Monday, June 7, 2010

The Art of The Softened Gaze

She looks at a place neither near nor far away, a destination in her mind's eye that only she can see.
(Portrait of uber-chic Marguerite Kelsey by Meredith Frampton, 1928)

He gazes softly downward, seeing nothing...and everything.
(Photographs of the alluring Duncan Grant by A. L. Coburn, 1912 )

He stares calmly ahead, book forgotten, absorbing the peace that slowly suffuses the tunnels of his mind.
(Photograph of debonair Mark Twain in 1909 via The Retronaut)

Somewhere in the middle distance, between the madding crowd and the noisy whirring of your brain, lies the land of meditation.

It's easy to get to.
Just relax, breathe and unfocus your attention.
(A little more.)
(A little more.)
(A little more.)
(A little more.)

Shhhhhhhh.

You're there.
(Portrait of singularly bohemian Karola Neher by Rudolf Schlichter, 1929)

I highly recommend it for taking the sting out of a manic Monday.

24 comments:

Susan Erickson said...

we all need to slow down and feel the grounding of the earth as we hurtle through space.....I like to imagine my roots reaching down into the earth's core......

Blighty said...

Dear BL, this is all just fabulous, I love the pictures you have shown, thank you for sharing, really inspiring,Bx

Mrs. Blandings said...

It's better to have a little softness around the eyes, right?

willow said...

I adore this portrait of Marguerite Kelsey. I'm off to find more on Meredith Frampton....

Dash said...

That portrait of Marguerite Kelsey is amazing, a testament to the artistic talents of Meredith Frampton. I half expect Marguerite to unfurl her legs and jump off the sofa to do something relaxing like popping the kettle on or browse her bookshelves.
XX

Sabine said...

Nice portraits, Duncan Grant always looks so rock 'n roll.

donna baker said...

I had to laugh when I accidentally subsituted medication for meditation.

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

donna baker: That is very funny!

Mrs. Blandings: Around the eyes, absolutely, but hopefully not too much around the neck. :)

Sabine: OMG, Duncan was SO indie, wasn't he? I can't believe those photos are 98 years old. He could be living in a loft in Williamsburg -- "Bloomsbury in Brooklyn." :)

Daniel-Halifax said...

Oh dearie we really must be connected in some weird subconscious online transcountry sorta way! I was going to blog that picture of karola neher in the near future. Don't you just love it!?! You far exceeded any kind of post I was going to do for sure, absolutely STUNNING post!

(Duncan's lips? Need I say more?)

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

Daniel-Halifax: We are connected, no doubt. The 154 N. 9th Street connection is too wonderfully strange! xx

Vava (aka Virginia) said...

Meditate. Focus. Be present. Must be in the air; as I posted on something similar...

columnist said...

I love the picture by Meredith Frampton - utterly exquisite!

Lou said...

Thank you.

Yoli said...

Oh Duncan Grant just so exquisitely beautiful, not just handsome because in these images he looks so otherworldly. I am relaxing already, wish I could magically transport myself next to Twain.

Hannah Stoneham said...

I love those pictures of Duncan Grant. have you ever visited Charleston House? I know that you don't live in England, but if you ever find yourself in the vicinity, I think you would love it

Thanks for sharing

Hannah

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

Hannah Stoneham: I was there two years ago...had the most amazing afternoon at the house. I felt as though I knew every corner already because I have so many books on Charleston House, but to see all the rooms in person -- the stenciled wallpaper, the Omega fabric curtains, the painted furniture -- was beyond. Plus I was with the most lovely group of old-age pensioners in cardigan sweaters who murmured reverently about Duncan and Vanessa as we tiptoed from room to room.

victoria thorne said...

just stopping by to share in your remarkable spirit -- continually enriching; there's such loveliness in this post (utterly timeless), thank you for finding (as you do so well) it all

24 Corners said...

Oh, to sit and gaze right now would be heaven....just looking at these peaceful images brought my heart rate down...thank you!

Susan's Snippets said...

Lisa -

It was a MUST READ reminder at the end of a very hectic day!!

thank you my dear i say

pve design said...

Somehow the softness, shows one's contemplative spirit.
pve

Hannah Stoneham said...

Oh - i am glad that you have been, I thought you probably would have done... I also read a few of the books before actually going and I was surprised by the house being slightly smaller and slightly softer than I had imagined - it was wonderful and i think I will try to go back this summer on a fleeting trip back home to the UK. I am always on the look out for other houses that bear the hallmarks of the bloomsbury attitude to interiors but sadly I don't mind that many.

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Katie said...

I always thought if they ever do a bloomsbury movie duncan grant ought to be played by ioan gruffudd.When I watched him in forsyte saga all i could think of was how very duncan grant he was.

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