the reason of beauty is emotional

Here is David Brooks; adding valuable arguments to our ongoing study of art & beauty: We really have to trust our emotions, which are much smarter than our reason in some ways – because our emotions tell us what to value. – we don’t have the choice to control our emotions, but we do have…

how to be alone

Some years ago I read Sara Maitland’s book A Book of Silence. It’s a beautiful book based on Maitland’s own experiences of living alone in the Scottish highland. Now she is out with a new book, in a way it’s a continuation of the first, but How to Be Alone is also an attempt to…

insurmountable difficulties

As I was writing my morning pages this morning it suddenly struck me how easily my mind wanders off when I sit down to write my own texts. I’m so much more focused when working on assignments. And it dawned on me that I have to try to figure out why my mind keeps wandering….

The Inner Landscape of Beauty

you should always carry something beautiful in your mind — Blaise Pascal (1623–1662) John O’Donohue in conversation with Krista Tippett Some of you might already know the words and writings of the late Irish poet and philosopher, John O’Donohue (1956-2008). I must admit: I don’t. All I know is a few passages from Longing and Belonging, which I have been…

“Don’t talk. I can’t hear myself see!”

a post inspired by Slow Muse As an art critic I have for a very long time been concerned about all kinds of written statements accompanying art exhibitions. In our post-conceptual area written descriptions and declarations more often than not dominate the art arena, at the expense of visual sensibility. As a critic I expect an art…

having a vision

apropos the didactic – once again … I have read a short piece by Frank Furedi today. Not necessarily an antidote to de Botton’s art-therapy-project. But definitively a problematization of governmental utility thinking. Here are some thoughts to share from one of Furedi’s texts: There was a time when, as the Oxford English Dictionary stated, vision meant…

… forgetfulness

The Dad Poet has a great post on poetry and philosophy, using a beautiful poem by Billy Collins as a springboard, or maybe rather as a centerpiece, for the discussion. Following some links on The Dad Poets’ page, I ended up with some great animations made to Collins’ poems. Here is Forgetfulness Forgetfulness – Billy…

a deeper level of experience –

I do not know how this happened; but suddenly, in the midst of reading about Yoko Ono, I remembered something I have read years ago in the The Birth of Tragedy. It has to do with art and life. Edvard Munch, Friedrich Nietzsche (1906) For Nietzsche, art is not just a form of human activity but is…

Cultures with richer vocabularies are more fully human —

Old Chestnuts re-blogged from Time’s Flow Stemmed Richard Rorty (1931–2007) The Fire of Life BY RICHARD RORTY In an essay called “Pragmatism and Romanticism” I tried to restate the argument of Shelley’s “Defense of Poetry.” At the heart of Romanticism, I said, was the claim that reason can only follow paths that the imagination has first broken….

Consecrating ones life to an imbecility

I suppose, as a poet, amongst my fears can be counted the deep-seated uneasiness that one day it will be revealed that I consecrated my life to an imbecility (to something intrinsically unnecessary and superfluous – and thereby unintentionally cruel). In an intriguing essay called “On Fear”, Mary Ruefle touch upon a problem I have been…