Paul Cézanne and what is reality

cezanne Self-portrait-1887 What is reality and what is our perspective of it; a perplexing question, indeed. Some may think of this as one’s point of view, some may think of it as one’s opinion, some may think of it as one’s judgment. Where fact meet, converge, and often collide can make quite a difference in how we look at ourselves and others.

An ordinary mirror in our homes or the dressing room of a clothing store can take on the eye of an opposing point of view or similar reaction. The mirror may agree with us, whereupon we feel quite content with our dress, or it may show us a rather disagreeable figure of ourselves and we become disgusted with the reflection it has imparted.
Reality of a view or landscape, such as a mountain range, may be met with appreciation of nature’s vestibules or it may be overlooked as an impedance in our journey.

Such is the task of the artist, to present to us a reality that is wholly personal or universal. Sometimes we connect with a painting, feeling that its presence is greater than the canvas it is painted on, and other times our perspective of it falls short and we pass it by with a mere shrug of detachment .

And so, as we go on with our day, we are confronted with the decisions of what is reality. For some it remains unimportant, and for others it is a daily search for truth.

Today’s blog brings back the esteemed thinker: Paul Cézanne (1839-1906), French artist whose work demonstrates mastery of design, color, and the transition from 19th century art to the 20th century. Renown all over the world, Cézanne is considered the father of modern painting.

In his artistic endeavor, I present to you his oil on canvas titled, Mont Sainte–Victoire and the Viaduct of the Arc River Valley. Take a moment to look at his reality through your reality and see where they converge. It is worth a moment out of your hectic day.

Cezanne painting

First image: Cézanne Self-portrait, 1887

Humor: a most personal taste

Where one gets their sense of humor is a question that can be deliberated; for some it may be inherited such as one inherits their blue eyes, or it might have been nurtured beginning with the way we may have reacted to situations and then how this reaction was perceived by others thus forming our ‘own’ sense of humor.

Humor can be something subtle or it can be found in a story that takes time to read. And then humor can take on different modes such as when we hear a joke, see a show, or find a situation that is ironic, not outwardly funny but rather it is understated. And then sometimes what we consider funny may not seem humorous to others.

But regardless of origin or style… humor is a human characteristic that can take us away from the most unpleasant day and send us happily into a different mood, even if it is for just a moment.
Today’s blog is my way of bringing perhaps a bit of humor to your day… by taking the liberty of sharing one of my pieces that I think is…well…kind of funny!

eeeks a mouse_compressed_avery

Esteemed thinker: Walt Whitman

ink blot test Point of view; (or POV which I now recognize as a widely used acronym in blogs) is a powerful tool. It enables us to see through someone else’s eyes or if you prefer…walk in their shoes. And with ‘point of view’ we find many perspectives that we either share in agreement with or disagree wholeheartedly…because after all, it is a point of view. A point of view can be an appraisal or opinion; it even has its own literary term when the writer wishes to convey a particular posture… “the narrative view point”… when the story is told from a consistent perspective. It can be in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd person; singular or plural. Sometimes the narrator is all knowing as with the “omniscient”, sometimes as a speculative observer: objective, and then it can be a limited point of view through the scrutiny of a character: subjective.

But when we get to poetry, this genre takes on a whole new realm; for looking at life through the point of view of the poet is quite unique…so unique that many times the reader finds himself or herself disconnected or to the contrary… even more connected than he or she imagined possible.

For the poetic design is composed with limited verbiage; as though every word was a breath that was exhaled… giving life to the thought or idea. Then as we the reader inhales the image; it expands in our own minds allowing us to observe the big idea…and doing such… this point of view is bestowed as a gift that we may keep or discard..whichever seems most fit.

Whitman And so, I hope you will allow today’s blog to borrow a moment of your time for the esteemed thinker: Walt Whitman (1819-1892) ; a most extraordinary man, considered by many (including this blogger) as one of America’s greatest and most significant poets. Born on Long Island, Whitman lived in Brooklyn, N.Y. where his numerous occupations as printer, teacher, editor, and reporter led him to what his name is tantamount with, writer.. His most noted work; Leaves of Grass was self-published; inspired by his travels through the frontiers of the United States and his appreciation for Ralph Waldo Emerson. Although critics of his time were not always kind in regards to his work, his legacy as a monumental contributor to American literature has withstood even the most ardent of critics. Lastly, Walt Whitman is claimed to be the first American “poet of democracy”.

From his book titled Complete Prose Work, here is Mr. Whitman’s point of view regarding poetry.

“… Strange as it may seem, the topmost proof of a race is its own born poetry. The presence of that, or the absence, each tells its story. As the flowering rose or lily, as the ripened fruit to a tree, the apple or the peach, no matter how fine the trunk, or copious or rich the branches and foliage, here waits sine qua non at last. The stamp of entire and finished greatness to any nation, to the American Republic among the rest, must be sternly withheld till it has put what it stands for in the blossom of original, first-class poems. No imitations will do…”

I would be remiss to you, readers of this blog, if I did not grace this page with at least one of Walt Whitman’s poems. There are too many greats to choose… so I will keep to my theme…

When the Full-Grown Poet Came

When the full-grown poet came,
Out spake pleased Nature (the round impassive globe, with all its
shows of day and night,) saying, He is mine;
But out spake too the Soul of man, proud, jealous and unreconciled,
Nay he is mine alone;
—Then the full-grown poet stood between the two, and took each
by the hand;
And to-day and ever so stands, as blender, uniter, tightly holding hands,
Which he will never release until he reconciles the two,
And wholly and joyously blends them.

(To my friend and fellow blogger, Rohan, thank you for your suggestions!)