Sunday, 16 August 2015

More Art Nouveau

"Art Nouveau Angel", drawing by Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2015

This is my first attempt in a while now to do a drawing using elements of the style known as "Art Nouveau".  I came across a black and white drawing of this angel and thought to myself how much fun it would be to make my own drawing like it only in colour.  I actually thought about just printing a copy of the image and then colouring it as you would a drawing in a colouring book, but holding coloured pencils or crayons is now more painful for me than using the computer mouse and drawing on the computer screen!

Anyway, you can see the results above.  As usual, I couldn't stay away from the orange-reds and yellows of which I'm so fond thus the finished drawing is quite a bit more colour intensive than the usual Art Nouveau designs. 

In case you don't recall what I said about Art Nouveau the last time I mentioned it, here is just a bit of information about this art form -- an art form that has always appealed to me ever since I first discovered  it as a teenager.

"Nature was one of the fundamental sources of Art Nouveau (or "new style"). The rediscovery of Japanese art in the latter 19th Century led to a new perspective that would wonder at the beauty of a wave, a kimono motif or the curve of a courtesan’s neck. The fluidity of lines, asymmetrical compositions without geometric perspective and delicate shades of colour created a new ornamental vocabulary, freeing itself from many of the “rules” of western art developed over previous centuries.
The languishing and mysterious image of the female became a decorative theme adopted in advertising before appearing in architecture and the decorative arts.
Art Nouveau had two faces: that of a style appropriate to new ways of life (lighting, hygiene, transportation, architecture) and that of a quest to embellish daily life (artists trained in the traditional fine arts devoting themselves to such things as graphic design in advertising, fashion, furniture ).
Art Nouveau spread quickly throughout Europe thanks to photo-illustrated art magazines as well as international exhibitions."  
The above information was taken from an article by Francoise Aubry. 



This is the look I got after accidentally
bumping into Suki's chair while
she was sleeping!  "She Who Must Not
Be Disturbed
" was displeased with me!
Suki, although she continues to be surprisingly well behaved, still manages to amaze and, almost, frighten me at times. This is especially true when it comes to her uncanny ability to tell time!

I have mentioned, on numerous occasions, Suki's skills at finding ways to make me aware of the approaching meal times. Most of the stories I have told concern Suki's ways of waking me in the morning in time for her 6 a.m. feeding.  However, she has her ways of reminding me when it's approaching the time for her lunch, supper and bedtime snack as well.

For example, I am usually on the computer from late morning until noon.  Starting at 11:30, Suki appears at my feet and meows at me in that crazy cat language of hers.  When this fails to move me, she climbs up on the chest next to the computer desk and stares at me. Do you know what it is like to be stared at by a cat?  They don't blink!  After a while it really becomes rather unnerving.

As the hours pass and it approaches her 6 p.m. suppertime, Suki appears -- chattering away in cat language.  By now, well-ensconced in my recliner and not inclined to move, it comes as no surprise to suddenly have a cat leap onto my lap. Unfortunately, this cat then proceeds to pester me by trying to wash my hands with her scratchy tongue. Suki, I'm sure, knows how much I hate the feel of that tongue of hers.  Eventually, this annoying behaviour accomplishes her purpose of getting me out of the chair and into the kitchen.

As the day draws to an end, Suki simply begins to stare at me as the hands of the clock move slowly towards the time for me to get ready for bed.  This is an even more intense type of staring than the staring she does at noontime and, soon, it becomes impossible to ignore.  So, after a short while, I usually give in and start preparing for sleep (which, of course, includes giving Suki a bedtime snack).

This is what I imagine would be the result
if Suki ever had a CT scan.
Recently, though, I have noticed that when I fail to show any indication of getting up to feed her -- I am speaking of morning, noon and night -- Suki has started doing something new.  As the hands on the clock approach the exact time she is to be fed, she starts meowing at me in a most insistent way. I mean, how does she know that the actual time is one minute until noon or one minute before 6 p.m? But these are the exact times when she begins her tirade. It really is rather spooky and a bit unsettling.  I mean, you can't help but think that maybe she can actually tell time! 

Other than these daily interactions with my favourite cat, my routine remains much the same.  My life continues to center around my efforts to manage the pain.  By late afternoon, it always seems to have gotten much worse but I continue to try to find ways to distract myself from it. If I allow myself to focus on it, then it becomes almost too much to handle which leaves me tempted to take a bit more pain medication than is normally prescribed.  I have permission to increase the dosage at such times, but I prefer not to as the more I take now, the more I will have to take in the future to manage the pain.

I do have a medical appointment coming up this week but it is just a routine, follow-up visit. Thankfully, the rest of the time I will be able to stay in my quiet, pleasantly-cool apartment with miz Suki and Joycelyn for company.  



"My Flesh is true Food; My Blood is true Drink", drawing by
Sarah "Sallie" Thayer, 2015 revision

[My Interpretation of the "Madonna of the Precious Blood" based on the painting by the same name by Italian artist Pompeo Batone (1708-1787); now in the possession of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood and hanging in the St. Gaspar Museum, Albano, Italy.]

... The Jews quarreled among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever.”  Jn. 6:53-58

For the third Sunday in a row we continue to be confronted by these claims of Christ which appear to our limited human minds to be totally outrageous.  As I have indicated in the two previous blog postings, we read words in this 6th chapter of St. John's Gospel that over 2,000 years later are still impossible for us to even begin to understand in spite of all the commentaries, sermons and meditations that have been written about this passage.  As I have said previously, I would never be so foolish as to try to add anything to the words of these learned scholars; rather, I will, once again, simply sit in silence before such a mystery.  

When confronted by such claims as these there are choices: we can accept that they are true because Christ said them; or, like the Jewish leaders of His day, we can scoff and deride; or, we can simply ignore them by assuming that they have no application to our daily lives in this modern world.

May we be granted the faith to believe, the hope to endure and the love to trust that in spite of all the darkness around us, we have been provided with the wisdom that will enable us to finally walk freely out of the shadows of this life into the full light of Truth. 


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