Posts Tagged ‘Portugal’

Amadeo de Souza Cardoso-Corpus Christi ProcessionThere is an exhibit of paintings currently hanging at the Grand Palais in Paris that features the work of the early 20th century Portuguese artist Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso.  It is only the second major retrospective of his work and the first since 1958.  He is another of those artists who are probably not on your radar– I know I was unaware of his work.  But once I found it, I couldn’t shake the memory of it.

Amadeo de Souza Cardoso-Greyhounds 1911He was born in the north of Portugal in 1887 near the small city of Amarante.  While still a teen he made his way to Paris where he absorbed the fertile art scene that was in place.  He began painting and drawing while becoming close friends with many artists and writers such as Gertrude Stein, Modigliani, Juan Gris  and Brancusi.

His work encompassed the Cubist, Modernist and Futurist movements, moving seamlessly among them while maintaining his unique voice in whatever style he was working at the moment.  When I viewed a large number of  his work, I was knocked out by the consistency and strength that ran through it.  Whether his work is in paint or in pen and ink, it is both vibrant and fully realized.

During the time of the first World War, Souza-Cardoso’s star was rising quickly.  But like so many other millions of people, he was struck down by the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918.  He was only 30 years old.

What might have been…

In the fast paced and quickly changing atmosphere of the art world of the era, Souza-Cardoso’s work soon forgotten until a minor awakening in 1952 in his native  Portugal.  In Amarante, his work was given a room in the museum there and in the years since a small museum has been formed to feature it.

Hopefully, the greater public will soon know the name Souza-Cardoso.  I think it’s a name worth knowing.  I am showing just a few  pieces of his work here.  There were so many more that I could have chose.  Just great stuff.

AMADEO_S_CARDOSO-SEM_TIT(CLOWN_CAVALO_SALAMANDRA)191112 Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso-Parto Da Viola Bom Ménage Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso- The Kitchen at Manhufe House 1913

Eduardo Mota digitalizou "Le Saut du Lapin" de Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso

Eduardo Mota digitalizou “Le Saut du Lapin” de Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso

Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso-Three White Greyhounds Amadeo de Souza Cardoso-Le Tigre Amadeo de Souza Cardoso-La Dentate du Cerf 1912

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Garrett-Mcnamara-100-Foot-Wave-Nazare-PortugalThere was a story on 60 Minutes Sports last night that featured surfer Garrett McNamara‘s ride in late January of a wave outside of a small fishing village in Portugal that may have been 100 feet tall, a world record when and if it is certified by the Guinness people.  McNamara already held the world record for riding the largest wave, a mere 78 footer.  But this is a one of a kind monster.  If you’ve never seen the ocean or seen much more than a small swell, it may be hard to imagine how big a wave we’re talking about here.  It is awe inspiring and to think that someone would look out at this moving mountain of mayhem that is breaking so close to the shore and think that they might want to put themselves out in it seems like madness.

And maybe it is.  But I have to admit to being envious of the guts and ability of the big wave riders, the guys who take on the challenge of these wave behemoths that other world class surfers would run from.  To put yourself at the mercy of nature’s fury  on such a grand scale is truly elemental.  I could sit and watch these guys all day, captivated by the way they dart across the waves.

Here’s a video that I showed about four years ago that feature the penultimate surf song, Pipeline, from the Chantays.  The setting for the video is a bit odd, however.  It’s hard to imagine this music that symbolizes the wildness of the surf culture on The Lawrence Welk Show but   here it is.  It adds to the kitsch factor.

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