Monday, June 28, 2010

Starry Night

I have mentioned before that this project was a spur of the moment idea, and that I am so lazy that I do not do a lot of research ahead of the daily post. This causes a few problems, first it puts me constantly on a deadline (which, I admit is not always a bad thing), secondly, it causes me to worry that I am overlooking a great number of people, and thirdly it makes me panicky that I won't have 366 heroes by the time my year is up, and I will have overlooked a bunch of people. Problems two and three overlap a bit, but hey, what can you do? In this case, I decided to do a little research, since I am otherwise wasting my time sitting on my ass, and that research led me to discover that on March 30th, I overlooked the fellow who painted the above picture. I was stunned, how could I overlook Vincent Van Gogh? I hurriedly looked at my post for the day in question, to see whom I could have possibly placed over Van Gogh. The answer, a horse by the name of Secretariat. A good choice, and for people that do not know me as well as they think, a choice that they would think is typical. In some respects they would be right, after all there have been at least three separate horses that have been my hero of the day. I do love to play the ponies, and that part of my personality (i.e. the shallow part) is pretty open and obvious for people to see.

However, I love art, and though I can not draw a properly proportioned stick man, I can appreciate artistic talent. The ability to paint "pretty pictures" like the one above stuns me. I cannot fathom having that kind of talent, that kind of vision. This is the other side of my personality (i.e. the side I don't show much), the side that can look at Van Gogh's paintings, and gasp in awe at such beauty. Sure, Van Gogh was bat shit crazy, and some of his pictures are not so "pretty" but, few artists, musicians, or authors produce solid gold every time they try. Even Shakespeare wrote reams, and reams of absolute dross, but we tend to forgive that (as well we should) because when they get it right it produces works that are astounding.

Van Gogh, and another painter I am fond of, Edvard Munch, both considered their paintings to be their "children." I can see why they would think such a thing. Their paintings are created out of the images in their heads, and the things by which their names are carried on throughout time. These images are the things we instantly access in our own memories when we hear their names mentioned. Van Gogh created many, many fabulous paintings (for all the good it did him while he was alive), and for that I will always stand in awe of his talent. I figure if you are interested enough, you can look up the petty details of his, sometimes tragic, life for yourself.

I also suggest taking a look at his painting, in person if you have the means, if not at least online. Don't just look at them, but see them for what they are. Images of a painter with no formal training, and a slightly tormented mind. Images that he HAD to put on canvas, no matter what the critics might have to say against him, and that about all critics can do, is nay say people with far more talent that then have (it is one reason I think I would make a lovely critic, a lack of talent). Then you will understand (I hope, for your sake at least) what true genius can do, and then you will also realize that, even though I overlooked him for a horse, Vincent Van Gogh (March 30th, 1853-July 29th, 1890, of a self inflicted gunshot wound), you are my (309th) hero of the day.

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