A vase

IMG_0027vase

Is this a vase or a work of ceramic art? Perhaps both. Please note that this old table has a white painted top as well. A pity our telephone book wasn’t taken away. It seems to spoil the photo by hiding the rest of this lovely woman’s top part of her body. I do like the composition of the photo though, but don’t ask me why. It’s rather unique.  I doubt there is a similar vase anywhere in the world. We bought it some decades ago while still living in the inner Sydney suburb of Balmain. All I remember is going to a ceramic art exhibition in North Sydney and really like this work. It reminded us of the Italian master Modigliani with its elongated neck and general posture. Look at the Modigliani painting below.

Image result for modigliani portraits

Amedeo Modigliani found little success during his short life but he would be happy to know he now is famous with his paintings and sculptures selling for millions. We went to an exhibition of some of his work many years ago when we were in Paris.

I am sure that the ceramic artist who made this vase could not but be an ardent admirer of Modigliani. It’s funny how we are all influenced by what our eyes take in. Or, would it be better put, we SHOULD be impressed by the visual world and what a blessing eyesight gives us? It begs the question though; if we are so influenced by what our eyes take in, why allow so much visual ugliness to surround us? The madness of materialism now evident everywhere. Those advertising hoarding first invented in the US and almost immediately and eagerly copied and accepted in Australia. Those endless car sales yards with yawning bonnets and happy happy balloons tied to the rear vision mirrors. Is the making of money so important allowing it to override everything?

It’s not everywhere like that though. There are havens of quiet and solitude if one looks carefully. We have a stretch of pure beauty near our house which we walk almost each day and never tire of it. A lovely walk along a small bubbling creek. There are ducks and old men who talk to each other in hushed calm voices. A parrot might fly overhead or we can find a dog scanning the reeds for hidden water fowl. We don’t have to go far to see beauty and that’s a blessing we should not take for granted.

It is lovely and makes it all worthwhile.

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34 Responses to “A vase”

  1. DisandDat Says:

    Yes I agree Gerard. There is so much natural beauty around but the man made visual pollution is overwhelming whereever one travels. The sad thing is that few people give it a passing thought. With new buildings I doubt that municipal councils even take astetics into account when development applications are past.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      It is hard to avoid the urban ugliness but we can close our eyes and think of beauty. No one can pollute our minds, not even the Duttons, Trumps or Turnbulls of this world.
      And if you look carefully there are snippets of beauty even if they are the weeds sprouting between the concrete cracks.

      Like

  2. petspeopleandlife Says:

    Great collators’ vase. Perhaps one of a kind. The artist might have gotten famous. Have you tried to research it?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. janesmudgeegarden Says:

    The Modigliani influence is very evident in the vase. We used to live in Balmain too, in the 70s and it was a beautiful suburb to walk around in those days: so many tiny streets, and other young people like us doing up our houses ourselves. Not too many signs of man-made ugliness in those days. I still like to visit and walk there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      We started living in Balmain in 1967 till 1973 with our three children after which we went to Holland for three years. After returning we lived in Balmain from 1976 till 1996.
      Balmain was our stomping ground and where our children grew up. Not much stomping now, more of a slow waltz but just as nice. Balmain was so energetic and progressive, trees and preservation of history. Now it is housing moguls and lawyers.
      ( we bought our first house in East Balmain for a mere $12.000.)

      Liked by 2 people

  4. leggypeggy Says:

    Gorgeous vase. And it’s true. We are surrounded by beauty.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      The vase is lovely and it has held the dry flowers for some years now. They occasionally get taken out and hosed down. Which reminds me, that I have promised to wash the windows.
      To surround ourselves with beauty is the only aim in life really.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Julia Lund Says:

    Hear, hear. And I love your vase.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. doesitevenmatter3 Says:

    Your description of your walking place brought tears of joy to my eyes! Your words are poetic and describe a beauty and peace that everyone needs in their lives! Thank you, Gerard! 🙂 Yes, we must NOT take those blessing for granted…they DO make life worthwhile! 🙂

    I love your vase! Whoever made it did a wonderful job!
    Oh, and I like Modigliani’s work, too.
    I am drawn to artwork or anything (fabric, wallpaper, greeting cards, posters, etc) that is of a face or faces. Faces intrigue me. Especially the eyes.

    HUGS and ❤ for you and for Helvi!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Tears of joy are the best compliments. Thank you Caroline.

      The walk along the little river is unique and we only discovered it after we moved into this place in 2010. Often visited by locals with their dogs and friends.

      Milo has learned not to bother the ducks and I feel an understanding has been reached between all of them. The ducks will stop quacking in return for Milo not to bark at them. Fair exchange, I think.
      Love and hugs to all.

      Liked by 1 person

      • doesitevenmatter3 Says:

        That is a fair exchange. 🙂
        My Cooper doesn’t bark at anyone or anything while we take walks. He’s just so into walking and sniffing.
        He will bark if he’s in the house and anyone (but me) comes to the door. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. kaytisweetlandrasmussen83 Says:

    Your lovely vase does have a resemblance to Modigliani. I love him too. Your photo is really nice too. It is pity there is so much ugliness in the world. You wonder if people even see it it is so common. Since my eyesight has been failing, I hope there are still people who appreciate beauty. I think you have posted your lovely walk by the stream. It’s a beautiful start to the day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Kayti. Ugliness is fully accepted but I think that stricter laws on advertising could easily change it for the better.
      We are supposed to keep our eyes on the road when driving, yet so much advertising is screaming out for our attention. We are forbidden to use the cell-phone when driving yet often both sides of the road are pleading for us to gaze away from the steering wheel and the road ahead and admire a new Ford or a svelte girl fitting new bra or worse.
      It just never stops!

      Like

  8. Curt Mekemson Says:

    I agree, Gerard. There is much beauty in the world, waiting to be discovered. All I have to do is walk out my door, or even look out the window. It’s not the type of beauty that the commercial world wants us to enjoy, however. –Curt

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank goodness for so many wonderful blogs, Curt. Your latest on Alaskan bear country was balm on bruised minds post shopping at the super market.
      A woman with a ghostly pallor had a trolley laden with 12 cartons of Coke. Mind boggling.

      Like

      • Curt Mekemson Says:

        Wow, 12 cartons! Maybe she lived in the Outback and was loading up a year’s supply. 🙂 Can you imagine what that much would do to your body? Glad I was able to put another picture in your mind, Gerard! Thanks. –Curt

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Andrew Says:

    I would love to eavesdrop on the conversations between the ducks and the old men. I do like Modigliani and I think you should put your vase on eBay as an original. Reminds me of the old joke about the man who had 2 pieces by great craftsmen – a Stradivarius and a Rembrandt. Unfortunately Strad was a lousy painter and Rembrandt made dreadful violins.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Talk about the Stradivarius; a beautiful Finnish well known violin player featured on a morning ABC news program on our TV. You know the sort of modern way news is presented. Lots of fun and joviality and fascinating news items of the sort of plights Brazilian waxers now face.
      She played a Stradivarius and her thick Finnish accent was so lovely. It made mine and Helvi’s morning.
      My parents had the Rembrandt’s copy ‘Man with the Golden Helmet’ hanging above the settee.
      It’s odd how they stick in ones mind.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Andrew Says:

        In the right hands the violin is an exquisite instrument.

        Sir Thomas Beecham famously said to one unfortunate lady Cellist “madam you have god’s greatest gift to man between your legs and all you can do is sit there and scratch it. 😱

        Liked by 1 person

  10. berlioz1935 Says:

    What an introspective post. It seems you have calmed down a bit. Anger doesn’t do anybody any good. The noise from the circus in Canberra does not affect you anymore? I too never tire observing nature.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Berlioz. Canberra is now fading. The decision was made to cheer up. It’s not easy.

      Yesterday I was sitting outside, admiring the afternoon sun sinking behind our Pittosporums when I noticed my clear-sighted despair had lifted, just a little. Not sure for how long, but it is encouraging. We can only put up with so much from our leaders in Canberra.

      How are you going, Peter? I hope all is reasonable and steady.

      Liked by 1 person

      • pethan35 Says:

        I’m pretty sanguine myself. I told my surgeon today to put his knives away and take me off the hospital waiting list. I wanted to enjoy a glass of wine and then the paper wrote for every glass of wine my life will be 13 minutes shorter. Perhaps tomorrow I will throw all caution to the wind and have a glass of wine anyway.

        Liked by 1 person

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        The paper did not say how much sooner we would die if steeped in miserable teetotalism. Do people live longer in countries where alcohol is banned?
        Glad the knives are put on hold, Peter. It’s funny that each time I see the doctor she orders a blood test that tells me I am healthy.

        Like

  11. jennypellett Says:

    That is a beautiful vase, Gerard. I’ve recently been to a huge Modigliani retrospective at out wonderful Tate Modern. It was absolutely wonderful. Your case is very reminiscent of his work. I would treasure it.

    Like

  12. Master of Something Yet Says:

    Sometimes I think I’d like the excitement and convenience of living in the middle of a busy city but you’ve made me realise I’d miss my runs along the river and easy access to walks along the beach or in the bush. We do need those escapes sometimes. It’s a beautiful vase/work of art.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. gerard oosterman Says:

    Sometimes strolling around greenery is possible in a well planned city too. Of course, bush walking or climbing mountains is hard in a city with skyscrapers.
    It depends on age a little as well. With getting older cities become more attractive when we are within walking distance of shops, hospitals and cafes. We look out for Thai restaurants within walking distance now. We love their mix of many vegetables and chicken at a special for $9.90.

    Like

  14. shoreacres Says:

    The vase is beautiful, and I suspect Modigliani himself would admire it. I smiled at your mention of Milo and the ducks reaching a bit of an accord. There is a lady here who walks her dog each evening — a rather large dog that I think might be one of those Portuguese water dogs — and she feeds the ducks, too. Now, the ducks have become so accustomed to being fed, and so used to the dog, that they will trail along behind her. It never fails to make me smile: the woman, the dog, and a line of a dozen ducks, following behind in single file.

    One of the best things that’s happened in various states here is a ban on billboards along great stretches of highway. When I was growing up, there were signs everywhere. Now, you can drive for miles and miles without seeing anything except the occasional advertisements for lodging and food. Size limits have helped, too. The cities still can be a jumble of signage, but cities tend to be jumbles, anyway, so not much additional harm is done.

    Now that Dixie Rose is gone, I’m engaged in a little housecleaning to eliminate the inevitable kitty fur. In the process, I’ve been doing some of that vaunted de-cluttering, and rearranging things in ways that are more pleasing to my eye. It does make a difference. Once I get the house in order, it’s time to tackle the balcony, and bring some order there. A little color wouldn’t hurt, either. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Long live the ban on hoardings, Linda!

      Here too, along the federal highways there are no hoardings. I suspect safety for drivers is the main concern. But for State and local roads it is a free for all madhouse.

      I am at a loss why there are not more protests. There is an area along the coast here, we used to go camping a lot. At one area near Nowra, it is so bad people must loose the will to keep going and some do. Visual clutter amongst so much natural beauty is criminal.

      Any way, in my effort to repose and stick to calm I must really stop upsetting thoughts and am pleased that in Texas hoarding are on the run.

      I am wondering if you are going to get another pet cat? Dixie Rose and pets are often large parts of so many people’s lives. We don’t know what to do when Milo goes. We would survive but be heartbroken.

      Like

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