Comforting Thought: Whistling in the dark

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"Art would not be important if life were not important. And life is important. Most of us, no matter what we say, are walking in the dark, whistling in the dark. Nobody knows what is going to happen to them from one moment to the next, or how one will bear it. This is irreducible.…

Anaïs Nin on why she writes

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-dRf7Zxf8Q We write to taste life twice...in the moment and in retrospection. Those few moments of communion with the world are worth the pain. Writing is worth it for others. It's an inheritance for others. A gift to others in the end. One has to create a world in which to live. I could not…

The world according to Anton Chekhov

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Anton Chekhov defied description with his writing. With his limber and sharp mind he was able to craft and bring alive 18th Century Russia in such a delicate, poignant and deeply emotional way that it will leave you breathless and gasping. To read his short stories is to be plunged into a completely different realm.…

Anna Breytenbach: Inspirational Animal Communicator

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Anna Breytenbach has the unusual ability to be able to communicate with animals. This may sound ridiculous, and if so I encourage you to watch this video with an open mind and heart and come to your own conclusions. Regardless of your opinion, this is still a touching and remarkable story of courage. Any attempts…

Inspirational People: Tenzin Gyatso

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"If we look at human history, we will find that a good heart has been the key in achieving what the world regards as great accomplishments in the fields of civil rights, social work, political liberation and religion for example. Tenzin Gyatso, the fourteenth Dalai Lama, after a school talk in Tibet. "A sincere outlook…

Helen Keller’s Fierce Friendships and Bold Legacy

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Helen Keller was not just some blind lass from the last century. She was a fierce socialist, pacifist, author and sufragette who believed in birth control, workers rights and women's rights. The first blind person to complete a Bachelor's Degree, she was a bold trailblazer with a sweet nature. "I seldom think about my limitations,…

So long, Marianne: Leonard Cohen and his muse Marianne Ihlen

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In November 2016, the singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen, renowned for his melancholic and romantic ballads, died a few months after the woman who inspired many of his famous songs - his Norwegian lover and muse, Marianne Ihlen. On the summery idyll of Hydra, Greece in 1960, there was a bohemian community of artists and musicians living…

Book Review: In Order to Live by Yeonmi Park

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Yeonmi Park has to be the bravest girl/woman in the world. She was born in the North Korean city of Hyesan which is separated by a river to the Chinese border and at the age of 13, she boldly and bravely managed to escape from there and gain her freedom. Yeonmi Park’s autobiography written at the…

Wild Woman Quote: Who We Used to Be

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I think we are well advised to keep on nodding terms with the people we used to be, whether we find them attractive company or not. Otherwise they turn up unannounced and surprise us, come hammering on the mind's door at 4 a.m. of a bad night and demand to know who deserted them, who…

Wild Woman Quote: Worship

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In the day-to-day trenches of adult life, there is actually no such thing as atheism. There is no such thing as not worshipping. Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship.David Foster Wallace Dusk at Okahu Bay Copyright © Content Catnip 2018 http://www.contentcatnip.com I love this quote from David Foster Wallace. In…

Wild woman quote: Strength

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Clarissa Pinkola Estes is a Jungian analyst and a Doctor of Ethno-clinical psychology. Her book Women Who Run with the Wolves is a dense and fascinating foray into the myths and wonders of oral storytelling throughout history. It's a book that makes you more playful, affectionate, joyful and more authentically joyful in every way. Pinkola-Estes…

Moondog: The enigmatic jazz wizard of post-war NYC

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I came across Moon dog on one of those long and meandering trips through obscure music on YouTube. He was a true innovator and an avante-garde enigma. For one he looked like Gandalf or Hagrid. Aside from that he invented several new muscial instruments including a small triangular instrument he called the Ooo and another…

All About Amazing Op Art

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Op Art descended out of geometric art of the 50's and the Bauhaus movement in Germany, which I have previously written about in the Origins of Flat Design. The 60's was a period of discovery in science, psychology and new technology. This type of art reflects the experimental mood of that era. The pieces normally…

The Sensual World of The Unseen By Photographer Duane Michals

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Photographer Duane Michals pushes the boundaries of photography with evocative, erotic and sensual images. I've written about Polish poet Anna Świrszczyńska before, she also has a similar aesthetic. I think photographs should be provocative and not tell you what you already know. It takes no great powers or magic to reproduce somebody’s face in a photograph.…

David Bowie’s Top 100 Favourite Books

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David Bowie is a voracious book reader, reportedly reading at least one book per day. As a part of a new exhibition at the Art Gallery of Ontario, he has lovingly selected his 100 favourite books of all time. According to the exhibition's curator Geoffrey Marsh, Bowie has an ''interest in the life of the…

Badass Bitch and Fashionista Lee Lin Chin

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Recently Lee Lin Chin bowed out as SBS World News' most loved news anchor for the past 30 years. She is well-known in Australia for her graceful presence, avante-garde fashion sense, acid tongue and a strangely monotone way of delivering the news. Her twitter account is totally outrageous and she has won a cult following…

Theatre Review: Jack Charles V The Crown at Auckland Arts Fest

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Last night I went to see Jack Charles V The Crown at the Auckland Arts Festival. Jack Charles is an Australian legend. He has traveled from movie sets to state prisons in Australia and run the full gamut of life as child of the stolen generation as well as a gifted Indigenous Australian actor, potter…

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There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not…

Style inspiration: 90’s era Denise Huxtable

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Lisa Bonet aka Denise Huxtable from the Cosby Show was a 80's and 90's style maven who had a timeless way of pulling together an outfit and then carrying it off with poise and grace. Her funky and unusual fashion choices left a mark on many young women of that era (including me). Her hair…

Creativity: How David Lynch finds his creative ideas

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https://vimeo.com/182093266 “Ideas are like fish: you don’t make the fish; you catch the fish.” The enigmatic film-maker David Lynch has no problem with capturing and exposing his weirdest and darkest ideas to film. In this short animation by The Atlantic, Lynch offers up nuggets of wisdom on creativity for film-makers, artists, writers and creators of…

Gemma Correll’s spirit animal is a pug and her cartoons are all kinds of charming wonderful

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Gemma Correll is the high priestess of wry, cute and amusing cartoons that are compassionate to women's bodily woes and emotional complexities. Her cartoons are sweet, sassy and charming and I'm totally in love with them. Also she's an aquarius, an INFJ and pretty much loves all the same things I do, so I have a…

Viola Smith is a badass 104 year old drummer

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Born in 1912, Viola Smith is one of the first professional female drummers and is pretty badass on the drums. Born Viola Schmitz in Mount Calvary, Wisconsin, her dad owned the town’s restaurant and dance hall. He made sure each child played an instrument, and the family orchestra became known as the Smith Sisters. Later Viola and…

Tilda Swinton is an iconoclast, rebel and an alien of the best kind

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In 2014, actress actress Tilda Swinton was awarded with the Rothko Chapel Visionary Award at the The Rothko Chapel, which is home to fourteen of Mark Rothko’s paintings. This luminous chapel is a spiritual and human rights center whose mission is “to inspire people to action through art and contemplation, to nurture reverence for the highest aspirations…

Nick Cave’s new album: Skeleton Tree and the film ‘One More Time With Feeling’

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Possibly one of the most  brave and bold things that you could do after the sudden and tragic loss of a son is to create a new album. That's what Nick Cave has done this past week. I saw Nick Cave in Melbourne a few years ago and it was truly the most remarkable concert…

The lost art and history documentaries of YouTube

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Forget Netflix, YouTube has some incredible vintage documentaries about art and history. Made during the days of  analogue, these docos may seem pixellated and blurry by today's standards. Yet if you persevere, you'll be rewarded with terrific storytelling, great production values and enigmatic and fascinating subject matter. Here for you are some great documentaries about material…

Vale David Bowie: Goodbye to the Best Part of the 20th Century (Bowie’s Music, Art, Fashion)

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Today the world received the most devastating news. David Bowie died at age 69. This news is monumental to anyone who is a lover of avante-garde art and rock music. Anybody who respects and reveres a life lived to its fullest would feel sad about the passing of David Bowie. A man elegant, humble and…