Daily Archives: July 23, 2011

My favourite Amy Winehouse song

So simple: so great. Just her and a guitar doing “Valerie”

Rest in Peace, Amy Winehouse.

‪The DL – Amy Winehouse ‘Valerie’ Live‬‏ – YouTube

The Political Thinking of Anders Behring Breivik

Doug Saunders has it, specifically

…the collected writings of Anders Behring Breivik, accused of killing more than 84 young people at a Labour Party gathering in Norway and at least seven in a car bombing in Oslo. These are comments he posted on the right-wing site document.no

It’s a good thing this was grabbed when it was. If you go to the site now, you get a one page site that translate.google.com says means “be right back”. It will be interesting to see if his writing is still there when that site comes back online. It’s worthwhile that Doug Saunders (from the Globe and Mail) and his friends were able to capture this and translate it like they did.

I could summarize what his thinking is like, but it won’t take too many pages of reading to come to your own conclusions.

Why did the Queen sit for a portrait painted by Lucian Freud?

My favourite painting by Lucian Freud is this one:

The question I have always asked is, why did the Queen sit for it? It was done in 2001, by which time Freud’s approach to subjects was well known. Surely the Queen knew it would not be flattering. While some critics approved, many hated it (How Lucian Freud’s portrait of the Queen divided critics – UK Telegraph). After it was painted, she did not comment on it.

I have a theory. Of the many paintings done of monarchs, how many pass the test of time? Merely a handful, like this work by van Dyck of Charles I (courtesy of Wikipedia):

I believe the Queen wanted Freud to paint her because he was one of the few great living painters who could do a portrait of her, regardless of how flattering it was. It would be a painting that would last for centuries and it would be discussed and viewed, long after the many millions of images of her were lost. It was a way to establish her image in the way that it would last. It was a way of being associated with something great and long lasting and artistic. That is why I think she sat for Freud.

Lucian Freud died this week. R.I.P.