Friday, July 31, 2009

"Never regret thy fall,
O Icarus of the fearless flight
For the greatest tragedy of them all
Is never to feel the burning light."
Oscar Wilde

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Covalent Bond, 17x11"
from the collection of Wendy and Emily,
Washington DC
"All government, in its essence, is a conspiracy against the superior man: its one permanent object is to oppress him and cripple him. If it be aristocratic in organization, then it seeks to protect the man who is superior only in law against the man who is superior in fact; if it be democratic, then it seeks to protect the man who is inferior in every way against both. One of its primary functions is to regiment men by force, to make them as much alike as possible and as dependent upon one another as possible, to search out and combat originality among them. All it can see in an original idea is potential change, and hence an invasion of its prerogatives. The most dangerous man to any government is the man who is able to think things out for himself, without regard to the prevailing superstitions and taboos. Almost inevitably he comes to the conclusion that the government he lives under is dishonest, insane and intolerable, and so, if he is romantic, he tries to change it. And even if he is not romantic personally he is very apt to spread discontent among those who are."

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

"Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
Rainer Maria Rilke

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

"I paint to rest from the phenomena of the external world - to pronounce it -- and to make notations of its essences with which to verify the inner eye."
Morris Graves

Monday, July 27, 2009

"To destroy is easier than to create, and that is why so many people are ready to demonstrate against what they reject. But what would they say if one asked them what they wanted instead?"
from Love and Garbage by Ivan Klima

Sunday, July 26, 2009

"Our minds, like our bodies, are in continual flux; something is hourly lost, and something acquired.... Do not suffer life to stagnate; it will grow muddy for want of motion: commit yourself again to the current of the world."
Samuel Johnson

Saturday, July 25, 2009

"The public wants work which flatters its illusions."
Gustave Flaubert

Friday, July 24, 2009

Enskied, 17x11"
from the collection of Greg,
Annapolis MD

Thursday, July 23, 2009

"In no part of the Constitution is more wisdom to be found than in the clause which confides the wisdom of war or peace to the legislature, and not to the executive department...War is in fact the true nurse of executive aggrandizement. In war, a physical force is to be created; and it is the executive will which is to direct it. In war the public treasures are to be unlocked; and it is the executive hand which is to dispense them. ...It is in war, finally, that laurels are to be gathered, and it is the executive brow they are to encircle. The strongest passions and most dangerous waeknesses of the human breast; ambition avarice, vanity, the honorable or venial love of fame, all are in conspiracy against the desire and duty of peace."
James Madison
"The case for individual freedom rests chiefly on the recognition of the inevitable and universal ignorance of all of us concerning a great many of the factors on which the achievement of our ends and welfare depend. It is because every individual knows so little and, in particular, because we rarely know which of us knows best that we trust the independent and competitive efforts of many to induce the emergence of what we shall want when we see it. Humiliating to human pride as it may be, we must recognize that the advance and even the preservation of civilization are dependent upon a maximum of opportunity for accidents to happen."
Friedrich Hayek

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"One writes because one has been touched by the yearning for and the despair of ever touching the Other."
from The Unemployed Fortune Teller by Charles Simic

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

"The most beautiful things are those that madness prompts and reason writes."
Andre Gide

Monday, July 20, 2009

"Why do you think you want to keep these records- all the shirt boards, the notes, and the files? Do you imagine other people reading them or are they just for you?

Gay Talese:
"I haven't given it much thought. I just don't want to throw them away. It's become an obsession with me now. I don't want to give the impression that I have an inflated sense of myself because I do not. But I do think that I am a chronicler. I want to report on what I have seen and heard and people I've known, and what I've done, because I think it's connected to history. I'm interested in leaving my mark. I keep records to testify to the fact that I'm alive."

"Like the ZT.S.Eliot line, "These fragments I have shorn against my ruins"?

"You bring intellectual bearing upon my banality."

from an interview by Katie Riaphe in The Paris Review vol.189

Sunday, July 19, 2009

"...I have come to think that life is a far more limited thing than those in the midst of its maelstorm realize. That light shines into the act of life for only the briefest moment-perhaps only a matter of seconds. Once it is gone and failed to grasp its offered revelation, there is no second chance. One may have to live the rest of one's life in hopeless depth of loneliness and remorse. In that twilight world, one can no longer look forward to anything. All that such a person holds in his hands is the withered corpse of what should have been."
from The Wind-up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami

Saturday, July 18, 2009

"On a wild night he went through the dark of the apple orchards downriver while a storm swept in and lightning marked him out with his empty sack. The trees reared like horses all about him in the wind and the fruit fell hard on the ground like the disordered clop of hooves.
Suttree stood among the screaming leaves and called the lightning down. It cracked and boomed about and he pointed out the darkened heart within him and asked for light. If there be any art in the weathers of this earth. Or char these bones to coal. If you can, if you can. A blackened rag in the rain.
He sat with his back to a tree and watched the storm move on over the city. Am I a monster, are there monsters in me?"
from Suttree by Cormac McCarthy

Friday, July 17, 2009

In a Field of Clover, 17x11"
from the collection of Greg,
Annapolis, MD
"The virtue of sacrifice is everything and must always exist in necessary moments. Without it, we would not be able to produce good art nor anything else of value in life."
Juan Gris in a letter to Leonce Rosenberg

Thursday, July 16, 2009

"A process cannot be understood by stopping it. Understanding must move with the flow of the process, must join it and flow with it."
Frank Herbert

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

"Civilised life, you know, is based on a huge number of illusions in which we all collaborate willingly. The trouble is we forget after a while that they are illusions and we are deeply shocked when reality is torn down around us."
J.G. Ballard

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

'Mr. Kiefer sees a vengeful God and "the world as completely wrongly constructed," he said. But beauty can emerge: "If you try to do something you cannot do, it brings you farther, it brings you to something else, even if you fail."'...

'There are days when he paints and hates his work. "It's horrible," he said. "You're desperate, but the next day it becomes, sometimes, beautiful. Because I didn't see what was inside. Desperation is a material for artists."'

from 7/8/09 Steven Erlanger piece in N.Y.Times about Anselm Kiefer nad the new Paris Opera stage sets and costumes.

Monday, July 13, 2009

"A poet makes himself a visionary through a long, boundless, and systematized disorganization of all the senses. All forms of love, of suffering, of madness; he searches himself, he exhausts within himself all poisons, and preserves their quintessences. Unspeakable torment, where he will need the greatest faith, a superhuman strength, where he becomes all men the great invalid, the great criminal, the great accursed--and the Supreme Scientist! For he attains the unknown! Because he has cultivated his soul, already rich, more than anyone! He attains the unknown, and if, demented, he finally loses the understanding of his visions, he will at least have seen them! So what if he is destroyed in his ecstatic flight through things unheard of, unnameable: other horrible workers will come; they will begin at the horizons where the first one has fallen!"
Arthur Rimbaud

Sunday, July 12, 2009

"We die containing a richness of lovers and tribes, tastes we have swallowed, bodies we have plunged into and swum up as if rivers of wisdom, characters we have climbed into as if trees, fears we have hidden in as if caves.

I wish for all this to be marked on by body when I am dead. I believe in such cartography - to be marked by nature, not just to label ourselves on a map like the names of rich men and women on buildings. We are communal histories, communal books. We are not owned or monogamous in our taste or experience."
from The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje

Saturday, July 11, 2009

"Your memories become fantasies if they are not shared,
and your life in all its triviality becomes a legend."
from The Lazarus Project by Aleksandar Hemon

Friday, July 10, 2009

Alley Sunset, 17 x 11"
from the collection of Donna & Steve,
Baltimore, MD
"Whoever separates his life from thought will not last. Whoever wishes to just wander along without thinking will meet his own death before he reaches his desired destination. By taking a step Paul had left the road, and his body followed along easily. The view that the eyes slowly take in tries to seduce him into the unknown. Another step....No hand to point the way. To remain in the unknown would be a good way to simply be. No need to own anything, no need for a grave."
from The Journey by H.G. Adler

Thursday, July 9, 2009

"Before all else, the Minotaur was the agent of his own appetite. But sometimes, in philosophical moods, he would think of himself as a messenger bearing this ultimate truth: You were created to be destroyed. That was it. Simple."
from Ziggurat by Stephen O'Connor

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

"It was dark, and the candle burning in the carriage generated more shadows than light."
from When Nietzsche Wept by Irving Yolom

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

"The color of the truth is gray."
Andre Gide

Monday, July 6, 2009

"But on bright summer days, in particular, so evenly disposed a luster lay over the whole of Barmouth Bay that the separate surfaces of sand and water, sea and land, earth and sky could no longer be distinguished. All forms and colors were dissolved in a pearl-gray haze; there were no contrasts, no shading anymore, only flowing transitions with the light throbbing through them, a single blur from which only the most fleeting of visions emerged, and strangely- I remember this well- it was the very evanescence of those visions that gave me, at the time, something like a sense of eternity."
from Austerlitz by W.G. Sebald

Sunday, July 5, 2009

"The modern artist is working with space and time and expressing his feelings rather than illustrating."
Jackson Pollock

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Crow's Nest, 17x11"
"Surrealism is destructive, but it destroys only what it considers to be shackles limiting our vision."
Salvador Dali

Friday, July 3, 2009

"An original is a creation motivated by desire. Any reproduction of an original is motivated by necessity. It is marvelous that we are the only species that creates gratuitous forms. To create is divine, to reproduce is human."
Man Ray

Thursday, July 2, 2009

"I want what we all want," said Carl. "To move certain parts of the interior of myself into the exterior world, to see if they can be embraced."
from You Don't Love Me Yet by Jonathan Lethem

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

"Not a breath, not a sound—except at intervals the muffled crackling of stones that the cold was reducing to sand—disturbed the solitude and silence surrounding Janine. After a moment, however, it seemed to her that the sky above her was moving in a sort of slow gyration. In the vast reaches of the dry, cold night, thousands of stars were constantly appearing, and their sparkling icicles, loosened at once, began to slip gradually towards the horizon. Janine could not tear herself away from contemplating those drifting flares. She was turning with them, and the apparently stationary progress little by little identified her with the core of her being, where cold and desire were now vying with each other. Before her the stars were falling one by one and being snuffed out among the stones of the desert, and each time Janine opened a little more to the night. Breathing deeply, she forgot the cold, the dead weight of others, the craziness or stuffiness of life, the long anguish of living and dying. After so many years of mad, aimless fleeing from fear, she had come to a stop at last. At the same time, she seemed to recover her roots and the sap again rose in her body, which had ceased trembling. Her whole belly pressed against the parapet as she strained towards the moving sky; she was merely waiting for her fluttering heart to calm down and establish silence within her. The last stars of the constellations dropped their clusters a little lower on the desert horizon and became still. Then, with unbearable gentleness, the water of night began to fill Janine, drowned the cold, rose gradually from the hidden core of her being and overflowed in wave after wave, rising up even to her mouth full of moans. The next moment, the whole sky stretched out over her, fallen on her back on the cold earth."
Albert Camus