STILETTO – a high pointed HEEL on a woman’s shoe or a small dagger.
WHEELS – a medieval instrument of torture or a vehicle for personal mobility.
Sharing things … is one of life’s pleasures, isn’t it? Like a mutually appreciated gift – with delight in the giving and the receiving. It is a gift that requires no more than one sentiment from the giver: I thought you might like this.
This year, I have been sharing some arts based DVDs with like-minded friends and what a pleasure it has been! We have learnt more about Rothko, Frances Bacon, Andy Goldsworthy and Chet Baker. We’ve watched films like The White Ribbon, A Serious Man, Mugabe and The White African and The September Issue. We’ve listened to music from pop to opera and argued about politics, women’s rights and whether religion really is ‘The Root of all Evil’ as posited by Richard Dawkins.
Whilst I’ve enjoyed them all, and would recommend any, the standout experience for me was, unquestionably, the most recent - a 1983 American Masters documentary on Alfred Stieglitz: The Eloquent Eye. Director, Perry Miller Adato.
This was a masterpiece of a documentary engrossing in its’ history, art, personality and presentation. From the opening black and white photography of a snow-covered, early 20th century New York, I was engaged, drawn into a bygone age, rampant with the flourishing of new creative processes and people. Fascinated by the commentary, personal interviews – not least with an ancient O’Keeffe, sparse in body, acute in intellect – and the glorious unfolding spectacle of a life’s work, joy and disappointments, I was moved almost to tears by some of the most openly vulnerable and trusting personal, portrait photography, of O’Keeffe by Stieglitz, that I have ever seen. Photographer, publisher, sponsor, visionary and yet, a man with flaws whose life, like ours, was strewn with the sparkling jewels and bitter ash of success and failure, happiness and despair, light and darkness.
Absorbing. Uplifting. Beautiful. A pleasure to be shared.
A gift for all seasons and I thought you might like this.