October 15, 2021

As for myself, I cannot imagine the Mid-Century Modern sans steel and glass.  Steel, glass, and technology is the sine qua non of the old-fashioned “Modern“.  And, steel and glass, and energy-efficiency is the sine qua non of the new modern.*  Trouble is, the old steel and glass are expensive, mostly energy consuming … ever…

October 1, 2021

Equity, diversity, inclusion is a pretty little phrase, quaint, nice and polite, well suited to swimsuit contests, campus riots, and advertising campaigns.  We find this fawning phrase graphicly projected on smart boardroom screens, carelessly taped to smudgy coffeehouse windows, and boldly italicized upon preachy university websites.  I cannot speak for you, yet, as for myself,…

September 15, 2021

Remarks Delivered at the Cosmos, Club, Washington, D.C., 14 September, 2021: Progressive, or Classive Civic Art? When asked to join this panel, I wondered: “What might I, an old craftsman, contribute to a discussion of architecture and urbanism.  Yes, I’ve tinkered with civic planning, designed some little houses, some, over-large, even so …  I wondered:  …

September 1, 2021

Likely, the universe was made by mind, the God, if you will, if not, no matter, nothing at all.  Before matter, information: before anything is made, idea, alike the programmer who enters code, alike the mechanic who conceives an engine, before all creation there is information, an idea which has no physical presence, yet physically…

August 15, 2021

Here we are in the picture gallery, the Pinakotheke, looking from the Propylaea to John Russell Pope’s National Gallery of Art, and what a view, 5,125 miles and even farther in time, 2,500 years, the distance between Phidias, Pericles, Plato and you.  What a view. Over the long and glorious expanse see us grow in…

August 1, 2021

Perhaps your school-desk was alike my school-desk covered edge-to-edge in sketches.  The desk surface, as you know, is an almost perfect blank canvas, a clean slate, a tabula rasa*, of sorts, where knowledge acquired might be reflected eye to mind to hand, to nun who might correct wayward drawing knuckles with a smart, wood-ruler, snap,…

July 1, 2021

Perhaps you assume, which, if you did, you would be mistaken, that Progressive decline is inevitable, that Classive ascendence is impossible, so very loud are the screams of maddened youth, so very droning are the innuendo of obsequious newsreaders, so very disheartened are you that all you honor, all you love, all you believe is…

June 15, 2021

Recently, following nearly a year’s absence from television, I had the opportunity to witness one of those common flatteries, television commercials, vehicles to sell some frivolity by appealing to typical vanities, pride, lust, sloth, et cetera.  You have seen them, I am sure, rainbow people, proud, self-selfing, posing by not posing, assuming that air, that…

June 1, 2021

The story of the American home is the story of the American Dream, and each home tells a story, stories being filmed for a five-episode television pilot whose sizzle-reel (the long, inside industry commercial) will be seen here, and many other places, soon. … “Home” is a big story, a story told in part in…

May 15, 2021

This, below, the preamble to an old book of notes, chapters, really, 40 chapters that considered American history in entire, every art, every craft, every variation.  The thing is cumbersome, not likely to be published in its present form, if at all.  Yet, opening statements, because brief, would like sharing for the introduction of a…

May 1, 2021

The God of War; May 1, International Workers Day, and Other Considerations When next you float down Yangtze River through Jingzhou City, likely you will notice Guan Yu, God of War, looking rather ambitious, rather restless; at 190 feet in height, a bit imposing, at 1,320 tons, quite a bit threatening, a person out-of-place at…

April 13, 2021

The story of the American home is the story of the “American Dream”, beautiful, abiding, good: “The Beautiful Home” tells this story. INTRODUCTION    The story of the American home is the story of the American Dream, our story, the story of us, a people beautiful, good, true, and sometimes, silly.  The Beautiful Home, introduced today,…

April 1, 2021

I do, and I can’t stand it. So, friends,I have composed a book for your amusement, for your understanding, a book to tell the truth on those who lied to you, MODERN ART: A Critique in Rhyme Here, examined: the lives of the knuckle-headed artists, their splattered pictures, crooked statues, bumbled books, collapsing buildings, and…

March 23, 2021

Here we are at circus, you and me and all the others, facing each and every way in The Age of Absurdity.  Rather alike some Swiftian satire, some Aesopian consequence, some Seussian phantasmagoria where all the world is upside down, facing sideways in slow-motion walking backwards into a psychedelic truth.  Yet, who can say: This…

March 15, 2021

The song of the breeze of the morning in a field peopled with fragrant flowers is one of the many delights in having life.  And the song of the breeze is, to those who pause to listen, the voice of eternal wisdom.  Listening to the morning breeze is for me an almost daily occupation from…

March 1, 2021

Having these past forty years of life a desire to taste of pleasure and delight—and having tasted—I consider myself something of an expert on Beauty, on pleasure and delight.  Alas, with humility I must confess a dilettante’s knowledge, only.  Though, had there been a course of study or even a course of lectures on the…

February 15, 2021

There is pleasure in the contemplation of the object one desires; there is a pleasure in tasting, touching, hearing or seeing the object; and there is a pleasure in the remembrance of the object enjoyed.  This pleasure, what is it?  Is pleasure specific to the object and unique to the person, or is pleasure general…

February 1, 2021

Why We Remember Forgotten Patriots Many states and localities commemorate African American History Month.  The wisdom to be derived from the commemoration is necessary and useful.  Yet, we must remember our history, I say “our history,” because the history of these United States is not coded by color, is not sub-divided by gender; the accomplishment…

January 15, 2021

The bird learns to fly by being pushed from the nest.  Sea turtles know they must run to the ocean.  Baby ducks ride mother’s back until learning by example to swim.  The tadpole grows legs and hops; the caterpillar grows wings and flies; what must the finger-painter grow to become a picture-maker. Certain you have…

January 1, 2021

Fellow Americans: You might be surprised to learn that you are Greek, in the first instance; that you are Roman, a child of Lucius Junius Brutus; that you are Catholic, even if atheist; that you ascend from victories in the Art of War; that you, fellow Americans, are Hellenocentric, even if citizens of the One…

December 15, 2020

You might like to know: my Sun is in Venus, my Scorpio is Ascendant, my Mars is in Pisces, my Venus is in Virgo, my Moon is in Taurus … that art is varied, variable of element, color, form.  You might like to know, that Art is the idea made real; that Art is fashioned…

December 1, 2020

You know, perhaps, the meaning of the word, “poetry”, derives, as does most everything of civil worth, from the Greek, “poesis”, a word descriptive of, “making”.  A poem is a thing made, alike a rocking chair, French fries, a statue; a poem is a thing made for a purpose: practical use, sensual joy, humane growth,…

November 15, 2020

The seasons of our lives, love to birth to death, bring moments of joy, of hope, of loss, occasions by which we learn to be in others, ourselves.  These occasions, the courting, the marriage, the birthday, the anniversary, the funeral and that final epitaph each deserve words appropriate to the occasion, suitable to the person. …

October 31, 2020

The homes of the gods are most often constructed near their sacred springs, the site of their miracles, their births, or the location of some occasional visitation.  Most often, at home, there was a table for feasting, then, as now, known as an “altar”.  There was a porch, maybe two, and within the main room…

October 15, 2020

For most of us, Aeolus is difficult, if not impossible to see, being “Wind”, as he is.  Even so, watch the leaves, as on this October day I have done.  If you will do as I have done, you will see, as did Leonardo, the pattern of the god, the twist and the turn of…

September 30, 2020

Many years ago, beneath nine, lovely, star-snowed nights, Mnemosyne [ne-mos-ie-ne] enjoyed the favor of Zeus-shepherd, each night bearing forth from love a Muse, as Hesiod in Theogony relates. Before the Muse History (Clio), before Love Poetry (Erato), before Song (Euterpe) and all the rest, there was Memory (Mnemosyne), god borne, corporeal, beautiful. We muse in…

September 15, 2020

A Review of Civilization in Little Songs: You, friend, ascend from many victories.  All who read these words shall know we won, that we through three millennia have won upon the bloody fields of contest; that through rolls of papyrus, through vellum folios, through books stitched in hard-covered paper we won the sharp battle of…

August 31, 2020

The dancing step, the telling gesture, memory in movement; we can imagine the joy, the ritual, the sacrifice to God in our days cave-safe, firelit some 40,000 years before this day, creatures as now we are yet without advantage, without these past millennia of humane tradition, the gift of thought, the accumulation of wisdom that…

August 15, 2020

Reality is a mundane enchantment, a make-believe typical to creatures of our type, to sensate creatures who cannot see over the horizon, who cannot hear through walls, who feel but by direct touch, whose peculiar quality of taste can be known only to the self, alone.  We are pretty creatures, flesh alike pearl, geometric in…

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