why do I make such
blanket, broad, vague
ambiguous statements?

1. i'm inarticulate
2. i'm changing

I'm unable to
express a new shift
in my aesthetic.

what once was boring
to me has suddenly become
illuminating, enlightening
my greatest muse yet!

has this ever happened to you?

I'm embarrassed to say
that I have built a building
without a foundation.

in school,
i slept through all of
classical european art and
awoke for 20th century

I must relearn the abc's
remix my palette, change
my tennis grip, etc. ha!

I need your help

share with me
1 thing i should know
about the early days of art.

...an artist, a painting
an event, a town, a method,
that you think is invaluable to
the history art and the way we
perceive the world today...

top: francois halard
bottom images via mozart


Lark said...

Vermeer, obvious choice but so lovely. If you are interested in what silence looks like.

The Dutch Baroque and Flemish Baroque painters in general.

Dominik said...

Giorgiones "la Tempesta" - an endless riddle
endless stories to be told. yet none really fitting

Anonymous said...

early modern art was one of my favourite undergrad courses. one painting that sticks with me is giorgione's sleeping venus:


partly because of the relaxed sensuality, and partly because (as wikipedia handily notes) it inspired manet's olympia--one of my very favourite paintings.

Mi said...

You shoud red this


and go to Firinze :)

miss milki said...

hmm sleeping through the old stuff and waking for 20th Century Architecture sounds so familiar! I'm also guilty of it. It didn't help that they had the most boring lecturers teach the old stuff and the passionate exciting lecturers covering the 20th Century.

But I have to say that I've always found the Impressionists interesting. They were rebels in their day going against the accepted way of painting and seeing the world.

My name's Haley said...

The duomo. It was designed in a way that they had no idea how to build it, no idea how to make that giant dome. The builders just had faith that as they built it they would figure out ways to construct it. It took a century and a half to build. The original designers never got to see the final product. It still stands centuries later.

I love that they dared to do something that they had no idea how to complete, that they had to figure it out.

Anonymous said...

Think I may have just lost a comment! It was basically this: A Girl & Her Duenna for the mischievous expressions, and Wawel Cathedral in Poland for the excess (like a Bosch painting).

Anonymous said...

P.S. What's the provenance of that first photo? Please share!

Anonymous said...

take yourself to the met. you'll learn by looking. and keep going back because you'll see something new every time....or fly to florence and visit the uffizi.

cerre said...

impressionists were rebels! I love this. I can't tell you how much I'm enjoying your comments! Thank you! The world is so illuminating.

the top image is from photog François Halard, Villa Malaparte. Capri, Italy



fitz said...

Surface, space, standing -- a real lens through which to approach art; not just the pretentious title of a Berkeley class.

Renaissance art and its perspective, Velázquez and his spatial depth, Bruegel's landscapes, Courbet and the unreal way he handles paint!

go back to the painting. everything got so confusing after.

fitz said...

On second thought: Giotto's Cappella degli Scrovegni in Padua.

Only 20 people are allowed at one time, and you have to go through this machine which removes excess moisture before you enter. You have the feeling that you are in this miraculous, well preserved incubator of the Quattrocento.

Still the most religious experience of my life.

en_pente_douce said...

I would say chiaroscuro (clair-obscur), il Caravaggio and Degas (although not quite so early days..).
You might be interested by books written by Daniel Arasse, I know some of them are translated in english and the one dealing with details in paintings is simply wonderful.
Thank you for sharing so many beautiful things and thoughts with us...
Marine (from Paris)

jana said...

i second what someone else has said -- the uffizi holds absolutely the best selection of art for the kind i think you are interested in.

The Wanderers' Daughter said...

I would agree with chiaroscuro...there's a great deal of depth and mystery there, not to mention a profundity of technique.

I love the way the Dutch masters drew the glow of a girl's skin from beneath layers of deep, enveloping shadow.

On a totally different level, don't miss out on the pleasures of Boticelli, images which were woven through my childhood by my grandmother, who adored him.

More recently on the historical timeline, I'm a great fan of the WPA murals and their powerful, earthy, grounded depiction of the evolution of our nation.

And something I never, ever tire of is studying Michelangelo's sketchbooks. I sometime think there is nothing more beautiful in this world than those sketches.

Anonymous said...

lee! you are not unarticulated! how dare you say that!!

it is just that the taste refines... better said, opens ones owns horizons, and chooses!

my mom used to say, "when you grow up you will eat eggs" - which is a Spanish saying for "when you become an adult you will do what you please" - for which I'd always reply "but i dont like eggs!" and she would answer "that's the whole point: you WILL like eggs and so you will be ready to eat them too"
(see was right from every angle!)

now, my recommendation ----> caspar david friedrich.


Adalgisa Campos said...

i think of velazquez, specially this lady, who use to be my best friend at the gemaldegalerie at berlin:
and fra angelico, for all the endless repetitions and differences among all those angel faces in the coronations of the vergin scenes...
i like your blog a lot, congratulations!..

joy said...

I do love these awkward close-ups of art work. Can we be blogging buddies? You are a pretty good blogger and have a good sense of fashion.

Adalgisa Campos said...

i think of this lady
who lives in the gemaldegalerie, in berlin. i used to seat there and talk quietly to her for a long time. i think she's one of the most impressive paintings i have ever seen.
and i think about a beautiful text on flamish art, by roland barthes. it's called "le monde-objet" (the object-world. i found it online, but i don't know if you read french.
love your blog.

Adalgisa Campos said...

ops, sorry, i have sent it in double accidentaly... i toutght it didn't work the first time...

PK Studios said...

See a Rembrandt in person. You will weep.

Sofia said...

spanish masters: goya, velázquez!
Museo del Prado, the best concentration of classical painting in the world


Jeannie said...

i recently learned about the effects of the church on the development of architecture in the western world.
whether gothic, the dark ages, medieval - because of what was going on in the church the structures around us accommodated the change.

Seth said...

Transformation. The stuff of creativity! Beautiful pictures all.

Christina said...

1. Your blog is my biggest inspiration and every image is my new favorite image.
2. My mind runs blank and the only person I can think of is, after living in Venice I remember the basilica Frari with its Titians...the quality of the light and the solemnity of the stones...

Fink said...

Hallo there. I love your blog and find it so inspiring and whole, with no lack of foundation. I studied History of Art and Classical Civilization in Ireland and at first was always waiting for the more modern classes. It was only when I left college I realised how much more those fundamentals meant, and how inescapably and wonderfully relevant history and care are. I think that's the same moment. It's never the wrong time though, I'd recommend seeing or reading about Goya's Black Paintings, also Casper David Friedrich as I see recommended already, Japanese Zen painting and also being told the tale of Giotto discovered by Cimabue drawing sheep on a rock as a young shepherd, only because it is always the first story you are told in art history. Would be worth reading Vasari's The Lives of Artists too-an anecdotal narrative of Renaissance and pre-Renaissance artist characters.

Jane O Sullivan said...

just study giottos fresco paintings ....W.O.W

neki desu said...

Velazquez, Giotto's frescos and Proust .
as fro being inarticulate..NADA !:)

neki desu

elena said...

Have you tried Giovanni Bellini? I find his paintings breathtaking.
I love the images you always chose, btw.

marga said...

Landscape with the Fall of Icarus by Pieter Brueghel, and have a carefull look at it. Enjoy.

tony said...

I'm never sure how one can select one artist before another but if pushed into a corner, with a palette knife against my throat, the one name I would offer is Piero della Francesca. He was so generous.

Manue said...

The Frauenkirche in Dresden with its unique bell shaped dome.
Destroyed in 1945, the church was rebuilt over a period of about 11 years piece by piece in keeping with the original plan of its architect George Bähr using original material as much as possible. Was finished in Oct. 2005, and I was lucky enough to attend one of its first concerts by none other than the New York Philarmonic Orchestra....
A peace memorial as well, where all gather on Feb.13th with candles to commemorate the victims of the bombing that completely destroyed the city.
A must see and feel....

Design Porn said...

I agree with My Name's Haley: Brunelleschi's Dome is a great place to start, not least because of the rediscovery of linear perspective during the Renaissance. The influence of this concept for the next three and a half centuries was important in art, culture, commerce, you name it: to attempt to render mathematically three dimensions in two-dimensional space; to attempt to show things not necessarily as they are but as they appear; and the slow movement away from painting for the eye of God. Eye = I as John Berger would say. (I love Brueghel for this reason: all those scenes of life just going on, people just doing what they do, even as in "Icarus" the legs of the doomed flyer thrash about pretty much unnoticed.) As for the Duomo, Ross King has a lovely book about Brunelleschi and one-point perspective if you haven't read it. Then it might be nice to flash forward to all the dudes who flouted perspective's so-called certainty, like Cezanne, Picasso, and Gris. Maybe they'll look brand new...btw, love, love, love your blog.

Rebekah Miles said...

Italo Calvino's Italian Folktales- "Rosemary" is a really great one! p.s.- I found your lovely blog through my dear friend nancy neil:)

mariarriz said...

You are so european, your esthetic and perception. You can find by yourself what you are looking for.

Aladdin's Cave keepster said...

I love the work of Nicolas Hey-Hutchinson and Henry Rousseau...

Anonymous said...

cyclops by Odilon Redon