|"Three Nudes and One Violin" - Pablo Picasso|
Painted during his Blue Period
"Old and new make the warp and woof of every moment. There is no thread that is not a twist of these two strands."
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Picasso was a classically trained painter who wasn't afraid to embrace new ideas. As is evident in his extensive body of work, he never abandoned his classical foundation. How could he? It was part of him. He simply coexisted with it as his work evolved.
After yesterday's question regarding the dilemma of real vs. virtual books, I realized that I'm not the only one who has experienced it. I'm just the one who made it difficult.
I have the most awesome, patient friends. As I learned from them, the considerations for the Kindle and its like are mostly practical. Using less precious paper. Using less precious shelf space. Traveling more lightly. I acknowledge the advantages, and will open my mind to them. Using one does not necessitate denying the other. Thank you for your wisdom, all!
Like everything else, the appearance of the e-reader in the world of books and libraries and end tables is nothing more than a continuation of the weaving of the tapestry of life. As Emerson says, there is no thread in this tapestry that is not a twist of old and new.
When looked at this way, I can let go of the notion that new will conquer old, or that either one will push the other out of existence. Each has its place in the tapestry. We can coexist.
I will not, ever, stop purchasing books, that I know. But today, I find myself considering the possibility of including an e-reader to my library. As one friend put it, it's great for the "throw-aways."
Which only serves to bring up another touchy subject. Who, in their right mind, would EVER throw a book away?
George Gershwin was another artist who knew the value of twisting the old with the new. His genius may have been born, in part, from the serendipitous time of his birth. The composer and pianist was born at the dawn of the Jazz Age, but as a son of newly immigrated Russian parents, was trained in the European classical tradition. His work has appeared on the stages of every genre of music, on Broadway, in Hollywood, and in concert halls around the world.
This piece, "Rhapsody in Blue," is certainly his signature composition. Many versions abound, but I selected this version, which brilliantly captures the idea of the melding of the disciplined passion of classical with the passionate abandon of jazz. Concert pianist Lang Lang joins jazz great Herbie Hancock for this delightful performance. It's hard to tell who's enjoying himself more, but one thing's for sure...it's contagious. Enjoy!
Today, let go of an old notion and find peace with the new.