Hamlet Meets Young Frankenstein:
"In one of Jorge Luis Borges's best-known short stories, 'Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote,' a 20th-century French writer sets out to compose a verbatim copy of Cervantes's 17th-century masterpiece simply because he thinks he can, originality perhaps not being all it's cracked up to be.
He manages two chapters word for word, a spontaneous duplicate that Borges's narrator finds to be 'infinitely richer' than the original because it contains all manner of new meanings and inflections, wrenched as it is from its proper time and context...."
[An artist's version of a newspaper is]....
"a drawing of a copy of a version of what happened, holding a mirror up to nature with a refraction or two in between. In a way that mixes Borges with a dollop of Jean Baudrillard and a heavy helping of Walter Benjamin, the work also upends ideas...."
Daily Number (Day):
Menard's Quixote, and
The Harvard Crimson
|Mon., Dec. 11:|
(via a white Matrix)
|Sun., Dec. 10:|
a black view of life in
"The Garden of Allah"
|Sat., Dec. 9:|
Click on numbers
"There is nothing new under the sun. With the death of the real, or rather with its (re)surrection, hyperreality both emerges and is already always reproducing itself." --Jean Baudrillard
Thursday, December 14, 2006 6:06 AMHamlet's Transformation,
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 9:29 AM
Christmas in Heaven and Hell
Best Wishes for a
C. S. Lewis
Image of Lewis from
Into the Wardrobe
"What on earth
is a concrete
-- Robert M. Pirsig, author of Zen and the Art of Motorcyle Maintenance
For one approach to an answer, click on the picture at left.
Update of 4:23 PM:
The Lewis link above deals with the separation of Heaven from Hell. The emphasis is on Heaven. A mysterious visitor to this website, "United States," seems to be seeking equal time for Hell. And so...
Tuesday, December 12, 2006 11:22 AM
For Sinatra's Birthday
| Sunday, January 08, 2006|
Monday, December 11, 2006 7:20 AM
Notes for Chile on...
Sunday, December 10, 2006 9:00 PM
Beyond Geometry, continued:
Sunday, December 10, 2006 12:00 PM
Nobel Prize Day, 2006
Sunday, December 10, 2006 9:00 AM
A First Class Degree
Death was what the Atlantic wall and Siegfried line were all about....
... modernism of the heroic period, from 1920 to 1939, is dead, and it died first in the blockhouses of Utah beach and the Siegfried line...
Sunday, December 10, 2006 6:00 AM
In the Garden of Allah
|The Lottery 12/9/06 ||Mid-day ||Evening |
|New York ||036 |
for the 36
"square crystal" and "the symbolism could not have been more perfect."
|Pennsylvania ||602 |
Jung's Imago and Solomon's Cube."
Saturday, December 9, 2006 4:00 AM
ART WARS continued
"We're not here to stick a mirror on you. Anybody can do that, We're here to give you a more cubist or skewed mirror, where you get to see yourself with fresh eyes. That's what an artist does. When you paint the Crucifixion, you're not painting an exact reproduction."
— Julie Taymor on "Frida" (AP, 10/22/02)
"Saint Francis Borgia at the Deathbed of an Impenitent [above], painted by Francisco Goya (1746-1828) in 1788, is one of the most astonishing works in an oeuvre replete with remarkable images. In the decade and a half since its inclusion in Robert Rosenblum's survey* of nineteenth-century art, this canvas has become widely known among scholars and their students. Rosenblum, following a line of interpretation that dates back to the middle of the nineteenth century, uses this painting to support a symptomatic reading of Goya's art, which he describes as 'the most sharply accurate mirror of the collapse of the great religious and monarchic traditions of the West.'"
-- Andrew Schulz in The Art Bulletin, Dec. 1, 1998
* 19th-Century Art, by H. W. Janson and Robert Rosenblum, 1984
Friday, December 8, 2006 9:00 AM
At the Crossroads
"Appropriating the Button-molder's
words to Peer Gynt, he would say,
'We'll meet at the next crossroads…
and then we'll see--
I won't say more.'"
Thursday, December 7, 2006 3:30 AM
Wednesday, December 6, 2006 3:15 AM
ART WARS continued
Tuesday, December 5, 2006 5:01 AM
On this date (Dec. 5):
1776, the first scholastic fraternity in America, Phi Beta Kappa, was
organized at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va.
In 1791, composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart died in Vienna, Austria, at age 35.
In 2006, author Joan Didion is 72.
Joan Didion, The White Album:
"We tell ourselves stories in order to live....
We interpret what we see, select the most workable of multiple choices. We live entirely, especially if we are writers, by the imposition of a narrative line upon disparate images, by the 'ideas' with which we have learned to freeze the shifting phantasmagoria which is our actual experience.
Or at least we do for a while. I am talking here about a time when I began to doubt the premises of all the stories I had ever told myself, a common condition but one I found troubling."
An Alternate History
(based on entries of
the past three days):
"A FAMOUS HISTORIAN:
England, 932 A.D. --
A kingdom divided...."
-- Introduction to "Spamalot"
A Story That Works
A Story That Works
Monday, December 4, 2006 11:01 AM
A Christmas Carol:
Monday, December 4, 2006 2:45 AM
|Google Search 12/4/06|
|Results 1 - 2 of about 14|
for umkehrung theocritus. (0.07 seconds)
|I12: on 'transference' by Theocritus of refined motifs to uncouth peasants, ... is in reality a parody, a devastating 'Umkehrung' of the real thing, ...|
|A THEOPHANY IN THEOCRITUS IN a masterly study of the language and motifs of ... epithet I The completeness and precision of the Umkehrung (for this term cf. ...|
Sunday, December 3, 2006 2:22 AM
Sunday, December 3, 2006; 12:12 AM
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - "Washington's elite mingled with artistic icons at the Kennedy Center Honors on Saturday....
The Kennedy Center Honors weekend was to conclude on Sunday with Bush hosting an afternoon reception at the White House followed by an evening performance at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
The show will be broadcast on the CBS television network on December 26."
From "Today in History,"
by The Associated Press:
On this date (Dec. 3):
"Concerto in F,"
by George Gershwin,
had its world premiere
at New York's Carnegie Hall,
with Gershwin himself
at the piano.
the Tennessee Williams play
"A Streetcar Named Desire"
opened on Broadway.
the musical "Kismet"
opened on Broadway.
the musical "Camelot"
opened on Broadway.
Monroe and the Kennedys
Monroe and the Kennedys,
Click on the picture
for further details.
Saturday, December 2, 2006 12:00 PM
Monroe and the Kennedys, Part II
"Emilio Estevez still doesn't know why, but one day in 2000 he and his brother Charlie Sheen found themselves doing a photo shoot at this city's long-closed but still infamous Ambassador Hotel. It was where Senator Robert F. Kennedy was fatally shot the night he won California's crucial Democratic presidential primary in 1968.
The site made little sense for the film they were promoting, 'Rated X,' a feature about the real-life San Francisco pornographers Jim and Artie Mitchell.... he [Estevez] and Sheen co-starred as the Mitchell brothers.
'It wasn't something I had requested,' Estevez says today of the photo shoot's location. 'It was perhaps the photographer. I never got to the bottom of it, but there I was.'
To him, it
was one in a series of 'divine interventions' that gave him the
inspiration to write and direct the new film 'Bobby,' which opened
Thursday [Nov. 23, Thanksgiving Day 2006]."
Bobby Kennedy and
John F. Kennedy
Charlie Sheen and
"We keep coming back
and coming back to the real:
To the hotel instead of
Saturday, December 2, 2006 1:29 AM
Monroe and the Kennedys
In honor of
the film "Bobby,"
("Venus at St. Anne's"
is the title of the final
the C. S. Lewis classic
That Hideous Strength.)
Symbol of Venus
Symbol of Plato
"The best theology today,
in its repudiation of a
rhetorical religious idealism,
finds itself in agreement
with a recurrent note
in contemporary poetry....
We keep coming back
and coming back/
To the real: to the hotel
instead of the hymns/
That fall upon it
out of the wind. We seek/
... Nothing beyond reality.
the spirit’s alchemicana....
(From 'An Ordinary Evening
in New Haven,'
in The Collected Poems
of Wallace Stevens....)
... Not grim/
Reality, but reality grimly seen....
-- "The Church's
New Concern with the Arts,"
by Amos N. Wilder,
of Divinity, Emeritus,
at Harvard Divinity School,
in Christianity and Crisis,
February 18, 1957.
"All the truth in the world
adds up to one big lie."
Friday, December 1, 2006 4:07 AM
ART WARS continuedDay Without Art
From the Online Etymology Dictionary:
crucial - 1706, from Fr. crucial... from L. crux (gen. crucis) "cross." The meaning "decisive, critical" is extended from a logical term, Instantias Crucis, adopted by Francis Bacon (1620); the notion is of cross fingerboard signposts* at forking roads, thus a requirement to choose.
"... given the nature of our intellectual commerce with works of art, to lack a persuasive theory is to lack something crucial-- the means by which our experience of individual works is joined to our understanding of the values they signify."
-- Hilton Kramer in The New York Times, April 28, 1974
"I realized that without making the slightest effort I had come upon one of those utterances in search of which psychoanalysts and State Department monitors of the Moscow or Belgrade press are willing to endure a lifetime of tedium: namely, the seemingly innocuous obiter dicta, the words in passing, that give the game away.
What I saw before me was the critic-in-chief of The New York Times saying: In looking at a painting today, 'to lack a persuasive theory is to lack something crucial.' I read it again. It didn’t say 'something helpful' or 'enriching' or even 'extremely valuable.' No, the word was crucial....
The more industrious scholars will derive considerable pleasure from describing how the art-history professors and journalists of the period 1945-75, along with so many students, intellectuals, and art tourists of every sort, actually struggled to see the paintings directly, in the old pre-World War II way, like Plato's cave dwellers watching the shadows, without knowing what had projected them, which was the Word."
-- Tom Wolfe, The Painted Word
For some related material from the next 30 years, 1976-2006, see Art Wars.
* "Note that in the original Latin, the term is not by any means 'fingerpost' but simply 'cross' (Latin Crux, crucis)
- a root term giving deeper meaning to the 'crucial' decision as to
which if any of the narratives are 'true,' and echoing the decisive
'crucifixion' revealed in the story."