Saturday, May 6, 2017

(Oscar)Wilde also raises the question of self-contradiction. In art, he says, there is no such thing as an absolute truth: "A Truth is that whose contradictory is also true." This sentiment recalls Wilde's tremendous respect for the thoughts of Walt Whitman. In "Song of Myself," Whitman writes, "Do I contradict myself? / Very well then I contradict myself, / (I am large, I contain multitudes)." From Cliff Notes

Ivan Albright  American, 1897-1983 Picture of Dorian Gray, 1943/44
Ivan Albright painted this picture for the movie 'Dorian Gray" based on the Oscar Wilde book "The Portrait of Dorian Gray" Personally, I am not fond of Albright's work and think that it is superbly suited to art consumers that like a heavy dose of  sturm und drang in their decor. It is perfect then for hedge fund billionaires like Steven Cohen, for a foyer staged prelude to his pickled Damien Hirst Australian shark und tank- a man whose wealth, not his character is his power. I prefer the work of Aubrey Beardsley for Wilde's book "Salome" and his work for "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves". There is more grace, beauty and power in a few strokes of Beardsley than in most overwrought painted oeuvres past and present. I can happily sit with the contradictions of Goya's Los Caprichos and Botticelli's Primavera, both have power, one uses beauty the other profound compassion. People often underestimate the power of beauty, Botticelli was alleged to have burned his more "pagan" paintings in the Bonfire of the Vanities directed by an acetic monk, Savonarola,


 Goya Los Caprichos

Botticelli Primavera

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