Tuesday, 7 May 2013

PAUL KLEE (1879-1940)

No one ever saw Paul Klee pigeon shooting.
His abstract expressions gave nothing away,
Although he’d claim with pride:
‘I have nothing to hide.’
If he did, he certainly never hid in his attic—because his roof was full of holes.
Like a Swiss cheese.

In his day, some people found Klee rather unsavoury.
But now, he’s generally well-regarded and his famous works please.
Switzerland has produced many notable things and people.
From cuckoo-clocks to Roger Federer and even Swiss Cottage underground station in London.
The Swiss Guard protect the Pope and who can overlook the universal utility of the Swiss army knife?
(It’s no wonder Switzerland remained neutral throughout the War—with only that compact tool to protect a soldier’s life!)

No one ever saw Paul Klee modelling.
But he described his pictures as: ‘Taking a line for a walk.’
So the next time his name is mentioned, don’t be shy—join in the talk.

Monday, 6 May 2013


EMERGENCY RESPONSE, a photo by Narolc on Flickr.

Via Flickr:
Incorporating a photo of one of my old paintings ('Broke', 1994), collage/drawing with pencil and colour gel pens on A4-size paper. The title was culled from an envelope. May, 2013.

Saturday, 4 May 2013


THE HORSES by Narolc
THE HORSES, a photo by Narolc on Flickr.

Via Flickr:
The precocious virtuosity of Picasso’s draughtsmanship is well documented and illustrated by accounts (much favoured by his numerous biographers) of his ability to draw the outline of a horse perfectly, starting from any point. Horses are notoriously difficult to capture; most artists will agree life drawing in general requires arguably the greatest technical skill. With no expectations of posthumous plaudits, I present this humble image of two feline companions I saw in my mind’s eye one occasion. I am under no delusions that it will enhance my reputation as a representational artist, but, nevertheless, because it is an honest representation of the image I had in mind, and the image has a tender quality, I still feel it is worthy. As an artist, I have always recognised and valued the importance of technical skill. Now, I produce pictures in one of two main ways: I consciously and deliberately execute them, or I emotionally ‘extract’ them from my unconscious self. Of course the latter way is still a conscious process—I do not create work in a somnambulistic state—I mean I relax and plan nothing. For me, either process is equally valid: the end results are what matter.


Easily falling off logs,
Cooks are walking their dogs,
Before making their way, en masse, to spoil the broth,
Incurring the head chef’s righteous wrath,
Who, despite being offered money,
A fool was promptly parted from,
Indignantly sits shaking on a kitchen stool.

Outside the kitchen, a wise man listens,
Wetted by his tongue, his bottom lip glistens,
Also, how it quivers in apprehension,
Perhaps, of the many slips between a cup and it.

Nearby, an argument between a tailor and a surgeon escalates,
As each professional tries best to decide whose stitch will save nine.
Not wanting to split hairs, a neurotic barber minds his own cares.

A partially sighted ironmonger is testing his mettle,
Turning a blind eye to an otherwise watched kettle.

Next door to the ironmonger’s premises,
Living in filth and squalor:
Is a woman, her work is never done,
Because she never starts it,
Instead, she nags her son.

Meanwhile, in the east side of his shop,
A bookseller places ‘Huckleberry Finn’,
And ‘Tom Sawyer’ in the west,
And never the Twain shall meet.

There’s more to this than meets the eye,
Which the quickness of a hand deceives,
We’ve all heard of the Official Receiver,
But who knows what he receives?

A baker’s dozen, counted by their evil cousin,
Rise to the occasion forming a coven.
Determined to leave, baker Steve uses his will power,
With great discretion,
Knowing that where there’s a will,
There’s a solicitor.

Talking of which,
A shit with a writ serves it
On some dimwit without a permit,
Who thinks that ‘permission’
Is a task for contented cats.

With both feet planted firmly on the ground,
A smirking idiot is found,
Pointing at the coastline and proclaiming:
‘Worse things happen at sea.’

‘All things come to those who wait,
Is an expression I truly hate,’
The hapless waiter said to his mate.
Reflecting how inaccurately the saying describes his life,
The waiter’s always late,
For catching buses and getting to work,
Or even keeping a date,
When it comes to the waiter,
Sooner or later, he’ll end up in a state.