Posts Tagged ‘ellen levy’

For an artsy, literary treat, take a look at the Project Gutenberg version of painter Marsden Hartley‘s out-of-print book, Adventures in the Arts: Informal Chapters on Painters, Vaudeville, and Poets, dedicated to Alfred Stieglitz.

Hard to resist an introduction like this:

“Sometimes I think myself one of the unique children among children. I never read a fairy story in my childhood. I always had the feeling as a child, that fairy stories were for grown-ups and were best understood by them, and for that reason I think it must have been that I postponed them. I found them, even at sixteen, too involved and mystifying to take them in with quite the simple gullibility that is necessary. But that was because I was left alone with the incredibly magical reality from morning until nightfall …

“I was constantly confronted with the magic of reality itself, wondering why one thing was built of exquisite curves and another of harmonic angles. It was not a scientific passion in me, it was merely my sensing of the world of visible beauty around me, pressing in on me with the vehemence of splendor, on every side. …

“It is because I love the idea of life better than anything else that I believe most of all in the magic of existence.”

(Thank you, Ellen Levy, for sending me the link.)

Art:  Marsden Hartley

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An island neighbor has just published Criminal Ingenuity: Moore, Cornell, Ashbery, and the Struggle Between the Arts (Modernist Literature and Culture). Ellen has been studying poets Marianne Moore and John Ashbery, and artist Joseph Cornell for some years — first as a member of the faculty at Vanderbilt and now at Pratt. I don’t know much about Joseph Cornell, but I did hear novelist Jonathan Safran Foer give a lecture about how Cornell’s work inspired him to cut up Bruno Schulz’s “Street of Crocodiles” every which way from Sunday and make a kind of art book out of it.

A few poets read this blog from time to time, so you might want to take a look at Ellen’s book. If you read it, could you send me a short review to post?

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