We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
However familiar his work is, the man himself has been a mystery. No longer. From Schjeldhal's review of Spurling's multi-volume biography of Henri Matisse, in The New Yorker:
How can intellectual potency be claimed for an artist whose specialty, by his own declared ambition, was easeful visual bliss? Itís a cinch, now that Spurling has cleared away a centuryís worth of misapprehensions and canards. Take, for example, the popular notion that Matisse was hedonistic. Hedonists seek pleasure. Matisse served it, as a monk serves God. He was a self-abnegating Northerner who lived only to work, and did so in chronic anguish, recurrent panic, and amid periodic breakdowns.
Read the whole review to learn more about the man who said that art should be like a good armchair.The piece above is Matisse's Seated Dancer -†in an armchair. Notice the way he patterned her skin, like upholstery. The website Artcyclopedia has a good Matisse section here, with paintings listed by museums, and links to photos.