Sunday, 2 October 2011
But is it art?
I was gladdened this week to read in my local press that primary school kids in this neck of the woods were marking Michaelmas. I cannot recall as a kid myself, in in the 1970s and 80s, ever so doing (although I can vividly remember Harvest Festival) So maybe there's a bit of cultural revival going on - which can never be a bad thing! Talking of Michaelmas, I didn't know until very recently that the said fair in the English standard Scarborough Fair lasted from Assumption Day in mid-August right up to Michaelmas at September's end - So it was some old gathering! It was a market rather than providing entertainment, but much sport was had, no doubt. Here's a clip below of a very able version of the classic song by ol' Sarah Brightman. I want to share it also for the wonderful paintings by Robert Duncan featured therein. I've always admired Realism in the arts, including the socialist and soviet varieties, but Duncan's work betrays what I would want to call nationalist realism (no heavy industry or working up the top of pylons here!) Idyllic, bucolic representations of some radical nationalist promised land - at least from a northern European perspective. Myths they may be, but are myths based on some long forgotten fact? And without myths surely a people suffer impoverishment.