Lucian Freud! Born on this day in 1922.


Girl with a White Dog 1950-1
This picture shows the artist’s first wife when she was pregnant. The style of the painting has roots in the smooth and linear portraiture of the great nineteenth-century French neoclassical painter, Ingres. This, together with the particular psychological atmosphere of Freud’s early work, led the critic Herbert Read to make his celebrated remark that Freud was ‘the Ingres of Existentialism’.

The sense that Freud gives of human existence as essentially lonely, and spiritually if not physically painful, is something shared by his great contemporaries, Francis Bacon and the sculptor Alberto Giacometti. (Via Tate)


Μέθα, Μεθύστε



Édouard Manet, Le Déjeuner sur l’herbe (1863)


Ἂν κάποτε στὰ σκαλιὰ ἑνὸς παλατιοῦ, στὸ πράσινο γρασίδι
μιᾶς τάφρου, στὴ μουντὴ μοναξιὰ τοῦ δωματίου σου,
ξυπνήσεις ξεμέθυστος πιά, ῥώτα τὸν ἄνεμο, ῥώτα τὸ κύμα,
τὸ πουλί, τὸ ῥολόι, κάθε τι ποὺ φεύγει,
κάθε τι ποὺ στενάζει, κάθε τι ποὺ κυλάει, ποὺ τραγουδάει,
ποὺ μιλάει· ῥώτα τί ὥρα εἶναι;
Κι ὁ ἄνεμος, τὸ κύμα, τὸ ἄστρο, τὸ πουλί, τὸ ῥολόι,
θὰ σοῦ ἀπαντήσουν: Εἶναι ἡ ὥρα τῆς μέθης!
Γιὰ νὰ γίνεις ὁ μαρτυρικὸς σκλάβος τοῦ χρόνου,
μέθα· μέθα ἀδιάκοπα!
Ἀλλὰ μὲ τί; Μὲ ῥακή, μὲ κρασί, μὲ ποίηση, μὲ ἀρετή…
-Μὲ ὅ,τι θέλεις, ἀλλὰ μέθα!…


Πρέπει νά ῾σαι πάντα μεθυσμένος.
Ἐκεῖ εἶναι ὅλη ἡ ἱστορία: εἶναι τὸ μοναδικὸ πρόβλημα.
Γιὰ νὰ μὴ νιώθετε τὸ φριχτὸ φορτίο τοῦ Χρόνου
ποὺ σπάζει τοὺς ὤμους σας καὶ σᾶς γέρνει στὴ γῆ,
πρέπει νὰ μεθᾶτε ἀδιάκοπα. Ἀλλὰ μὲ τί;
Μὲ κρασί, μὲ ποίηση ἢ μὲ ἀρετή, ὅπως σᾶς ἀρέσει.
Ἀλλὰ μεθύστε.

Καὶ ἂν μερικὲς φορές, στὰ σκαλιὰ ἑνὸς παλατιοῦ,
στὸ πράσινο χορτάρι ἑνὸς χαντακιοῦ,
μέσα στὴ σκυθρωπὴ μοναξιὰ τῆς κάμαράς σας,
ξυπνᾶτε, μὲ τὸ μεθύσι κιόλα ἐλαττωμένο ἢ χαμένο,
ρωτῆστε τὸν ἀέρα, τὸ κύμα, τὸ ἄστρο, τὸ πουλί, τὸ ρολόι,
τὸ κάθε τι ποὺ φεύγει, τὸ κάθε τι ποὺ βογκᾶ,
τὸ κάθε τι ποὺ κυλᾶ, τὸ κάθε τι ποὺ τραγουδᾶ,
ρωτῆστε τί ὥρα εἶναι,
καὶ ὁ ἀέρας, τὸ κύμα, τὸ ἄστρο, τὸ πουλί, τὸ ρολόι,
θὰ σᾶς ἀπαντήσουν:

-Εἶναι ἡ ὥρα νὰ μεθύσετε!

Γιὰ νὰ μὴν εἴσαστε οἱ βασανισμένοι σκλάβοι τοῦ Χρόνου,
μεθύστε, μεθύστε χωρὶς διακοπή!

Μὲ κρασί, μὲ ποίηση ἢ μὲ ἀρετή, ὅπως σᾶς ἀρέσει.

Σὰρλ Μπωντλαίρ

Διαβάστε περισσότερα ποιήματα:

Fleurs du mal / Flowers of Evil:

«Καλός και Κακός Καιρός»


weatherweather_kalmanhandler6Illustration by Maira Kalman, based on Barney Ingoglia’s photograph for the NewYork Times



Καλός και Κακός Καιρός

Δεν με πειράζει αν απλώνη
έξω ο χειμώνας καταχνιά, σύννεφα, και κρυάδα.
Μέσα μου κάμνει άνοιξι, χαρά αληθινή.
Το γέλοιο είναι ακτίνα, μαλαματένια όλη,
σαν την αγάπη άλλο δεν είναι περιβόλι,
του τραγουδιού η ζέστη όλα τα χιόνια λυώνει.

Τι ωφελεί οπού φυτρώνει
λουλούδια έξω η άνοιξις και σπέρνει πρασινάδα!
Έχω χειμώνα μέσα μου σαν η καρδιά πονεί.
Ο στεναγμός τον ήλιο τον πιο λαμπρό σκεπάζει,
σαν έχεις λύπη ο Μάης με τον Δεκέμβρη μοιάζει,
πιο κρύα είναι τα δάκρυα από το κρύο χιόνι.(Από τα Αποκηρυγμένα, Ίκαρος 1983)

Claude Monet: Born on this day in 1840


The name giver:

Monet painted the famous Impression, Sunrise (Impression, soleil levant) in 1872. It depicted a Le Havre port landscape. In 1874 it hung in the first Impressionist exhibition. Thanks to this painting the whole movement is now called “Impressionism” – The art critic who came up with this adjective meant his assessment to be negative, but the Impressionists at the time approved of description and it stuck.

The Stonemason’s Yard about 1725 by Canaletto


Τhe Stonemason’s Yard’ is considered one of Canaletto’s finest works. The view is one across the Campo (small square) S. Vidal, looking over the Grand Canal to the church of S. Maria della Carità (Saint Mary of Charity). The square has been temporarily transformed into a workshop for repairing the nearby church (not seen in the picture) of S. Vidal. The blocks of Istrian stone were brought by water to the square. The ‘campanile’ (bell-tower) of the church of S. Maria della Carità on the far side of the Grand Canal collapsed in 1744, after the painting was made, and was not rebuilt.

The painting is not precisely datable but the bold composition, the densely applied paint and the careful execution of the figures are characteristic of Canaletto’s works of the mid- to late 1720s. The informal nature of the scene and the unusual view across the Grand Canal suggest that it was made for a local Venetian patron rather than a foreign visitor to Venice.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec 


On this day in 1901, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec died at age 36

The Englishman (William Tom Warrener, 1861–1934) at the Moulin Rouge

William Tom Warrener, an English painter and friend of Lautrec’s, appears as a top-hatted gentleman chatting up two female companions at the Moulin Rouge, the dance hall that epitomized the colorful and tawdry nightlife of fin-de-siècle Paris. The women’s suggestive attitudes—and Warrener’s ear, reddened in embarrassment—indicate the risqué nature of their conversation. This painting served as a preparatory study for a color lithograph of 1892.