Paint and Pallete

Apr 29 2009

Plautus: A Pioneer In Musical Theater

Titus Macchius Plautus was a playwright of Ancient Rome. He was one of the earliest pioneers in the history of musical theater. In my own opinion, I would classify him as a pre-modern man that abode the concept of exploration and innovativeness.

There are only few accounts of Plautus’ early life. It is said that Plautus worked as a scene-shifter or a stage carpenter in his early years. It is probably because of these that his love of theater emerged. He discovered his acting talent and adopted the names “Macchius” - a clownish stock-character in popular farces, and “Plautus” — meaning flat-footed. It is also siad that he had worked as a manual laborer for him to experience Greek drama particularly the New Comedy of Menander – during his leisure. Titus Macchius Plautus attained so much popularity that his name alone became a legend in the history of theater and its ventures throughout generations.

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Feb 08 2009

The Man Behind West Side Story

The man behind the famous West Side Story, Arthur Laurents, is an American novelist, playwright, stage director, librettist, and screenwriter. Laurents came from a Jewish family and was born in New York City. He began writing scripts for radio in 1945 and wrote the play titled Home of the Brave – a drama that was set during the Second World War.

The Way We Were and The Turning Point are two of his novels of which became successful films. He also wrote the screenplays for Alfred Hitchcock, The Snake Pit, Rope and Anastacia.

In the year 2000, he published a memoir titled Original Story By. Laurents revealed that he’s a homosexual and had relationships with Tom Hatcher and Farley Granger.

With this information about the author, it can be judged that Laurents is a postmodern man because of his embrace to freedom and no absolute truth – not even God, not even human reason. His concept of “no control” is a proof of it. He sets the standard of what is true and what is not. What is reality from what is not. Therefore, his being homosexual defines who he is, but does not meddle with what the society dictates – if there is, in a postmodern one. In other words, he has his own world but does not necessarily fit and coincide with the rest.

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Jan 20 2009

Euripides Was Way Ahead His Contemporaries

The author of Medea, Euripides, is said to be modern by comparison with those of his contemporaries (Aeschylus and Sophocles), focusing his plays on the inner lives and motives of his characters in a way previously unknown to Greek audiences.

It can be recalled that Euripides was considered one of the three great tragedians of the classical Athens. The other two were Sophocles and Aeschylus. According to ancient scholars, Euripides was able to write 95 plays but only 18 of which survived complete.

Euripides violated the formal structure of the Attic tragedy. Euripides empowered women by giving strong roles to women and mocking the many heroes of Greek mythology.

There are only few stories about the public life of Euripides. The one that is considered to be reliable is that of the accounts of Aristotle. Aristotle said about Euripides being a wealthy man because of his involvement in a dispute over a liturgy. That gathering showed strong proof that Euripides was a rich man. And because he had the finances, he had been able to travel to places like Syracuse and Sicily. He was also noted to be involved in different public or political activities during his lifetime.

Nov 20 2008

The Seasons of Love

The author of the play was a man full of vision for musical theater. An American Tony Award-winning composer and playwright, Jonathan Larson lived in New York and authored musical plays like the famous Rent and Tick, Tick…BOOM! These plays talk about serious issues like addiction, multiculturalism, homophobia, and the AIDS epidemic. His artistic goal was to combine the concepts of Generation X and the MTV Generation in his works. The mission was accomplished in a way by his magnum opus, Rent, which gained the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and won four Tony Awards.

The author, Jonathan Larson, is considered to be a Post-Modernist. He is a man who embraced the thought of going beyond not just the traditional, but with the concept of modernism as well. He is man who thought that nothing is impossible in this world (manifested by his being innovative and creative in his thoughts and actions) and that he can do unlimitedly, even including reality. He believed that reality, in fact, is not just accepting change as an inevitable idea; but is constructed; therefore, all comprehensible worldviews are oppressive, in this case, reality. Thus, it should be deconstructed; as deconstructionism is the progressive pulverization of reality.

Jul 17 2008

Lysistrata: A Satire On War

Aristophanes is the author of Lysistrata. An Athenian writer, he is considered to be one of the greatest comedy playwright in literary history. His plays are famous all throughout history because of their wit, comic invention, and poetic language. He is believed to have been born in Athens, Greece and presumably, he received good education during his time. He was also known to be the first and foremost a satirist. Being an expert in his craft, we was able to write more than 40 plays. Eleven of which are declared extant. Lysistrata, which is a satire on war, wherein women strike for peace by the mere practice of celibacy, has been his most famous work.

With the following data, it can be deduced that the said playwright embraced the concept of pre-modernism because of his passion in comic invention despite the traditional standards that had been laid out to him prior to his time. His sense of plotting a new standard in a certain field is analogous to a pre-modern man’s desire to know what his role is in an ordered universe.

Apr 09 2008

Life Is A Dream

The play “Life Is A Dream” is written by Pedro Calderon de la Barca, one of Spain’s most popular playwright. As Wilson and Goldfarb (2000) described it, Calderon’s first choice of career, even at his young age, was the priesthood. After a few years of study in a seminary, he left school to enter government service. At age 23, he began to write plays for the court, becoming a leader among the court poets. He changed careers at age 40 by joining the army to help suppress a Catalan rebellion.

He is a “Modern Man” because of his submission to humanism, an attitude that emphasizes the dignity and worth of the individual. Calderon believed that people are “rational beings who possess within themselves the capacity for truth and goodness” – that regardless of the wrongdoings of men, it is through the natural kindness of men that restores peace and unity to everyone in the society. This is a basic premise of humanism.

Jan 19 2008

Everyman, Every Era

The author of the morality play “Everyman” is not known, an excuse valid enough to not identifying its anonymous author as belonging to one of the three Western models of history. However, it has been speculated that a member of the church during the Medieval Period wrote this one. This is for the very purpose of preaching and teaching morality – what is good and what is not – to the people. According to several critics in the Internet: the author is unknown, but it has been speculated by scholars that the play was written by a cleric or under the direction of the church.

If we suppose that the author of this play was a clergyman with his intention to preach and teach morality, then he is a “Pre-Modern Man” because of his concept of a Supreme Being, a higher authority that people should submit. This manifested an embrace in Deism, a notion that is very Pre-Modern.

Dec 06 2007

Most Remarkable Writer During The World War II

The playwright of Waiting for Godot is Samuel Beckett. Beckett is a “Post-Modern Man” because of his utilization of language and the complexities of it to write plays that were not typical to the traditional plays. He used his being multi-lingual in exploring the world of playwriting. He had proven his mastery on his craft when he set a record as a student. He was a student at the Portora Royal School in County Fermanagh. He also studied at Trinity College in Dublin. From the latter institution he earned the Bachelor of Arts in French and Italian in 1927 and the M.A. in 1931.

Whoroscope was Beckett’s first published work. This appeared in 1930 and for which he won a prize. He was once called as “the most remarkable writer to emerge since World War II.” Of those writers who have created the theater of the absurd, Beckett is probably the best known, and Waiting for Godot is his most famous play.

Oct 28 2007

Sophocles: Master In Writing Dramas

The very popular and intriguing Oedipus Rex’ author is Sophocles. I would say that Sophocles was a “Pre-Modern Man” because of his attitude towards a world of awe. In the said play, Sophocles introduced the explicit version of life and reality – showing that death and suffering are normal parts of life. The way he thought even at his young age explained this claim. He was born in 497/6 at Colonus. In his youth Sophocles was given prizes for athletics and for his school work. It was said that his dramatic career started in 468, when he won his first victory with the Triptolemus. This first victory coincided with his first production.

Moreover, the evidences show that Sophocles was interested in the theoretical as well as the practical side of dramatic art. He wrote books that served as treaties as to how to write tragedies. He also founded a leading company in Athens during his time that served as training ground for dramatists and to those people who have the passion in dramatic art.

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Oct 13 2007

Bits Of Bahamian Art

The Commonwealth of Bahamas has a rich culture. Not only it is famous for its music called Junkanoo (equatable with Jamaican Reggae), it also has unique art. Bahamian Arts include quilting, canvas art, straw weaving, and coral and stone art. Quilting has been practiced by its people for generations. It has been mainly practiced on the island of Spanish Wells. Straw weaving is a traditional craft that is practiced in most, if not all, islands. Each island has a unique braiding style creating pretty hats and baskets of all sizes. The use of baskets is very common to the Bahamians since they use these baskets for carrying fruit and fishing traps.

Furthermore, canvas art is also something that Bahamians should be proud of. Their art is mainly manifested in their beatuiful landscapes and elegant houses. Notable Bahamian artists include Eddi Minnis, Amos Ferguson, Brent Malone, John Beadle, Jackson Burnside and John Cox.

Sep 19 2007

Goya: A Pintor Del Rey

Francis Goya was a pintor del rey (painter to the king) to the three rulers of Spain. He was a court painter and a chronicler of history. He was famous for his skills and expertise in both impressionist and expressionist painting. He is known for his creativity having a broad range of subjects and artistic styles. He developed a method of loose, expressive brushwork that anticipated the impressionist and expressionist movements.

He was said to be an artist ahead of his time. He created unconventional works that were full of personality – showing a critical fascination with violence and brutality.

Goya married Francisco Bayeu’s sister. This marriage was the gateway to this membership to the Royal Academy of Fine Art. This membership made him more fulfilled as an artist because he was given tons of opportunities that he never thought of achieving. He was invited to travel from one place to another because of his painting prowess.

Sep 12 2007

El Greco

El Greco, although spent most of his life in the Tolera area of Spain, he was Greek by birth – this was what my Arts teacher kept on repeating and repeating to us during our class this morning. It just can’t let out of my mind. Well, certainly, he was a Greek. His name alone means “The Greek” in the Castilian language.

El Greco was first trained as an icon painter and studied formallyin an art school under the influence of Titian and Tintoretto. El Greco was guided by religious influences and so he referred himself as an artist-philosopher. His works portrayed images that are conceived in the mind, pure colors, and incandescent light – all of them depicting Byzantine and Mannerist influences. And although he primarily worked for religious purposes, he also had some portraits of high quality wherein themes were not limited to his belief system.

El Greco was also an architect and a sculptor.

Aug 19 2007

Dali Created Destino

My Arts teacher discussed another impressive artist in class today. He discussed to us the artist’s biography, he showed to us samples of his works and truly the artist is still astounding even in present times. His name is Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dali I Domeneech. Salvador Dali, for short.

Salvador Dali worshipped surrealism. He was a Spanish Catalan painter born in Figueres. He was best known for the strange images in his surrealist works. He was a skilled draftsman. His skills were influence by the Renaissance masters. It can also be noted that The Persistence of Memory as his best-known work. Despite his being a flamboyant exhibitionist with odd traits, he was, without a doubt, a talented worker. He was able to produce more than 1,500 paintings and illustrations in books and lithographs. He also made a name on the film industry. In fact, he was responsible for the short Disney cartoon “Destino.”

Aug 17 2007

Claude Monet Introduced French Impressionist Painting

Claude Monet was born an artist. When he was young, he was known for his charcoal caricatures. He also took his drawing lessons under Jacques Francois Ochard, a former student of Jacques-Louis David. When he was fifteen, he met a fellow artist in the person of Eugene Boudin. Boudin became Monet’s mentor in using oil paint. He also taught him outdoor techniques for painting known as “en plein air.”

Claude Monet was considered to be the most distinguished member among impressionists. He was a founder of French Impressionist painting. He studied under Charles Gleyre. His students included American Impressionists like Theodore Butler, Theodore Robinson, and Lilla Cabot Perry.

Monet died at the age of 86 because of lung cancer. His popular home and garden with its waterlily pond was turned over to the French Academy of Fine Arts in 1966. All of Monet’s collection is preserved up until now for educational and historical purposes.

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Aug 14 2007

Gustav Klimt’s Life As An Artist

One of the most distinguished members of the Vienna Art Nouveau movement was Gustav Klimt. He was an Austrian Symbolist painter. His works of art included murals, paintings and sketches. Gustav Klimt’s primary subject of interest was the female body. It is obvious in his works that the theme were marked by explicit eroticism.

Klimt was one of the three boys of the family. All three of them showed artistic talent even in their young years. When he was sixteen years old, Gustav Klimt was granted a scholarship to the Vienna School of Arts and Crafts. He studied there for seven years and received a number of trainings as an architectural painter. His early works were regarded as academic because of the conservative training he got. Ten years later, he received the Golden Order of Merit from the emperor of Austria because of his contributions as an artist. He was also nominated as an honorary members to two prestigious universities namely the University of Munich and University of Vienna.

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