Catching Up


Today the haunting began. I can go only so long without writing or reading, or thinking the thoughts of beginnings and endings. Updike liked centers. I don’t. The centers are suffocating, stagnant, the places of boredom and illness. We stir around within them, buying things, sleeping. Sleeping. Sleeping may be the singular warning of middles. That’s where you can hear the other voices and you drown.

Anne Packard (1933) Barca a remi sul blu

Anne Packard (1933) Barca a remi sul blu

In this painting you cannot see the line on the horizon. You might think you can, but you cannot hold it. It looks as if it should be one solid blue, top to bottom. But it is not. The water ends where the sky begins, though they merge. It isn’t just the horizon line, you see, it is also the boat. The boat, and the rower, the oars, traverse the blue and say: this is it, this  is the water through which we travel. And this is where we are.



Today is being brought to you by this and that. And a fine sort of day it is…

A Room With A View Neal's Yard, Covent Garden

A Room With A View—Neal’s Yard, Covent Garden

This is a space, a very few blocks or so, outside of Covent Garden, in London, England. Neal’s Yard is the actual name of the location. Another fine example of what can happen when sought and encouraged. The place used to be the sewer of the area, crawling with rats and trash.

R.I.P. Karl Lagerfeld,1977. Photo - Francesco Scavullo.

R.I.P. Karl Lagerfeld—1977. Photo – Francesco Scavullo.

Karl left us yesterday from Paris, where he had been living for the last several years. He was the master behind the Chanel line once Coco left this world. How handsome he was in his youth.

Fashions of the day. Cambridge Undergraduates 1926.

Fashions of the day. Cambridge Undergraduates 1926

This has a special appeal for me as my father, George Hansen, dressed this way upon some time long ago. There’s a very old photo of him sitting on a dockage pillar, dressed most exactly like the young man on the right. It was taken in San Francisco where he had been before meeting my mother. In the photo it is also possible to see a ring on his little finger, which had belonged to his mother, my grandmother. I inherited the ring and it sits in my jewelry box as this is being written.

Pictures In History

Pictures In History

“I ain’t afraid to love a man. I ain’t afraid to shoot him neither.” ~Annie Oakley, 1899

From the Depths - by William Balfour Ker (1906)

“From the Depths” – by William Balfour Ker (1906)

Isn’t this a testimony to the “nothing new under the sun”? The quote is from Ecclesiastes 1:9—What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. This also reminds me of the IWW, The Industrial Workers of the World, and big Bill Haywood—as was writ by John Dos Passos. I love the ending line: He died there [Russia] and they burned his big broken hulk of a body and buried the ashes under the Kremlin wall. 

Art Like This Page · 14 February · Gustav Klimt

20th Century Art

And that’s a wrap

Art & Architecture

austrian artist friedensreich hundertwasser

Friedensreich Hundertwasserption

Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser was an expressionist artist and architect who built many colourful and eye-catching buildings around Europe in the 1950s. He created the Hundertwasserhaus, one of Vienna’s most iconic landmarks, alongside architect Joseph Krawina.

Thanks to for this amazing photo on Instagram.

And the last Hundertwasser designed building is being built in Whangarei, New Zealand, where he lived in the last years of his life. He designed the building but the money has only recently been raised to build it. It is a very exciting project which will house Maori art.

All windows are different and trees and plants grow freely without any pruning or cutting. Places are created to allow neighbours to meet and have a good time together.

I’m always astounded by the work that can be done, is done by artists. How beautiful our world would be if we could only unleash this passion in the ghettos, the slums, even just the tired and worn of our streets.

Oh Dear

And Oh My! I saw this and could only puzzle over it. I don’t know the artist or the location or the time period. Someone did point out the shoes, suggesting the Netherlands or Holland. I suppose the time  period is irrelevant. But I don’t know the suggested meaning. A title by the artist always helps a great deal. At least it could point us in the right direction.

the psychedelic museum

The Psychedelic Museum

I understand that meaning is subjective and we can take or give whatever it is that is suggested to us. But. When I look at this I wonder if it is the skeleton of the person who lives here or if the skeleton is waiting for the person who lives here.

Or. Does the skeleton not exist for the person who lives there, the unbidden reminder of the death that awaits us all? Is it a specter? Is it that one place is set and the other is forever waiting for what or who will join us?

I do note that the skeleton is quite tired, his (or her) head tilted downward. And yet, the candle is still lit, and is new. In any case, I am fascinated by this portrait of puzzlement. Oh…oh…another thought. Is it perhaps Time that is waiting and dying at the table we have yet to join?

So you see, wouldn’t a title help? Or is one of the central reasons this is so enchanting that we don’t know?

Another Glimpse Of Egon Schiele

Egon Schiele-Seated women with bent knee,1917 (Although Egon was an apprentice of Gustav Klimt he took a different approach with his art,he was quit controversial at his time for his nud

Egon Schiele—Seated women with bent knee, 1917. (Although Egon was an apprentice of Gustav Klimt he took a different approach with his art; he was quite controversial at his time for his nudes.

In April 1912 he had been arrested for seducing a young girl below the age of consent. When the police came to his studio to place him under arrest, they seized more than a hundred drawings which they considered pornographic. Schiele was imprisoned while awaiting his trial. When his case was brought before a judge, the charges of seduction and abduction were dropped, but the artist was found guilty of exhibiting erotic drawings in a place accessible to children. In court, the judge burned one of the offending drawings over a candle flame. The twenty-one days he had already spent in custody were taken into account, and he was sentenced to a further three days’ imprisonment. Controversial doesn’t seem to quite cover it, does it?

Schiele is now obtaining a renewed appreciation. Egon was always venerated by connoisseurs who valued the line, placement, form, and the shear edginess of his artistic expression. Today he is gathering a much wider appeal. In fact, he is discussed by an art critic in a current Sundance series on T.V.

And as a sidenote, nudes in the artworld and public world have always been at odds it seems. I wonder, might it be interesting to know how many artists have not done nudes? Excluding of course, those practicing the landscape, floral, and the like expressions of art.

Egon Again

Today, 100 years ago, Egon Schiele died at the age of 28, three days after his wife Edith. Both were struck by the Spanish flu in the autumn of 1918. Edith was six months pregnant with their first child. In 1915 Schiele made this fragile portrait of his wife.

Arno Landewers‎20:21 century art & architecture Follow · 10 hrs · Egon Schiele, Portrait of Edith, 1915, collection Gemeentemuseum Den Haag.

Egon Schiele, Portrait of Edith, 1915

Arno Landewers‎ 20/21 century art & architecture post· Egon Schiele, Portrait of Edith, 1915, collection Gemeentemuseum Den Haag.

Imagine. Dying at 28 years old. Watching your beloved wife and unborn child die before you. It was the great epidemic of Spanish Flu, in 1918. What losses were suffered, what pain was endured. To people surrounded by it, it was the end of days. So many times it has felt like the end of days, yet art and music go on.







Paweł Łydka‎Modern Art 20th Century. 3 mins · Roman Zakrzewski oil on canvas 1985 Her portrait 50x70

Paweł ŁydkaModern Art 20th Century.

Roman Zakrzewski oil on canvas 1985
Her portrait 50×70

Sometimes a struggle is captured in a single painting. Or photograph, or sketch… And this is one I’ve immediately identified with. It’s a representation of where I’ve been these past few days as I’ve struggled to stay awake, or get out of bed. Or stay focused. Or write a few words, or wonder why I can’t have a magic pill that would allow me to overcome whatever it is I need to overcome. This is what I look like today, purely as an abstraction as I’m not that thin. You can see the depth of despair that you know will always linger within even though there is a bit of hope or signs of life that have surfaced—not entirely, mind you—yet skimming the face, eyes, lips. Maybe the eyebrows perched into a worrisome frame. It’s not clear to me what the worry is contemplating or considering. Maybe nothing at present—perhaps a comment on the state of being. And then again sometimes it is difficult to tell the difference between a comment and a reflection.

I looked up Roman having not heard of him before seeing this painting. That effort has rendered the painting yet more of an enigma, as Zakrzewski is a man and his primary focus was painting this singular woman. Not a “Her portrait…” as indicated on the post. Not much more information is given as entries are in Polish and one of the signatures of the particular struggle I seem closed within is laziness. Translations are often a mouse click too far. (Not a bridge at all.)

And so here we are left once again, with the waaaayyyyy things are.