Saturday, April 21, 2007

NBA Playoffs. Victor Hugo. Romanticism. Caspar David Friedrich.

The NBA Playoffs start today. This is very very important. I think. If you don't already have a team to root for, or you just don't care about basketball, well, I still think you should cheer for a team. I recommend you cheer for the Phoenix Suns. You will thank me in the end.

In other news... I finished Victor Hugo's Notre-Dame de Paris, such an amazing book. Unfortunately, since I liked it so much, I'm going to have to read more of this writer's works, and, uh, his novels seem to be very long (some writers have too much time on their hands, if this guy had kept a more active lifestyle, maybe his books would've been a little more concise?)... well, maybe I will read some of his poetry instead, read his other novels later. But this book I just finished, it was great, really well-written, and the story itself is good (although a little silly and predictable at times). I'd tell you about the story, but I'd probably give it away or more likely than not you already know the story.

Well, I'll tell you a bit about the story, for those of you who don't know... there's a 'magical' goat in the story who's able to do lots of stuff, like, impersonate people and do all sorts of other hilarious stuff which I wish I could teach my dog how to do... and then there's a hunchback character, and he's basically a fighting machine and he's exactly like Stallone in the movie Rambo, blowing bad guys away, except he doesn't use rocket launchers and sniper rifles, he uses beams and rocks and super-strength... another character is a beautiful girl who goes by the name of Esmerelda. Everybody in the story loves her except for one person, but this one person happens to be the person she loves! And this guy, whom she loves, is a total bozo, which is totally sad, but hey, this is a tragedy, so that kinda stuff happens in tragedies. And people die in tragedies, which I don't like. I like happily ever after stories, well, most of the time, although we all know happily ever after is an illusion, people grow old and fat and hog the television remote and don't help clean the dishes, not to mention the kids they have, who more likely than not are spoiled brats, always whining and trying to strongarm their parents into buying them stuff, and whining about wanting to go see a Britney Spears' concert...

Anyways.

Victor Hugo was part of the romantic movement, I'm not too familiar with writers from that movement, except for Chateaubriand. I'm mostly familiar with romanticism in the realm of 19th century painting... specially German romantic painters, there were a bunch of great ones, one of my favorites is Caspar David Friedrich... Some of Friedrich's paintings are very well known, but he also did some unbelievable drawings. His work tends to be sad and spiritual, and the colors tend to be low-key... I included some pictures of his work down below. And if there is one thing we can all probably agree on, it's that Caspar David Friedrich was a great tree painter. I'm guessing he really liked trees. And owls. Although, I'm not sure how he felt about gophers, but I'm willing to bet that if I study his paintings a little more I will be able find that out, and I will promptly get back to you on that (I must admit it would be a huge disappointment if I were to find out that Friedrich was a fan of gophers, we all know they are terrible, terrible creatures who are always cooking up nefarious plots).

Back to Hugo... Hugo was famous for his writing, but I found out he did lots of drawings and paintings, I guess he was multi-talented like William Blake... Although, I've searched the internet for Hugo's drawings, and I've only been able to find a couple, but they look pretty cool. Nothing mind-blowing, but cool enough...

Here is one of the few Hugo drawings I found on the internet...


And here are a couple of Caspar David Friedrich's paintings and drawings...





26 comments:

Moonbeam Baby said...

I can't believe I almost forgot that the NBA Playoffs start today! Thanks for the reminder. I haven't been paying much attention to the Eastern Conference, but I'm watching the Bulls game out of the corner of my eye as I write this. Everyone SHOULD cheer for the Phoenix Suns. They rock... especially Nash, and Bell (my two favorite players).

Caspar David Friedrich's work tends to be on the melancholic side, but I like the Owl on the casket.

I love happily ever after stories! Even if they can be a tad unrealistic... Reality sucks, anyway. : )

C'est le vie!

~*SilverNeurotic*~ said...

I like those last two pictures, they are so similar (the tree on the right especially) but other details tell me they are two different scenes.

Sir Jorge said...

My team sucked so bad that they are planning on moving them out of Seattle. I'm talking about the Sonics...what a bad season.

People in the Sun said...

Never read Hugo but I will one day (now that I know the story is filled with action and adventure and had actually been the basis for First Blood and The Pacifier).

I did read The Count of Monte Cristo as an adult and loved it more than anything I've ever read and ever will. But I'm reading The Three Musketeers and it's kinda disappointing...

In other news, if you see one owl you've seen them owl.

Mariana said...

Hey, that's not unrealistic, I lived happily ever after! While I was alive of course, and then I died, but then I never said I was immortal, that would be asking for a little too much...

Sebastien said...

Moonbeam Baby: YES! The Suns are playing today! Ahhh, the owl on the casket, I like that one too!

Silverneurotic: Glad you like them, they are pretty dark and sad but beautiful...

Sir Jorge: Oh yeah, that's terrible, probably moving that team out to Oklahoma no?

People in the Sun: You should!!! It's unbelievable, I can't believe they stole Hugo's story idea for the movie Rambo! Count of Monte Cristo, read that when I was younger, it was quite awesome, we all love crazy revenge stories! Ya know, Alexandre Dumas, not a huge fan of his. His books make for pretty cool movies though. About the owl, I guess that's true, haha, it's funny, last night an owl was making noise in our yard, and Rambo was going crazy, didn't know what was happening.

Mariana: Awww, glad you are happily ever after... I'm only sorta joking, life can be happily ever after... but maybe you ARE immortal?

Shaymus said...

I think I like the last pic the best....very inviting! If your a vampire that is.

WAT said...

I had no idea Victor Hugo drew as well. They're quite beautiful.

Haunting, but beautiful. Like my mind...

Babybull40 said...

Basketball sounds like a blast.. But I don't watchi it or follow it.. But I do like magical goats.. They are much fun to romp and play with.. Does Rambo get jealous?
Those paintings and drawings are great.. They sort of remind me of Tim Burtons "Nightmare before Christmas".. very dark and haunting...

SeaRabbit said...

Romantics were very good at taking the most dramatic situations and depicted them with a lot of details. As you liked Hugo's Les miserables... and plan on reading some more, I can assure you that you won't be disapointed by the Toilers of the sea, and the The man who laughs...

laurenbove said...

Great art. Thanks for enlightening me re: basketball and Hugo. I don't love basket ball or sports but I'll root for the suns for you.

Cheers! Here's to Beers!

MrManuel said...

Suns should go farther than last year with Amare back, but you never know. It's going to be a pretty wide open playoffs, especially if the Warriors can upset the Mavs.

Battlerocker said...

I really like those paintings, especially the last two. I'm rooting for the Nuggets, but if they don't win, I hope the Suns do.

tkkerouac said...

His paintings have a darkness to them. Some artists do tap into thier darks sides.

taarzaan said...

When I learned to talk, I named my rubber duckie "Esmerelda".

Sonja said...

How is your Mom doing?

Princesse Ecossaise said...

Is it just me, or are all of those pictures slightly creepy?

Sebastien said...

Shaymus: Hey buddy!!! Haha, very true, now that I think about it, I bet this painter was a vampire...

WAT: Is your mind like a haunted house? That would be pretty cool.

Babybull: Oh yeah, love that connection with Tim Burton's movie, great movie! Rambo is always jealous and he tries to chew on my leg which isn't very nice...

Searabbit: Thanks for the recommendations!! I will definitely check those other novels out.

Lauren: Thank you for cheering for my team! We are one person closer to taking over the world...

Mrmanuel: I really really hope the Mavs and Spurs get upset...

Battlerocker: Cool, I'm cheering for the Nuggets too, at least for now...

Tk: Yup, and some artists are insane. I guess that's a good thing?

Taarzaan: Hahahaha, that is awesome.

Sonja: Much better thanks!!!! It's been such a relief!

Princesse Ecossaise: Ah, yes, you are most definitely correct! I like both creepy and fun happy art. All depends...

Good for Me said...

a quick hello to you. i see you haven't posted in a few days. i hope you're doing ok.

Sebastien said...

Hi!!! Doing ok, thanks!

Good for Me said...

glad to hear it!

Zhu said...

I must say that as many French people, I'm sick of Victor Hugo.

Now, don't think I'm insensitive to art - I told you I liked yours, so I can't be that blind ;-)

But I had to study Hugo from the time I started junior high to the day of my final high school exam ! We even went on his grave during a class trip, believe it or not. And I wasn't part of some underground Hugo secte, it was just a regular high school.

So please, forgive me but... no Victor Hugo for me.

C'est la vie ! ;-)

Sebastien said...

Completely understand!! Things read in school, they lose their lustre and are never really fun (at least, not usually). I had the luck of reading this on my own, things are so much more enjoyable that way!!! Plus, 19th century French literature, I mean, it ain't always the most exciting thing in the world either, I understand that fact, haha...

Zhu said...

Glad to see you know what I mean ! I study litterature during the last two years of high school, had about 12 hours of analysing metaphores etc. a week.

For two years after that, I wasn't able to read a book without thinking of the goals of the main character, the innuendo to whatever and the meaning of the word "cup" in the second line of the third paragraph !

Sebastien said...

OMG! I REALLY understand now, haha!!! I know it's important to be able to interpret and analyze art/literature, actually useful in lots of fields, but seriously, sometimes putting a microscope to everything, well, sometimes it defeats the purpose and takes the fun out of it all!!!

imhelendt said...

Seb- Dang. I'm late to the party as usual. I'm just getting caught up on three thousand feeds in my bloglines and I was delighted to see that you came back for a bit. I hope you're doing well. I think of you every time I see a red panda. :)