Lucian Freud! Born on this day in 1922.

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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

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800px-edouard_manet_-_le_dejeuner_sur_lherbe

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

Μέθα

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!…

Μεθύστε

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:
http://users.uoa.gr/~nektar/arts/poetry/charles_baudelaire_poems.htm

Fleurs du mal / Flowers of Evil:
http://fleursdumal.org/1868-table-of-contents

Writing about….Paestum or Poseidonia

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The Doric temple of Hera, the wife of Zeus,  in Paestum, Italy, an outpost of ancient Greece.

The ceramic  ceremonial bust of the Goddess Hera. Classical period. Paestum,
Italy-Archaeological Museum of Paestum

 

The word ‘swastika’ is a Sanskrit word (‘svasktika’) meaning ‘It is’, ‘Well Being’, ‘Good Existence, and ‘Good Luck’. However, it is also known by different names  in different countries – like ‘Wan’ in China, ‘Manji’ in Japan, ‘Fylfot’ in England, ‘Hakenkreuz’ in Germany and ‘Tetraskelion’ or ‘Tetragammadion’ in Greece.

Even in the early twentieth century, the swastika was still a symbol with positive connotations.

For 3,000 years, the swastika meant life and good luck. But because of the Nazis, it has also taken on a meaning of death and hate

In the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit, swastika means «well-being». The symbol has been used by Hindus, Buddhists and Jains for millennia and is commonly assumed to be an Indian sign.

The Nazi use of the swastika stems from the work of 19th Century German scholars translating old Indian texts, who noticed similarities between their own language and Sanskrit. They concluded that Indians and Germans must have had a shared ancestry and imagined a race of white god-like warriors they called Aryans. German nationalist movements saw the swastika as the Germans’ link to the Aryan “master race” and a “symbol of ‘Aryan identity’ and German nationalist pride,” the Holocaust Museum says, and it soon “became associated with the idea of a racially ‘pure’ state.