mago, Sunday Music

Sunday Music, Monday Edition

Oh dear.
“Gestern noch auf stolzen Rossen, heute durch die Brust geschossen”, as WIlhelm HAUFF (Ger., Eng.) once put it in a poem called Reiters Morgenlied, Horseman’s Morning Song. After a weekend spent in fine company in sunny Suebia, I went to work this morning, still all good. Then I had to see the company doctor for the bi-annual check-up, and it went downhill from there. In the end he prohibited me from driving until I can show correct new glasses. He kindly avoided words like “ticking time bomb” and “accident waiting to happen”. I had realised that reading has become a bit difficult over time, but when I stared into this eye testing thingy, I understood that something is wrong. Cheating Adjusting the glasses did not work. And when the friendly assistant showed me a cardboard with a dot, I could not help and had to ask “Dot ?”, what produced a light sigh from her.
I drove home. Shortly afterwards my dispatcher’s right-hand-man wrestled the car keys from my shaking hands, and that was that.
And rightly so. The risk is simply much too big, it is totaly irresponsible not to act.
Tomorrow midday I’ll see the optician who “made” my glasses (in 2012), there will be an eyesight test resulting in correct new glasses (and a huge bill), and with a little luck I’ll be back on the road next week. Meanwhile I am on forced holiday, a good chance to look around and orientate oneself.
I need some friendly music today. Please listen with me to Mr David RUSSELL playing Minueto by Francisco de Asís Tárrega y Eixea.
I hope you like the music – and if you realise that your eyesight changes, have it checked please.

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Sunday Music

Sunday Music

Wonderful days, warm, golden light – it should stay this way, but nevertheless the murk lurks behind the horizon, hopefully still for weeks.
The week was, nothing earth shattering to report. With the exception of Frayday afternoon, when all of a sudden a really loud bang occurred while I was driving over a country road. We have no idea what happened. Of course something must have hit the vehicle, but what where – no clue. All I know is that it occurred behind and above me, and that I did not run over something. But whatever it was, it left no visible traces. The young boy who was my sole passenger at this moment became really alarmed and needed consolation ; thankfully he is not afraid to climb in, at least on Saturday all was  well with him again. (This Saturday was an additional working day.)
After this dramolett in the Franconian wilderness, and the boring book list, it is time for some joyful, little Gran Valse, composed by Francisco TÁRREGA (1852-1909) (Ger., Eng.), performed by David RUSSELL (Ger., Eng.).
I hope you enjoy the music ; may the coming week be warm, sunny, easy for all of us.

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books

Books Read

Or looked at, some are photograph collections only. It’s a while since the last book report, in July. Before I put them back into the shelves – maybe you find something here that is interesting for your own reading adventures.

PITTROF, Thomas (Ed.) : Christian GARVE. Über die Moden. Frankfurt / Main , 1. Auflage 1987 (insel taschenbuch 989)
Christian GARVE (1742-1798) (Ger., Eng.) was a philosopher of the late enlightenment (“Spätaufklärung”), and for reasons I can not explain, he got somehow “lost”. If he was / is mentioned he is often called, a little pejorative, a “popular philosopher” / Populärphilosoph – as if he would not necessarily deserve to be taken fully serious.
After all GARVE, seven years older than GOETHE, was a very well known author in his lifetime, had a serious public discussion with KANT, and was several times invited to meet the Prussian king Friedrich II.  So dismissing him as a “popular writer” seems not doing justice to the man in my humble opinion. Perhaps it is because he wrote essays, not “the” book to display his ideas systematically. Something he has in common with LEIBNIZ I think, who of course published (Latin) disputationes, and a monadology, but not a coherent system of his ideas. I do not believe that GARVE could or should be compared to LEIBNIZ.
Thomas PITTROF is ordinarius for Neuere Deutsche Literaturwissenschaft at the University of Eichstätt.

[Anonymous :] Am Wege. Kleines Wander-Lehrbüchlein in 47 Naturaufnahmen. Königstein im Taunus o.J. [1948] (Der eiserne Hammer)
“Publication authorized by Publications Control Branch” – this little booklet was printed while Germany was still divided into zones and Hesse was part of the American zone. It is a collection of 47 b/w photographs showing vistas and “Kleindenkmäler” like Bildstöcke (Ger., Eng.). I simply like these old black-white photographs. The booklet displays some very interesting Franconian examples. While the covers are already dark brown & weak from acid, the pages with the printed photographs are remarkably well preserved.

BOHMERT, Friedrich : Hauptsache sauber ? Vom Waschen und Reinigen im Wandel der Zeit. Würzburg 1988
This is a work sponsored by Henkel, based on the contents of the Henkel Werksarchiv und Werksbibliothek. What is not necessarily bad, and disqualifies the work in no way. It makes clear from the start that it is written by someone who works for Henkel, and focuses on the impact Henkel products had on the daily grind of washing clothes and cleaning things. While the praise of Persil is sung, also a lot of useful information about the history of washing clothes of different kind, and of cleaning all kind of things is included, presented in a well readable form with generous use of illustrations – a solid publication.
I could not find more information on Friedrich BOHMERT, he seems to have been a Henkel archivist.

SCHOTT, Rolf : Michelangelo. Der Mensch und sein Werk. Paris o.J.
I am absolutely not sure about the author Rolf SCHOTT (1891-1977) (It.). He is without a doubt a very erudite scholar, has developed a deep understanding and knowledge of Renaissance art in general, Michelangelo’s œvre in particular ; he writes elegant, draws lines, leads the reader to insights – but I can not help, it always feels a bit like SCHOTT writing about SCHOTT, as if he’d use Michelangelo (Ger., Eng.) as a starting point for  showing …  off ?
I may be absolutely wrong, I may be doing harm to this author, but after having finished the book, only two things stuck : Michelangelo very likely formed his madonnas as idealised images of his mother early lost , and SCHOTT knows a lot.
Anyway, if you can get the 1963 English version of this book, give it a chance. I hope the translation is good, because SCHOTTs admirable use of the German language may be hard to reproduce – and a lot of the charm of this text depends in my humble opinion of the author’s ability to form twisting and surprising sentences.

LINDENBERG, Christoph : Rudolf Steiner mit Selbstzeugnissen und Bilddokumenten dargestellt. Reinbek bei Hamburg, Originalausgabe 1992 (rowohlts monographien 500)
No Iron Cross here, but the strange biography of an autodidact. Whatever your thoughts are on STEINERs (Ger., Eng.) philosophy, what no one can deny is his seriousness, and his work ethic. The man literally worked himself up for the development of his “movement”, something that seemingly became an ever faster growing, in the end overwhelming task for him that took him by surprise. What I learned from this short biography, and really surprised me, was how politically active STEINER became through the revolution of 1918/1919, how he actively supported the workers’ movement.
This text gives the outline of the “outer” biography of STEINER, and does not deal deeply with his teachings, of which I know basically nothing. I “know” a little about the Waldorfschulen, but I may be wrong, simply because I never seriously digged into the whole concept.
The author LINDENBERG (1930-1999)  (Ger.) was not only a Waldorflehrer, but worked as teacher at the Seminar für Waldorfpädagogik in Stuttgart, and as historian. I will definitely look for his  book about the pre-history of nazism titled Die Technik des Bösen, Technique of Evil.

VALLIER, Dora : Henrie ROUSSEAU, der Zöllner. Eine Akte.  Bindlach 1994 (zuerst : Vaduz 1991) (Meister der modernen Kunst)
ROUSSEAU (Ger., Eng.) was an outsider, always. The traditionalists, the modernists, all looked at his paintings and basically said the same : Naw … Is he a tragic figure ? Is he a happy fool ? I do not know. This is a nice book about a strange man by an interesting woman (Ger., Fr., about).

ALBRECHT, Herbert : Worpswede. Kunst in der Landschaft. Fischerhude 1981
This is a collection of short essays about the people who lived in Worpswede and formed, more or less, the artists’ colony through the twentieth century. ALBRECHT, about whom I could find sadly no more information on the web, is an opinioned critic, who was involved in the region’s cultural politics since the 1950s, and knew since this time the people he writes about personally. He seems to have been working as journalist for diverse German publications.

GOLDSWORTHY, Andy : Mauer. Storm King Art Center. Mit einem Essay von Kenneth BAKER. Frankfurt / Main, 1. Aufl. 2000
Mr GOLDSWORTHY (Ger., Eng.) has a wall built by other people and Mr Baker (a now retired American art critic) writes an essay about it. Nice photographs.

Heilbronn anno dazumal. Mit sämtlichen Stadtteilen. Fotos von 1858-1944. Heilbronn 1974 (Kleine Schriftenreihe des Archivs der Stadt Heilbronn, 6)
It is the catalogue of an exhibition held in autumn 1974 in the local Kunsthalle. This is only interesting for people who have a connection, however shallow, to the places shown. I lived there for some years. Now & then I travel through this town by train, but have no urge to get out and visit, this simply was.

Staatsklugheit und Frömmigkeit. Herzog Julius zu Braunschweig-Lüneburg, ein norddeutscher Landesherr des 16. Jahrhunderts. Wölfenbüttel 1989 (Ausstellungskatalog der Herzog August Bibliothek, 61)
As you may have noticed, venerated reader, I always come back to this magical place called Herzog August Bibliothek. They had an exhibition about Duke Julius (Ger., Eng.) there in 1989/1990, and this is the catalogue. It contains some learned essays about different aspects of the duke’s reign, his personality and hence the state he was running. Julius is a strong personality, important for the history of his house, and always fighting against his father. An interesting man who was accidentally confronted with the task to reign (his older brothers both died in another stupid war), he solved the given task with merit.

KENGEL, Rainer (O.S.B.) : Die Benediktinerabtei Münsterschwarzach. Münsterschwarzach 1952
Good readable short history of the abbey Münsterschwarzach (Ger., Eng.) in Lower Franconia. Nice place.

DETTELBACHER, Werner : Denk- und merkwürdige Kriminalfälle wie sie sich zugetragen in fränkischen Landen. Würzburg 1982
A popular written collection of historical crimes in Franconia, collected from the sources by the teacher and local historian DETTELBACHER (1926-2007), a prolific author of Franconica. He covers the span from the late 15th to the early 20th century.

DRECZKO, Werner : Teppiche Europas. Recklinghausen 1962
Expert DRECZKO explains how a rug is made, what one has to watch for when buying a European rug – very practical, a real good manual for anyone who wants to learn something about European rugs. He published a book about Oriental rugs too, and a lady with the same family name wrote a dissertation about rugs in the eighties.  A family business.

This is it. Looks more than it actually was, most of these “books” are “booklets”. Perhaps you find something inspirational, motivating for own reading among these titles.

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Aside, mago

Dies und Das

The boxer Graciano “Rocky” ROCCHIGIANI (Ger., Eng.) died some days ago. For those of my readers who are not interested in European boxing, Rocky was one of the few German world champions, regardless now of what “federation” ; he won two championships in middle weight. ROCCHIGIANI was one of those guys who fought his way up, only to lose it all, and manage to come back. He blew his money, spent time in jail – the full circle. A terrible loudmouth sometimes.
But one thing no one could ever deny – he was always himself. What all these “personality consultants” tell their (seemingly un-authentic) clients and call “authenticity” – Rocky had enough of this : Not the cleverest or smartest boxer who ever graced a ring, but always Rocky. You should think that one needs a tank to run this guy over to make sure that he does not come back, but he was run over and killed by a person driving a SMART.

Some weeks ago Mr Inexplicable DeVice brought a list of some videos he “most recently watched courtesy of YouTube” “for no reason other than I thought they were quite a diverse selection”. Included was one with the divine Annie LENNOX. Mr Eroswings took the chance to list in the comments to the mentioned post a list of “top recently viewed” videos (that contain nice ladies). This made Mr LẌ put together and post his own list of “top ten videos”.
All this made me think about videos, stuff on youtube and other video platforms – I could not name five favourites. I remembered scenes from films I liked and did not forget despite the fact that I saw them maybe forty years ago for the first time. Like the picture of this canon in Mr KEATONs (Ger., Eng.) The General (Ger., Eng.)  Or what Jacques TATI (Ger., Eng.) did in all his films (just a scene). And then there were some short films that impressed me – I think La Cabina (Ger., Eng.) comes to mind first. Do not read about it, watch it here, 34 minutes. It is of archeological value, because only humans of a certain age know what a “telephon box” / “Telephonzelle” actually was.

Such a holiday in the middle of the week is a nice invention. But generally a week of four working days would be a nice idea, worth a try. I think some company in New Zealand is introducing it. But hey, they stand on their heads there and live in the future …

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