“The uniqueness of a work of art is inseparable from its being embedded in the fabric of tradition. This tradition itself is thoroughly alive and extremely changeable. An ancient statue of Venus, for example, stood in a different traditional context with the Greeks, who made it an object of veneration, then with the clerics of the Middle Ages, who viewed it as an ominous idol. Both of them, however, were equally confronted with its uniqueness, that is, its aura.”
“Why, I [Socrates] said, you join physicians and judges. Now the most skillful physicians are those who, from their youth upwards, have combined with the knowledge of their art the greatest experience of disease; they had better not be robust in health, and should have had all manner of diseases in their own persons. For the body, as I conceive, is not the instrument with which they cure the body; in that case we could not allow them ever to be or have been sickly; but they cure the body with the mind, and the mind which has become and is sick can cure nothing.”
“Look steadfastly with thy mind at things though afar as if they were at hand. Thou canst cut off what is from holding fast to what is, neither scattering itself abroad in order nor coming together.”
Crossing the frozen Charles. The old crooked river that winds through crooked cities retires its tumultuous caricature for the winter months – slows its raging, murky flow with the aid of frigid January air. The guise of firm tundra masking the flotilla of illegal dumping beneath, and so early this year.
Dmitri Shostakovich was among the most defiant individuals in the history of the USSR, never relenting in his battle against Joseph Stalin and other federal officials. However, Symphony No. 7, which was arguably his most beautiful and important composition, was decidedly dedicated to the people who died during or survived through the Siege of Leningrad.
It’s somewhat comical to me that Master of Puppets turned 30 today, and what a year 1986 must’ve been. Metallica might’ve provided me the fuel to sit down and write this piece after a couple days of simply feeling defeated – as though I’m watching a very distinct series of events unfold that will yield nothing more than chaos, madness, worse.
The ways in which we measure, reconcile, come to terms with and accept the consequences of events, stimuli and otherwise are, in their depths, relatively rudimentary in nature. Today was better/worse than yesterday. That person is more/less attractive than that other person. The Civil War was more/less brutal than the Vietnam War. Sweetness versus sourness. Love versus hate. Apathy versus empathy. Relativity acting as compass in all situations and at all times.
Oscar night, 2015.
I’ve heard that Hollywood was once the beacon of cultural values and lifestyle best practice, disseminating important lessons to the masses that will, one way or another, shape the actions and behaviors of captivated audiences from San Francisco to Manhattan and beyond. This is undoubtedly still the case although, suffice it to say, things have changed quite a bit since the time before digital media.