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January 5, 2011 / Neurotypical Me.

A Visual Feast.

MET addicts.

This morning we discussed whether to make the trek to Brooklyn and Coney Island. A lot of the attractions are closed at this time of the year but I think Coney Island would look beautiful with the wintery beach. Will did his little ‘google map directions’ thingy and we decided that it was a long way to go for a good shot.

I jumped into the void and announced that I didn’t care how ‘touristy’ it was, I really wanted to go back to the MET. I apologise in advance for being so mainstream but the Van Gogh Sunflowers 1887 has got under my skin. I had to see it one more time. Everyone was happy to do that so off we went. I think I stood in front of it for 30 minutes. Do you think it is cool to be able to photograph it? I am in two minds. I wanted to look at it and put my camera away, but then I did take some snaps. There is something so intimate in being able to see his brushstrokes. You can hear the smoosh of the thick paint.

Sunflowers 1887, Van Gogh

Just to distribute the passion, I will add that Will stood in front of Seurat’s Circus Side Show 1887-1888 for a very long time and Marcel kept appearing and disappearing looking for the Egon Schiele sketches. He is also quoting to us all the guiding notes we have until now treated as secondary to the works. Cezanne is quoted as saying, ‘with an apple I want to astonish Paris’, and he did.

RJ really actually does love calligraphy. I photographed some from the twelfth century for him so he can copy them when he gets home. He wants to use them in his own poetry book.

We had a sushi lunch and got a train downtown to SoHo. Will had heard that there was a Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art ( on Broadway. It was run by an eccentric fellow, no big surprise, but it was great. They had three exhibitions: Al Jaffee (Mad Magazine), Denis Kitchen and Liza Donnelly (New Yorker cartoonist). I read Liza’s biography in cartoon form. It was in a really simple style but refreshingly funny. I am the right audience for her cartoons: clever and successful….just joking, I mean I am old enough to have supposedly sorted out what ‘feminism’ actually means, but not sure if I actually have. This is what a lot of her work deals with, humorously.

Will was disappointed that there were no Warner Bros cartoons, ie: Daffy, but there was a wall showing exhibitions to come and one work was an original Dr. Seuss as you have never seen him before.

Dr. Seuss

You kind of had to think ‘boffin’ while you were there but it really was interesting. We ended up buying a book parodying literature in comic form. Waiting for Godot done in Beavis and Butthead style. Crime and Punishment done in the style of Batman. I am sure you get the gist.

Marcel and I picked up some beer and went home to play cards and do our diaries/blog. Will and RJ have headed out to hear Kurt Rosenwinkel at The Village Vanguard via an Australian-themed restaurant called “Kingswood” which is owned by an old Cranbrookian. Let’s hope they make it home before they turn into popsicles.

Village Vanguard happy patron.


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