‘The Fishermen Know…’ said Vincent

Design and image © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2021

Vincent Willem van Gogh (1853-1890) was a post-Impressionist painter whose works, notable for their beauty, emotion and colour, highly influenced 20th century art. He struggled with mental illness and remained poor and virtually unknown throughout his life.

Posthumously, he became one of the most famous and influential figures in the history of Western art.

Vincent van Gogh

The eldest of six living children, van Gogh had two younger brothers (Theo, who worked as an art dealer and supported his older brother’s art, and Cor) and three younger sisters (Anna, Elizabeth and Willemina). Theo would later play an important role in his older brother’s life as a confidant, supporter and art dealer.

Vincent’s lifestory makes fascinating reading, he was truly the classic tortured genius, but there is much more to be learned behind the scenes, e.g. his own mother destroying many of his paintings; hoping to become a minister he prepared to take the entrance exam to School of Theology in Amsterdam; Vincent was fluent in French, German and English, as well as his native Dutch.

Wheatfield with Crows 1890 by Vincent van Gogh

Fascinating facts and more:

https://www.biography.com/artist/vincent-van-gogh

Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

‘Blank Pages’ Edith Lovejoy Pierce said…

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Out goes the old © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2021

“We will open the book, its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day”

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In comes the new © Gretchen Bernet-Ward 2021

Edith Lovejoy Pierce (1904-1983) was a twentieth-century poet and pacifist.

Pierce was born in 1904 in Oxford, England. She married an American in 1929 and moved to the U.S. the same year. She and her husband lived in Evanston, Illinois. Information Boston University.

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

What if..? Jade Hameister’s Challenge

Jade Hameister Polar Skier and Sandwich
Jade Hameister Polar Skier (Image Credit: @jadehameister)

“What if young women around the world were encouraged to be more, rather than less? What if the focus shifted from how we appear, to the possibilities of what we can do?”

Quote from Jade Hameister – world record-breaking polar skier.

When told to “make me a sandwich” by a number of male internet trolls in response to her TED talk, Hameister made one, posted a picture of herself with the sandwich at the South Pole and captioned the photo:


“I made you a sandwich (ham & cheese), now ski 37 days and 600 kilometres to the South Pole and you can eat it.”


Star Fish 02Jade Hameister OAM (born 5 June 2001) is an Australian woman who, age 16, became the youngest person in history to pull off the “polar hat-trick”, ski to the North and South Poles, and cross the second largest polar icecap on the planet: Greenland.  Wikipedia.

Quote source:
https://www.australiangeographic.com.au/topics/history-culture/2018/03/in-her-words-inspiring-quotes-from-australias-ground-breaking-women/

TED talk:
https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-d&q=Jade+Hameister+TED+Talk

Facebook post:
https://www.facebook.com/jadehameister/photos/a.224825967879767.1073741829.207513589611005/524715937890767/?type=3&theater

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Bernard Shaw says…

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Bernard Shaw (he disliked his first name George) was not a good scholar but developed a wide knowledge of music, art, and literature from his mother’s influence and his visits to the National Gallery of Ireland.

In 1876 Shaw resolved to become a writer and he joined his mother and elder sister, by then living in London.  Like most creatives in their 20s, Shaw suffered continuous frustration and poverty.  He depended upon his mother’s pound a week from her husband and her earnings as a music teacher.

I love a good rags-to-riches story

Shaw’s early days were spent in the British Museum reading room, writing novels and reading what he had missed at school… eventually he became an internationally known and celebrated playwright, producing more than sixty plays.  His work is still performed today, the most well-known from 1912 is ‘Pygmalion’ aka ‘My Fair Lady’, and in 1925 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.

The rest of Shaw’s long and remarkable life can be found in Britannica—
https://www.britannica.com/biography/George-Bernard-Shaw

Gustavo’s blogspot has the original source of Shaw’s quote
http://shawquotations.blogspot.com/2014/08/the-power-of-acute-observation-is.html

Film Camera Lights Action MovieNOTE:  Britannica shows a film clip of Bernard Shaw (in his 70s) speaking on the marvels of Movietone and the novelty of technology; excerpt from a Hearst Metrotone newsreel (c. 1930), (29 sec; 2.6 MB)  J. Fred MacDonald & Associates.

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Shopping – Bombeck and Kinsella say…

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“The odds of going to the store for a loaf of bread and coming out with only a loaf of bread are three billion to one.” ― Erma Bombeck (February 1927 – April 1996) ― American writer and humourist Erma Bombeck achieved great popularity for her newspaper column which described suburban home life from mid-1960s until late 1990s. She published 15 books, appeared on television shows, and wrote over 4,000 newspaper columns, all featuring her entertaining and eloquent humour. Irma Bombeck wrote before social media, achieving world-wide fame through her books, and in 1970s her columns were read twice-weekly by 30 million readers of the 900 newspapers in US and Canada.  Interestingly her work featured domesticity during the women’s liberation movement. She hid a life-long illness which was disclosed three years prior to her death. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erma_Bombeck

Gretchen Bernet-Ward

Novelist Marguerite Yourcenar said…

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Marguerite Yourcenar, or Marguerite Antoinette Jeanne Marie Ghislaine Cleenewerck de Crayencour, was a French novelist and essayist born in Brussels, Belgium, who became a US citizen in 1947. Winner of the Prix Femina and Erasmus Prize, in 1980 she was the first woman elected to the Académie Française. Her most notable work is historical novel “‎Mémoires d’Hadrien” (Memoirs of Hadrian) and I have read “Denier du Rêve” (retitled A Coin in Nine Hands) set in 1933 over one day in Rome where a ten-lira coin passes through the hands of nine unusual people https://www.britannica.com/biography/Marguerite-Yourcenar The flower buds are Dianella caerulea (commonly known as the blue flax-lily) which turn into small green then purple berries and it grows in a terracotta pot near my kitchen door. GBW.

Gretchen Bernet-Ward