Picasso’s Tools for bloggers!?

Picasso’s Tools for bloggers!?

Nah, not his cans and brushes : Tools for the mind!

Here’s what I did : I picked a great book about Picasso, from Philippe Dagen.

It’s a great book because it’s not about “Picasso’s life”, and it’s not a “catalog of paintings”. He looked for structures, patterns, tools for the mind, and showed how in many aspects Pablo Picasso is a great artist.

I took a pictures of these patterns he detected, and I’ll casually apply them into the blogging activity. You’re free, after this, to apply this toolbox to poetry, teaching, marketing, photography, baking, theater or music composition. Life’s cool, right?

  1. Discover the modern
  2. Express by the primitive
  3. Build until crumbling
  4. Invent some new codes
  5. Hold all styles in one’s hand
  6. Let loom the monsters
  7. Stare at inhumanity
  8. Pit against the present
  9. Never finish

 

These are terribly pleasant injunctions, right? It shows we can build our own roads, windows, tools and door. It shows we can dare, be casual, open, multiple. It shows we can play, have fun, plug things, juxtapose concepts, dance, be fast, and intelligent, and plugged to the now.

Have fun!

 

 

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Charles Sheeler, a precisionist American painter

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Precisionism

Never heard about Precisionism until I found C. Sheeler on Pinterest.

Precisionism celebrated the new American landscape of skyscrapers, bridges, and factories in a form that has also been called “Cubist-Realism.”

I love this work! Transparency, flatness, games of light, geometry. I also love that there’s nobody in his paintings…

Have a nice sunday!

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IDM & Math Rock

Hi everyone, I discovered the word “IDM” yesterday (stands for “Intelligent Dance Music“) and it made me think of this idea of “Math Rock“. Let’s ask Wikipedia about this one :

Math rock is a style of indie rock that emerged in the late 1980s in the United States, influenced by post-hardcore, progressive rock bands such as King Crimson, and 20th century minimal music composers such as Steve Reich. Math rock is characterized by complex, atypical rhythmic structures (including irregular stopping and starting), counterpoint, odd time signatures, angular melodies, and extended, often dissonant, chords. It bears similarities to post-rock.

This definition is enough to put a big smile on my face. Crimson and Reich, wahhhh!

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Math_rock
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligent_dance_music

 

When I think about Math Rock I think about the groupe Battles. Atlas indeed is like crazy crimsonian :

 

Yes, if you listen to Crimson fury after that, you’ll find the links. And there’s fun in listening to the parts (the guitars weaving, the crackling drums, the bass…) :

 

OK if you’re in the mood you can Google “best math rock albums” or “best intelligent dance music albums”. And get a headache?

 

So let’s extract the pattern : In a field, there’s a movement named “math something” or “intelligent something” by the public, which shows a creative complexification of a field.

(Yeah some’ll think it’s all “elitist and derogatory towards other genres” – so there!)

What if you “mathed” something? Intelligent poetry? Math marketing? Photography? Love? What is this :

“complex, atypical rhythmic structures (including irregular stopping and starting), counterpoint, odd time signatures, angular melodies, and extended, often dissonant, chords”

…applied to teaching, writing, sex, blogging, or business?

Is there a way to grow, blossom and climb, propelled by intelligence instead of brute force and traditional tools?

Etc…

 

Thanks for reading!

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“Taken for granted” questioning

In any discipline, “Taken for granted” questioning is a funny tool.

It’s a pretty serious game, too.

  1. To play it, watch your “territory” and list everything about it.
  2. Then check what’s taken for granted, even the obvious.
  3. Then question everything with “What if I destroy one element, or reverse it?”.

 

An example. Theater, a play.

Actors are on the scene, playing as if they were someone else, telling a learned-by-heart text written by someone, they rehearsed before to make the whole thing fluent, there’s a red curtain, the lights are off during the play, the audience is sitting in aligned chairs and they listen, there’s maybe an intermission, but the play is “played” in one piece…

 

Now for each element, say : NO. Or “let’s do the contrary” :

  • Put the audience on stage and actors in the room.
  • Mix them up.
  • Let the audience stand up.
  • Divide the play into 5 minutes parts.
  • Don’t switch off the lights.
  • Make actors talk to the public.
  • Ask the public things.
  • Change the text during the play.
  • Use two stages or more.
  • Show the rehearsals.

Well, etc. For each line, pull the string, see what comes to you. Personally, I love the “two stages” idea. Interactions…

 

Now do it with : marriage, base ball, religion, politics, blogging, teaching, poetry, sex, photography. Anything can be questioned, especially :

What’s taken for granted?

What if you destroy/invert a line? Why would you do that? Exploration, invention?

 

Thanks for reading!

 

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Instagram : mariakdolores

Weird Street Photography : Wall & Lay

ONE

From sensitiveness to intellectual games

This is a movement I like to watch in Arts. And in a way it depends on you.

If you see a photography

  1. do you prefer to feel “Aaaaweeeee!”?
  2. or an eyebrow movement followed by happy inner questions like “Why did he do that, what does that mean, it makes me think about this, etc”?

TWO

In the domain of Street photography I wrote already two articles about Jeff Wall

Jeff Wall, Photographer & Jeff Wall : Photography for Thinkers, Part 1

“Near Documentary” : he elaborates pictures which “look like” natural but are NOT. He can spend weeks on a single photography.

His pictures seems banal, ordinary, but with a slight feeling of “something’s wrong”, or “maybe fake”, or staged. Is it something you SEE really, or is it because you know this about his work?

Of course, there’s here this old idea than this little weirdness in the only way to really tell something about “reality”.

And this modernity which is that “Art evolves with the movement of thinking about its own limits, frontiers, its own character”.

Therefore you have two camps : real photographers, who show what’s happening in the world (to be witnesses), and staged photographers, who think & invent their images (with artistic or intellectual purposes).

Here are 4 Jeff Wall pics :

THREE

On the other side, I just discovered a “real” street photographer : Géraldine Lay. Who chooses situations and light and places so… carefully, that you’re almost SURE that it’s staged. But it’s not.

Hopper like. A too good to be true meeting. Etc… You keep watching, smiling, wondering…

FOUR

Where, in other maps of your brain, do you like when two opposite ways of working result in the same “result for the audience”?

An interesting braid, right?

Thanks for reading!

Here are 4 Géraldine Lay pics :

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Sharing space but nothing else

First I found this painting from Belmiro de Almeida (how, why, I don’t remember).

Wondered about what happened in this couple. She cries or at least is weighed down, but by what? And this man is smoking, thinking, probably powerless/helpless, but who knows? Maybe he’s angry? “Here we go again…”.

Is it a break up, a betrayal, jealousy, boredom, romantic disappointment?

Maybe like in Chekhov, it’s just some tears, because of the “something’s lacking in my life” syndrome?

My researches showed me the second painting : a crying woman, a “vacant look” man, and flowers on the ground. Mhhh, who copied the other?

Then I thought about Hopper, of course, with no tears but only a… moment.

I remember that some (female) friends of mine told me many times than their guy “wasn’t really talkative”.

Thus I remembered the “bored couples” series, photographed by Martin Parr – who is a love because he includes himself in the series (he is on two photos of the four I found for you). Parr showed many times he’s a part of what he sees…

 

So is it even an article? No I don’t think so! I cobbled these together :

  1. To remember I should find more paintings on this topic (I tried and failed today)
  2. To think about the idea I found in the Parr link : monogamy is maybe dumb
  3. To remember that my lady likes my random lectures (I’m a chatterbox)
  4. To go on liking the “what happens here?” in Arts
  5. What if a man was crying, and a woman sitting aside, indifferent?
  6. To remember I have to take care of my partner, even if she’s a real “handful”
  7. To pass it on to you : what ideas did you get, reading this?

 

Take care! Have a nice day!

JP

 

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Bored Couples on Display in Public Places

“The Unhinger” : Manet’s Le Déjeuner sur l’Herbe (1863) is a MESS

Nowadays it’s almost impossible to understand the scandal and the revolution caused by Le Déjeuner sur l’Herbe, The Luncheon on the Grass, by Edouard Manet – which sounds totally harmful today, right? This painting is today in the Musée d’Orsay, in Paris.

It was a groundbreaker in three areas. And it stays an enigma, a source of endless books, articles and suppositions.

Because

  1. We don’t understand the reason why this woman is naked with two men. “The presence of a nude woman among clothed men is justified neither by mythological nor allegorical precedents”.
  2. She seems a normal woman, not the aerial nymph or goddess you normally see when you see a naked body in a painting. This “realistic” approach has never been seen before.
  3. She watches the audience, she watches YOU, we wonder : “Is she challenging or accepting the viewer, looking past the viewer, engaging the viewer, or even looking at the viewer at all?”.
  4. She doesn’t listen to the talking guy. She doesn’t care. She cares of you.
  5. Manet has been considered an awful painter, because of the perspective mistakes (though he studied all of it for almost 10 years with a great teacher)… all this is made on purpose :
  6. Like in Japanese etchings, the lady in the middle is too big according to the perspective laws. “Too large in comparison with the figures in the foreground, she seems to float above them”. There’s a flatness, which is like a game for your eyes.
  7. Manet displayed the painting at the Salon des Refusés, an alternative salon established by those who had been refused entry to the official one. The public liked to come and laugh, ununderstanding crowd.
  8. “The roughly painted background lacks depth, giving the viewer the impression that the scene is not taking place outdoors, but in a studio”. De facto, even the light looks like “studio“. It fake, not “gorgeous nature”.
  9. The fruits and the dress are painted in a great talented way, but the trees and the natural environment are painted differently : you see the brush strokes. Impressionism is coming.
  10. Therefore it seems unfinished on several parts of the scene.
  11. The painting is TALL – 81.9 x 104.1 inches (208 by 264.5 cm), which is unusual for this “genre” painting. Usually, tall paintings are used for biblical or mythological subjects.
  12. There are no “subtle gradations” between colors (though the painter perfectly knows how to do this), and Manet has been accused to “see in blocks”.
  13. We can wonder if these people are lovers, swingers. Or maybe she’s a hooker?
  14. It’s like casually based (gestures, dispositions) on old masters painters. Manet studied them a lot. Raphael’s Judgment of Paris is an example.
  15. Oppositions are many between her and them : feminine/masculine, light/dark, naked/dressed.
  16. Described as idiotic, childish, shocking and incoherent by the newspapers. Good to them!
  17. This sounds not sincere, but analytical, a game, an enigma, a puzzle for your mind.
  18. Indecency : “vulgar men” painting nude women.
  19. Manet himself jokingly nicknamed his painting “la partie carrée“.
  20. “Refusal to conform to convention and his initiation of a new freedom from traditional subjects and modes of representation – can perhaps be considered as the departure point for Modern Art.”
  21. Subject is shocking. Style and treatment are shocking.
  22. “She is not ashamed of being naked as she gazes confidently at us”.
  23. The model was known (Victorine Meurent, who was a painter) and the guys are Manet’s brothers. Scandal in the French Academy!
  24. Works like this made Manet the father of impressionism. You can also study “Olympia” and the fabulous “A Bar at the Folies-Bergère“. In both paintings, the woman gazes. At you.
  25. Manet unhinged, damaged the whole history of paintings with this one…

 

Thanks for reading!

 

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You’ll find dozens other ideas everywhere on the web. This artist is an infinite source of thinking. Also : parodies (some are hilarious!).

It inspired other painters like Monet – who dit a “correct” and gorgeous version (comparing both could be a whole article). It so beautiful (Manet and Monet, who was younger, were friends), but it’s for you eyes, not for thinkers…

Have a nice day!

JP

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