there and back again

The truly unpopular opinions.
August 6, 2008, 3:47 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

I had two important realizations today.  Firstly.  If I live for another fifteen years without ever seeing another Monet, I would be quite happy.  I am sick to death of Monet.  His paintings don’t have any movement for me, any life—they’re just a pleasing arrangement of colors and shapes.  Earlier in my course here at Cambridge, all of us went to London for the day and many of us ended up at the Tate Modern.  Most people who went to the Tate came back raving about the large Water-Lilies painting that was on display.  I sat in front of this particular painting for about five minutes and almost fell asleep.  I don’t want to see any more art that lulls me into a stupor!  I want art that’s attempting to do something or provoke something.  No more Monet.

Secondly!  I am sick to death of reading about the phenomenon of the muse.  These lovely women (usually women, not always) who exist simply to provoke men to greater artistic, philosophical, literary heights.  Usually I think these women are regarded as fairly revolutionary.  Involved in the male dominated world, interacting with famous movers and shakers.  That’s all very nice, but from now on, I only want to learn about women who did things.  No more poetic and tragically beautiful empty vessels.  I want to learn about women with opinions, who were mean maybe, or rude, and definitely deeply uninterested in allowing anyone to project anything onto them.  This was the exact reason why I started to cool off on Haruki Murakami, former love of my literary life.  Write a real woman, dude.  A woman who has goals and journeys of her own and doesn’t conveniently disappear after providing our everyman hero with a night of poignant and rather passive sex.  No more beautiful, deep, charmingly quirky, willing to change your life, dances in the rain barefoot, wellspring of inspiration type women.  Guess what?  If you can project whatever you want onto her, if everyone can look at that woman and see what they truly love—she’s not real.

Also!  If you wanted another reason to hate Garden State, other than the fact that it’s a shallow, emotional manipulative piece of shit, Natalie Portman’s character is the classic quirky yet acceptably beautiful girl who dances funny and changes your life.  You know who thinks lying all the time is charming?  Crazy people!  The brilliant people over at The Onion’s A.V. Club have got this shit figured right out.


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

aw, i love monet, but i’m pretty sure that’s at least like 60% because i first learned about him in 4th grade and i really loved my 4th grade teacher (the other 40% is that art doesn’t speak to me at all so most of my favorite art is just things that are pretty).

but, so true about the manic pixie dream girls (what a great phrase). especially garden state. on a tangential note, one of the reasons i love eternal sunshine is because it sort of takes that trope and turns it on its head–in real life, magic pixie dream girls probably have drinking problems, might cheat on you, pick fights over stupid shit, and definitely will not save you from yourself.

also, kate winslet could act the pants, socks, underwear, and make-up off natalie portman and zach braff combined without breaking a sweat, and it’s an interesting story about real characters instead of two hours of fantasy fulfillment. but the trope-reversal thing is nice, too.

Comment by natalia

Monet isn’t bad per se, I think it’s just that I’ve had too much. Because the thing is, Monet is still really groundbreaking and important. And all of the art I really love couldn’t happen with Monet. But because he’s so important, he’s everywhere and I don’t think his art is multifaceted enough to stand up to this much exposure. I hope that makes sense. I don’t want angry art historians tracking me down and killing me. I think once upon a time I really liked Monet, too. Just not right now.

Also, Kate Winslet is indeed brilliant. It’s really sad, even thinking about Eternal Sunshine really gets me teary eyed.

Comment by inthemigranthotels

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: