truth. Worship your body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly. And when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally grieve you. On one level, we all know this stuff already. It’s been codified as myths, proverbs, clichés, epigrams, parables; the skeleton of every great story. The whole trick is keeping the truth up front in daily consciousness.”
“The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you.”
“Everybody is identical in their secret unspoken belief that way deep down they are different from everyone else.”
“Lucky people develop a relationship with a certain kind of art that becomes spiritual, almost religious, and doesn’t mean, you know, church stuff, but it means you’re just never the same.”
“I do things like get in a taxi and say, ‘The library, and step on it.’”

Contemporary Canadian Art – Angela Seear: Part I of II.

Below – “Lake Color Study 1”; “Ocean Color Sudy 1”; “Desert Color Study 6”; “Prairie Color Study 1”; “Sunset Color Study 1.”

This Date in Literary History: Born 21 February 1962 – Chuck Palahniuk, an award-winning American novelist, journalist, and author of “Fight Club.”

Some quotes from the work of Chuck Palahniuk:

“Your past is just a story. And once you realize this it has no power over you.”
“Big Brother isn’t watching. He’s singing and dancing. He’s pulling rabbits out of a hat. Big Brother’s busy holding your attention every moment you’re awake. He’s making sure you’re always distracted. He’s making sure you’re fully absorbed. He’s making sure your imagination withers. Until it’s as useful as your appendix. He’s making sure your attention is always filled. And this being fed, it’s worse than being watched. With the world always filling you, no one has to worry about what’s in your mind. With everyone’s imagination atrophied, no one will ever be a threat to the world.”
“If you don’t know what you want, you end up with a lot you don’t.”
“We come from a generation of people who need their TV or stereo playing all the time. These people so scared of silence. These soundaholics, these quietophobics.”
“Actually, watching television and surfing the Internet are really excellent practice for being dead.”
“When did the future switch from being a promise to a threat?”
“Your handwriting. the way you walk. which china pattern you choose. it’s all giving you away. everything you do shows your hand. everything is a self portrait. everything is a diary.”
“You have a class of young strong men and women, and they want to give their lives to something. Advertising has these people chasing cars and clothes they don’t need. Generations have been working in jobs they hate, just so they can buy what they don’t really need. We don’t have a great war in our generation, or a great depression, but we do, we have a great war of the spirit. We have a great revolution against the culture. The great depression is our lives. We have a spiritual depression.”

Contemporary Canadian Art – Angela Seear: Part II of II.

Below – “Octavia”; “Aiko”: “Breaking the Dawn”; “Blue Rocks “October Mist.”

Born 20 February 1907 – W.H. Auden, an Anglo-American poet and playwright.

“Musee des Beaux Arts”
by W. H. Auden

About suffering they were never wrong,
The Old Masters: how well they understood
Its human position: how it takes place
While someone else is eating or opening a window or just walking dully along;
How, when the aged are reverently, passionately waiting
For the miraculous birth, there always must be
Children who did not specially want it to happen, skating
On a pond at the edge of the wood:
They never forgot
That even the dreadful martyrdom must run its course
Anyhow in a corner, some untidy spot
Where the dogs go on with their doggy life and the torturer’s horse
Scratches its innocent behind on a tree.

In Breughel’s ‘Icarus,’ for instance: how everything turns away
Quite leisurely from the disaster; the ploughman may
Have heard the splash, the forsaken cry,
But for him it was not an important failure; the sun shone
As it had to on the white legs disappearing into the green
Water; and the expensive delicate ship that must have seen
Something amazing, a boy falling out of the sky,
Had somewhere to get to and sailed calmly on.

Below: Peter Bruegel the Elder: “Landscape with the Fall of Icarus”

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