20 September 2021

Museum Monday 2021/38


Bura Chochin no Inkyo Banashi (Tale of the Retired Street Lantern) by Ando Hiroshige, seen at the Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive in 2017

13 September 2021

10 September 2021

Friday Photo 2021/37


for the start of football season: a detail of the Douglas Tilden football sculpture on the campus of UC Berkeley

06 September 2021

Museum Monday 2021/36


detail of Henri Matisse's portrait of Sarah Stein, now at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

30 August 2021

Museum Monday 2021/35


a detail of Diego Rivera's 1940 mural The Marriage of the Artistic Expression of the North and of the South on This Continent (also known as the Pan-American Unity mural), currently at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

23 August 2021

Museum Monday 2021/34

 love my sea monsters! this is a detail from the border of the Flemish tapestry Construction of the Tower of Babel, woven around 1600 and now in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston

20 August 2021

16 August 2021

Museum Monday 2021/33


detail of a fresco from a garden room, normally in the House of the Golden Bracelet in Pompeii, temporarily at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco as part of the special exhibit Last Supper in Pompeii: From the Table to the Grave

13 August 2021

Friday Photo 2021/33


I have no idea which species this rather prehistoric-looking plant belongs to, as it sprang up in my yard unplanted by me (the prehistoric look mostly comes from the trunk, here unseen, but the total effect is like something decorating a dinosaur diorama)

09 August 2021

Museum Monday 2021/32


a detail of the Gymnich Mirror from eighteenth century Germany, now in the Legion of Honor in San Francisco; the bird at the top is a quacking duck, from the Von Gymnich coat of arms

02 August 2021

Museum Monday 2021/31


a detail of Rabbit-Hunting with Ferrets, a fifteenth-century Franco-Flemish tapestry now in the Legion of Honor, San Francisco

26 July 2021

Museum Monday 2021/30


a detail of the Botticelli-inflected Love & the Maiden, by John Roddam Spencer Stanhope, now at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco

19 July 2021

Museum Monday 2021/29


I was actually in a museum this week, for the first time in nearly a year and a half, so this detail of a mosaic panel from the House of the Geometric Mosaics in Pompeii comes from Last Supper in Pompeii: From the Table to the Grave, on view at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco through 29 August. This astonishing tableau is one of the treasures of the exhibit, as demonstrated by its many manifestations in the gift shop, and no wonder: not only are the very tiny stones arranged to give an accurate depiction of each of the many species shown, but each fish also expresses a surprising amount of personality, an attribute not usually thought of in connection with sea life.

12 July 2021

09 July 2021

05 July 2021

Museum Monday 2021/27


a detail of The Birth of Venus (or possibly the triumph of Galatea?) by Nicolas Poussin, once in the collection of Catherine the Great and now in the possession of the Philadelphia Museum of Art

02 July 2021

28 June 2021

Museum Monday 2021/26

This is from the Philadelphia Museum of Art; it's from a group of photos I took on a trip there over ten years ago, before I started photographing the identifying tags with the work, but I believe it's a detail of this tomb figure of a horse from China

16 June 2021

in its own small way

 Mr Bloom could easily picture his advent on this scene – the homecoming to the mariner's roadside shieling after having diddled Davy Jones –a rainy night with a blind moon. Across the world for a wife. Quite a number of stories there were on that particular Alice Ben Bolt topic, Enoch Arden and Rip van Winkle and does anybody hereabouts remember Caoc O'Leary, a favourite and most trying declamation piece, by the way, of poor John Casey and a bit of perfect poetry in its own small way? Never about the runaway wife coming back, however much devoted to the absentee. The face at the window! Judge of his astonishment when he finally did breast the tape and the awful truth dawned upon him anent his better half, wrecked in his affections. You little expected me but I've come to stay and make a fresh start. There she sits, a grass widow, at the selfsame fireside. Believes me dead. Rocked in the cradle of the deep. And there sits uncle Chubb or Tomkin, as the case might be, the publican of the Crown and Anchor, in shirtsleeves, eating rumpsteak and onions. No chair for father. Boo! The wind! Her brandnew arrival is on her knee, post mortem child. With a high ro! and a randy ro! and my galloping tearing tandy O! Bow to the inevitable. Grin and bear it. I remain with much love your brokenhearted husband, W. B. Murphy.

The sailor, who scarcely seemed to be a Dublin resident, turned to one of the jarvies with the request:

– You don't happen to have such a thing as a spare chaw about you, do you?

And once again, happy Bloomsday to my mountain flowers.

14 June 2021

11 June 2021

Friday Photo 2021/24

 I'm not sure what kind of flowers these are. When the owner saw me photographing them on the sidewalk, he told me they (the flowers, not the leaves) could be smoked as a hallucinogen, like certain mushrooms, though he also said he had not tried it himself.

07 June 2021

04 June 2021

Friday Photo 2021/23


stained glass at Saint Mark's Lutheran in San Francisco; this is from 2017, and I must have gone there for a concert

31 May 2021

Museum Monday 2021/22

 from the Joan of Arc Series, I: The Vision and Inspiration, by Louis Maurice Boutet de Monvel, now in the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC; 30 May is the feast of Saint Joan

28 May 2021

Friday Photo 2021/22


the statue of Joan of Arc outside of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco; 30 May is the feast of Saint Joan

24 May 2021

Museum Monday 2021/21

detail of the tomb effigy of Alonso de Mera by Juan de Montejo; in the background is part of The Crucifixion by the Master of the Urbino Coronation; now in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

21 May 2021

Friday Photo 2021/21


the Lohengrin-inspired swan boats in the Boston Public Garden, June 2019

17 May 2021

10 May 2021

Museum Monday 2021/19


detail of Sarah Bernhardt as La Dame aux Camélias, a poster by Alphonse Maria Mucha, which I saw at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, as part of the 2019 exhibit Toulouse-Lautrec and the Stars of Paris

03 May 2021

Museum Monday 2021/18


Python necklace by David Bielander, made of anodized titanium, seen by me in 2017 at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

30 April 2021

Friday Photo 2021/18


the monument to the Portuguese immigrant, San Leandro California, March 2021

26 April 2021

Museum Monday 2021/17


Six Lions in a Forest, by the Master of the Death of Absalom: I saw this pen-and-ink drawing at the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC on a 2017 trip, but it is normally found at the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam

23 April 2021

Friday Photo 2021/17


King Lear & his Fool: one of the bas-reliefs at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC

Today is traditionally considered Shakespeare's birthday

19 April 2021

Museum Monday 2021/16


detail of Winged Genius, an Assyrian sculpture now in the Legion of Honor, San Francisco

12 April 2021

Museum Monday 2021/15

mat weight in the shape of a tiger, second century BCE, unearthed from Tomb 1, Pit 1, Dayun Mountain in the Hunan Province of China, seen in the exhibit Tomb Treasures: New Discoveries from China's Han Dynasty at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco