7 June, 2015

White Art

Posted by Socrates in art, Socrates, White art/architecture at 1:08 pm | Permanent Link

Nicolas Poussin. “Winter (The Flood)”

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  7. 8 Responses to “White Art”

    1. Antagonistes Says:

      There is a richness and depth (the intensity of the colors, the range of the values) to the traditional way of painting that computer graphics cannot match. The composition, also, is something that a computer graphics person has little concept of. Notice how the line of the people echoes the line of those rocks which frame the background.

      There is a remnant, a small remnant, of true artists in the world today, who have not given in to cheap plasticity and mindless electronics.

    2. Tim McGreen Says:

      There is a lot of symbolism in this work but it is too obscure for me to figure out. For example, the snake and the streak of lightning obviously have some kind of hidden significance. Maybe they are an indictment of the cable TV industry?

    3. CW-2 Says:

      I suspect Dr Pierce would have appreciated this picture as a symbol of White people saving only what can be saved.
      Of course Nicolas Poussin was heavily into symbolism, often the most arcane and recondite kind.

    4. fd Says:

      Ominous–dark. The picture seems to illustrate a struggle to survive the power of nature. Lightening exhibits destructive qualities, whereas the snake is a threat, adding insult to injury. Normally snakes move to high ground to avoid rising water. The one in the picture (the Jew) is advancing toward the people. A parasite in want of a free ride. Roaches will follow White men into space

    5. Mel Brooks Says:

      But lightning represents the renewal of life (creation of nitrogen and the destruction of old growth to make room for new) and serpents represent wisdom. It’s an astonishingly vivid work. Never seen it before, thanks to OP for the opportunity. I’d love to find a print of it.

      I’m surprised this work never made it into a rock band’s collection of album covers. It’s easy to imagine this piece in day-glo colors, it’s half-way there as it is. Reminds me of my (arguably) favorite album cover of all time. Procol Harum’s “Exotic Birds & Fruit” with the painting of the same name by Jakob Bogdani.


      The album was a dank, dark masterpiece, maybe the creepiest Procol ever did, and the artwork mirrored the music perfectly. Deliciously murky, dungeonesque production, have a listen.


    6. fd Says:

      This is true. Lightening is a cleanser, but it must be destructive to replace the old with the new. Lightening is positive unless it strikes you :) A hurricane is also positive. It stirs the bottom up in the Gulf. Fishermen profit with great catches after the storm. So far as the serpent–we kill snakes in Texas. It’s to late to kill a snake after it bites you.

    7. Tim McGreen Says:

      Thanks, Mel, I have Procol Harum’s first two albums. The cover art for their second LP, Shine on Brightly, was pretty strange as well. Actually, there are two versions, both of which are weird. And their third LP had a scary-looking Negro sailor on the cover, which discouraged me from buying it.

      Maybe the White folks in the painting are moving out of their old neighborhood because the coloreds are moving in?

    8. Mel Brooks Says:

      I won’t argue with you, fd-in Cal’ (and I’ve split that state, BTW) most of the snakes are non-venomous (garter, bull, gopher, etc..)-but for every snake you kill, you give a reprieve to dozens of pests. It’s like the way I used to horrify my squeamish friends with the supposition that if Jeffrey Dahmer had been cloned, and set loose in every ghetto, instead of being imprisoned…..errr..LOL. That’s one reason I thought the “Dexter” series was so brilliant..a father sees the serial killer/psychopath within his son, and accepts the condition, making sure that his boy’s impulses benefit society, rather than cause it harm.

      Tim, I have a first-pressing of Shine On Brightly..the one with the nude mannequin and the upright piano with the broken black keys. That LP is so superior to any 70s embargo-era pressing..heavy, flat as Kansas and still noise-free after 40+ years.

      You don’t have “A Salty Dog”? The title song, beautiful as it is, is chock-full of phallic references (seaman’s log? rofl). Put that down to their very Eweish lyricist, Keith Reid. Who, I might add, is the model for the cover. Too bad, cause the record is filled with Procol’s unique approach to the blues, and has one of the finest drinking songs ever, “The Devil Came From Kansas” (speaking of..) It even sounds like someone bouncing off the walls :)