divineblu: Roadside fruit seller by Partha Das
It's about books and paintings and movies and stuff. Also, fruit. OK not really fruit...
This blog is dedicated to all things relating to the philosophy and history of art and aesthetics. Basically, it serves as a place to gather all of my favorites, looking for themes. Some of it's beautiful, and some is (arguably) not. None of it is my own.
"He would pick up eggshells, a bird’s wing, a jawbone […] He would peer at them as if he could read them, and pocket them as if he could own them. This is death in my hand, this is ruin in my breast pocket, where I keep my reading glasses."
Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson
“In theory, it seems like a good thing when a story we have really enjoyed carries on and on. It means we get more, and that’s what all readers want, mostly. We point at something we enjoyed a great deal and say more, please! Some artists are cranky and say “What? No, I already did that, now I want to do something else.” Others obligingly begin turning out more and more.
The problem with a lack of ending is that we can never form a completed opinion about the artwork we’re experiencing and enjoying. Without a final point, we can never say if it’s been any good or not. I think that’s partially why artists shy away from them.”
At the risk of sounding too much like a salesman…. There is a documentary film in the works about Armen Ra’s life and absolutely incredible music. The indiegogo campaign for the film runs through the end of the month (March), for anyone who would like to make a donation. http://igg.me/at/WhenMySorrowDied
THEREMIN Dido’s Lament by Henry Purcell Thereminist ARMEN RA (by Armen Ra) Really really wonderful …
"He went back to his section and folded into a slouched position and settled one foot on a pipe that ran under the window. Eastrod filled his head and then went out beyond and filled the space that stretched from the train across the empty darkening fields."
Flannery O’Connor, Wise Blood
"Everything is a self-portrait. A diary. Your whole drug history’s in a strand of your hair. Your fingernails. The forensic details. The lining of your stomach is a document. The calluses on your hand tell all your secrets. Your teeth give you away. Your accent. The wrinkles around your mouth and eyes. Everything you do shows your hand."
Chuck Palahniuk, Diary (via shesanargonaut)
The following are a series of excerpts from Kevin Whelan’s essay on Brian Friel’s play Translations. Never have I read an academic paper that moved me as much as (if not more than) the work of art it is analyzing. The complete article can be found here:
A little overly-simplified contextual background: Friel’s play is set in Ireland during a period of colonial mapping and place re-naming. The bold text in the final excerpt is my own emphasis, not the author’s.
Colonialism is never just a political and economic condition but also a psychic one. Translations probes the psychodynamic effects of colonialism as they play out in the linguistic realm, where the private and the public spheres meet. Masquerading as a version of universalism, colonialism presented the acquisition of English as a liberation, the golden bridge that carried the native beyond localism into the world at large, rescuing him from provincialism by awarding full participation in British civic life. The toll required was the relinquishment of the native language, disavowal of native history, severance from native culture.
Translations is ultimately a language play not a history play, an emphasis that Friel himself constantly stressed: ‘The play has to do and only to do with language.’ He wished to understand what it means to become a people having to use a language ‘that isn’t our own’ and how Irish people today respond to ‘having to handle a language that is not native to them’. Consider Friel’s own mastery of the language as in a deceptively simple phrase like ‘English cannot express us’: this has at least three mutually enriching meanings in this context — to hurry us up, to squeeze us out, to describe us.
The native Irish tradition of dind seanchas (place lore) relied on a narrative rather than a technical mode of surveying the landscape. It produced a cultural landscape that coded a reciprocal, vernacular relationship between a community and its environment, not imposed from outside or above but developed cumulatively, spontaneously, organically. The material practices and associated symbolic forms that comprised this cultural landscape had a dual function. The first was secular, pragmatic, social; the second was symbolic, cultural, associational. The lived landscape provided a locus for human affection, imprinted as remembered forms, ways of being, ways of living, ways of seeing, ways of knowing. This version of landscape connected its outer contours with an inner vision: in place names the landscape and the imagination meet. Place names are an accumulated repertoire of historical knowing, a narrative sediment deposited by the continuous flow of history. The sense of place fuses a material environment, a historical experience and a lived reality, and is encapsulated in the Irish word dúchas.