Thursday, August 9, 2012

jan toorop

JAN TOOROP (British/Dutch/Javanese, 1858-1928)
Jan Toorop was born in Purworedjo, Java to a British mother and Dutch/Javanese father. At the age of five he moved to Banka, a small island southeast of Sumatra, and then to the Leiden in 1869. He studied as a teenager at the State Academy in Amsterdam, and then between 1882 and 1886 he lived in Brussels. 

There, he became connected with an avant-garde group of artists connected to James Ensor. After experimenting with a number of modernist styles, he eventually developed a unique, personal symbolist style which often included Javanese elements...In 1905 Toorop converted to Catholicism, and took an interest in the mysteries of Rosicrucianism, an esoteric order. 
In the later part of his career he created works inspired by the Pointillist style of Georges Seurat and also Art Nouveau. From 1920 onward Toorop was confined to a wheelchair, due to the paralysis of his left leg, devoting himself to drawings and graphics with Catholic themes. He died on March 3, 1928 in The Hague, Netherlands. 

Love this guy's art, the fascist politics (he was a fan of Mussolini) not so much. But Kahlo was a fan of Stalin, and it'd be unfair to write off this work based on that. 

where o Death is your victory?
the three brides
the vagabonds
Le retour sur soi-même
  the prayer


  1. After days of darkness I didn't understand
    a second of yellow sunlight
    here and gone through a hole in clouds
    as quickly as a flashbulb, an immense
    memory of a moment of grace withdrawn.
    It is said that we are here but seconds in cosmic
    time, twelve and a half billion years,
    but who is saying this and why?
    In the Salt Lake City airport eight out of ten
    were fiddling relentlessly with cell phones.
    The world is too grand to reshape with babble.
    Outside the hot sun beat down on clumsy metal
    birds and an actual ten-million-year-old
    crow flew by squawking in bemusement.
    We're doubtless as old as our mothers, thousands
    of generations waiting for the sunlight.

    "Sunlight" by Jim Harrison

  2. Kahlo was a Troskyist - which is little better to my taste, but seem a lot more acceptable those days ;-) Trotsky was actually assassinated in her and Diego de Riviera's house. I discovered Toorop in art class in high school and I am forever grateful to my teacher!