David Jones, artist and poet (1895-1974) begins his PREFACE TO THE ANATHEMATA :

'I have made a heap of all that I could find.' (1) So wrote Nennius, or whoever composed the introductory matter to Historia Brittonum. He speaks of an 'inward wound' which was caused by the fear that certain things dear to him 'should be like smoke dissipated'. Further, he says, 'not trusting my own learning, which is none at all, but partly from writings and monuments of the ancient inhabitants of Britain, partly from the annals of the Romans and the chronicles of the sacred fathers, Isidore, Hieronymous, Prosper, Eusebius and from the histories of the Scots and Saxons although our enemies . . . I have lispingly put together this . . . about past transactions, that [this material] might not be trodden under foot'. (2)

(1) The actual words are coacervavi omne quod inveni, and occur in Prologue 2 to the Historia.
(2) Quoted from the translation of Prologue 1. See The Works of Gildas and Nennius, J.A.Giles, London 1841.

31 July 2015


      they have
      gone to GOMA droving 
      and we don't know where they are 
As well as The drover invitation card from the University of Queensland Art Museum, we recently received another invitation from Queensland (below), from the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA).

bLOGOS/HA HA sent one of our award winning journalists
to attend the opening, the lectures and the special guided tour by
The Drovers of TAR.

      The TAR guide is there, awaiting in demand,
      TAR book held firmly in his Hand Space hand;
      He fixes on an Actor with a look of lonely lack,
      Exactly what he's waiting for : "TAR here, Jack!"

      - from Songs of the Open Road 

        (The Drovers of TAR)

The Painter's Reach is a 40 year survey curated by longtime MacPherson expert Ingrid Periz. For those familiar with the art of Robert MacPherson there are lots of old favourites. 

The early, sufficient, mark-making mark-regarding themes and variations.... 
Robert MacPherson
studio c.1977 with SARAH'S MERLES - photo David Goulter

soon spill out from the artist's paint encrusted studio ...

Robert MacPherson, 
... in liberated, worldly play.

Robert MacPherson

'Speaking of CHERRY PICKERS...' (LOGOS/HA HA) :
from QAGOMA Facebook comes this image of THREE MEN and a SPIRIT LEVEL high in a CHERRY PICKER installing the 156 panels of "CHITTERS: A WHEELBARROW FOR RICHARD, 156 PAINTINGS, 156 SIGNS" 1999-2000

Then t/here's our looking at the/se painted words, printed words, pixilated words.

Robert MacPherson

A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...

Looking without, and reading, and perhaps even looking within.

Robert, MacPherson
A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...


Displayed in a long red wall vitrine are various other MacPherson productions, not so obviously or primarily of The Painter's Reach: his correspondence with fellow artists is as much a measure of The Postal System's Reach. This pair of gloves, with a clearly franked postage stamp on each finger and the receiver's address written under the thumbs, are part of a recent gift to GOMA of around 13,000 items of 
MacPherson correspondence.

Robert MacPherson, 1982



Topping the show off, QAGOMA has recently acquired this grand opera by Robert MacPherson and his eternally 10 year old alter-ego Robert Pene :


A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...


24 July 2015

Cultural Capital, The drover of

Extending our Capital theme, we have received through the post, from the University of Queensland Art Museum, an invitation to the travelling (art droving) exhibition :


The invitation reproduces a 1906 painting by Harry Garlick, The drover, from the collection of the National Gallery of Australia.

Before we show that invitation, here is the NGA's online reproduction of The drover from an earlier (2007-2009) travelling (art droving) exhibition :

Ocean to Outback: Australian Landscape Painting 1850–1950

What is the CAPITAL of IMAGE & TEXT ? At that NGA website, this image is accompanied by the following text composition, beginning with the SURNAME of the artist in LARGE(R) CAPITAL LETTERS than the Prenom/Christian Name/ First Name :

Australia 1878 – Australia 1910
The drover 1906
oil on canvas board
60.8 (h) x 45.4 (w) cm
Framed 81.1 (h) x 65.7 (w) x 7.2 (d) cm
signed and dated l.l., oil "Harry Garlick \06"
NGA 1972.135
VIEW: Article |

For the CAPITAL & COUNTRY invitation
the EXHIBITION TITLE is imprinted onto the image 
in steely blue CAPITAL LETTERS

in the manner of a later LANGUAGE or CONCEPTUAL ARTIST

'Value added' landscape No.14
Ian Burn and Hans Selke

or in the manner of a TAR figure & field dualist 
      gone to GOMA droving 
      and we don't know where we are :

A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...


from the series : AUSTRALIAN ANDSCAPE 
Harry Garlick and FIAPCE
TAR and the mirrors of emptiness : we looked online for earlier stock route camps of the drovers of CAPITAL & COUNTRY and were rewarded with this devoided scene of white/blanc (Fr.) projection-spaces whose spectral reflections appear to indicate something quite other.
Below this image was the following text
Capital and country: the Federation years 1900 - 1914 is the National Gallery of Australia's first major exhibition to focus on Australian painting from this formative era of the nation's history.
Drawing together the art of a newly Federated Australia with the work of Australias residing in Europe, the 46 works in this exhibition invite viewers on a journey from the Australian bush to bohemian enclaves of London and Paris.
Well-known and loved paintings from the national collection will be on display to tell the stories of thie era, as well as works from the collections of the Parliament of Australia and the National Library of Australia.
whereas, above the image was this, as relevant here as there :
 This listing has already occurred and is has now expired, it has been retained for viewing for historical / archival purposes. 

A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...


23 July 2015

Q : "What is a question?"

Though with only schoolboy French, we do appreciate the double or meta form of the formal reflexive French interrogation :
"What is it that it is (whatever)?"
"Qu' est-ce que c'est (this question)?"
      lithograph on offset page by CHAM, Le Charivari, Dec. 1869
      collection FIAPCE  (Perhaps someone who has acquired the first edition of Das Kapital in German has come to speak? The Paris Commune is formed 15 months later.)
Though with only schoolboy Art appreciation, we do appreciate the raised hands of Theatre of the Actors of Regard :
"Does anyone really know what this is?" 
 click image to see full image
 (Fifteen months later they formed the Free Pencil Movement.)
Though with only schoolboy Korean Zen, we do appreciate the primary koan of that tradition :
"What is this?"

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


20 July 2015

Regarding certain capital questions

Today, the kerfuffle continues over the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Bronwyn Bishop's $5,000 helicopter ride from Melbourne to Geelong at tax payers' expense to attend a Liberal Party fundraiser. Blue blood snouts caught in the trough are popular theatre. 

Questions are being asked, of course.
- Que pensez vous du capital? 
- Messieurs, j'en suis encore a faire sa connaissance!

Preface to the French Edition (Marx, 1872) 

To the citizen Maurice Lachâtre 
Dear Citizen, 
I applaud your idea of publishing the translation of “Das Kapital” as a serial. In this form the book will be more accessible to the working class, a consideration which to me outweighs everything else. 
That is the good side of your suggestion, but here is the reverse of the medal: the method of analysis which I have employed, and which had not previously been applied to economic subjects, makes the reading of the first chapters rather arduous, and it is to be feared that the French public, always impatient to come to a conclusion, eager to know the connexion between general principles and the immediate questions that have aroused their passions, may be disheartened because they will be unable to move on at once. 
That is a disadvantage I am powerless to overcome, unless it be by forewarning and forearming those readers who zealously seek the truth. There is no royal road to science, and only those who do not dread the fatiguing climb of its steep paths have a chance of gaining its luminous summits. 
Believe me, 
dear citizen, 
Your devoted, 
Karl Marx 
March 18, 1872

below : lithograph on offset by CHAM, Le Charivari, Dec. 1869
collection FIAPCE  (Perhaps someone who has acquired the first edition of Das Kapital in German has come to speak? The Paris Commune is formed 15 months later.)

Today, this headline and report in
Porsche profits triple in stark contrast to heavy losses at Holden
Porsche Australia has tripled profits and lifted revenues by 37 per cent to $428 million on strong sales of its luxury vehicles at a time when local car makers are reporting heavy losses.

Questions are being asked, of course.
- Que pensez vous du capital?
- Messieurs, j'en suis encore a faire sa connaissance!


Today, there are over 2.5 million Australians living below
The Poverty Line (see below)
(see also: "Taking a Line for a Ride in a Helicopter" by Paul Klee)

Questions are being asked, of course.
- Que pensez vous du capital?
- Messieurs, j'en suis encore a faire sa connaissance!


Questions are being asked, of course.
- Que'est-ce qu c'est un question?

- What is a question?

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


18 July 2015

Confound it !

I. Lara (photographe amateur, 04-2)
Estimation :
120 - 150 €
Résultat : 1500 €
Carte de visite au miroir vers 1860 Épreuve albuminée, 90x55 mm, montée sur un carton au format carte de visite, cachet bleu au verso : "I. Lara, Fotografo. Aficionado", annotation au crayon : Cuba ? Espagne De la collection Michel Braive. Dans les années 1860, Cuba est une colonie espagnole Unique print, published in Michel Braive, L'âge de la photographie, page 167 Also in Juan Naranjo, La fotografía en España en el siglo XIX, Caixa Forum, Barcelona, 2003

 carte de visite au miroir
 circa 1860
 blue stamp on the back: "I. Lara, Fotografo Aficionado."
 annotation in pencil: Cuba? Spain

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


15 July 2015

TAR : De Revolutionibus : De-Centred : re. knowing & not knowing where to look

Dear wonderful Nadar, 

In 1858, you were the first to photograph our world from space.

Nadar élevant la Photographie à la hauteur de l'Art
Nadar elevating Photography to the level of Art
Lithograph by Honoré Daumier, in Le Boulevard, May 25, 1863

And, in your studio, the first to fake it too.
 Nadar, Self-Portrait in a Balloon Gondola, c1865

Félix Nadar was the pseudonym of Gaspard-Félix Tournachon (1 April 1820, Paris – 23 March 1910), a French photographer, caricaturist, journalist, novelist and balloonist. He took his first photographs in 1853 and pioneered the use of artificial lighting in photography, working in the catacombs of Paris. In 1858, he took a camera up in a tethered hot air balloon and became the first aerial photographer. Around 1863, Nadar built a huge (6000 m³) balloon named Le Géant (“The Giant”), thereby inspiring Jules Verne’s Five Weeks in a Balloon. Although the “Géant” project was initially unsuccessful Nadar was still convinced that the future belonged to heavier-than-air machines. Later, “The Society for the Encouragement of Aerial Locomotion by Means of Heavier than Air Machines” was established, with Nadar as president and Verne as secretary. Nadar was also the inspiration for the character of Michael Ardan in Verne’s From the Earth to the Moon. In April 1874, he lent his photo studio to a group of painters, thus making the first exhibition of the Impressionists possible. (Wikipedia
Today, we think of you again, as a vehicle from Earth, New Horizons, after almost ten years travelling through space, passes by and photographs our Sun's outermost mini-planet Pluto and its moon Charon. Here's the screen photo we made for you at the moment of closest approach. 
Of course, dear Nadar, there were many others involved in this projection : Copernicus & Co..

Aristarchus of Samos, Martianus Capella, Nicole Oresme, Aryabhata, Varahamihira, Brahmagupta, and Bhaskara II. Nilakantha Somayaji, Nilakantha, Abu Sa'id al-Sijzi, Alhazen, Abu Rayhan Biruni, al-Battani, Thabit ibn Qurra, al-Zarqali, Ibn Rushd, and al-Bitruji. Tycho Brahe, Nicolaus Copernicus, Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, William Herschel, Friedrich Bessel... 

Nicholas of Cusa in his Learned Ignorance asked whether there was any reason to assert that the Sun (or any other point) was the centre of the universe. In parallel to a mystical definition of God, Cusa wrote that "Thus the fabric of the world (machina mundi) will quasi have its centre everywhere and circumference nowhere." 

Modern thinking is that there is no specific location that is the centre of the universe, per Albert Einstein's principle of relativity(Wikipedia
...but it is still giddy YOU who have us in the best of spins!

Yours at large

Nadar,  revolving self-portrait,  c.1865      

14 July 2015

"Never imagine you're looking backwards." (FIAPCE)

Portrait of a Daruma Muralist 

Félix Tournachon aka Nadar (1820-1910)
Marie Laurent, de dos
circa 1856
Bibliothèque nationale de France
Now, before and after :

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...



12 July 2015

Spirit of TAR seen from the back

In the previous post, we showed several tableau vivant photographs by Olympe Aguado

Today, in a similar metamusement spirit, a photographic presentation by his brother Onésipe Aguado. This image from the collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art can also be found at the archives of Theatre of the Actors of Regard and the Daruma Muralists.
  • Title : Woman seen from the back
  • Artist: Onésipe Aguado, French, 1827–1894
  • Date: ca. 1862
  • Medium: Salted paper print from glass negative
  • Dimensions: 12 1/8 x 10 1/8 in. (30.8 x 25.8 cm)
  • Credit Line: Gilman Collection, Purchase, Joyce F. Menschel Gift, 2005
  • Accession Number: 2005.100.1

                   The Metropolitan Museum of Art  
 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...


10 July 2015

Ça va? On we go...

Today, a TAR follow-on from our previous scene of capital regard.

tableau (n.) 1690s, "a picturesque or graphic description or picture," from French tableau "picture, painting" (12c.), from Old French table "slab, writing tablet" (seetable (n.)) + diminutive suffix -eau, from Latin -ellus. Hence tableau-vivant (1817) "person or persons silent and motionless, enacting a well-known scene, incident, painting, etc.," 19c. parlor game, literally "living picture."

Wikipedia writes of Olympe Aguado
Count Olympe-Clemente-Alexandre-Auguste Aguado de las Marismas, born in Paris in 1827, was a Franco-Spanish photographer and socialite, active primarily in the 1850s and 1860s.  
Some of Aguado's most interesting images consist of a series of staged family portraits, or "living pictures," taken in the 1860s as an apparent critique of Second Empire nobility. The most well-known of these include Admiration, which depicts several people with their backs turned to the camera admiring a painting, and La Lecture, which depicts a man reading to a bored audience.     

La Lecture [Reading]
by Olympe Aguado (1827-1894)
albumen print from a collodion glass negative 
between 1862 and 1864
collection Musée d'Orsay
The Musée d'Orsay writes of La Lecture (Reading) :
Olympe Aguado's career as a photographer was devoted mainly to reproductions of paintings or 'studies from nature', mostly landscapes and photographs of animals, inspired by the paintings of Constant Troyon and Rosa Bonheur. 
He is now also known for the playlets he photographed in the first half of the 1860s but did not exhibit. They are living pictures, a favourite game within aristocratic and bourgeois circles during the nineteenth century, in which the photographer staged himself with his family and friends. Here he is playing the role of the listener nodding off on the right. The women in the photograph however are harder to identify with any certainty. The one on the far left may be Emily McDonnell, the photographer's sister-in-law, and the woman dozing beside her, Bertha Aguado, the photographer's wife since 1860. The man reading aloud remains nameless. 
La Lecture and Admiration (below) are both among the favorites of visitors to the archive of the Theatre of the Actors of Regard :

Admiration !
by Olympe Aguado (1827-1894)
albumen print from a collodion glass negative 
circa 1860
collection Musée d'Art Modern et Contemporain de Strasbourg, France
A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...


04 July 2015

'Capital before and after Capital : Regarding Regard : the Appearance of Reality and the Economy of Desire'

Julie Ewington writes in The Monthly (July) about the curator Okwui Enwezor's 2015 Venice Biennale, All the World’s Futures :
"... Enwezor’s Biennale has separated visitors into two camps: lovers and haters. I’m in the former. One of the most influential voices in contemporary art, Enwezor has staged a Biennale that is provocative and abrasive, even angry, but also engaging and humane. Key themes, signalled by the continuous reading of Marx’s Das Kapital in the new Arena at the main pavilion in the Giardini, are power, labour and inequity. Why Marx? Provocation aside, what else stands as a foundational text for the modern period? Kapital leads into the exhibition’s exploration of what is happening now, with the world’s exploited labour, mass migrations, historical and inherited injustices. The aim is to see the state of things, in Enwezor’s often repeated italicised phrase, in order to move forward. It’s an enormous program, a huge ask."

Julie Ewington again :

"The disquiet with Enwezor’s Biennale leads to this question : what is the purpose of art?"

Well, that doesn't necessarily lead to that...
] do All roads lead to roam, as we have herd? (
: what is the purpose of disquiet?
: what is the purpose of purpose?
: what is the purpose of such leading questions?
: what is art?
: what is capital?
: what is a koan?
: what is this?
Karl Marx : Capital: Critique of Political Economy (1867)
Monty Python " Communist Quiz [World Forum] :

Presenter : Well now we come on to our special gift section. The contestant is Karl Marx and the prize this week is a beautiful lounge suite. Now Karl has elected to answer questions on the workers control of factories so here we go with question number one. Are you nervous? (Karl nods his head; the presenter reads from a card) The development of the industrial proletariat is conditioned by what other development?

Karl Marx : The development of the industrial bourgeoisie.

Presenter: Yes, yes, it is indeed. You're on your way to the lounge suite, Karl. Question number two. The struggle of class against class is a what struggle? A what struggle?

Karl Marx : A political struggle.
(Tumultuous applause.)

Presenter: Yes, yes! One final question Karl and the beautiful lounge suite will be yours... Are you going to have a go? (Karl nods) You're a brave man. Karl Marx, your final question, who won the Cup Final in 1949?

Karl: The workers' control of the means of production? The struggle of the urban proletariat?

Presenter: No. It was in fact, Wolverhampton Wanderers who beat Leicester 3-1.
Thomas Piketty : Capital in the Twenty-First Century (2013)
We have a question sent-in by Theatre of the Actors of Regard :
       What is the nature and purpose of our regard? 
       What is The Capital of regard?"

Blaise Pascal, your thoughts?
      "All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone." (Pensées)

Thank you, Blaise. Straight to the root of (the means of) production - our disquiet : from desire-attachment to 'the state of things'.

LOGOS/HA HA : a frame by any other name ...

C'EST UN MORCEAU CAPITAL : A bit of Capital Regard, in fact. It's a telling favourite here - by Jules Bourdet, published in Le Charivari (1833) three decades before the publication of Das Kapital :

 A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
 someone looks at something...



01 July 2015

Previous Scene as Daruma Muralist

A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something...