Burnished Sword At the Ready

Oh yes once you know, he did believe in a Minotaur waiting for him:
used to dream himself rushing into the last room, burnished sword at the
ready, screaming like a Commando, letting it all out at last – some true
marvelous peaking of life inside him for the first and last time, as the face
turned his way, ancient, weary, seeing none of Pointsman’s humanity,
ready only to assume him in another long-routinized nudge of horn, flip
of hoof (but this time there would be struggle, Minotaur blood the
fucking beast, cries from far inside himself whose manliness and violence
surprise him)…. This was the dream.

—-Thomas Pynchon, Gravity’s Rainbow

Dallas Museum of Art

The Unfathomable Mystery

“… that a warrior, aware of the unfathomable mystery that surrounds him and aware of his duty to try to unravel it, takes his rightful place among mysteries and regards himself as one. Consequently, for a warrior there is no end to the mystery of being, whether being means being a pebble, or an ant, or oneself. That is a warrior’s humbleness. One is equal to everything.”
― Carlos Castaneda, Eagle’s Gift

Dallas Museum of Art, Sightings:Mau-Thu Perret

Lord Ganesh Of Curved Elephant Trunk And Huge Body

“Lord Ganesh of curved elephant trunk and huge body,
Whose brilliance is equal to billions of suns in intensity,
Always removes all obstacles from my endeavours truly,
I respectfully pray to him with all my revered sincerity.”
– 31 -”
― Munindra Misra, Chants of Hindu Gods and Godesses in English Rhyme

Ganesha, Dallas Museum of Art Dallas, Texas

Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

I have always been intrigued by art depicting the Hindu deity Ganesha. This is one from the DMA.

Thought Myself Out Of Happiness

“I think and think and think, I‘ve thought myself out of happiness one million times, but never once into it.”
― Jonathan Safran Foer

I wonder what this guy is thinking. He’s been in that glass box a long time.

Dallas Museum of Art Dallas, Texas

Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

Be Content With Silence

“When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.”
― Ansel Adams

Silence Antoine-Augustin Préault Dallas Museum of Art

Antoine-Augustin Préault
Dallas Museum of Art

Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

(label text)

Antoine-Augustin Préault
French, 1809-1879

c. 1842
Patinated plaster
Anonymous gift and General Acquisition Fund, 2014.10

French sculptor Antoine-Augustin Préault created eerie contrasts of shadow and light in this composition featuring merely a face and a hand. Linear drapery enshrouds the androgynous figure’s face, drawing attention to its gaunt features, half-closed eyes, and skeletal hand. A finger lifted to the lips is a gesture commonly found in ancient funerary sculptures that glorified the dead. Portraiture or reliefs bearing images of the deceased performing this gesture were intended to conjure pleasant memories, but Silence, with its brutal evocation of frailty and death, breaks from the well-established canon.

Préault designed Silence for Jacob Roblès’ tomb at Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris, which is the city’s largest and most famous burial ground. The medallion’s compositional elements combine to convey a somber nature perfect for the purpose of a tomb. Its superb round, dark hardwood frame with a deep ogee, or S-shaped molding, enhances the sculpture’s dimensionality and melancholy theme.

“Does not everything depend on our interpretation of the silence around us?”
― Lawrence Durrell, Justine

When the Pretty Women Walk Over My Grave

“It’s not what I’d want for at my funeral. When I die, I just want them to plant me somewhere warm. And then when the pretty women walk over my grave I would grab their ankles, like in that movie.”
― Neil Gaiman, American Gods

Funerary Figure (tau-tau) Dallas Museum of Art Dallas, Texas

Funerary Figure (tau-tau)
Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

(label text)
Funerary figure (tau-tau)
Indonesia: South Sluawesi, Sa’dan Toraja People
19th century or earlier
The Eugene and Margaret McDermott Art Fund, Inc. 1980.2 McD

The Toraja carve tau-tau, smaller than life-size funerary figures, to commemorate the deceased when a high-ranking funeral is held. Only members of the highest-ranking aristocracy are permitted to have permanent tau-tau. This unusually small funerary figure appears to be archaic in style and probably predates even the oldest effigies seen beside Toraja tombs today.

The bun or hair knot at the back of the head of this tau-tau indicates that it represents a female. Her mouth is open and may remind one of The Scream, a modern painting by Edvard Munch. The expression is not precisely understood, but it may have been meant to capture bearing of an authoritative aristocratic woman accustomed during her lifetime to public speaking and giving orders, as this tau-tau appears to be doing

Jazz and Chihuly

“Jazz is the music of the body. The breath comes through brass. It is the body’s breath, and the strings’ wails and moans are echoes of the body’s music. It is the body’s vibrations which ripple from the fingers. And the mystery of the withheld theme, known to jazz musicians alone, is like the mystery of our secret life. We give to others only peripheral improvisations.”
― Anaïs Nin, The Diary of Anaïs Nin, Vol. 5: 1947-1955

Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas



“Life is an experimental journey undertaken involuntarily. It is a journey of the spirit through the material world and, since it is the spirit that travels, it is the spirit that is experienced. That is why there exist contemplative souls who have lived more intensely, more widely, more tumultuously than others who have lived their lives purely externally.”
― Fernando Pessoa, The Book of Disquiet

Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

Dallas Museum of Art

Dallas Museum of Art

“Muddy water, let stand, becomes clear.”
― Lao Tzu

Sun God (Helios)

Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

I never get tired of walking around in an art museum, especially one that I am very familiar with, looking for beauty in odd corners and hidden spots.

Sun God (Helios), Donald DeLue Dallas Museum of Art Dallas, Texas

Sun God (Helios), Donald DeLue
Dallas Museum of Art
Dallas, Texas

From the Label Text:

Donald DeLue
American, 1897-1988

Sun God (Helios), 1937
Patinated plaster
Gift of the Estate of Donald DeLue, 1997.20

A radiant crown of bright sunbeams draws our eyes toward the fierce gaze of the handsome, beardless Sun God, Helios. The ancient poet Homer described how the mighty titan Helios “shines upon men and deathless gods, and piercingly he gazes with his eyes from his goldne helmet. Bright rays beam dazzingly from him, and his bright locks streaming from the temples of his head gracefully enclose his far-seen face.

Donald DeLue translated Homer’s verse into sculptural form using a theme that appealed to his lifelong fascination with ancient Greek and Roman mythology. This figure is one of the artist’s most beautiful early sculptures. It marks a turning point in DeLue’s working method, as it is the last one that he modeled in French clay and cast in plaster himself. The final bronze version of Sun God (Helios) was DeLue’s first publicly exhibited sculpture.