It might have been Cézanne who went into the field of corn and setting up his easel, looked around and saw the mountains to the rear and, argumentative in sky and corn, the raucous crows. It might have been Cézanne, this painter on a mission -- and if it had been he he would have known where best to stay his eye. But this was not Cézanne. This painter was anonymous... famous but anonymous. He was in need of time, reflection, thought. He needed to consider, weigh up all the aspects. He had come to paint reality. He'd paint it in whatever guise it came to him. But where in all this richness should a painter focus first? To help him in the awe-inspiring task he'd brought an aid to mental application: a chocolate cream egg. He bites the egg. It spurts. It stains his shirt. But more: it stains his pristine canvas. He looks with horror at two stains -- a dark brown chocolate-coloured streak beneath a yellow egg yolk smudge. He takes a palette knife, attacks the irritating marks, but only spreads them, makes them more offensive to his eyes. He is about to try again with greater fury when a crow adds to the mess with a grey-white and black, grey white conglomerate obscenity... He stops, the palette knife raised high above his head in preparation for the final strike... he's struck by thought. And are these not, he cries aloud, more real than any marks I've ever seen purporting to be art? Seconds after voicing this epiphany he is engulfed by midges, which he sets about with vigour and his cap. Only later does he realise that he has swatted some on to the canvas, where they've somehow morphed as crows among the egg yolk-corn, above the chocolate earth. So that's reality! he says. Reality impinges, bites, invades, encroaches on your rights, becomes a bloody nuisance now and then. And if it don't do that, then man, it just aint real enough for me! Reality don't paint, it simply spreads itself around. It's mucky, fucky, unlucky for the guy who gets too stuck with it. Reality finds you and when it does, then do all what you have to do with it -- and get out pretty quick! (Perhaps the world of art would not have been the same if anonymous had really been Cézanne!)
The moon petals the sea. Rose petals the sea. Stone sea. Stone petals. Rose petals of stone. Stone rising before me. Sea moves. How moves...
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Tuesday, 5 February 2013
The Man Who Wasn't Cézanne
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could you give a link to the painting and painter you are discussing?
Funny, the first stanzas I could have seen as a painters allegory to the false names used on the New Testament Bibles -- forgery made holy.
'fraid to say, the story's fictitious. Paul Cezanne I refer to, but the main guy just never was. Sorry.
Well we can be sure the writers of the Gospels weren't.
Oh well. The analogy feel apart.
Isn't it law in Britain that fictitious poems much come with a warning label -- or was that Sweden?
I know Europeans are much more careful about warning their consumers than Americans.
-- weren't * fictitious*
-- *fell* apart
more real than
any marks I've ever seen purporting
to be art...i really like his epiphany dave...and from a creme egg...i am not rather fond of them, but like what you did with them...smiles....ha...like that last italics bit as well on reality....
If it was Cezanne it would have been worth a fortune! But reality puts a damper to the expectations. Nicely Dave!
Very funny, Dave, on about a zillion levels. Perhaps not so much a landscape, as a land-escape, is what he was interested in. But there's an element of gritty abstraction that probably is catching this (sort of) but maybe without so much humor. k.
You may just have given birth to a new art movement...Perhaps an Easter exposition might be in order:)
A great foray which left me too wanting to gaze upon the finished piece...
Splendid powerful..the final digression on reality...sublime. I totally agree with it...no way to escape from the mess and its ineluctable spreading.
this is intelligent, thoughtful FUN!
Sending YOU Aloha
~ > < } } ( ° >
Enjoyed this, Dave. The story captured my attention and kept me reading. Ha, I wonder how many "anonymous" paintings out there really were done by someone famous.
art is a good part serendipity despite all we try to do, perhaps writing too. whimsical.
Cezanne also must've struggled with reality...and was criticized by members of salon de beau art. Creativity has some risky aspect.
Now I see where I've been going wrong all these years!!
This would-be painter all too often just sits gazing dumbly at her blank canvas, waiting for that elusive inspiration to come.
And all she really needs to do is follow the prompts of fate and nature. Hehe:D
A gloriously funny story, Dave.
I so enjoyed reading this!
I have come back to read your poem in its fictional light now. First, I must ell you, I new nothing of Cezanne before reading your poem. So now I read Wiki, and scanned around Google pics at paintings. 'Twas a fun tour, thanx. After that, I re-read your poem -- knowing both some background and that your poem is fiction. [BTW, you paint as a hobby too, don't you?]
His painting of Mount Sainte Victoire seemed to match the one in your poem a bit. I loved his stuff -- thanx for the intro.
Now, to your poem:
About the fake painter, you said, "He'd paint it in whatever guise it came to him." which, if I am understanding Cezanne, Cezanne would not do. For he said:
"When I judge art, I take my painting and put it next to a God-made object like a tree or flower. If it clashes, it is not art."
But your guy starts with an egg-squirt, not carrying, ready to make up anything --- indeed, not Cezanne.
I had to look up "midges" -- is that British for gnat? A pest for painters in the field indeed. And I wonder here, is Fred the painter?
"Reality is Midges" -- great analogy. I love the last philosophic stanza. The parenthetic helps me. You are indeed contrasting anonymous (?you) to Cezanne. You see the world as the last stanza.
Interestingly, Cezanne painted more skulls and was darker in his last days (as many folks are) -- for one, his diabetes was harsh. Our philosophies change colors depending on our life circumstances. This fact is often missed by folks who discuss philosophy as if it is removed from real lives.
Fantastic poem -- glad I came back.
It's art, my friend, not a sales pitch!
No. I'm not keen on creme eggs either - not for EATING! Thanks for this.
That sounds like Cezaane was NOT into reality! Ah well, could be right, at that!
Land-escape, I love it. Very clever. And yes, I'm with you on the gritty abstraction, that's something I'd like to follow up some time.
Thanks for this, it's really appreciated. I almost included a new art movement -- probably would have called it something very unimaginative, like REAL ART . (Or has that been done?)
Thanks. Once again, two great minds....?
Love this comment. Thanks.
Good question... as is its opposite: how many famous paintings out there are actually the work of anonymous painters?
Yes, you are so right - as it happens I have said the same thing in my post for today -- an example of the web's synchronicity, think you?
This is undoubtedly so. Thanks for the thought.
Absolutely, no need to go insearch of it, let it find you -- whatever it
Oooops, I said "Fred" in my comment -- meant "Dave. My bad.
After my long, thought out comment you tersely and dismissingly said,
"Sabio. It's art, my friend, not a sales pitch!"
I'm not sure what you are implying and won't guess. I do enough guessing on folks poems.
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