Saturday, September 20, 2008

m is for mural

I once claimed that "M is the very best letter in the alphabet." I know it's not nice to pick favorites, but my mind is maintained, there's something marvelous about the letter M - mmmmmmm.

speaking of marvelous - aren't murals just that! I started thinking about murals yesterday after I read this column about the mounting maelstrom of money madness. it begins:
The leverage party’s over for the masters of the universe. Shed a tear. When you trade pieces of paper for other pieces of paper instead of trading them for real things, one day someone wakes up and realizes the paper’s worth nothing.And Lehman Brothers, after 158 years, has gone poof in the night.

We’re witnessing the passing of more than a venerable firm. We’re seeing the death of a culture.

For years, accountants, rating agencies and Wall Street executives decided to shoot craps and collect fees. Regulators, taking their cue from a distracted President Bush, took a nap. The two M’s — Money and Me — became the lodestones of the zeitgeist, and damn those distant wars.
roger cohen goes on to suggest this article and nick taylor's book American-Made: The Enduring Legacy of the W.P.A.: When F.D.R. Put the Nation to Work.

murals are paintings on walls, ceilings or other large fixed surfaces - ever since we humans discovered that we can make marks, we have been creating murals - just think of the caves of lascaux!

key to murals: 1) a portion of diego rivera's magnificant the detroit industry mural commissioned early during the 1930 depression by edsal ford. the murals are housed in the recently renovated detroit institute of arts.

2) a mural in pittsburgh - unfortunately I didn't write down either the artist or the street.

3) this mural of the mermaid with hot dog is posted in honor of lettuce who is quite mesmerized by coney island. I can tell you the mural is right off the boardwalk, but again I did not note the name of the artist - I really need to start doing this!

above - the monkey room a bar (that I admit I haven't checked out) in washington heights


Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

HMmmm, let's not get me started on the money and me saga... But I love the murals! I've painted two and they were such fun to do!

R.L. Bourges said...

gorgeous post, great links. wow.
re the Waltz of the Trillions: I see the House Transportation Committee estimated the needs for a spending program at some one trillion and a half to shore up sagging infrastructures. Guess that's not where the trillion will be going, huh?
re Lascaux: the real site is now closed to the public because carbon dioxide was starting to affect the wall paintings. They've created a replica in Montignac close to Lascaux (good wine there, btw)
GREAT stuff at the Detroit Institute of Arts. Just the film program would be worth the trip.
As for the Monkey room frankly, mouse,I'm surprised you haven't explored it yet. It looks so...suave et de bon ton, non?

à +

The Liberator said...

Diego Rivera's works are just astounding.

I do love murals! m is for mountains, too... and monuments...

marmalade marmite minestroni



tut-tut said...

The Crash of 1929 was what caused the impetus for the creation of that WPA mural. Will we be seeing more such jobs for artists and writers in this mess?

Betty said...

That Diego Rivera is breathtaking.

Other Half™ (insurance broker) has been watching the collapse and rescue of AIG with interest, from this side of the pond. It's a sad business - in more ways than one.

M ...
music, memories, movies and, yes indeed, marmite.

Barbara said...

We pay a big price when those in power basically fall asleep at the wheel, which seems to be what they did. We are far from out of this mess yet.

Great murals, every one of them.

I do like the feel of M when you put your lips together and Hmmm!

Megan said...

Something that upset me recently - there are murals on the 110 freeway on the way through downtown L.A. that have been defaced by mindless graffiti. It made me sad to see.

Thanks for the links, though! Mmmmmarvelous!

K. said...

The Depression-era murals are wonderful. There's a terrific book called The Texas Post Office Murals all about an Depression arts project to spruce up Texas post office buildings. You can see the cover of the book here:

lettuce said...

hey thanks kimy! we were mesmerised in a maelstrom!

and didn't see the magnificent mermaid, so many thanks.


Steve said...

That Pittsburgh mural, in particular, is spectacular!

Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

M is my second favorite letter after G. (I have five of them in my full name.) It's a great meditation letter. Mmmmmmmmm.

When you make it out here to visit me, I will give you the tour of my neighborhood, the Mission, which is said to have more murals per square block than any city in North America.

Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

Oh, and PS, the movie "M" is one of my favorite flicks of all time.

alicesg said...

Love all these murals. They are so beautiful.

WAT said...

There's some fine Mexican (there's another "M" for ya) that have done amazing murals. Diego Rivera and Jose Clemente Orozco I believe.