Thursday, December 21, 2006

Some Artists I Admire

A list of personal favorites, for no good reason other than that I would like to write about them:
  • Ezra Pound
  • Louis Sullivan
  • Claude Bragdon
  • Francesco Borromini
  • John Coltrane
  • Billie Holiday
  • Pola Negri
  • Joni Mitchell
  • Charles Ives
  • Tennessee Williams
  • Eugene O'Neill
  • Jorge Luis Borges
  • Caravaggio
  • Eugene Delacroix
  • Charles Dickens
  • Thomas Hardy
  • Victor Hugo

What links these artists, besides my taste for their work? Perhaps it is that all are -- to some extent -- difficult and challenging artists, whose work has been controversial, whose aims have outreached their grasps, who in different ways have been misunderstood, neglected, undervalued.

In my eyes, at least.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

A Note On Identity

From Sepharad by Antonio Munoz Molina:
The most burdensome aspect of our identity is based on what others know or
think about us. They look at us and we know that they know, and in silence they
force us to be what they expect us to be, to act according to certain habits our
previous behavior has established, or according to suspicions that we aren't
aware we have awakened. To the person you meet on a train in a foreign country,
you are a stranger who exists only in the present.

Brilliant, I think. We set the traps with our own behavior. Others police those traps and force us to remain inside them.