October 31, 2012

Owlsing in the browls.

An image from the Rijksmuseum, which has a fine website, where I was browsing in the owls... owlsing in the browls...



I really don't know what's up with these ice-skating owls. I just like them.

25 comments:

edutcher said...

If you've ever seen ducks try to walk on the ice, you know why the owls are wearing skates.

bagoh20 said...

I like how they carry lunch with them right out in front. We could do that with donuts or bagels...or spaghetti.

chickelit said...

The phrase reads: "How well we suit each other"

Ann Althouse said...

Click on the picture to get a nice, clear enlargement.

Coketown said...

If you click to the images on the left, you'll be treated to a riveting game of "Where's the owl?"

Two images over, I thought, "Why is this tagged owls?" Then I found it. Fun! Well, time to start drinking.

Irene said...

Dead mice jewelry.

Lem said...

A new PBS Nature showed little owls crossing a river... it was cutest thing.

The little family goes on the move in an effort to place themselves closer to the food source, closer to each meal the male flies back and forth to provide. Not yet able to fly, the owlets travel by foot, waddling across the tundra, taking tumbles as they go. The film crew is uprooted and must come up with a new, more mobile camouflaged camera hide to keep up with the action. Rainstorms arrive, as well as a plague of mosquitoes.

For the crew, all this effort pays off in a big way. As the whole family of owls moves closer to the coast, the owlets are faced with an unusual challenge – they must cross a river. It’s easy enough to do if you can fly, but these owlets haven’t fledged yet. And the cameras are there to record four little owlets “swimming” across the water, something never recorded or filmed before.

Ruth Anne Adams said...

Are you sure those are skates? They could be talons.

traditionalguy said...

This could be a family portrait of Meadehouse done as owls.

Two very wise birds planning ahead.

Skipper said...

Reminds me of the wonderful Merrie Melodies cartoon, "I Love to Singa" with Owl Jolson, clip at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zj1FifK3bbg

bagoh20 said...

Lem, That's amazing! How the hell did owls come to the decision and then communicate it to each other that they need to move to new ground. And then, one brave owlet makes the swim on his own without the parents showing him what to do. Incredible.

yashu said...

Very cool, thanks for that link. Really enjoying a browse around the Rijksmuseum collection. Some of my favorite works of art there.

PS Agree with your remark re aesthetics to Ed @ Instapundit. It was a little ouchy, but it had to be said.

What I'd say to Ed (or those who agree with his grand artistic generalization) is to look not at a Viola Frey, but much greater artists like a George Grosz or Otto Dix, or going back earlier to real greats, the darker works of Goya etc. Or to go in a very different direction/ genre, Grunewald's Crucifixion.

Not very "pretty" stuff. But fucking great art. Put that next to the insipid kitsch of "California Venus" (such a feeble emulation of truly great classical and Renaissance sculpture).

One of my pet peeves of simplistic art criticism (and a fault that too many conservatives are prey to) is conflating the content/ object of a work of art with the work of art itself.

God save us from a tyranny of "beautiful" works of art, i.e. paintings of flowers and sunsets and nudes (i.e. representations of purportedly "beautiful" things). Cf. Hitler's exhibition of "degenerate art."

exiledonmainst said...

I like the owls very much too. They remind me of Grandville, a 19th century French cartoonist:

http://www.printspast.com/selected-print-sc.asp?PrintID=21290044&Return=metamorphoses-prints-jean-grandville.htm

Ann Althouse said...

@yashu. thanks. I thought of the Hitler degenerate art issue but resisted putting that in.

Mamie said...

Re the reference to Hitler’s exhibition of "degenerate art”:

Interesting that the Soviet Union did basically the same kind of thing, only called it “decadent” art, and officially approved art had to be of the Socialist Realist school, but in this, as in so many other areas, seems to always get a pass.

bagoh20 said...

Decadent / degenerate - whatever blows your skirt up.

chickelit said...

I just bought Paglia's book about art for my wife after seeing the author chat with Glenn Reynolds. I hope she likes it.

mojavehicular said...

I've always had a thing about ruffs; not sure why. If they ever bring them back as a fashion accessory I'll wear one, though it's likely I'll look ridiculous.

mtrobertsattorney said...

Shopenhauer on art is commentary (paraphrased):

If you want to comment, write an essay.

دردشة ومنتديات عراقنا said...

شات عراقنا

Stephen A. Meigs said...

I really like that image. Sometimes I think skating suggests a perhaps appropriate way to live life. Sometimes it's not feasible to point oneself exactly where one wants to go. When around one group of fanatics, point one's weight-bearing skate a little in their direction, and push off against the worst ideas of the other fanatics. Then, when around the opposite group of fanatics, use the other skate, pointed just a little in their direction, and push off against the worst ideas of the fanatics opposite to them. You'll end up going forward.

Skating is very analogous to sailing. Just like a sideways wind can propel a sailing ship in the direction it is tacked much faster than the wind is blowing, a sideways push on the biting skate can propel one in the direction of the weight-bearing skate much faster than the skates are separating or than one's feet can move. The difference is that in skating the skater provides the force in the direction of choice, whereas in sailing, the force is external and from largely random direction. If blog commenting should be like skating, maybe a good conservative blog should be like a starboard tack forward toward those conservative principles that happen to be correct as opposed to scudding off exactly in the direction that right-wing forces tend to blow towards.

Internally, it's a different matter. Lazily scudding along--Aye!--toward whatever direction the truth blows--arrghh, aye!--at any particular moment I'd say is the ideal.

mariner said...

I really don't know what's up with these ice-skating owls. I just like them.

I should think it's obvious.

They can't go sailing with the pussycats because the lake is frozen over.

Sheesh.

;)

Edwin den Boer said...

I had exactly the same kind of wooden skates when I was a kid, in Holland in the 1970s. I'm sure my parents were happy that they didn't have to buy new skates each winter as my feet grew. But I hated these skates; it was impossible to get them strapped tight enough to your shoes, even with human feet.

Now I'm wondering about the meaning of the engraving. It looks like a political cartoon. The owl on the viewer's right-hand is dressed like a Protestant minister, wile the owl on the left-hand side looks much more secular, maybe a soldier. And he's leading the minister on.

The only info I could find is that the engraving was copied from a painting by Adriaen van de Venne. So it wouldn't have been very topical, but Van de Venne was known for satire about religious conflicts.

drunkdebunker said...

The bitchy-looking girl owl has an evil eye on the bewildered-looking boy owl...

drunkdebunker said...

The bitchy-looking girl owl has an evil eye on the bewildered-looking boy owl...