Monthly Archives: June 2010

Ideas to consider…

I’m reading The Rational Optimist by Matt Ridley, subtitled ‘How Prosperity Evolves’.  On page 109 I came across a few lines that describe what I also find to be an interesting paradox:

Politically, as Brink Lindsay has diagnosed, the coincidence of wealth with toleration has led to the bizarre paradox of a conservative movement that embraces economic change but hates its social consequences and a liberal movement that loves the social consequences but hates the economic source from which they came. ‘One side denounce capitalism but gobbled up its fruits; the other side cursed the fruits while defending the system that bore them.’

The reference is to Brink Lindsay’s 2007 book The Age of Abundance: How Prosperity Transformed America’s Politics and Culture.

Ridley is in essence trying to convince both sides to see the bright side.

Sigmar Polke, 1941-2010

Saw the news yesterday that German artist Sigmar Polke passed at age 69.  Polke was an interesting character, whose work kind of took off from pop and spun out in many directions.  Here are a couple bits of interest from the NYT obit by Roberta Smith:

Tall, with a commanding presence and caustic wit, Mr. Polke was often fittingly called an alchemist. He had a long face that seemed to call out for a sorcerer’s pointed hat. In photographs, he often appeared to be on the verge of laughter; small, gleaming eyes behind wire-framed glasses and a sharp V of eyebrows added a sardonic if not demonic note.

For much of his life Mr. Polke made extensive use of recreational drugs. Mushrooms were a frequent motif in his paintings and photographs. Unpredictable behavior was his norm, elusiveness his everyday mode, and provocative answers a matter of course.

But in the 1980s Mr. Polke, along with painters like Mr. Richter, Anselm Kiefer, Georg Baselitz and Jörg Immendorff, signaled a resurgence of painting that was heard around the art world. The experience bred into Mr. Polke a preference for the margins over the mainstream and a relatively modest lifestyle despite his success. He worked without an assistant and lived in Cologne in a warehouse surrounded by his books and his paintings.

The Tender Loving Empire!

Last night I made it to a good portion of the Tender Loving Empire‘s third birthday party at the Wonder Ballroom.  Enjoyed the sets from Jared Mees and Y La Bamba, thought Boy Eats Drum Machine was pretty entertaining, and I still don’t really get the appeal of Finn Riggins (but they seem to be popular with the kids!).  I’m hoping that an Y La Bamba full-length will come out sometime soon!