Roses; epilogue

My rose text is done. Strange how one can work for weeks on a text which ends up at 567 words. But that’s how it is. For me, anyway. I have written this text on commission, it’s going into an exhibition catalogue. The text is written to a series of large-scale rose-drawings, pencil drawings in…

Roses

reading up & sketching down; roses in art (cont.)   Virgin Mary and Jesus is, one could be tempted to say, a standard motif in Western art. However, most portraits depict the virgin looking at her child. In this picture, by British/Austrian Marianne Stokes, Mary looks up and out, as if to introduce her young child…

Roses

reading up & sketching down; roses in art (cont.) Vincent van Gogh: Still Life: Vase with Roses (1890) Vincent Van Gogh (1853-90) is more famous for sunflowers, irises and blazing cherry blossom: but still his pale roses, incandescent against a pale green wall, is amongst my favorites. The flowers are in bright, exuberant bloom, their furled forms animated by…

Looking at boulders

There are few things I like better than a great ekphrastic poem: Adjacent,Against, Upon Rick Barot —after Michael Heizer I may be looking at the set of boulders that is now in front of me, but it is you I am addressing. You are near or you are far, depending on the accuracy of the…

Apropos moving –

Lucia Berlin called many different places home during her lifetime. The following is a list she made in the late eighties detailing the pitfalls of some of them. Excerpted from Welcome Home: A Memoir with Selected Photographs and Letters, by Lucia Berlin, 2018.  Juneau, Alaska—Avalanche the day I was born, wiped out a third of town. Deer…

Hothouse

Here I am; reading, thinking & writing about roses, and then suddenly this poem comes along – almost as on demand … Hothouse A rose, rose. A violet, violet. A jade, jade. No. The architecture of each, a refusal. Rose is not rose nor violet violet nor jade jade. But each is what it is,…

Gather Ye Rosebuds While Ye May … (cont.)

Still working on my rose-text, today I will show you a contemporary version of the motif: Cy Twombly: The Rose IV (2008). Acrylic on plywood, 252 x 740 cm. Cy Twombly’s The Rose is a cycle of five paintings, numbered I – V, the paintings are variations of each other. Cy Twombly: The Rose V (2008). Acrylic on plywood, 252 x 740…

Gather Ye Rosebuds While Ye May …

reading up & sketching down; roses in art ….? Some historical fragments: Botanical symbolism has its origin in the literature of antiquity, where plants are often used in metaphors for virtue and vice. In classical mythology, human beings are transformed into plants as a reward or punishment, as in the story of Narcissus, the vain…

she stuttered

confused thoughts on art as therapy As already mentioned: I’m not sure about the great therapeutic dimension in/of art, it looks very much like some strained kind of positive thinking … What I forgot to tell you, is that I’m also rather skeptical regarding psychotherapy’s therapeutic ability … I have been working for several yeas as a researcher…

Julia Briggs – An Inner Life

Two days ago I got a question: Have you read Julia Briggs’ biography on Woolf – An Inner Life? – to which I had to reply: no. But now I have … well not the whole of it yet – but I definitively will! Briggs is a clear and talented narrator, and she offers clever insights into both…