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On Being Tumblr

On Being with Krista Tippett is a public radio project delving into the human side of news stories + issues. Curated + edited by senior editor Trent Gilliss.

We publish guest contributions. We edit long; we scrapbook. We do big ideas + deep meaning. We answer questions.

We've even won a couple of Webbys + a Peabody Award.
The architectural art of stacking bales. Admiring this farmer’s mastery.
Photo by Trent Gilliss.

The architectural art of stacking bales. Admiring this farmer’s mastery.

Photo by Trent Gilliss.

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Ah, but I love to draw beautiful words, like trumpets of light…I adore you, words who are sensitive to our sufferings, words in red and lemon yellow, words in the steel-blue colour of certain insects, words with the scent of vibrant skills, subtle words of fragrant roses and seaweed, prickly words of sky-blue wasps. words with powerful snouts, words of spotless ermine, words spat out by the sands of the sea, words greener than Cyrene fleece, discreet words whispered by fishes in the pink ears of shells, bitter words, tornado and storm-tossed words, being beaten, evil words, festive words, tornado and storm-tossed words, windy words, reedy words, the wise words of children, rainy, tearful words, words without rhyme or reason, I love you! I love you!
- James Ensor, belgian printmaker and painter on language.
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Time is, of course, doing its steady work on every object ever made. This complex relationship between the maker, an emotionally invested object, and the growing distance between them is not new, only rediscovered each generation, whether by an artist, a mourner, a mother, or a soldier…

We let go with the hope others will grab hold. These objects ask very human, moral questions: What right do we have to forget? What do we owe to each other’s memories?

- Dario Robleto on memory, forgetting, and time.
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Ashwini Ramaswamy of Ragamala Dance performs “Sacred Earth” at On Being on Loring Park during the Northern Spark festival.

Ashwini Ramaswamy of Ragamala Dance performs “Sacred Earth” at On Being on Loring Park during the Northern Spark festival.

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"Learn by heart the forms to be found in nature, so that you can use them like notes in a musical composition. That is what these forms are for. Nature is a marvelous chaos, and it is our job and our duty to bring order into that chaos and — to perfect it. Leave it to others to puzzle over old books on geometry or the problems of higher mathematics. We are going to enjoy the forms we see before our eyes."
— Max Beckmann, “Drei Briefe an Eine Malerin” (1948)

(Photo of a woman looking at Max Beckmann paintings at Hypo-Kunsthalle in Munich by Joerg Koch/Getty Images)

"Learn by heart the forms to be found in nature, so that you can use them like notes in a musical composition. That is what these forms are for. Nature is a marvelous chaos, and it is our job and our duty to bring order into that chaos and — to perfect it. Leave it to others to puzzle over old books on geometry or the problems of higher mathematics. We are going to enjoy the forms we see before our eyes."

— Max Beckmann, “Drei Briefe an Eine Malerin” (1948)

(Photo of a woman looking at Max Beckmann paintings at Hypo-Kunsthalle in Munich by Joerg Koch/Getty Images)

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You can’t make anything authentic by asking people what they want, because they don’t know what they want. That’s what they’re looking at you for.
- Thom Mayne, architect and winner of the 2005 Pritzker Prize    
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The art of losing isn’t hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn’t hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

- Elizabeth Bishop, from "One Art"
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More beauty here. Check out these incredible photos from Iranian photographer Hossein Zare. Surreal and majestic, and out of this world.

More beauty here. Check out these incredible photos from Iranian photographer Hossein Zare. Surreal and majestic, and out of this world.

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There are, it seems, two muses: the Muse of Inspiration, who gives us inarticulate visions and desires, and the Muse of Realization, who returns again and again to say, ‘It is yet more difficult than you thought.’ This is the muse of form. It may be then that form serves us best when it works as an obstruction, to baffle us and deflect our intended course. It may be that when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work and when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is the one that sings.
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Wendell Berry, from Poetry and Marriage: The Use of Old Forms”

Saw this quoted in Parker Palmer’s excellent reflection on celebrating one’s obstacles.

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Oh man, Helen Marriage does the coolest work. Just love this video.

"It’s always an incredible moment when a city is returned to the people who live and work there. And they can wander freely as if in a playground. For no better reason than something is happening that they love."

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Postcard from San Francisco: Jun Kaneko’s Tall Dango.
(via trentgilliss)

Postcard from San Francisco: Jun Kaneko’s Tall Dango.

(via trentgilliss)

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Postcard from SFO: Tyrannosaurus Butterfield.
(via trentgilliss)

Postcard from SFO: Tyrannosaurus Butterfield.

(via trentgilliss)

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Neil Gaiman’s commencement speech at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia is what you need on this Saturday morning. He says what so many others are saying nowadays: make mistakes, enjoy the journey, break the rules, make good art. But, he says it better than most, and I believe him.

Often I half-jokingly tell my friends, “Fake ‘til you make it.” So it should come as no surprise that one of my favorite Gaiman nuggets parallels this line of thinking:

"Be wise, because the world needs more wisdom. And if you cannot be wise pretend to be someone who is wise — and then just behave like they would."

~Trent Gilliss

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From our head content honcho trentgilliss:

This sculpture by Nicolas Africano greets me each time I enter RKMC’s law offices this past week.

Bill Manning and his staff have been absolute peaches during our buildout and transition to Loring Park.

From our head content honcho trentgilliss:

This sculpture by Nicolas Africano greets me each time I enter RKMC’s law offices this past week.

Bill Manning and his staff have been absolute peaches during our buildout and transition to Loring Park.

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The fascinating Yugoslavian performance artist Marina Abramović is in conversation with Sir Norman Rosenthal at the 92nd Street Y. Must watch.

Tagged: #art
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