December 17, 2008

Passion




There’s those silly, red flowers, poppies or tulips, that I found at an estate sale. They lighten up my humor every time I walk into the room, lighten it far more than the eight dollars I paid for them. A small gesture of passion.



Himself: He had another good day, and he liked the second day of the pork roast better than the first day.

Herself: Spent the day quietly again. Powered down water. Feeling vastly better by the end of the day and know I will live this morning. Eldest daughter passed her math class and has her last final today. Last class at City center today, potluck afterwards. Picking up LH so he doesn’t have to ride his bike in the pouring rain. It is raining. At least I am driving a full sized truck while being surrounded by folks who don’t know that our dry streets turn into ice rinks when it rains.

Balance: Several good books on interior decoration. I’m especially fascinated by how several vastly different mid-twentieth century styles coexisted so easily with each other.
The last time I stopped by the library, not only did I get my usual three or four mysteries, I picked up two books on interior styles. One on Deco and Moderne houses, was absolutely fascinating, but the other covered the styles up through the fifties. Yesterday, I came home with Pile’s A History Of Interior Design in my hands.

Everybody is in there. Lock, stock, and barrel, there they all are. I was interested in post war modernism, and found myself swept away through the Greeks and Romans then slowed by the magnificence of the Baroque and Renaissance. Empire, Georgian, Colonial, they all passed me by as the dinner hour crept up upon me.

I had to abandon the volume, perched on my knee on a pillow, for a dinner tray, perched on my knee on a pillow. Soon I was able to fall back into the post Victorian reaction of Ruskin’s Aesthetics Movement and the Arts and Craft Movement. The simplicity of these reactionary new forms led to the classical forms and International Styles we all know so well today epitomized by Cranbrook....now called the cradle of American Modernism.

But what I wanted was another reactionary line of thinking. Elsie De Wolf, an untrained but filled with imagination American actress, painted the Victorian world white, and swept the ornate away. Then in the 1930’s, Dorothy Draper came along to swept boring away with one wide wave of her exquisitely gloved hand.

That’s it. That’s what I wanted to see. What made her push the shapes so delightfully, from every direction, so we find today that her work has not grown dated, so we find today that we are still stirred to passion over her designs. Design Sponge Blog offers not only enthusiasms, but marvelous pictures of the Greenbrier Hotel at it’s finest. What made Draper paint walls dark chocolate brown, use giant cabbage rose print fabrics unlike any seen before, and sweep away centuries of interiors with the boldest hands. If you lived in Florida this year, I hope you grabbed the moment to visit, In The Pink, “America’s Most Fabulous Decorator” at MoAFL.

It was wonderful to spend a few moments with the imagination of a woman who made everything bigger, better, yet never boring.

1 comment:

  1. My grandmothers used to make all sorts of marvelous pieces for their houses. They knew how to paint porcelain, embroider, knit, crochet, do flower arranging, make rugs, quilt, make lace, sew, paint, make collages... the list goes on and on. One of the things that I regret is how we diminished their artistic endeavors, by wishing only store bought goods. My mother's generation threw all notions of homemade goodness out the door, has a lot to answer for. I wish I could have seen my grandmothers for the artists they were.

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