One must make a distinction however: when dragged into prominence by half poets, the result is not poetry, nor till the autocrats among us can be “literalists of the imagination”—above insolence and triviality and can present for inspection, imaginary gardens with real toads in them, shall we have it.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Artistic Interpretations with Margaret - Poetic Marble

"Reproof"  Marble @1878 by Edward R. Thaxter
Welcome to Artistic Interpretations with Margaret.  This past summer I traveled to Washington D. C. and visited the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM).  I have selected six marble statues for your inspiration.  I have offered a bit of background for a few of the images - you may choose to use the information or perhaps you will be inspired in a completely different direction.

Please, link your new poem to Mr. Linky below.  Friday is often a hectic day, so please feel free to submit late and remember, Monday is "Open Link" here in the Garden.

I had three hours to wet my appetite at the SAAM - there is NO way one can truly take in a venue like this in one day.  Or at least I can't.   I have promised myself a few return visits to this city of museums - and the most amazing thing to me is they are free admittance.

"Puck" Marble @1856 by Harriet Hosmer
Puck is the mischievous character from Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream".

"Greek Slave" Marble @1873 by Hiram Powers
"Greek Slave" was among the most popular full-length statures of the 19th century.  The figure depicts a Greek woman who has been captured and chained by Turkish warriors.  The statue referred directly to the Greek struggle for independence during the 1820's, but also evoked the issue of slavery in America.  "Greek Slave" was the first nude statue to be widely accepted by the American public.  By emphasizing that the slave was stripped by her captors and not naked by choice, Powers gave the public permission to view the statue without fear of embarrassment.

"Nydia, the Blind Girl of Pompeii" Marble @1854
by Randolph Rogers
Nydia, the blind flower seller, was a popular character from the 1834 novel "Last Days of Pompeii" by English playwright and novelist Edward Bulwer-Lytton.  Rogers depicted her wandering through the wreckage of Pompeii as the erupting volcano Mount Vesuvius destroys the city.  Her staff and acute sense of hearing guide her around the destruction.  Nydia, a slave, listens intently for the voice of her aristocratic master with whom she has fallen in love.

"Eve Tempted" Marble @1877 by Hiram Powers
"Diana" Marble 1853 by Hiram Powers


Kerry O'Connor said...

This pieces are exquisite, Margaret!

Kerry O'Connor said...


(Sorry been a long and tiresome day!)

Anonymous said...

A lot of fun, Margaret. I am from DC, born and bred, and have a special fondness for the National Gallery. Thanks. k.

Helen said...

Lived in Bethesda just outside DC for two years way back in the late 60s ... the Smithsonian, our weekend hangout! What a treasure.

hedgewitch said...

I have had a certain subject in mind for a poem for almost a month, Margaret,and this challenge set it whirring. Thanks! (while your photos are lovely, I found another one from the Smithsonian collection that seemed a better fit--hope this is okay--if not, feel free to remove the link.)Many chores today--will be back to read later or in the morning. Have a great and safe trip, Margaret.

Susan said...

What fine photographs, Margaret. I compared your Puck to the one the Smithsonian put on line--they missed the exquisite detail at the right hand! I used that and added an Ariel. Fun.

Hannah said...

Inspiring! Thank you, Margaret.

alp said...

Bonitas imágenes... Un saludo desde Murcia...

Fireblossom said...

There's a lot of busts here!

Margaret said...

Thank you all for participating on a busy Friday and Saturday. I enjoyed perfect wether while on my two day mountain trip and am hoping to find words to pair with my photos.

humbird said...

The poems in stone...Thanks, Margaret!