Friday, July 15, 2011
Coming from Evening Church
Kenneth Clark called Samuel Palmer England's Van Gogh. With due respect to Sir Kenneth, this is a rather odd judgement.
Van Gogh was conditioned by his vision: the revelation that he felt he was given, he found it challenging to receive. Its intensity escalated, breaking containing form.
Palmer found his way to a disciplined pattern of imagination (as shown here) that was, in time, for complex personal reasons surrendered. It was always shaped by a guiding sense of form.
Palmer accessed an imaginative world through disciplined means, Van Gogh's painting was an attempt to contain his ecstasy. Palmer's vision was shaped by a coherent pattern of thinking rooted in a tradition, Van Gogh's was shaped by a set of feelings that had only a personally shaped pattern of thinking that groped form after the intensity of his vision.
The results are very different. There is something serene about Palmer's vision. There is something alluringly disturbing about Van Gogh's
There is a new biography of Palmer.
that has been well-reviewed and which is timely. Palmer is another neglected national treasure.
Two men are up a tree, gathering cones. One sits uneasily, rheumatic limbs always waiting to ambush him at these uncertain heights. Hi...
What if during your creative 'annus mirabilis', you wrote a poem that became prophetic of the trajectory of your own life? Looki...
Benjamin Lay was a victim of 'history from above', airbrushed out of the history of the abolition of slavery for being not only...
One reason for being in Toronto was to check in on Roots of Empathy http://rootsofempathy.org/ and attend the first day of their annual R...