RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 149G Sir Bertrand Russell “Why I Am Not a Christian.”

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On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

Nick Gathergood, David-Birkett, Harry-Kroto

I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif Ahmed, Sir David AttenboroughMark Balaguer, Horace Barlow, Michael BatePatricia ChurchlandAaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky,Alan DershowitzHubert Dreyfus, Bart Ehrman, Stephan FeuchtwangDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca GoldsteinDavid J. Gross,  Brian Greene, Susan GreenfieldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan HaidtTheodor W. Hänsch, Brian Harrison,  Hermann HauserRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodHerbert Huppert,  Gareth Stedman Jones, Steve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart Kauffman,  Lawrence KraussHarry Kroto, George LakoffElizabeth Loftus,  Alan MacfarlanePeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow,  Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff,  Jonathan Parry,  Saul PerlmutterHerman Philipse,  Carolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceLisa RandallLord Martin Rees,  Oliver Sacks, John SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongRonald de Sousa, Victor StengerBarry Supple,   Leonard Susskind, Raymond TallisNeil deGrasse Tyson,  .Alexander Vilenkin, Sir John WalkerFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

 

About 

BERTRAND RUSSELL 

As a philosopher, mathematician, educator, social critic and political activist, Bertrand Russell authored over 70 books and thousands of essays and letters addressing a myriad of topics. Awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1950, Russell was a fine literary stylist, one of the foremost logicians ever, and a gadfly for improving the lives of men and women.Born in 1872 into the British aristocracy and educated at Cambridge University, Russell gave away much of his inherited wealth. But in 1931 he inherited and kept an earldom. His multifaceted career centered on work as a philosophy professor, writer, and public lecturer.(Here is a detailed chronology of Russell’s life, an overview of his analytic philosophy, and a complete bibliography of all his publications.)

Russell was an author of diverse scope. His first books were German Social DemocracyAn Essay on the Foundations of Geometry, and A Critical Exposition of the Philosophy of Leibniz. His last books were War Crimes in Vietnam and The Autobiography of Bertrand Russell. Other noteworthy books include Principles of MathematicsPrincipia Mathematica (with A.N. Whitehead), Anti-Suffragist AnxietiesThe Problems of PhilosophyIntroduction to Mathematical PhilosophySceptical EssaysWhy I Am Not a Christian, and A History of Western Philosophy.

He was arguably the greatest philosopher of the 20th century and the greatest logician since Aristotle. Analytic philosophy, the dominant philosophy of the twentieth century, owes its existence more to Russell than to any other philosopher. And the system of logic developed by Russell and A.N. Whitehead, based on earlier work by Dedekind, Cantor, Frege, and Peano, broke logic out of its Aristotelian straitjacket. He was also one of the century’s leading public intellectuals and won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1950 “in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought.”

Russell was involved, often passionately, in numerous social and political controversies of his time. For example, he supported suffragists, free thought in religion and morals, and world government; he opposed World War I and the Vietnam War, nationalism, and political persecution. He was jailed in 1918 for anti-war views and in 1961 for his anti-nuclear weapons stance.

He was married 4 times and had 3 children. With Dora Russell, he founded the experimental Beacon Hill School. He knew or worked with many of the most prominent figures in late 19th and 20th century philosophy, mathematics, science, literature, and politics.

Active as a political and social critic until his end, Russell died in 1970 at the age of 97.

In  the first video below in the 14th clip in this series are his words and I will be responding to them in the next few weeks since Sir Bertrand Russell is probably the most quoted skeptic of our time, unless it was someone like Carl Sagan or Antony Flew.  

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Quote from Bertrand Russell:

Q: Why are you not a Christian?

Russell: Because I see no evidence whatever for any of the Christian dogmas. I’ve examined all the stock arguments in favor of the existence of God, and none of them seem to me to be logically valid.

Q: Do you think there’s a practical reason for having a religious belief, for many people?

Russell: Well, there can’t be a practical reason for believing what isn’t true. That’s quite… at least, I rule it out as impossible. Either the thing is true, or it isn’t. If it is true, you should believe it, and if it isn’t, you shouldn’t. And if you can’t find out whether it’s true or whether it isn’t, you should suspend judgment. But you can’t… it seems to me a fundamental dishonesty and a fundamental treachery to intellectual integrity to hold a belief because you think it’s useful, and not because you think it’s true.

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Firing an Unloaded Gun: Bertrand Russell on Christianity

Gregory Bahnsen

 

An excellent opportunity to practice our defense of the Christian faith is provided by one of the most noteworthy British philosophers of the twentieth century: Bertrand Russell.  Russell has offered us a clear and pointed example of an intellectual challenge to the truthfulness of the Christian faith by writing an article which specifically aimed to show that Christianity should not be believed.  The title of his famous essay was “Why I Am Not a Christian.”1 Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) studied mathematics and philosophy at Cambridge University and began his teaching career there.  He wrote respected works as a philosopher (about Leibniz, about the philosophy of mathematics and set theory, about the metaphy-sics of mind and matter, about epistemological problems) and was influential on twentieth-century developments in the philosophy of language.  He also wrote extensively in a more popular vein on literature, education and politics.  Controversy surrounded him.  He was dismissed by Trinity College for pacifist activities in 1916; he was jailed in 1961 in connection with a campaign for nuclear disarmament.  His views on sexual morality contributed to the annulment of his appointment to teach at the City University of New York in 1940. Yet Russell was highly regarded as a scholar.  In 1944 he returned to teach at Cambridge, and in 1950 he became a recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature.

For all his stature as a philosopher, Russell cannot be said to have been sure of himself and consistent in his views regarding reality or knowledge.  In his early years he adopted the Hegelian idealism taught by F. H. Bradley.  Influ-enced by G. E. Moore, he changed to a Platonic theory of ideas.  Challenged by Ludwig Wittgen-stein that mathematics consists merely of tauto-logies, he turned to metaphysical and linguistic atomism.  He adopted the extreme realism of Alexius Meinong, only later to turn toward logical constructionism instead.  Then following the lead of William James, Russell abandoned mind-matter dualism for the theory of neutral monism. Eventually Russell propounded materialism with fervor, even though his dissatisfaction with his earlier logical atomism left him without an alternative metaphysical account of the object of our empirical experiences.  Struggling with philoso-phical problems not unlike those which stymied David Hume, Russell conceded in his later years that the quest for certainty is a failure.

This brief history of Russell’s philosophical evolution is rehearsed so that the reader may correctly appraise the strength and authority of the intellectual platform from which Russell would presume to criticize the Christian faith.  Russell’s brilliance is not in doubt; he was a talented and intelligent man.  But to what avail?  In criticizing Christians for their views of ultimate reality, of how we know what we know, and of how we should live our lives, did Bertrand Russell have a defensible alternative from which to launch his attacks?  Not at all.  He could not give an account of reality and knowing which—on the grounds of, and according to the criteria of, his own autonomous reasoning—was cogent, reasonable and sure.  He could not say with certainty what was true about reality and knowledge, but nevertheless he was firmly convinced that Christianity was false!  Russell was firing an unloaded gun.

Bertrand Russell made no secret of the fact that he intellectually and personally disdained religion in general, and Christianity in particular.  In the preface to the book of his critical essays on the subject of religion he wrote:  “I am as firmly convinced that religions do harm as I am that they are untrue.”3  He repeatedly charges in one way or another that a free man who exercises his reasoning ability cannot submit to religious dogma. He argued that religion was a hindrance to the advance of civilization, that it cannot cure our troubles, and that we do not survive death.

We are treated to a defiant expression of metaphysical materialism—perhaps Russell’s most notorious essay for a popular reading audience—in the article (first published in 1903) entitled “A Free Man’s Worship.”  He there concluded: “Brief and powerless is man’s life; on him and all his race the slow, sure doom falls pitiless and dark.  Blind to good and evil, reckless of destruction, omnipotent matter rolls on its relentless way.”  In the face of this nihilism and ethical subjectivism, Russell nevertheless called men to the invigoration of the free man’s worship:  “to worship at the shrine that his own hands have built; undismayed by the empire of chance . . . .”3

Hopefully the brazen contradiction in Russell’s philosophy of life is already apparent to the reader. He asserts that our ideals and values are not objective and supported by the nature of reality, indeed that they are fleeting and doomed to destruction.  On the other hand, quite contrary to this, Russell encourages us to assert our autonomous values in the face of a valueless universe—to act as though they really amounted to something worthwhile, were rational, and not merely the result of chance.  But after all, what sense could Russell hope to make of animmaterial value (an ideal) in the face of an “omnipotent matter” which is blind to values?  Russell only succeeded in shooting himself in the foot.

The essay “Why I Am Not a Christian” is the text of a lecture which Russell delivered to the National Secular Society in London on March 6, 1927. It is only fair to recognize, as Russell commented, that constraints of time prevented him from going into great detail or saying as much as he might like about the matters which he raises in the lecture. Nevertheless, he says quite enough with which to find fault.

In broad terms, Russell argued that he could not be a Christian because:

(1) the Roman Catholic church is mistaken to say that the existence of God can be proved by unaided reason;

(2) serious defects in the character and teaching of Jesus show that he was not the best and wisest of men, but actually morally inferior to Buddha and Socrates;

(3) people accept religion on emo-tional grounds, particularly on the foundation of fear, which is “not worthy of self-respecting human beings”; and

(4) the Christian religion “has been and still is the principal enemy of moral progress in the world.”

What is outstanding about this litany of com-plaints against Christianity is Russell’s arbitrari-ness and inconsistency.  The second reason offered above presupposes some absolute standard of moral wisdom by which somebody could grade Jesus as either inferior or superior to others. Likewise, the third reason presupposes a fixed criterion for what is, and what is not, “worthy” of self-respecting human beings.  Then again, the complaint expressed in the fourth reason would not make any sense unless it is objectively wrong to be an enemy of “moral progress”; indeed, the very notion of moral “progress” itself assumes an established benchmark for morality by which to assess progress.

Now, if Russell had been reasoning and speak-ing in terms of the Christian worldview, his attempt to assess moral wisdom, human worthiness, and moral progress—as well as to adversely judge shortcomings in these matters—would be under-standable and expected.  Christians have a universal, objective and absolute standard of morality in the revealed word of God.  But obviously Russell did not mean to be speaking as though he adopted Christian premises and perspectives!  On what basis, then, could Russell issue his moral evaluations and judgments?  In terms of what view of reality and knowledge did he assume that there was anything like an objective criterion of morality by which to find Christ, Christians, and the church lacking?

Russell was embarrassingly arbitrary in this regard.  He just took it for granted, as an unargued philosophical bias, that there was a moral standard to apply, and that he could presume to be the spokesman and judge who applies it.  One could easily counter Russell by simply saying that he had arbitrarily chosen the wrong standard of morality. To be fair, Russell’s opponents must be granted just as much arbitrariness in choosing a moral standard, and they may then select one different from his own.  And there goes his argument down in defeat.

By assuming the prerogative to pass moral judgment, Russell evidenced that his own presuppositions fail to comport with each other.  In offering a condemning value-judgment against Christianity, Russell engaged in behavior which betrayed his professed beliefs elsewhere.  In his lecture Russell professed that this was a chance world which shows no evidence of design, and where “laws” are nothing more than statistical averages describing what has happened.  He professed that the physical world may have always existed, and that human life and intelligence came about in the way explained by Darwin (evolu-tionary natural selection).  Our values and hopes are what “our intelligence can create.”  The fact remains that, according to “the ordinary laws of science, you have to suppose that human life . . . on this planet will die out in due course.”

This is simply to say that human values are subjective, fleeting, and self-created.  In short, they are relative.  Holding to this kind of view of moral values, Russell was utterly inconsistent in acting as though he could assume an altogether different kind of view of values, declaring an absolute moral evaluation of Christ or Christians. One aspect of Russell’s network of beliefs rendered another aspect of his set of beliefs unintelligible.

The same kind of inner tension within Russell’s beliefs is evident above in what he had to say about the “laws” of science.  On the one hand such laws are merely descriptions of what has happened in the past, says Russell.  On the other hand,  Russell spoke of the laws of science as providing a basis for projecting what will happen in the future, namely the decay of the solar system.  This kind of dialectical dance between conflicting views of scientific law (to speak epistemologically) or between conflicting views of the nature of the physical cosmos (to speak metaphysically) is characteristic of unbelieving thought.  Such thinking is not in harmony with itself and is thus irrational.

In the first reason given by Russell for why he was not a Christian, he alluded to the dogma of the Roman Catholic church that “the existence of God can be proved by the unaided reason.”4  He then turns to some of the more popular arguments advanced for the existence of God which are (supposedly) based upon this “unaided reason” and easily finds them wanting.  It goes without saying, of course, that Russell thought that he was defeating these arguments of unaided reason by means of his own (superior) unaided reason. Russell did not disagree with Rome that man can prove things with his “natural reason” (apart from the supernatural work of grace).  Indeed at the end of his lecture he called his hearers to “a fearless outlook and a free intelligence.”  Russell simply disagreed that unaided reason takes one to God. In different ways, and with different final conclusions, both the Roman church and Russell encouraged men to exercise their reasoning ability autono-mously—apart from the foundation and restraints of divine revelation.

The Christian apologist should not fail to expose this commitment to “unaided reason” for the unargued philosophical bias that it is.  Throughout his lecture Russell simply takes it for granted that autonomous reason enables man to know things. He speaks freely of his “knowledge of what atoms actually do,” of what “science can teach us,” and of “certain quite definite fallacies” committed in Christian arguments, etc.  But this simply will not do.  As the philosopher, Russell here gave himself a free ride; he hypocritically failed to be as self-critical in his reasoning as he beseeched others to be with themselves.

The nagging problem which Russell simply did not face is that, on the basis of autonomous reasoning, man cannot give an adequate and rational account of the knowledge we gain through science and logic.  Scientific procedure assumes that the natural world operates in a uniform fashion, in which case our observational knowledge of past cases provides a basis for predicting what will happen in future cases.  However, autonomous reason has no basis whatsoever for believing that the natural world will operate in a uniform fashion. Russell himself (at times) asserted that this is a chance universe.  He could never reconcile this view of nature being random with his view that nature is uniform (so that “science” can teach us).

So it is with a knowledge and use of the laws of logic (in terms of which Russell definitely insisted that fallacies be avoided).  The laws of logic are not physical objects in the natural world; they are not observed by man’s senses.  Moreover, the laws of logic are universal and unchanging—or else they reduce to relativistic preferences for thinking, rather than prescriptive requirements.  However, Russell’s autonomous reasoning could not explain or justify these characteristics of logical laws.  An individual’s unaided reason is limited in the scope of its use and experiences, in which case it cannot pronounce on what is universally true (descriptive-ly).  On the other hand, an individual’s unaided reason is in no position to dictate (prescriptively) universal laws of thought or to assure us that these stipulations for the mind will somehow prove applicable to the world of thought or matter outside the individual’s mind.5

Russell’s worldview, even apart from its internal tensions, could not provide a foundation for the intelligibility of science or logic.  His “unaided” reason could not account for the knowledge which men readily gain in God’s universe, a universe sovereignly controlled (so that it is uniform) and interpreted in light of the Creator’s revealed mind (so that there are immaterial laws of thought which are universal).

We must note, finally, that Russell’s case against being a Christian is subject to criticism for its reliance upon prejudicial conjecture and logical fallacies.  That being the case, he cannot be thought to have established his conclusions or given good reason for his rejection of Christianity.

One stands in amazement, for instance, that the same Russell who could lavish ridicule upon past Christians for their ignorance and lack of scholarship, could come out and say something as uneducated and inaccurate as this: “Historically it is quite doubtful whether Christ ever existed at all, and if He did we do not know anything about Him.” Even forgetting secular references to Christ in the ancient world, Russell’s remark simply ignores the documents of the New Testament as early and authentic witnesses to the historical person of Jesus.  Given the relatively early dates of these documents and the relatively large number of them, if Russell “doubted” the existence of Jesus Christ, he must have either applied a conspicuous double standard in his historical reasoning, or been an agnostic about virtually the whole of ancient history.  Either way, we are given an insight into the prejudicial nature of Russell’s thinking when it came to consideration of the Christian religion.

Perhaps the most obvious logical fallacy evident in Russell’s lecture comes out in the way he readily shifts from an evaluation of Christian beliefs to a criticism of Christian believers.  And he should have known better.  At the very beginning of his lecture, Russell said, “I do not mean by a Christian any person who tries to live decently and according to his lights.  I think that you must have a certain amount of definite belief before you have a right to call yourself a Christian.”  That is, the object of Russell’s criticism should be, by his own testimony, not the lifestyle of individuals but the doctrinal claims which are essential to Christianity as a system of thought.  The opening of his lecture focuses upon his dissatisfaction with those beliefs (God’s existence, immortality, Christ as the best of men).

Nevertheless, toward the end of his lecture, Russell’s discussion turns in the direction of fallaciously arguing against the personal defects of Christians (enforcing narrow rules contrary to human happiness) and the supposed psychological genesis of their beliefs (in emotion and fear). That is, he indulges in the fallacy of arguing ad homin-em. Even if what Russell had to say in these matters was fair-minded and accurate (it is not), the fact would remain that Russell has descended to the level of arguing against a truth-claim on the basis of his personal dislike and psychologizing of those who personally profess that claim. In other settings, Russell the philosopher would have been the first to criticize a student for pulling such a thing. It is nothing less than a shameful logical fallacy.

Notice briefly other defects in Russell’s line of thinking here.  He presumed to know the motivation of a person in becoming a Christian—even though Russell’s epistemology gave him no warrant for thinking he could discern such things (especially easily and at a distance).  Moreover, he presumed to know the motivation of a whole class of people (including those who lived long ago), based on a very, very small sampling from his own present experience.  These are little more than hasty and unfounded generalizations, telling us (if anything) only about the state of Russell’s mind and feelings in his obvious, emotional antipathy to Christians.

But then this leaves us face to face with a final, devastating fallacy in Russell’s case against Christianity—the use of double standards (and implicit special pleading) in his reasoning.  Russell wished to fault Christians for the emotional factor in their faith-commitment, and yet Russell himself evidenced a similarly emotional factor in his own personal anti-Christian commitment.  Indeed, Russell openly appealed to emotional feelings of courage, pride, freedom and self-worth as a basis for his audience to refrain from being Christians!

Similarly, Russell tried to take Christians to task for their “wickedness” (as though there could be any such thing within Russell’s worldview)—for their cruelty, wars, inquisitions, etc.  Russell did not pause for even a moment, however, to reflect on the far-surpassing cruelty and violence of non-Christians throughout history.  Genghis Khan, Vlad the Impaler, Marquis de Sade and a whole cast of other butchers were not known in history for their Christian professions, after all!  This is all conveniently swept under the carpet in Russell’s hypocritical disdain for the moral errors of the Christian church.

Russell’s essay “Why I Am Not a Christian” reveals to us that even the intellectually elite of this world are refuted by their own errors in opposing the truth of the Christian faith.  There is no credibility to a challenge to Christianity which evidences prejudicial conjecture, logical fallacies, unargued philosophical bias, behavior which be-trays professed beliefs, and presuppositions which do not comport with each other.  Why wasn’t Russell a Christian?  Given his weak effort at criticism, one would have to conclude that it was not for intellectual reasons.

 

Notes

1 The article is found in Bertrand Russell, Why I Am Not a Christian, And Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects, ed. Paul Edwards (New York: Simon and Schuster, Clarion, 1957), pp. 3-23.

2 Ibid., p. vi.

3 Ibid., pp. 115-16.

4 In his lecture Russell displays a curious and capricious shifting around for the standard which defines the content of “Christian” beliefs.  Here he arbitrarily assumes that what the Roman magisterium says is the standard of Christian faith. Yet in the paragraph immediately preceding, Russell claimed that the doctrine of hell was not essential to Christian belief because the Privy Council of the English Parliament had so decreed (over the dissent of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York).  Elsewhere Russell departs from this criterion of Christianity and excoriates the teaching of Jesus, based upon the Bible, that the unrepentant face everlasting damnation.  Russell had no interest in being consistent or fair in dealing with Christianity as his opponent.  When con-venient he defined the faith according to the Bible, but when it was more convenient for his polemical purposes he shifted to defining the faith according to the English Parliament or the Roman Catholic church.

5 Those familiar with Russell’s detailed (and noteworthy, seminal) work in philosophy would point out that, despite his brilliance, Russell’s “unaided reason” could never resolve certain semantic and logical paradoxes which arise in his account of logic, mathematics and language. His most reverent followers concede that Russell’s theories are subject to criticism.

Greg L. Bahnsen page

 

 

Francis Schaeffer noted in his book HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? (p. 182 in Vol 5 of Complete Works) in the chapter The Breakdown in Philosophy and Science:

In his lecture at Acapulco, George Wald finished with only one final value. It was the same one with which English philosopher Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) was left. For Wald and Russell and for many other modern thinkers, the final value is the biological continuity of the human race. If this is the only final value, one is left wondering why this then has importance. 

Now having traveled from the pride of man in the High Renaissance and the Enlightenment down to the present despair, we can understand where modern people are. They have no place for a personal God. But equally they have no place for man as man, or for love, or for freedom, or for significance. This brings a crucial problem. Beginning only from man himself, people affirm that man is only a machine. But those who hold this position cannot live like machines! If they could, there would have been no tensions in their intellectual position or in their lives. But even people who believe they are machines cannot live like machines, and thus they must “leap upstairs” against their reason and try to find something which gives meaning to life, even though to do so they have to deny their reason. 

Francis Schaeffer in another place worded it like this:

The universe was created by an infinite personal God and He brought it into existence by spoken word and made man in His own image. When man tries to reduce [philosophically in a materialistic point of view] himself to less than this [less than being made in the image of God] he will always fail and he will always be willing to make these impossible leaps into the area of nonreason even though they don’t give an answer simply because that isn’t what he is. He himself testifies that this infinite personal God, the God of the Old and New Testament is there. 

Instead of making a leap into the area of nonreason the better choice would be to investigate the claims that the Bible is a historically accurate book and that God created the universe and reached out to humankind with the Bible. Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?)

There is also a confirmation of what the Bible says concerning the Egyptian King Tirhakah who came up to oppose the Assyrians. Confirmation of his reality is typified by a sphinx-ram in the British Museum (British Museum Ref. B.B.1779). The small figure between the legs of the ram is a representation of King Tirhakah. The Bible says that when Sennacherib heard that  Tirhakah, king of Eqypt, was coming to fight against him, he sent messengers to tell Hezekiah that help from Egypt would be of no use to him.

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2 Kings 19:9, 10 Now the king heard concerning Tirhakah king of Cush, “Behold, he has set out to fight against you.” So he sent messengers again to Hezekiah, saying,10 “Thus shall you speak to Hezekiah king of Judah: ‘Do not let your God in whom you trust deceive you by promising that Jerusalem will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria. (Isaiah 37:9-10 also says about the same thing.)

The date of Sennacherib’s campaign in Palestine is 701 B.C., and something which has often puzzled historians is the role of Tirhakah, who was not king of Egypt and Ethiopia until 690 B.C. But the solution to this problem is simple. In 701 B.C. Tirhakah was only a prince at the side of his military brother, the new Pharaoh Shebitku, who sent Tirhakah with an army to help Hezekiah fend off the Assyrian advance. But the story in Kings and Isaiah does not end in 701 B.C. It carries right through to the death of Sennacherib in 681 B.C., which is nine years after Tirhakah had become king of Egypt and Ethiopia. In other words, the biblical narrative, from the standpoint of 681 B.C., mentions Tirhakah by the title he bore at that time (that is, 681 B.C.), not as he was in 701 B.C. This is still done today, using a man’s title as he is known at the time of writing even it one is speaking of a previous time in his personal history.

Unaware of the the importance of these facts, and falling into wrong interpretations of some of Tirhakah’s inscriptions, some Old Testament scholars have stumbled over each in their eagerness to diagnose historical errors in the Books of the Kings and Isaiah. But as the archaeological confirmation shows, they were quite mistaken. What is striking about these archaeological finds is the way they often converge; there is often not just one line of evidence but several in which the biblical account is confirmed. We do not have confirmation of every single detail in the biblical account, by any means. Nor do we need such total confirmation in view of the amount of evidence there is. To insist on confirmation at every point would be to treat the Bible in a prejudiced way, simply because it is the Bible. The fact that is a religious book does not mean that it cannot also be true when it deals with history.

Not all archaeological finds have a convergence of many different interrelated lines like these around the life of Hezekiah, but they are no less striking. For example, take the “ration tablets” discovered in the ruins of Bablyon. The Bible tells us that after the Assyrians had destroyed the nothern kingdom of Samaria (around 721 B.C.), the southern kingdom, Judah, survived for almost another 150 years until approximately 586 B.C. By this time Assyria, one of the greatest military powers of the ancient world, had been defeated by Bablyon, a neighboring state to the east. That was in 609 B.C. Four years later the Babylonian general, Nebuchadnezzar–then the crown prince–came west and completely defeated Necho II, king of Egypt, at the battle of Carchemish. As a result of this victory he laid claim to Judah, which had previously been in the sphere of influence of Egypt. King Jehoiakim of Judah thus now paid tribute to the Babylonians. The Bible tells us that Jehoiakim rebelled three years later: “During Jehoiakim’s reign Nebuchadnezzar king of Bablyon invaded the land, and Jehoiakim became his vassal for three years. But then he changed his mind and rebelled against Nebuchnezzar” (II Kings 24:1).

The political background for this step can be understood from the Babylonian Chronicles (British Museum, Ref. 21946, records events from 597 B.C. down to 594). These were a compressed chronological summary of the principal events from the Babylonian court. There had been a crucial battle in 601 B.C. between the Egyptians and the Babylonians. This had left both sides weakened, and Jehoiakim took this opportunity to declare his independence of the Babylonian king. His independence, or rather Judah’s independence, did not last long, for Jehoiakim himself died in 598 B.C., leaving his throne and the crisis to his son, Jehoiachin. Second Kings (II Kings 24:10-12, 17) tells us what happened:

10 At that time the servants of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up to Jerusalem, and the city was besieged. 11 And Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to the city while his servants were besieging it, 12 and Jehoiachin the king of Judah gave himself up to the king of Babylon, himself and his mother and his servants and his officials and his palace officials. The king of Babylon took him prisoner in the eighth year of his reign. 17 And the king of Babylon made Mattaniah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, king in his place, and changed his name to Zedekiah.

The story of Jehoiachin does not end there, however. The royal family were kept at the court of Nebuchadnezzar, and the Bible says that they , like other royal captives, were provided for by the king with rations of grain and oil (II Kings 25:27-30):

27 And in the thirty-seventh year of the exile of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, Evil-merodach king of Babylon, in the year that he began to reign, graciously freed[a] Jehoiachin king of Judah from prison. 28 And he spoke kindly to him and gave him a seat above the seats of the kings who were with him in Babylon. 29 So Jehoiachin put off his prison garments. And every day of his life he dined regularly at the king’s table, 30 and for his allowance, a regular allowance was given him by the king, according to his daily needs, as long as he lived.

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The records of these allowances referred to in the Bible were unearthed in excavations in Babylon in basement storerooms of the royal palace (in Staat-Liches Museum, East Berlin, Vorderas Abteilung; Babylon 28122 and 28126). These are known as the “ration tablets” and they record who received such “rations.” In these, Jehoiachin is mentioned by name.

We also have confirmation of the Babylonian advance towards Judah in Nebuchadezzar’s first campaign. Among the ruins of Lachish were discovered a number of ostraca. Ostraca are broken pieces of earthenware called postherds, which were used for writing on in ink. (The Lachish ostraca are in the Palestinian Archaeological Museum, Jerusalem.) These brief letters reveal the increasing tensions within the growing state of Judah and tie in well with the picture given in the Bible by the Book of Jeremiah the Prophet. In Ostracon VI, the princes are accused of “weakening our hands” (that is, discouraging the writers), which is the very phraseology used in the Bible by the Judean princes against Jeremiah. Also, the use of fire beacons for signaling is found in both Ostracon IV and Jeremiah 6:1, each using the same terminology.

These events took place around the year 600 B.C. Events we considered earlier in relation to the capture of Lachish by Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah were around the year 700 B.C.

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Image result for francis schaeffer

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MUSIC MONDAY The story behind the song ITCHYCOO PARK by “The Faces”

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I am moving the MUSIC MONDAY to a monthly feature on http://www.thedailyhatch.org. My passion has been in the recent years to emphasize the works of Francis Schaeffer in my apologetic efforts and most of those posts are either on Tuesdays or Thursdays.

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The Surprising Meaning Behind ‘Itchycoo Park’ – NME Song Stories

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 197 “Film series HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? PART 8 ” THE AGE OF FRAGMENTATION ” Featured artist is Josef Albers

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HowShouldWeThenLive Episode 4

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This outline below is one that I have found very helpful. It is by Tony Bartolucci

 

How Shall We Then Live?
Francis Schaeffer
Began: June, 2006 | Finished November: 2006

IX. Chapter Nine: Modern Philosophy and Modern Theology
A. Secular Existential Philosophers and The Move “Upstairs”
Moderns have put various things upstairs in a vain attempt to find meaning in life. Reason, the
existentialists believed, leads only to pessimism and despair.
1. Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-1980)
Believed that in the area of reason all is absurd, but people could nonetheless authenticate themselves
by an act of the will. (“On the basis of histeaching, you could authenticate yourself either by helping
a poor old lady along the road at night or by speeding up your auto and running her down. Reason
is not involved, and nothing can show you the direction which your will should take.” page 183).
Sartre did not live consistently with his worldview, however. This showed when he signed the
Algerian Manifesto in 1960 which declared the Algerian War evil. His later leftist political views also
demonstrated that he deep down believed man could use reason to determine right and wrong, this
in contradiction to his own philosophy.
2. Albert Camus (1913-1960)
Camus is often connected with Sartre as the twin pillars of French Existentialism.
3. Martin Heidegger (1889-1976) – German
Also believed that answers are separated fromreason. He coined the German term”angst” – a general
feeling of anxiety with no object.
In his later years he modified his views to that which is (being) is true and meaningful.
4. Karl Jaspers (1883-1969) – German
Believed we could have a life-transforming (rationally indescribable) experience that would give us
meaning and direction. He had such an experience while watching a play”Green Pastures.” Divorced
from reason, it was emotionally charged. But asthe months passed by, Jaspersfelt the power of this
experience wane and slip through his fingers resulting in his contemplating suicide.
5. Aldous Huxley (1894-1963) (Brother of Julian Huxley)
Proposed drugs as a solution. Wrote “Brave New World” in 1932. Made his wife promise to give
him LSD when he was ready to die so that he could die while on a trip.
The result of existentialism is that truth is only in your head. Objective truth does not exist.
B. Religions
1. Hinduism and Buddhism
Both are non-rational and try to find meaning in life apart from rationality.
2. The Occult
3. Surrealism
Surrealism is the combining of Freud’s concept of the existence of the unconscious with Dada, an art
and life form in which all was seen as absurd (Dada was a random term chosen out of a French
dictionary – means “rocking horse.”) Promoted bythe artist/philosopher Salvidor Dali(b. 1904) who
later abandoned it.
C. Summary
The dichotomy between reason and nonreason is impregnable from Kierkegaard onward.
“Downstairs in the area of reason, man is a machine, man is meaningless. And upstairs optimism
about meaning and values is totally separated from reason. . . . Once people adopt this
dichotomy–where reason is totally separated fromnonreason–theythen must face the fact that many
types of things can be put in the area of nonreason. And it really does not matter what one chooses
to put there, because reason give no basis for a choice between one thing or another.” [page 189]
D. Theological Existentialism
1. Karl Barth (1886-1968)
German who stood fast against Nazism. He was in contrast to the older, liberal theologians of
Germany who denied the miraculous, yet tried to hold onto a historical Christianity. They were
caught in a rational dilemma because they didn’t believe something could be true and false at the same
time. Either Jesus was resurrected or he wasn’t.
Barth brought a change to this believing that the contradiction was acceptable. He upheld German
higher criticism and denied inerrancy. But he also held that a word from God breaks through the
Bible to man when he encounters it. Reason was of no importance to this. This was “NeoOrthodoxy”
(better, “Neo-Liberalism”). The Bible is not about absolute propositions of right and
wrong (cf. to today’s emerging church movt.).
From this point onward, theology was added to allthe other thingsthat were pushed into the category
of nonreason.
a. What about the Problem of Evil?
These neo-liberals could not answer the question of why evil exists and are left with the same answer
as the Hindu – everything that is, is equally in God. This is demonstrated in the Hindu Kali – a
feminine image of God with fangs and skulls around her neck. This pictures “god” as encompassing
all that is, good and evil. There is no right or wrong grounded in absolute truth, only bad karma.
2. Paul Tillich (1886-1965) – Harvard Divinity School
Religious words and concepts without real substance.
a. The God is Dead Theology of the 1960s
b. The next Logical Step is that Theological Words Have no Absolute
Meaning but Change with Times and Culture (as we see today)
c. Nietzche (1844-1900) – Perhaps the First to Say “God is Dead”
If God is dead, then everything for which God gives an answer died with him. Schaeffer believes that
when Nietzche came to Switzerland and went insane it was more than his venereal disease that cause
it. It was because “he understood that insanity was the only philosophic answer if the infinitepersonal
God does not exist.” [page 193]

This outline below is one that I have found very helpful. It is by Tony Bartolucci

 

How Shall We Then Live?
Francis Schaeffer
Began: June, 2006 | Finished November: 2006

X. Chapter Ten: Modern Art, Music, Literature, and Films
A. Modern Pessimism and Fragmentation Have Spread Three Different Ways
1. Geographically from European Mainland to England to the USA
2. Culturally from Philosophy to Art to Music to General Culture (novels, poetry,
drama, cinema)
a. Philosophy
The flow historically was from the philosophers Rousseau, Kant, Hegeland Kierkegaard onward who
lost hope of a unity in knowledge and hope and passed that worldview on to the artists.
b. Art
(1) The Impressionists
Art reflectsthe philosophy of the artist. The Impressionists(Monet – 1840-1926 and others) painted
only what their eyes saw, but they doubted the reality behind the rays of light that their eyes saw.
After 1855 Monet brought his philosophy to its logical conclusion and reality became a dream. “As
reality became a dream, Impressionism as a movement fell apart.” [page 196]
(2) The Post-Impressionists (Van Gogh – 1853-1890)
The P.I. tried to find the way back to reality (they sensed the need for universals) but failed.
“After philosophy had moved from unity to fragmentation, thisfragmentation was also carried into
the field of painting. The fragmentation shown in post-Impressionist paintings was parallel to the
loss of a hope for a unity of knowledge in philosophy. It was not just a new technique in painting.
It expressed a worldview.” [page 197]
(3) Resulting belief in the absurdity of all things
According to Schaeffer, the man who most exemplified an understanding of absurdity was Marcel
Duchamp (1887-1969).
(4) Jackson Pollock (1912-56)
American artist who tried to make the statement that all is chance. He placed a canvas on the floor
and suspected buckets of paint from the ceiling from which dripped paint onto the canvas in random
fashion. However, it was not really random asthe buckets and dripsfollowed set patterns of gravity
and motion!
c. Music
Fragmentation in music – example of John Cage who believed the universe to be random chance and
composed music that way (Eg. flipping coins, using a randomly programmed machine to conduct
music; making music that was a confusion of sounds).
d. General culture (poetry, novels the cinema)
3. Socially from the intellectuals to the educated and then through the mass media to all
a. Science and positivism
Modern science jettisoned the epistemological base of earlier science (that the universe was created
by a reasonable God and therefore was rational and intelligible). The result was that modern
scientists made the philosophy of positivism their base for knowing. Positivism is a philosophy that
contends that when you observe an object you have seen all there is. Your observation tells you all
you need to know.
But some realized that the observer was not totally objective. The observer has biases and
preconceived notions that affect his observation and interpretation of the data. Also, how can one
be sure that the data is real and not an illusion? This was not a problem in a Christian worldview.
There is a parallel to positivism in science to impressionism in art. The Impressionist simply painted
what he saw but questioned the reality behind the light-waves that reached his eyes.
Without a Christian worldview there is not a sufficient base to conduct philosophy, art, or science.
Science today has no sufficient epistemological base, know positive way of knowing that reality exists
and can be known. Science today tends to go in one or two directions as a result: 1) High
technology, often with the goal of increasing wealth; 2) Sociological science (people who use science
as a means to an end). With the latter evolutionism stands out as a means to deny that God exists,
promote humanism, Communism, Marxism, etc. This is why science is a “sacred cow” today.
Note how that same bias and objective has led to “sociological news and media.”
B. The Generation Gap
The older middle-class (i.e. those who were parents in the 1940s – 60s) still clung to the old ways.
However, they didn’t have a sufficient base for doing so. When their children were educated they
noticed that their parents had no basis for the old ways (Eg. religion) and, believing their parents
were governed by no more than dead tradition, they jettisoned their parents “habits.”
C. Existentialism and Linguistic analysis
Both are considered philosophies, but probably are “anti-philosophies.” Existentialismdeals with the
big questions of life, but separates the answers from reason, placing them in the category of nonreason.
Linguistic analysis leads to neither values or facts, only the analysis of language.
D. Music and Film demonstrate the despair of man (cf. last quote on page 209)

This outline below is one that I have found very helpful. It is by Tony Bartolucci

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Featured artist is Josef Albers

Bauhaus: Art as Life – Talk: An Insider’s Glimpse of Bauhaus Lfe

Published on May 16, 2012

Nicolas Fox Weber, Director of the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation, explores day-to-day life at the Bauhaus: the personal relationships, the struggles and even the scandals. Showing little-known images of Bauhauslers frolicking on the beach, sitting around a samovar, parading at costume parties, and even feigning lovers’ duels, Weber sets the enjoyment and challenges of Bauhaus life in context.

Part of Bauhaus: Art as Life (3 May – 12 Aug) at Barbican Art Gallery. Find out more – http://bit.ly/mBAT3e

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At Black Mountain College

Teaching at Brauhaus

Color in Context: Revisiting Albers, with Anoka Faruqee

Josef and Anni Albers at Black Mountain College, 1938 photograph by Theodore Dreier

An iconic book reimagined: Josef Albers’ “Interaction of Color”

Published on Jul 29, 2013

“Interaction of Color” — Josef Albers’ iconic book that taught legions of students and professionals alike how to think creatively about color — has been given a modern makeover as an iPad app, just in time for the 50th anniversary of its publication by Yale University Press.

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Later in life:

Drawing class of Josef Albers at Black Mountain College: Left to right: Harriett Engelhardt, Bela Martin, Lisa Jalowetz Aronson (stooping), Josef Albers, Robert de Niro, Martha McMillan, Eunice Schifris, Claude Stoller. Photo courtesy North Carolina State

Josef Albers drawing class:

Hazel Larsen Archer, "Josef Albers Teaching at BMC, with Ray Johnson in the Foreground," ca. late 1940s Courtesy of the Estate of Hazel Larsen Archer and the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center

Black Mountain College

Uploaded on Apr 18, 2011

Class Project on Black Mountain College for American Literature

 

 

 

Postcards from Black Mountain

 

THE 5 BEST ARTISTS OF THE ‘20S

From a his­tor­i­cal point of view the twen­ties were quite tumul­tuous, the polit­i­cal con­di­tions that would bring to the out­break of World War II just a decade later were start­ing to build up. The world was destroyed by the war, a period of re-construction and renewal started and Amer­ica was seen as an exam­ple of growth that then col­lapsed after the cri­sis of 1929. On the artis­tic front the new con­ti­nent was gear­ing towards a return to real­ist ten­den­cies, many artists had been let down by the new avant-garde move­ments. In Europe abstrac­tion­ism took hold, the idea was to declare a new method of aes­thetic con­cep­tion that wasn’t based on a loyal rep­e­ti­tion of objects to por­tray. This con­cept would be car­ried on espe­cially by Bauhaus dur­ing these years for what con­cerns fig­u­ra­tive art, and applied arts and archi­tec­ture as well. The Twen­ties are also the years of Sur­re­al­ism, a direct con­se­quence of Dadaism, born thanks to the impor­tance that Bre­ton gave to dreams and the sub­con­scious in mod­ern cul­ture. Let’s go through these steps that are full of events and charged with artis­tic pro­duc­tions through the 5 best artists from the ‘20s.

I 5 migliori artisti anni 20 - Piet Mondrian Piet Mon­drian ( 1872–1944 )
In 1917 he founded the group “De Stijl” along with Theo van Does­burg and Bart van der Leck. Even if his style was fairly tra­di­tional, fig­u­ra­tive and nat­u­ral­is­tic at first, at a cer­tain point of his career the artist turned his style towards a sort of geo­met­ric min­i­mal­ism fol­low­ing sev­eral inspir­ing exter­nal influ­ences. His per­sonal philo­soph­i­cal and spir­i­tual stud­ies were impor­tant for his work, observ­ing Picasso and Braque he reached a per­sonal geo­met­ric style enriched by a more and more impor­tant min­i­mal­ist vein. His paint­ings, often imi­tated and triv­i­al­ized, are com­posed of areas that are almost always painted with homoge­nous blues, reds, yel­lows and framed with a black line that became thicker as the artist took aware­ness of his style. It’s a mis­take to call Mondrian’s works “non –rep­re­sen­ta­tive”, instead they are the result of a care­ful study and per­sonal research.
I 5 migliori artisti anni 20 - Josef Albers Josef Albers ( 1888–1976 )
He was a Ger­man painter and the­o­reti­cian of abstract art.
The art­works that set him apart from oth­ers are char­ac­ter­ized by geo­met­ric forms that are evenly filled with pri­mary col­ors and that aren’t nec­es­sar­ily cre­ated on tra­di­tional sup­ports, in fact the artist often uses glass sup­ports through which he can con­tin­u­ously change the artwork’s visual per­cep­tion. He was also a pas­sion­ate and cre­ative paint­ing teacher, for Bauhaus, which he joined in 1920. A care­ful the­o­reti­cian of abstract art, he was engaged in stud­ies on per­cep­tion through the cre­ation and obser­va­tion of ambigu­ous geome­tries and on their poten­tial evoca­tive qualities.
I 5 migliori artisti anni 20 - Paul Klee Paul Klee ( 1879–1940 )
An all-around artist, Klee loves music and poetry but espe­cially paint­ing, which he con­sid­ers the high­est form of art. A son of two musi­cians, for him music rep­re­sents an impor­tant and fun­da­men­tal means of artis­tic inspi­ra­tion. As much as he is con­sid­ered an abstract artist, abstrac­tion­ism is not his only approach to art, he thought that art shouldn’t rep­re­sent real­ity, but that it should be a con­ver­sa­tion around and on real­ity. In fact his vision of the real world pro­duced art­works in which real­ity is altered, evanes­cent, dis­solved, a per­sonal rep­re­sen­ta­tion that cre­ates a wide range of sup­ports. His paint­ings are free, care­free, play­ful, almost as if they were the result of a child’s inno­cent hand. He was an enthu­si­as­tic paint­ing teacher, a pas­sion­ate the­o­reti­cian of abstrac­tion­ism and in 1911 he founded «Der Blaue Reiter» along with Alfred Kubin, August Macke, Wass­ily Kandin­skij and Franz Marc.
I 5 migliori artisti anni 20 - Salvador Dalì Sal­vador Dalì ( 1904–1989 )
Dalì is one of the main rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the sur­re­al­ist move­ment, a per­sona with a ver­sa­tile and eccen­tric char­ac­ter, with a lack of a sense of mea­sure, besides paint­ing, dur­ing his artis­tic career, he worked in sev­eral fields such as cin­ema, sculp­ture and writ­ing, the­atre and design. He was a skill­ful drawer, an extrav­a­gant man with a lively imag­i­na­tion. He declared that his art­works were inspired by Renais­sance tech­niques and they are full of sym­bol­ism, for him paint­ing is a way of show­ing his most sub­con­scious impulses and desires. His is a hal­lu­ci­na­tory art rich with evoca­tive images and arti­fi­cial scenes in which he often faces the theme of para­noia. Very often his behav­iors at the lim­its of decency had peo­ple pay­ing atten­tion to him rather than his art.
I 5 migliori artisti anni 20 - Man Ray Man Ray ( 1890–1976 )
Emmanuel Rad­nit­sky is Man Ray’s real name. Since he was a child he loved paint­ing and graphic rep­re­sen­ta­tion, but he’s known espe­cially for his great abil­ity in pho­tograph­ing, in fact he became the offi­cial pho­tog­ra­pher of the sur­re­al­ist move­ment. An artist with a multi-faceted per­son­al­ity, he was a pas­sion­ate inven­tor of the most var­ied objects, so strange and absurd that they could be defined as sculp­tures. Thanks to his friend­ship with Duchamp he came into con­tact with the Amer­i­can Dadaist move­ment, he rev­o­lu­tion­ized the art of pho­tograph­ing invent­ing a new tech­nique called “Rayo­g­ra­phy”, which con­sists in putting objects between the light source and th

An Experiment in American Education

By Carol Cruickshanks

At a pastoral campus in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, Bauhaus emigres and American educators co-created a progressive experiment in arts and learning. The faculty and students who homed in on Black Mountain during its 23-year-existence were innovators in all fields of artistic endeavor, comprising a noteworthy Who’s Who of modernists.

From its tentative beginnings in 1933 until its doors closed in 1956, Black Mountain’s reputation grew. By the early 1940s, it was a destination of choice for the American avant-garde. The attraction was linked from the start with the presence of the egalitarian, communal Bauhaus spirit. Founded in 1919 and shut down in 1933, the revolutionary German art school integrated art with technology for the enhancement of both, elevating design and craft to the status of art, and applying a new aesthetic to industry.

Josef Albers led the procession of dozens of Bauhaus faculty and students to Black Mountain, eventually even including Walter Gropius, the German school’s founding director. Other American institutions were recipients of Bauhaus influence, notably Harvard, where Gropius headed the School of Architecture, and Chicago’s Institute of Design where Laszlo Moholy-Nagy created a ‘New Bauhaus.’ But Black Mountain was unique–a Southern institution with rural roots, where farming was part of the educational concept, and students wore jeans and sandals decades before they became collegiate fashion.

The unique confluence of European Modernism with American progressive education happened both by intention and by chance. Black Mountain College opened in September 1933 with eleven faculty members and about twice as many students, on a site used by the Blue Ridge Assembly, a Christian conference, during the summer months. In the midst of the Depression, its founder, John Andrew Rice, a Classics professor, embarked on the risky endeavor of attracting students to a college with no scholastic reputation. His goal: to provide an alternative to traditional higher education, with ideals of democracy and the opportunity for students to realize their fullest potential.

Instead of the medieval hierarchy, rigid requirements, codes and rights of passage that delineated practices at other American colleges the structure of Black Mountain evolved from consensus. There were no remote trustees to satisfy, since the faculty owned the college. Students were represented in administrative meetings, and students and faculty shared the daily work and function of the college community. All students were essentially working students, avoiding class distinctions based on family wealth. Eventually, the college farm raised food, and workshops produced articles made in Black Mountain studios.

At Black Mountain, students created their own courses of study with the help of an advisor. There were no required classes and no grades, and the role of the arts in the curriculum evolved to a position of equality with traditional subjects.

Albers Arrives

Rice assembled his faculty, many from the ranks of disaffected professors at Rollins College in Florida, where he had taught before his dismissal earlier that year. He envisioned a resident artist who would be a key figure in the interdisciplinary curriculum, but the available candidates seemed to hold conventional attitudes about teaching art–not what Rice had in mind. Philip Johnson, then Curator of Architecture and Design at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, proposed Josef Albers, whom he had met during a visit to Dessau, Germany, site of the Bauhaus. Johnson had sat in on Albers’s classes and was impressed by his experiential approach to teaching.

Events in Germany during the summer of 1933 cemented Albers’s decision to come to America. In June, the National Socialist Party required that the Bauhaus install party members on the faculty. In resistance to this edict, Gropius decided to “temporarily” close. Ultimately, the school never reopened, but in this uncertain period, the telegram came from Rice offering Albers a teaching position in America.

Albers and his wife Anni arrived in Asheville, North Carolina, in early December 1933, following a reception in New York organized by the Museum of Modern Art. Albers became the first Bauhaus instructor hired to teach in America, heading up a wave of emigration of talented artists and scientists fleeing Nazi oppression. Though Albers did not speak English, Rice considered a German-speaking faculty member a learning opportunity for the college community.

Anni Albers was to develop her own important contribution to Black Mountain, with the establishment of the weaving workshop. She became a faculty member of tremendous influence, as she matured in stature as an artist.

As his English improved, Albers’s influence on the educational track of the college grew. Albers shaped his art classes in the model of the vorkurs, or preliminary study, as he had taught it at the Bauhaus. Emphasis was on experiencing the properties of materials firsthand. An example of this investigative process might include an exercise involving the tensile and structural properties of paper. Beginning with a flat sheet of the material, the student would create a form by folding, cutting or manipulating. Given a problem to solve, students would develop a solution on their own, and bring the completed effort to the next meeting of the class. All projects were then displayed and critiqued. A student without a project was not admitted to the class. While the discussion was part of the educational process, doing was the essential element of understanding.

Albers’s goal, he wrote, was the “…disciplined education of eye and hand.” Through the direct experience of material, without preconceived or imitative notions, students had the opportunity for inventiveness and discovery. Copying solutions from art history or making a “work of art” was not the point. This innovative approach to learning basic similarity, gaining what Albers called “a finger tip feeling” for material, was revolutionary in American art education.

In the 1930s, American art favored figurative work, even though Modernist elements had been gradually embraced by native artists who studied in Europe or were influenced by it. Pure abstraction was rooted in European Modernism as early as 1912, when Wassily Kandinsky created non-objective abstract art–art without reference the pictorial tradition. Albers’s dedication to geometric abstraction was an aesthetic then shared only by the most sophisticated American audience. He saw abstract art as pure art, a step away from imitation, and the most viable expression of pure form. “Abstract Art is Art in its beginning and is the Art of the Future,” he wrote.

Albers understood both the virtues and the limitations of his curriculum. He invited artists of other disciplines to expand the offerings at Black Mountain, including such other former Bauhaus participants as Kandinsky and sculptor Jean Arp, who were still in Europe, and graphic artist Herbert Bayer, who had already arrived in America.

In 1936, Albers was instrumental in arranging passage from Europe for Alexander Schawinsky, a former Bauhaus student. Schawinsky, hired to teach painting and drawing, began staging performances aimed at modernizing theatrical methods and concepts, as he had done at the Bauhaus under his mentor, Oskar Schlemmer. Within a year of his arrival, Schawinsky staged Spectodrama: Life Play Illusion, with actors clothed in abstract costumes of paper art fabric strips, on a dramatically lighted stage against a black backdrop. Schawinsky’s productions at Black Mountain were among the first American presentations of what was later to become known as performance theater.

The Designer-Craftsperson

Anni Albers’s role at Black Mountain exemplified the Bauhaus model of the designer-craftsperson. In Germany, she had worked as a textile designer and part-time instructor in the Bauhaus weaving workshop. After her first year at Black Mountain, she was appointed to the faculty, soon establishing a similar weaving workshop for practical application of the skills learned in the classroom. In this studio, students produced mats and cloths to be sold to the public, contributing to the economy of the college.

The aesthetics of weaving, as she taught it, reiterated the Bauhaus ideal of sensitive design in the service of industry. Kore Kadden Lindenfeld, a textile designer who was enrolled at Black Mountain from 1945-48, recalled the two-fold emphasis of her studies with Anni Albers. One aspect was technical achievement, a facility with the hand loom in preparation for machine production. The other was inventive, playful exploration of materials.

The model of designer-craftsperson was established in other workshops at Black Mountain during the late 1930s. Bookbinding, printing, and woodworking provided applied experience and skill development for the student as well as service to the college community. Furniture for dormitory rooms was made on site. A modular concept for a desk, bookcase and chest that could be moved and rearranged as necessary was designed for production in the workshop. The college press printed programs for concerts and dramas, featuring original art and imaginative graphic design.

After 1940, when the college purchased property at Lake Eden, students participated in architectural projects. The most significant project, which still exists–the Studies Building–was a two-level cantilevered structure rising out of the hillside on stilts. The original design was a collaboration between Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer. Financial concerns and the need to move to the new campus within a year required a less elaborate plan that could be constructed by students under the supervision of architecture professor A. Lawrence Kosher. The result was fashioned from native stone, concrete and steel columns, sheathed in corrugated fireproof material.

Collaborations

The interdisciplinary nature of Black Mountain provided the perfect stage for collaborative effort in the arts. Participation in events at the college drew on the painting, theatrical, music and writing talents of students, faculty, and the frequent distinguished visitors. The isolated campus, far from any major city or cultural center, required entertainment to be produced on site.

At the new Lake Eden campus, special projects were developed each summer, beginning in 1941 with a work camp to help complete the buildings. The Summer Institutes were unique events that evolved from the particular roster of participants. Black Mountain’s summer programs became legend in 1944 with the Music Institute, organized to celebrate composer Arnold Schoenberg’s seventieth birthday. That same summer, the Art Institute included four guest artists in addition to Albers, a lecture series by Walter Gropius, and a “clothing course” taught by Bernard Rudofsky, the Austrian designer who was then organizing his seminal exhibition “Are Clothes Modern?” for the Museum of Modern Art.

In 1946, Jean Varda, artist in residence, and students constructed a Trojan horse for the summer party with a Greek theme. Classes were suspended for the preparation of costumes. In 1948, Buckminster Fuller constructed the first large-scale model of his Geodesic Dome with Venetian blind strips and the labors of students and other participants, including painter Elaine de Kooning. The same summer, Fuller appeared in a production of The Ruse of Medusa, by Erik Satie along with dancer Merce Cunningham, on a set designed by abstract painter Willem de Kooning.

Another extraordinary year, 1952, included the meeting of studio ceramic artists Bernard Leach, who brought the aesthetic of handmade pottery to the West; Shoji Hamada, the “national treasure” of Japan; and Marguerite Wildenhain from the Bauhaus. They converged with celebrated postwar studio potters Peter Voulkous, Karnes Karnes, David Weintraub and Robert Turner, inspiring writer Mary Caroline Richards to write Centering, her prose poem on the metaphor of pottery and life.

The same summer saw composer John Cage, musician David Tudor, and dancer Merce Cunningham arrange a performance work based on Cage’s theories of chance, the I Ching. Improvisation and electronic music, viewed today as the first ever “happening.”

The avant-garde of the New York art world was at home at Black Mountain in the 1950s. First Generation Abstract Expressionists Franz Kline, Willem de Kooning and Robert Motherwell all appeared there, as did art critic Clement Greenberg who first brought attention to the Abstract Expressionist movement. The next generation of artists--Robert Rauschenberg, Kenneth Nolan and Kenneth Snelson--was there as students.

In the literary realm, Robert Creeley and Charles Olson developed and published the Black Mountain Review. Poetry, prose, photographs and drawings by artists residing on campus, and emerging artists residing elsewhere, contributed to the literary journal. In 1954, a two-page article titled Essentials of Spontaneous Prose by Jack Kerouac appeared along with a review of Allen Ginsberg’s recently published Howl.

Josef and Anni Albers, who had lived and worked at the rural campus for sixteen years, left in 1949 when Josef became the founding director of Yale’s Institute of Design. The Bauhaus spirit, which had been so important in the formative years of the college, had evolved into a home-grown American avant-garde spirit.

Despite heroic efforts to remain financially solvent, Black Mountain College ceased to function in 1956. The faculty and students disseminated–some gravitating to San Francisco, others to New York–carrying with them the influence and ideas of a true learning community.

Carol Cruickshanks teaches History of Modern Art at the College of New Jersey

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– See more at: http://www.theartstory.org/school-black-mountain-college.htm#sthash.IrnxTUFZ.dpuf

Great article 

Bauhaus Movement and Chronology

“If today’s arts love the machine, technology and organization, if they aspire to precision and reject anything vague and dreamy, this implies an instinctive repudiation of chaos and a longing to find the form appropriate to our times.”

Oskar Schlemmer

BAUHAUS SYNOPSIS

The Bauhaus was the most influential modernist art school of the 20th century, one whose approach to teaching, and understanding art’s relationship to society and technology, had a major impact both in Europe and the United States long after it closed. It was shaped by the 19th and early 20th centuries trends such as Arts and Crafts movement, which had sought to level the distinction between fine and applied arts, and to reunite creativity and manufacturing. This is reflected in the romantic medievalism of the school’s early years, in which it pictured itself as a kind of medieval crafts guild. But in the mid 1920s the medievalism gave way to a stress on uniting art and industrial design, and it was this which ultimately proved to be its most original and important achievement. The school is also renowned for its faculty, which included artists Wassily Kandinsky, Josef Albers, László Moholy-Nagy, Paul Klee andJohannes Itten, architects Walter Gropius and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and designerMarcel Breuer.

BAUHAUS KEY IDEAS

The motivations behind the creation of the Bauhaus lay in the 19th century, in anxieties about the soullessness of manufacturing and its products, and in fears about art’s loss of purpose in society. Creativity and manufacturing were drifting apart, and the Bauhaus aimed to unite them once again, rejuvenating design for everyday life.
Although the Bauhaus abandoned much of the ethos of the old academic tradition of fine art education, it maintained a stress on intellectual and theoretical pursuits, and linked these to an emphasis on practical skills, crafts and techniques that was more reminiscent of the medieval guild system. Fine art and craft were brought together with the goal of problem solving for a modern industrial society. In so doing, the Bauhaus effectively leveled the old hierarchy of the arts, placing crafts on par with fine arts such as sculpture and painting, and paving the way for many of the ideas that have inspired artists in the late 20th century.
The stress on experiment and problem solving at the Bauhaus has proved enormously influential for the approaches to education in the arts. It has led to the ‘fine arts’ being rethought as the ‘visual arts’, and art considered less as an adjunct of the humanities, like literature or history, and more as a kind of research science.

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MOST IMPORTANT ART

Bauhaus building in Dessau, Germany (1919-1925)
Artist: Walter Gropius
Gropius’s complex for the Bauhaus at Dessau has come to be seen as a landmark in modern, functionalist design. Although the design seems strongly unified from above, each element is clearly divided from the next, and on the ground it unfolds a wonderful succession of changing perspectives. The building consists of an asphalt tiled roof, steel framework, and reinforced concrete bricks to reduce noise and protect against the weather. In addition, a glass curtain wall – a feature that would come to be typical of modernist architecture – allows in ample quantities of light. Gropius created three wings that were arranged asymmetrically to connect different workshops and dormitories within the school. The asymmetry expressed the school’s functionalist approach and yet retained an elegance that showed how beauty and practicality could be combined.

Bauhaus Beginnings

The Bauhaus, a German word meaning “house of building”, was a school founded in 1919 in Weimar, Germany by architect Walter Gropius. The school emerged out of late-19th-century desires to reunite the applied arts and manufacturing, and to reform education. These had given birth to several new schools of art and applied art throughout Germany, and it was out of two such schools that the new Bauhaus was born.

Gropius called for the school to show a new respect for craft and technique in all artistic media, and suggested a return to attitudes to art and craft once characteristic of the medieval age, before art and manufacturing had drifted far apart. Gropius envisioned the Bauhaus encompassing the totality of all artistic media, including fine art, industrial design, graphic design, typography, interior design, and architecture.

Concepts and Styles

Central to the school’s operation was its original and influential curriculum. It was described by Gropius in the manner of a wheel diagram, with the outer ring representing the vorkurs, a six-month preliminary course, initiated by Johannes Itten, which concentrated on practical formal analysis, in particular on the contrasting properties of forms, colors and materials. The two middle rings represented two three-year courses, the formlehre, focused on problems related to form, and werklehre, a practical workshop instruction that emphasized technical craft skills. These classes emphasized functionalism through simplified, geometric forms that allowed new designs to be reproduced with ease. At the center of the curriculum were courses specialized in building construction that led students to seek practicality and necessity through technological reproduction, with an emphasis on craft and workmanship that was lost in technological manufacturing. And the basic pedagogical approach was to eliminate competitive tendencies and to foster individual creative potential and a sense of community and shared purpose.

The creators of this program were a fabulously talented faculty that Gropius attracted. Avant-garde painters Johannes Itten and Lyonel Feininger, and sculptor Gerhard Marcks were among his first appointments. Itten would be particularly important: he was central to the creation of the Vorkurs, and his background in Expressionism lent much of the tone to the early years of the school, including its emphasis on craft and its medievalism. Indeed, Itten’s avant-gardism and Gropius’s social concerns soon put them at odds. By the early 1920s, however, Gropius had won out; Itten left and was replaced by Lázlsó Moholy-Nagy, who reformed vorkurs into a program that embraced technology and stressed its use for society. Other important appointments included Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Georg Muche, and Oskar Schlemmer.

In 1925, the Bauhaus moved to the German industrial town of Dessau, initiating its most fruitful period. Gropius designed a new building for the school, which has since come to be seen as a landmark of modern, functionalist architecture. It was also here that the school finally created a department of architecture, something that had been conspicuously lacking in an institution that had been premised on the union of the arts. But by 1928 Gropius was worn down by his work, and by the increasing battles with the school’s critics, and he stood down, turning over the helm to Swiss architectHannes Meyer. Meyer headed the architecture department, and, as an active communist, he incorporated his Marxist ideals through student organizations and classroom programs. The school continued to build in strength but criticism of Meyer’sMarxism grew, and he was dismissed as director in 1930, and after local elections brought the Nazis to power in 1932, the school in Dessau was closed.

In the same year, 1932, it moved to Berlin, under the new direction of architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, an advocate of functionalism. He struggled with far poorer resources, and a faculty that had lost some of its brightest stars; he also tried to remove politics from the school’s ethos, but when the Nazis came to power in 1933, the school was closed indefinitely.

BAUHAUS LEGACY

The Bauhaus influence travelled along with its faculty. Gropius went on to teach at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University, Mies van der Rohe became Director of the College of Architecture, Planning and Design, at the Illinois Institute of Technology, Josef Albers began to teach at Black Mountain College in North Carolina,Laszlo Moholy-Nagy formed what became the Institute of Design in Chicago, and Max Bill, a former Bauhaus student, opened the Institute of Design in Ulm, Germany. The latter three were all important in spreading the Bauhaus philosophy: Moholy-Nagy and Albers were particularly important in refashioning that philosophy into one suited to the climate of a modern research university in a market-oriented culture; Bill, meanwhile, played a significant role in spreading geometric abstraction throughout the world.

Original content written by Larissa Borteh
Bauhaus. [Internet]. 2015. TheArtStory.org website. Available from:
http://www.theartstory.org/movement-bauhaus.htm [Accesed 04 May 2015]

QUOTES

“The ultimate aim of all artistic activity is building! … Architects, sculptors, painters, we must all get back to craft! … The artist is a heightened manifestation of the craftsman. … Let us form … a new guild of craftsmen without the class divisions that set out to raise an arrogant barrier between craftsmen and artists! … Let us together create the new building of the future which will be all in one: architecture and sculpture and painting.”
Walter Gropius

“Designing is not a profession but an attitude. Design has many connotations. It is the organization of materials and processes in the most productive way, in a harmonious balance of all elements necessary for a certain function. It is the integration of technological, social, and economical requirements, biological necessities, and the psychological effects of materials, shape, color, volume and space. Thinking in relationships.”
Laszlo Moholy-Nagy

“I consider morals and aesthetics one and the same, for they cover only one impulse, one drive inherent in our consciousness – to bring our life and all our actions into a satisfactory relationship with the events of the world as our consciousness wants it to be, in harmony with our life and according to the laws of consciousness itself.”
Naum Gabo

“Architecture is the will of an epoch translated into space.”
Mies van der Rohe

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 149F Sir Bertrand Russell “A Free Man’s Worship”

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Image result for bertrand russell

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

Image result for harry kroto

 

earlier posts:Photo of Bertrand Russell
Photo by Larry Burrows

Bertrand Russell

First published Thu Dec 7, 1995; substantive revision Thu Jun 29, 2017

Bertrand Arthur William Russell (1872–1970) was a British philosopher, logician, essayist and social critic best known for his work in mathematical logic and analytic philosophy. His most influential contributions include his championing of logicism (the view that mathematics is in some important sense reducible to logic), his refining of Gottlob Frege’s predicate calculus (which still forms the basis of most contemporary systems of logic), his defense of neutral monism (the view that the world consists of just one type of substance which is neither exclusively mental nor exclusively physical), and his theories of definite descriptionslogical atomism and logical types.

Together with G.E. Moore, Russell is generally recognized as one of the main founders of modern analytic philosophy. His famous paradoxtheory of types, and work with A.N. Whitehead onPrincipia Mathematica reinvigorated the study of logic throughout the twentieth century (Schilpp 1944, xiii; Wilczek 2010, 74).

Over the course of a long career, Russell also made significant contributions to a broad range of other subjects, including ethics, politics, educational theory, the history of ideas and religious studies, cheerfully ignoring Hooke’s admonition to the Royal Society against “meddling with Divinity, Metaphysics, Moralls, Politicks, Grammar, Rhetorick, or Logick” (Kreisel 1973, 24). In addition, generations of general readers have benefited from his many popular writings on a wide variety of topics in both the humanities and the natural sciences. Like Voltaire, to whom he has been compared (Times of London 1970, 12)), he wrote with style and wit and had enormous influence.

After a life marked by controversy—including dismissals from both Trinity College, Cambridge, and City College, New York—Russell was awarded the Order of Merit in 1949 and the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1950. Noted also for his many spirited anti-nuclear protests and for his campaign against western involvement in the Vietnam War, Russell remained a prominent public figure until his death at the age of 97.

Interested readers may listen to two sound clips of Russell speaking or consult the Bertrand Russell Society’s video archive for video clips of and about Russell. (Members of the Society have access to a significantly larger video library than is available to the general public.)

1. Russell’s Chronology

A short chronology of the major events in Russell’s life is as follows:

  • (1872) Born May 18 at Ravenscroft in Trelleck, Monmouthshire, UK.
  • (1874) Death of mother and sister.
  • (1876) Death of father; Russell’s grandfather, Lord John Russell (the former Prime Minister), and grandmother succeed in overturning Russell’s father’s will to win custody of Russell and his brother, rather than have them raised as free-thinkers.
  • (1878) Death of grandfather; Russell’s grandmother, Lady Russell, supervises Russell’s upbringing at Pembroke Lodge, London.
  • (1883) Receives his first lessons in geometry from his brother Frank.
  • (1890) Enters Trinity College, Cambridge; meets Whitehead.
  • (1893) Awarded first-class B.A. in Mathematics.
  • (1894) Completes the Moral Sciences Tripos (Part II); appointed Honorary British Attaché in Paris; marries Alys Pearsall Smith.
  • (1895) Studies at the University of Berlin.
  • (1896) Appointed lecturer at the London School of Economics; lectures in the United States at Johns Hopkins and Bryn Mawr.
  • (1899) Appointed lecturer at Trinity College, Cambridge.
  • (1900) Meets Peano at the First International Congress of Philosophy in Paris.
  • (1901) Reappointed lecturer at Cambridge; discovers Russell’s paradox.
  • (1902) Corresponds with Frege.
  • (1905) Develops his theory of descriptions.
  • (1907) Runs for parliament and is defeated.
  • (1908) Elected Fellow of the Royal Society.
  • (1910) Fails to receive Liberal Party nomination for parliament because of his atheism; reappointed lecturer at Trinity College, Cambridge.
  • (1911) Meets Wittgenstein; elected President of the Aristotelian Society; separates from Alys.
  • (1913) Lectures at the École des Hautes Sociales in Paris.
  • (1914) Visits Harvard and teaches courses in logic and the theory of knowledge; meets T.S. Eliot.
  • (1915) Reappointed lecturer at Trinity College, Cambridge.
  • (1916) Fined 100 pounds and dismissed from Trinity College as a result of anti-war writings; denied a passport and so unable to lecture at Harvard.
  • (1918) Imprisoned for five months as a result of anti-war writings.
  • (1920) Visits Russia.
  • (1921) Divorce from Alys and marriage to Dora Black; visits China and Japan.
  • (1922) Runs for parliament and is defeated.
  • (1923) Runs for parliament and is defeated.
  • (1924) Lectures in the United States.
  • (1927) Lectures in the United States; opens experimental school with Dora.
  • (1929) Lectures in the United States.
  • (1931) Lectures in the United States; becomes the third Earl Russell upon the death of his brother.
  • (1935) Divorce from Dora.
  • (1936) Marriage to Patricia (Peter) Helen Spence.
  • (1938) Appointed visiting professor of philosophy at Chicago.
  • (1939) Appointed professor of philosophy at the University of California at Los Angeles.
  • (1940) Appointment at City College New York revoked prior to Russell’s arrival as the result of public protests and a legal judgment in which Russell was found to be “morally unfit” to teach at the college; delivers the William James Lectures at Harvard.
  • (1941) Appointed lecturer at the Barnes Foundation in Pennsylvania.
  • (1942) Dismissed from Barnes Foundation, but wins a lawsuit against the Foundation for wrongful dismissal.
  • (1944) Reappointed a Fellow of Trinity College.
  • (1948) Involved in a plane crash en route to Norway, he and other passengers save themselves by swimming in the ocean until help arrives.
  • (1949) Awarded the Order of Merit; elected a Lifetime Fellow at Trinity College.
  • (1950) Awarded Nobel Prize for Literature; visits Australia.
  • (1951) Lectures in the United States.
  • (1952) Divorce from Patricia (Peter) and marriage to Edith Finch.
  • (1955) Releases Russell-Einstein Manifesto.
  • (1957) Elected President of the first Pugwash Conference.
  • (1958) Becomes founding President of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.
  • (1961) Imprisoned for one week in connection with anti-nuclear protests.
  • (1963) Establishes the Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation.
  • (1967) Launches the International War Crimes Tribunal.
  • (1970) Dies February 02 at Penrhyndeudraeth, Wales.

 

 

In  the first video below in the 14th clip in this series are his words and I will be responding to them in the next few weeks since Sir Bertrand Russell is probably the most quoted skeptic of our time, unless it was someone like Carl Sagan or Antony Flew.  

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Quote from Bertrand Russell:

Q: Why are you not a Christian?

Russell: Because I see no evidence whatever for any of the Christian dogmas. I’ve examined all the stock arguments in favor of the existence of God, and none of them seem to me to be logically valid.

Q: Do you think there’s a practical reason for having a religious belief, for many people?

Russell: Well, there can’t be a practical reason for believing what isn’t true. That’s quite… at least, I rule it out as impossible. Either the thing is true, or it isn’t. If it is true, you should believe it, and if it isn’t, you shouldn’t. And if you can’t find out whether it’s true or whether it isn’t, you should suspend judgment. But you can’t… it seems to me a fundamental dishonesty and a fundamental treachery to intellectual integrity to hold a belief because you think it’s useful, and not because you think it’s true.

Image result for bertrand russell

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John Piippo

Theological/philosophical/cultural/spiritual thoughts about God and the Real Jesus.

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Bertrand Russell’s “A Free Man’s Worship” (For My Philosophy of Religion Students)

Philosophy of Religion Exam 3, Question 2:

EXPLAIN BERTRAND RUSSELL’S “A FREE MAN’S WORSHIP”

What, then, are the beliefs of atheism? Some (but not all) atheists have come forth with them. The famous British philosopher and atheist Bertrand Russell has done so, in his 1907 essay “A Free Man’s Worship.” I think Russell has done an admirable and logical job; i.e., were I an atheist I would believe these things. (I’d probably side with Nietzsche on 5.)

1. Russell is an atheist who presents the logic of atheism. That is, if atheism is true, then here is what life is like.

2. State Russell’s 4 Pillars of Atheism.

#1 –  Humanity is the product of causes that had no prevision of his appearing.
I am certain Russell is correct on this. If there is no Creator-God, then the universe and all that is in it is not some “creation,” like every work of art has a creator-artist. If there is no Supreme Personal Agent who has made everything and is responsible for everything, and who is the cause of it all, then no one or no thing or no being “had us on their mind” when the universe began. Sometimes I hear someone who self-designates as an “atheist” and believes there is some reason or purpose for their existence. They don’t realize that, on atheism, such thinking is nonsense. Humanity just is, for no reason.

#2 –  Humanity is but the result of an accidental collocation of atoms.
A “collocation” is a “coming together,” a “being located together,” a “co”-“location.” An “accidental collocation” is an unplanned, random “coming together.” For example, I am writing this from my home office, located on the second floor of our house. I’m looking down on our front lawn, and leaves from one of our maple trees are scattered randomly. Why are the leaves scattered as they are? Not because an intelligent agent arranged or designed them that way. Purely natural conditions caused them to lie where they do. Beyond this, there is no meaning or purpose. Sometimes I read an atheist who believes their existence is more than some cosmic accident. But this is more nonsense. On atheism the formation of humanity is no more or greater than the random, accidental blowing of the leaves on my front lawn.

#3 –  There is no personal existence after death.
Russell was once asked what he thought would happen to him after he dies. He responded, “I believe that when I die I shall rot, and nothing of my own ego will survive.” (In Paul Edwards, “Great Minds: Bertrand Russell,” Free Inquiry,December 2004/January 2005, 46) If the worldview of atheism is true, then I am certain this logically follows. On atheism all that exists is matter (accidental collocations of atoms). There is no non-physical, non-material reality. Persons have no spiritual being or essence or “soul” or “mind” that survives physical death. Obviously, on atheism, “soul friends” don’t exist. “You” and “I” simply will not be, on death. 

#4 – All the heroism and human fire in the world cannot stop the fact that all man’s accomplishments will ultimately be destroyed and come to nothing in the vast heat-death of the universe.
According to physics, this is true. Of course, it’s not going to happen tomorrow. Nonetheless, on atheism, it will happen. Nothing can stand in the way of Nature (Russell capitalizes it). I use this analogy to explain. Imagine life is a voyage on the Titanic. Imagine also that we know the fate of the Titanic, and that nothing can prevent it. We can choose to polish and rearrange the deck chairs if we desire to do so. But in the end all this labor will be undone. All heroic talk of “Let’s make a better world” is, ultimately, futile. This atheistic fact has caused a number of atheists to despair (see especially atheistic existentialists)

3. State Russell’s “Temple”

For Russell, these four truths are certain. They form the pillars of a “temple” upon which humanity erects a scaffolding and dwells within. Russell writes: “Within the scaffolding of these truths, which are nearly certain and cannot reasonably be denied, humanity must build its temple for worship on a foundation of unyielding despair. (“Unyielding” refers to the inexorable destructiveness of Nature. “Despair” describes the emotion felt about the absurdity and meaninglessness of life.

4. Russell is amazed at… 

Astoundingly, nature has produced “man” as a conscious and self-reflexive being. (Here is the matter of consciousness arising from unconscious matter, no less astounding today than it was in Russell’s time.)

5. Worship Goodness, not Nature (Power)
Even though nature is and will do its horrific thing, in our minds we are free and should not bow to Nature (as Nietzsche calls us to do). This is our freedom in the face of the inevitable – free to create, act, live, be moral, rational agents.

John Piippo at 8:55 AM

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Image result for francis schaeffer

Above Bertrand Russell said he rejected Christianity “Because I see no evidence whatsoever” indicating that Christianity is true. I wish he had considered the following:
Francis Schaeffer noted in the book THE GOD WHO IS THERE:
Firstly, these are space-time
proofs in written form, and consequently
capable of careful consideration. Then,
secondly, these proofs are of such a
nature as to give good· and sufficient
evidence that Christ is the Messiah as
prophesied in the Old Testament, and
also that he is the Son of God. So that,
thirdly, we are not asked to believe until
we have faced the question as to whether
this is true on the basis of the space-time evidence. 
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Schaeffer then points to the historical accuracy of the Bible in Chapter 5 of the book WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?

The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt 42 min)

You want some evidence that indicates that the Bible is true? Here is a good place to start and that is taking a closer look at the archaeology of the Old Testament times. Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

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Badfinger – Day After Day (1971 – HQ – Restored)

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Milton Friedman PBS Free to Choose 1980 Vol 1 of 10 Power of the Market

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE PART 196″Film series HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? PART 7 THE AGE OF NONREASON” Featured artist is Claude Monet

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HowShouldWeThenLive Episode 4

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This outline below is one that I have found very helpful. It is by Tony Bartolucci

 

How Shall We Then Live?
Francis Schaeffer
Began: June, 2006 | Finished November: 2006

VIII. Chapter Eight: The Breakdown in Philosophy and Science
A. The Legacy of Plato
A.N. Whitehead believed that all of European history is a footnote on Plato. That might go too far,
but Plato did affirm that if there are no absolutes, then the particulars in life have no meaning. The
universal, or absolute, is that under which all the particulars fit, they give unity and meaning to the
whole.
B. Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-80) – French Existentialist
He believed that a finite point is absurd if you have no infinite reference point. Example is morals:
With no absolute point of reference there is no standard for right or wrong.
We also need absolutes if we are to have meaning in ourselves, as human beings. We must also have
absolutes if we are to have a solid epistemology.
C. Non-Christian Philosophers From the Time of the Greeks Until the Modern Period had
Three Things in Common
They were rationalists. They believed that man can begin with himself and find ultimate answers.
Second, they took reason seriously. They believed that reason was a valid proof instrument. They
thought in terms of antithesis/contrast (Eg. A is A and A is not non-A). Third, they were optimistic.
They believed that a utopia of sorts can be universally reached by reason (Star-Trek ideal).
D. Three Shifts Came Afterward (Shifts in Science; Philosophy; Theology)
1. Science
Shifted from modern science (which rested on a Christian worldview), to what Schaeffer calls
“modern, modern science.” Science went from an open system to closed. God was left out. With
no place for God, eventually there was no place for man (he was just another part of the machine).
Prior to this scientism, cause and effect were applied to physics, astronomy and chemistry. Now they
are applied to psychology and sociology. Everything is mechanical, cause-and-effect. God died and
so did man.
a. Lyell (1797-1882), Darwin and Huxley
Lyell (uniformity in a closed system) and Darwin (origins in a closed system). Huxley popularized
Darwin’s ideals. It was Herbert Spencer who coined the phrase, “survival of the fittest.”
b. Connection to Nazi Germany
Henreich Himmler (1900-`1945) took Spencer’s “survival of the fittest” and applied it to the
Germany. Hitler believed that Christianity and its concept of love should be replaced with “the ethic
of strength over weakness” (page 170).
Part of the problem in Germany at this time was the rise of liberal theology, which has adopted
rationalism in theological terminology (closed system).
2. Philosophy
a. The Older Non-Christian Philosophers
There was a search for true meaning in rationalism, but this search left philosopher after philosopher
short. One would come along and say “here is a circle which will give a unified and true knowledge
of what reality really is:” . Another would come along and cross that circle out q and say, “No,
here is the circle:” . Then another would come along, cross out that circle q, and say: “You are
all wrong, here is the circle:” . On and on it went. The older philosophers didn’t find the circle, but
they were optimistic that someone would. “Then the line of crossed-out circles was broken, and a
drastic shift came. It is this shift that causes modern man to be modern man.” [page 171]
(1) Rene’ Descarte (1596-1650) – “I think therefore I am”
Many believe Descarte was the first of the modern philosophers, but Schaeffer disagrees, feeling he
should be the last of the old guard for two reasons: 1) He remained confident that by rationalism one
could doubt all notions based on authority and man could start within himself with total sufficiency
(“I think therefore I am”). 2) He believe mathematics would provide a unity for all kinds of
investigations. So, he was yet optimistic. The shift to pessimism came in the next century.
b. Modern Philosophy
Four philosophers marked the shift in thought from optimism to pessimism: Jean-Jacques Rousseau;
Immanuel Kant; Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel; Soren Kierkegaard.
(1) Rousseau (1712-1778) – “Man the noble savage”
Rousseau was a French-speaking Swiss from Geneva. There was a shift in individual things and
ultimate meaning from that of the old guard (humanism of the High-Renaissance):
UNIVERSALS (that which give meaning to the particulars)

PARTICULARS (including each person individually)
To this:
AUTONOMOUS FREEDOM

AUTONOMOUS NATURE
As Schaeffer observes, there was two parts to this new formulation of the old problem. Man was
now viewed as a machine along with everything else in the universe (just another cog or a collection
of molecules among trillions). Starting w/mechanics one always ends w/mechanics. Second,
Rousseau viewed this tension in terms of society, political life, and culture.
For him, primitive man “the noble savage” was superior to modern man. He wrote, “If man is good
by nature, as I believe to have shown him to be, it follows that he stays like that as long as nothing
foreign to him corrupts him.” [page 173] In 1749 he had an epiphany of sorts when he concluded that
the Enlightenment, with it’s emphasis on reason, had resulted in man losing more than he had gained.
At this time Rousseau gave up faith in progress.
Rousseau and his disciples de-emphasized reason, viewing the restraints of civilization as evil: “Man
was born free but everywhere he is in chains!” [page 173]
The result of making nature the basis of morals influenced civil law: “The Natural Law of
Jurisprudence.” Thisis “Law without God.” However, nature is cruel as well as non-cruel [page 176]
Negatively, Rousseau’s philosophy influenced the French artist Gauguin (1848-1903). In his search
for “freedom” Gauguin deserted his family and moved to Tahiti where he tried to be the noble savage.
He found out that this ideal was an illusion. Afterward, he pained his last work (f. 1898): “Whence
Come We? What Are We? Whither Do We Go? It is a portrait of an old woman dying. When he
finished this work Gauguin tried to commit suicide. He died about five years later.
Another example is Marquis de Sade (1740-1814) from whom we derive the term “sadism.” de Sade
knew that if nature was all there is, then what is is right! He wrote: “As nature has made us (men)
the strongest, we can do with her (women) whatever we please.” [page 177]
(a) Rousseau’s Philosophy Backfires – The Reign of Terror
How would this fit into a society without anarchy? Individual freedom would be reflected in the
“general will” through the social contract. This could even come by force, as the French Revolution
shows. The Reign of Terror was an attempt to purify the general will via the guillotine.
In his book “The Social Contract” (1762) he wrote:
“In order that the social compact may not be an empty formula, it tacitly includes the undertaking,
which alone can give force to the rest, that whoever refuses to obey the general will shall be
compelled to do so by the whole body.” This means nothing less than that he will be forced to be
free.” [page 174]
Robespierre, the “King of Terror” was a disciple of Rousseau and used this strain of thought to justify
his actions.
(b) Rousseau’s Influence Today
In another book, “Confessions,” (1782) Rousseau put forth that the best education was the absence
of education. This has influenced our own educational philosophies to this day (“self-expression”
learning, etc.).
Will and Ariel Durant believed Rousseau to be the most important influence on modern thought.
Rousseau’s concept of autonomous freedom led to the Bohemian ideal where the noble man is one
who fights against all of society’s standards, values, laws. Cf. the Bohemian ideal which marked out
the hippie generation of the 60s.
(c) In England: David Hume (1711-1776)
A contemporary of Rousseau, Hume (in England) also criticized reason as a means of knowledge,
questioning the existence of “cause and effect.” He upheld the centrality of human experience and
feeling.
(2) Immanuel Kant (1724-1804)
Wrote: “Critique of Pure Reason” (1781). He worded the problem of is age differently from that of
Rousseau:
NOUMENAL WORLD (the concepts of meaning and value)

PHENOMENAL WORLD (the world that can be measured; the external world of science)
Kant, like Rousseau, could not unify his worldview. There was no way to do this beginning with
man.
(3) Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831)
Hegel understood the need for unity between Kant’s two worlds. Hegel emphasized the flow of
history. Quoting Copleston, Schaeffer writes (page 179):
“According to Hegel, the universe is steadily unfolding and so is man’s understanding of it. No
single proposition about reality can truly reflect what is the case. Rather, in the heart of the truth
of a given proposition one finds its opposite. This, where recognized, unfolds and stands in
opposition to the theses. Yet there is truth in both thesis and antitheses, and when this is perceived
a synthesisisformed and a new proposition states the truth of the newly recognized situation. But
this in truth is found to contain its own contradiction and the process goes on ad infinitum. Thus
the universe and man’s understanding of it unfolds dialectically. In sort the universe with its
consciousness–man–evolves.”
Our generation today sees truth in this way, a result of synthesis rather than absolutes. Truth can be
found in the changing flow of history (and opinion), through thesis, antithesis, synthesis. “When this
happens, truth, as people have always thought of truth, has died.” [page 179]
(4) Soren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)
Meaning is found apart from reason, as reason will always lead to pessimism. Could be illustrated
like this:
The things that are Hope, meaning, future
Reason Religion or Metaphysics.
Leap of faith
For Kierkegaard, faith is believing in something apart from objective truth.
NONREASON = FAITH/OPTIMISM

REASON = PESSIMISM
c. All of this Leads to our Modern Dilemma:
“In our day, humanistic reason affirms that there is only the cosmic machine, which encompasses
everything, including people. To those who hold this view everything people are or do is explained
by some form of determinism, some type of behaviorism, some kind of reductionism.” [Schaeffer,
page 180]
Note Schaeffer’s story about hearing a lecture by George Wald, former professor of chemistry at
Harvard. He believed all things are the product of chance. During the lecture, he said, “Four hundred
years ago there was a collection of molecules named Shakespeare which produced Hamlet.”
Man, beginning with a proud humanism a few centuries ago, tried to make himself autonomous and
rather than becoming great, he found himself to be nothing more than a collection of molecules!
Out of nothing man has come, nothing man is.
E. The Question of Origins
What was the beginning of everything? There are only four possible answers to this question.
1. Once Absolutely Nothing Existed and Then Something Came to Be
a. Everything Came from Nothing (ex nihilo)
This is philosophically absurd. Therefore, if everything came from something, something has always
existed.
2. Everything Came from Something or Someone
a. Everything Came from a Personal Someone (God)
This is God who providentially guides the universe.
b. Everything Came from an Impersonal Someone
Includes pantheism, deism, gods, a god, a living impersonal force. No providential immanent
guidance in this system.
c. Everything Came from an Impersonal Something
Atheistic Evolution. No guidance in this system other than chance or that which is natural (survival
of the fittest, cause and effect).
(1) Louis Pasteur (1822-1895)
Proved in 1864 that if non-living things were pasteurized, life could not come forth. IOW –
abiogenesis is impossible in a closed system.
F. Summary
From the High (later) Renaissance to today we see an historical journey to despair. This is where
men live today. Man is a machine in a universe of machines. But man cannot live like a machine!
“But even people who believe they are machines cannot live like machines, and thus they must ‘leap
upstairs’ against their reason and try to find something which gives meaning to life, even though to
do so they have to deny their reason.” [page3 182]
Those in the earlier Renaissance would never had settled for this; they would have considered it
intellectual suicide to separate meaning and values from reason.

 

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Woman with a Parasol – Madame Monet and Her Son

Image result for claude monet

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프란시스 쉐퍼 – 그러면 우리는 어떻게 살 것인가 introduction (Episode 1)

 

02 How Should We Then Live? (Promo Clip) Dr. Francis Schaeffer

The clip above is from episode 9 THE AGE OF PERSONAL PEACE AND AFFLUENCE

10 Worldview and Truth

In above clip Schaeffer quotes Paul’s speech in Greece from Romans 1 (from Episode FINAL CHOICES)

Two Minute Warning: How Then Should We Live?: Francis Schaeffer at 100

 

A Christian Manifesto Francis Schaeffer

Today I am posting my second post in this series that includes over 50 modern artists that have made a splash. Last time it was Tracey Emin of England and today it is Peter Howson of Scotland. Howson has overcome alcoholism in order to continue his painting. Many times in the past great painters and writers have had their careers halted by the bottle in the past. William Faulkner, Ernest Heminingway, Scott  Fitzgerald and James Joyce are all in the  Woody Allen movie “Midnight in Paris” and they all were alcoholics.  However, there is deliverance from alcoholism through the power of Christ.
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Monet “Poplars on the River”

File:Monet Poplars on the River Epte.jpg

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Van Gogh Self-Portrait with Straw Hat 1887-Metropolitan.jpg

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Paul Cezanne

Edgar Degas – 

Alfred Sisley –

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Pierre-Auguste Renoir born 25th February 1841–1919 French artist painter Impressionist black & white portrait photo

Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841–1919) French Impressionist painter

__________________

Claude Monet

paul gauguin march 1891 ,

Georges Seurat

Camille Pissarro

How Should We Then Live – Episode 8 – The Age of Fragmentation

Published on Aug 6, 2015

Francis Shaeffer

Francis Schaeffer in the episode, “The Age of Fragmentation,” Episode 8 of HOW SHOULD WE THEN  LIVE? noted:

Monet, Renoir, Camille Pissarro, SisleyDegas were following nature as it has been called in their painting they were impressionists.They painted only what their eyes brought them. But was there reality behind the light waves reaching their eyes? After 1885 Monet carried this to its conclusion and reality tended to become a dream. With impressionism the door was open for art to become the vehicle for modern thought. As reality became a dream, impressionism began to fall apart. These men Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, all great post Impressionists felt the problem, felt the loss of meaning. They set out to solve the problem, to find the way back to reality, to the absolute behind the individual things, behind the particulars, ultimately they failed.
I am not saying that these painters were always consciously painting their philosophy of life, but rather in their work as a whole their worldview was often reflected. Cezanne reduced nature to what he considered its basic geometric forms. In this he was searching for an universal which would tie all kinds of individual things in nature together, but this gave a broken fragmented appearance to his pictures.
File:Paul Cézanne 047.jpg
Les Grandes Baigneuses, 1898–1905: the triumph of Poussinesque stability and geometric balance.
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In his bathers there is much freshness, much vitality. An absolute wonder in the balance of the picture as a whole, but he portrayed not only nature but also man himself in fragmented form. 
I want to stress that I am not minimizing these men as men. To read van Gogh’s letters is to weep for the pain of this sensitive man. Nor do I minimize their talent as painters. Their work often has great beauty indeed. But their art did become the vehicle of modern man’s view of fractured truth and light. As philosophy had moved from unity to fragmentation so did painting. In 1912 Kaczynski wrote an article saying that in so far as the old harmony, that is an unity of knowledge have been lost, that only two possibilities remained: extreme abstraction or extreme naturalism, both he said were equal.
Image result for claude monet
Claude Monet
Claude Monet 1899 Nadar crop.jpg

Claude Monet, photo by Nadar, 1899.
Born Oscar-Claude Monet
14 November 1840
Paris, France
Died 5 December 1926 (aged 86)
Giverny, France
Nationality French
Known for Painter
Notable work Impression, Sunrise
Rouen Cathedral series
London Parliament series
Water Lilies
Haystacks
Poplars
Movement Impressionism
Patron(s) Gustave CaillebotteErnest HoschedéGeorges Clemenceau

Claude Monet – Grainstacks, end of day, Autumn, 1890

Image result for claude monet

Oscar-Claude Monet (/mˈn/French: [klod mɔnɛ]; 14 November 1840 – 5 December 1926) was a founder of French Impressionist painting, and the most consistent and prolific practitioner of the movement’s philosophy of expressing one’s perceptions before nature, especially as applied to plein-air landscape painting.[1][2] The term “Impressionism” is derived from the title of his painting Impression, soleil levant (Impression, Sunrise), which was exhibited in 1874 in the first of the independent exhibitions mounted by Monet and his associates as an alternative to the Salon de Paris.

Monet’s ambition of documenting the French countryside led him to adopt a method of painting the same scene many times in order to capture the changing of light and the passing of the seasons. From 1883 Monet lived in Giverny, where he purchased a house and property and began a vast landscaping project which included lily ponds that would become the subjects of his best-known works. In 1899 he began painting the water lilies, first in vertical views with a Japanese bridge as a central feature, and later in the series of large-scale paintings that was to occupy him continuously for the next 20 years of his life.

Biography

Birth and childhood

Claude Monet was born on 14 November 1840 on the fifth floor of 45 rue Laffitte, in the 9th arrondissement of Paris.[3] He was the second son of Claude Adolphe Monet and Louise Justine Aubrée Monet, both of them second-generation Parisians. On 20 May 1841, he was baptized in the local parish church, Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, as Oscar-Claude, but his parents called him simply Oscar.[3][4] (He signed his juvenilia “O. Monet”.) Despite being baptized Catholic, Monet later became an atheist.[5][6]

In 1845, his family moved to Le Havre in Normandy. His father wanted him to go into the family’s ship-chandling and grocery business,[7] but Monet wanted to become an artist. His mother was a singer, and supported Monet’s desire for a career in art.[8]

On 1 April 1851, Monet entered Le Havre secondary school of the arts. Locals knew him well for his charcoal caricatures, which he would sell for ten to twenty francs. Monet also undertook his first drawing lessons from Jacques-François Ochard, a former student of Jacques-Louis David. On the beaches of Normandy around 1856 he met fellow artist Eugène Boudin, who became his mentor and taught him to use oil paints. Boudin taught Monet “en plein air” (outdoor) techniques for painting.[9] Both received the influence of Johan Barthold Jongkind.

On 28 January 1857, his mother died. At the age of sixteen, he left school and went to live with his widowed, childless aunt, Marie-Jeanne Lecadre.

The Woman in the Green DressCamille Doncieux, 1866, Kunsthalle Bremen

Paris and Algeria

When Monet traveled to Paris to visit the Louvre, he witnessed painters copying from the old masters. Having brought his paints and other tools with him, he would instead go and sit by a window and paint what he saw.[10] Monet was in Paris for several years and met other young painters, including Édouard Manet and others who would become friends and fellow Impressionists.

After drawing a low ballot number in March 1861, Monet was drafted into the First Regiment of African Light Cavalry (Chasseurs d’Afrique) in Algeria for a seven-year period of military service. His prosperous father could have purchased Monet’s exemption from conscription but declined to do so when his son refused to give up painting. While in Algeria Monet did only a few sketches of casbah scenes, a single landscape, and several portraits of officers, all of which have been lost. In a Le Temps interview of 1900 however he commented that the light and vivid colours of North Africa “contained the germ of my future researches”.[11] After about a year of garrison duty in Algiers, Monet contracted typhoid fever and briefly went absent without leave. Following convalescence, Monet’s aunt intervened to get him out of the army if he agreed to complete a course at an art school. It is possible that the Dutch painter Johan Barthold Jongkind, whom Monet knew, may have prompted his aunt on this matter.

Disillusioned with the traditional art taught at art schools, in 1862 Monet became a student of Charles Gleyre in Paris, where he met Pierre-Auguste RenoirFrédéric Bazilleand Alfred Sisley. Together they shared new approaches to art, painting the effects of light en plein air with broken colour and rapid brushstrokes, in what later came to be known as Impressionism.

Le déjeuner sur l’herbe (right section), 1865–1866, with Gustave CourbetFrédéric Bazille and Camille Doncieux, first wife of the artist, Musée d’OrsayParis[12]

In January 1865 Monet was working on a version of Le déjeuner sur l’herbe, aiming to present it for hanging at the Salon, which had rejected Manet’s Le déjeuner sur l’herbe two years earlier.[13] Monet’s painting was very large and could not be completed in time. (It was later cut up, with parts now in different galleries.) Monet submitted instead a painting of Camille or The Woman in the Green Dress (La femme à la robe verte), one of many works using his future wife, Camille Doncieux, as his model. Both this painting and a small landscape were hung.[13] The following year Monet used Camille for his model in Women in the Garden, and On the Bank of the Seine, Bennecourt in 1868. Camille became pregnant and gave birth to their first child, Jean, in 1867.[14] Monet and Camille married on 28 June 1870, just before the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War,[15] and, after their excursion to London and Zaandam, they moved to Argenteuil, in December 1871. During this time Monet painted various works of modern life. He and Camille lived in poverty for most of this period. Following the successful exhibition of some maritime paintings, and the winning of a silver medal at Le Havre, Monet’s paintings were seized by creditors, from whom they were bought back by a shipping merchant, Gaudibert, who was also a patron of Boudin.[13]

Impressionism

Impression, Sunrise (Impression, soleil levant), 1872; the painting that gave its name to the style and artistic movement. Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris

From the late 1860s, Monet and other like-minded artists met with rejection from the conservative Académie des Beaux-Arts, which held its annual exhibition at the Salon de Paris. During the latter part of 1873, Monet, Pierre-Auguste RenoirCamille Pissarro, and Alfred Sisley organized the Société anonyme des artistes peintres, sculpteurs et graveurs(Anonymous Society of Painters, Sculptors, and Engravers) to exhibit their artworks independently. At their first exhibition, held in April 1874, Monet exhibited the work that was to give the group its lasting name. He was inspired by the style and subject matter of previous modern painters Camille Pissarro and Edouard Manet.[16]

Impression, Sunrise was painted in 1872, depicting a Le Havre port landscape. From the painting’s title the art critic Louis Leroy, in his review, “L’Exposition des Impressionnistes,” which appeared in Le Charivari, coined the term “Impressionism“.[17] It was intended as disparagement but the Impressionists appropriated the term for themselves.[18][19]

Franco-Prussian War and Argenteuil

After the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War (19 July 1870), Monet and his family took refuge in England in September 1870,[20] where he studied the works of John Constable and Joseph Mallord William Turner, both of whose landscapes would serve to inspire Monet’s innovations in the study of colour. In the spring of 1871, Monet’s works were refused authorisation for inclusion in the Royal Academy exhibition.[15]

In May 1871, he left London to live in Zaandam, in the Netherlands,[15] where he made twenty-five paintings (and the police suspected him of revolutionary activities).[21] He also paid a first visit to nearby Amsterdam. In October or November 1871, he returned to France. From December 1871 to 1878 he lived at Argenteuil, a village on the right bank of the Seine river near Paris, and a popular Sunday-outing destination for Parisians, where he painted some of his best-known works. In 1873, Monet purchased a small boat equipped to be used as a floating studio.[22] From the boat studio Monet painted landscapes and also portraits of Édouard Manet and his wife; Manet in turn depicted Monet painting aboard the boat, accompanied by Camille, in 1874.[22] In 1874, he briefly returned to Holland.[23]

Impressionism

Madame Monet in a Japanese kimono, 1875, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

The first Impressionist exhibition was held in 1874 at 35 boulevard des Capucines, Paris, from 15 April to 15 May. The primary purpose of the participants was not so much to promote a new style, but to free themselves from the constraints of the Salon de Paris. The exhibition, open to anyone prepared to pay 60 francs, gave artists the opportunity to show their work without the interference of a jury.[24][25][26]

Renoir chaired the hanging committee and did most of the work himself, as others members failed to present themselves.[24][25]

In addition to Impression: Sunrise (pictured above), Monet presented four oil paintings and seven pastels. Among the paintings he displayed was The Luncheon (1868), which features Camille Doncieux and Jean Monet, and which had been rejected by the Paris Salon of 1870.[27] Also in this exhibition was a painting titled Boulevard des Capucines, a painting of the boulevard done from the photographer Nadar’s apartment at no. 35. Monet painted the subject twice, and it is uncertain which of the two pictures, that now in the Pushkin Museum in Moscow, or that in the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, was the painting that appeared in the groundbreaking 1874 exhibition, though more recently the Moscow picture has been favoured.[28][29] Altogether, 165 works were exhibited in the exhibition, including 4 oils, 2 pastels and 3 watercolours by Morisot; 6 oils and 1 pastel by Renoir; 10 works by Degas; 5 by Pissarro; 3 by Cézanne; and 3 by Guillaumin. Several works were on loan, including Cézanne’s Modern Olympia, Morisot’s Hide and Seek (owned by Manet) and 2 landscapes by Sisley that had been purchased by Durand-Ruel.[24][25][26]

The total attendance is estimated at 3500, and some works did sell, though some exhibitors had placed their prices too high. Pissarro was asking 1000 francs for The Orchard and Monet the same for Impression: Sunrise, neither of which sold. Renoir failed to obtain the 500 francs he was asking for La Loge, but later sold it for 450 francs to Père Martin, dealer and supporter of the group.[24][25][26]

Death of Camille

Claude Monet, Camille Monet on her deathbed, 1879, Musée d’Orsay, Paris

Pierre-Auguste RenoirPortrait of Claude Monet, 1875, Musée d’Orsay

In 1876, Camille Monet became ill with tuberculosis. Their second son, Michel, was born on 17 March 1878. This second child weakened her already fading health. In the summer of that year, the family moved to the village of Vétheuil where they shared a house with the family of Ernest Hoschedé, a wealthy department store owner and patron of the arts. In 1878, Camille Monet was diagnosed with uterine cancer,[37][38][39] and she died on 5 September 1879 at the age of thirty-two.[40][41]

Monet made a study in oils of his dead wife. Many years later, Monet confessed to his friend Georges Clemenceau that his need to analyse colours was both the joy and torment of his life. He explained,

I one day found myself looking at my beloved wife’s dead face and just systematically noting the colours according to an automatic reflex!

John Berger describes the work as “a blizzard of white, grey, purplish paint … a terrible blizzard of loss which will forever efface her features. In fact there can be very few death-bed paintings which have been so intensely felt or subjectively expressive.”[42]

Vétheuil

After several difficult months following the death of Camille, Monet began to create some of his best paintings of the 19th century. During the early 1880s, Monet painted several groups of landscapes and seascapes in what he considered to be campaigns to document the French countryside. These began to evolve into series of pictures in which he documented the same scene many times in order to capture the changing of light and the passing of the seasons.

Monet’s friend Ernest Hoschedé became bankrupt, and left in 1878 for Belgium. After the death of Camille Monet in September 1879, and while Monet continued to live in the house in Vétheuil, Alice Hoschedéhelped Monet to raise his two sons, Jean and Michel. She took them to Paris to live alongside her own six children,[43] Blanche (who married Jean Monet), Germaine, Suzanne, Marthe, Jean-Pierre, and Jacques. In the spring of 1880, Alice Hoschedé and all the children left Paris and rejoined Monet at Vétheuil.[44] In 1881, all of them moved to Poissy, which Monet hated. In April 1883, looking out the window of the little train between Vernon and Gasny, he discovered Giverny in Normandy.[43][45][46] Monet, Alice Hoschedé and the children moved to Vernon, then to the house in Giverny, where he planted a large garden and where he painted for much of the rest of his life. Following the death of her estranged husband, Monet married Alice Hoschedé in 1892.[9]

Giverny

Study of a Figure Outdoors: Woman with a Parasol, facing left, 1886. Musée d’Orsay

Monet’s house and garden

Monet rented and eventually purchased a house and gardens in Giverny. At the beginning of May 1883, Monet and his large family rented the home and 2 acres (0.81 ha) from a local landowner. The house was situated near the main road between the towns of Vernon and Gasny at Giverny. There was a barn that doubled as a painting studio, orchards and a small garden. The house was close enough to the local schools for the children to attend, and the surrounding landscape offered many suitable motifs for Monet’s work.

The family worked and built up the gardens, and Monet’s fortunes began to change for the better as his dealer, Paul Durand-Ruel, had increasing success in selling his paintings.[47] By November 1890, Monet was prosperous enough to buy the house, the surrounding buildings and the land for his gardens. During the 1890s, Monet built a greenhouse and a second studio, a spacious building well lit with skylights.

Monet wrote daily instructions to his gardener, precise designs and layouts for plantings, and invoices for his floral purchases and his collection of botany books. As Monet’s wealth grew, his garden evolved. He remained its architect, even after he hired seven gardeners.[48]

Monet purchased additional land with a water meadow. In 1893 he began a vast landscaping project which included lily ponds that would become the subjects of his best-known works. White water lilies local to France were planted along with imported cultivars from South America and Egypt, resulting in a range of colours including yellow, blue and white lilies that turned pink with age.[49] In 1899 he began painting the water lilies, first in vertical views with a Japanese bridge as a central feature, and later in the series of large-scale paintings that was to occupy him continuously for the next 20 years of his life. This scenery, with its alternating light and mirror-like reflections, became an integral part of his work. By the mid-1910s Monet had achieved:

a completely new, fluid, and somewhat audacious style of painting in which the water-lily pond became the point of departure for an almost abstract art

— Gary Tinterow[50][51]

Last years

Monet, right, in his garden at Giverny, 1922

Failing sight

Monet’s second wife, Alice, died in 1911, and his oldest son Jean, who had married Alice’s daughter Blanche, Monet’s particular favourite, died in 1914.[9] After Alice died, Blanche looked after and cared for Monet. It was during this time that Monet began to develop the first signs of cataracts.[52]

During World War I, in which his younger son Michel served and his friend and admirer Georges Clemenceau led the French nation, Monet painted a series of weeping willow trees as homage to the French fallen soldiers. In 1923, he underwent two operations to remove his cataracts. The paintings done while the cataracts affected his vision have a general reddish tone, which is characteristic of the vision of cataract victims. It may also be that after surgery he was able to see certain ultravioletwavelengths of light that are normally excluded by the lens of the eye; this may have had an effect on the colours he perceived. After his operations he even repainted some of these paintings, with bluer water lilies than before.[53]

Death

Monet family grave at Giverny

Monet died of lung cancer on 5 December 1926 at the age of 86 and is buried in the Giverny church cemetery.[45] Monet had insisted that the occasion be simple; thus only about fifty people attended the ceremony.[54]

His home, garden, and waterlily pond were bequeathed by his son Michel, his only heir, to the French Academy of Fine Arts (part of the Institut de France) in 1966. Through the Fondation Claude Monet, the house and gardens were opened for visits in 1980, following restoration.[55] In addition to souvenirs of Monet and other objects of his life, the house contains his collection of Japanese woodcut prints. The house and garden, along with the Museum of Impressionism, are major attractions in Giverny, which hosts tourists from all over the world.

Monet’s methods

Rouen Cathedral at sunset, 1893, Musée Marmottan Monet. An example of the Rouen Cathedral Series.

Monet has been described as “the driving force behind Impressionism”.[56] Crucial to the art of the Impressionist painters was the understanding of the effects of light on the local colour of objects, and the effects of the juxtaposition of colours with each other.[57] Monet’s long career as a painter was spent in the pursuit of this aim.

In 1856, his chance meeting with Eugene Boudin, a painter of small beach scenes, opened his eyes to the possibility of plein-air painting. From that time, with a short interruption for military service, he dedicated himself to searching for new and improved methods of painterly expression. To this end, as a young man, he visited the Paris Salon and familiarised himself with the works of older painters, and made friends with other young artists.[56] The five years that he spent at Argenteuil, spending much time on the River Seine in a little floating studio, were formative in his study of the effects of light and reflections. He began to think in terms of colours and shapes rather than scenes and objects. He used bright colours in dabs and dashes and squiggles of paint. Having rejected the academic teachings of Gleyre’s studio, he freed himself from theory, saying “I like to paint as a bird sings.”[58]

In 1877 a series of paintings at St-Lazare Station had Monet looking at smoke and steam and the way that they affected colour and visibility, being sometimes opaque and sometimes translucent. He was to further use this study in the painting of the effects of mist and rain on the landscape.[59] The study of the effects of atmosphere was to evolve into a number of series of paintings in which Monet repeatedly painted the same subject in different lights, at different hours of the day, and through the changes of weather and season. This process began in the 1880s and continued until the end of his life in 1926.

His first series exhibited as such was of Haystacks, painted from different points of view and at different times of the day. Fifteen of the paintings were exhibited at the Galerie Durand-Ruel in 1891. In 1892 he produced what is probably his best-known series, twenty-six views of Rouen Cathedral.[57] In these paintings Monet broke with painterly traditions by cropping the subject so that only a portion of the façade is seen on the canvas. The paintings do not focus on the grand Medieval building, but on the play of light and shade across its surface, transforming the solid masonry.[60]

Other series include PoplarsMornings on the Seine, and the Water Lilies that were painted on his property at Giverny. Between 1883 and 1908, Monet traveled to the Mediterranean, where he painted landmarks, landscapes, and seascapes, including a series of paintings in Venice. In London he painted four series: the Houses of Parliament, LondonCharing Cross BridgeWaterloo Bridge, and Views of Westminster Bridge. Helen Gardner writes:

“Monet, with a scientific precision, has given us an unparalleled and unexcelled record of the passing of time as seen in the movement of light over identical forms.”[61]

Fame

In 2004, London, the Parliament, Effects of Sun in the Fog (Londres, le Parlement, trouée de soleil dans le brouillard) (1904), sold for US$20.1 million.[63] In 2006, the journal Proceedings of the Royal Societypublished a paper providing evidence that these were painted in situ at St Thomas’ Hospital over the river Thames.[64]

Falaises près de Dieppe (Cliffs near Dieppe) has been stolen on two separate occasions: once in 1998 (in which the museum’s curator was convicted of the theft and jailed for five years and two months along with two accomplices) and most recently in August 2007.[65] It was recovered in June 2008.[66]

Monet’s Le Pont du chemin de fer à Argenteuil, an 1873 painting of a railway bridge spanning the Seine near Paris, was bought by an anonymous telephone bidder for a record $41.4 million at Christie’s auction in New York on 6 May 2008. The previous record for his painting stood at $36.5 million.[67] Just a few weeks later, Le bassin aux nymphéas (from the water lilies series) sold at Christie’s 24 June 2008 auction in London, lot 19,[68] for £36,500,000 ($71,892,376.34) (hammer price) or £40,921,250 ($80,451,178) with fees, nearly doubling the record for the artist[69] and representing one of the top 20 highest prices paid for a painting at the time.

In October 2013, Monet’s paintings, L’Eglise de Vetheuil and Le Bassin aux Nympheas, became subjects of a legal case in New York against NY-based Vilma Bautista, one-time aide to Imelda Marcos, wife of dictator Ferdinand Marcos,[70] after she sold Le Bassin aux Nympheas for $32 million to a Swiss buyer. The said Monet paintings, along with two others, were acquired by Imelda during her husband’s presidency and allegedly bought using the nation’s funds. Bautista’s lawyer claimed that the aide sold the painting for Imelda but did not have a chance to give her the money. The Philippine government seeks the return of the painting.[70] Le Bassin aux Nympheas, also known as Japanese Footbridge over the Water-Lily Pond at Giverny, is part of Monet’s famed Water Lilies series.

See also

Further reading

External links

101 Western painters you should know

A list of the Best Painters of all-time in Western Painting, the 101 most important painters of the history of western painting, from 13th century to 21st century

by G. Fernández – theartwolf.com
Although this list stems from a deep study of the painters, their contribution to Western painting, and their influence on later artists; we are aware that objectivity does not exist in Art, so we understand that most readers will not agree 100% with this list. In any case, theartwolf.com assures that this list is only intended as a tribute to painting and the painters who have made it an unforgettable Art

1. PABLO PICASSO (1881-1973) – Picasso is to Art History a giant earthquake with eternal aftermaths. With the possible exception of Michelangelo (who focused his greatest efforts in sculpture and architecture), no other artist had such ambitions at the time of placing his oeuvre in the history of art. Picasso created the avant-garde. Picasso destroyed the avant-garde. He looked back at the masters and surpassed them all. He faced the whole history of art and single-handedly redefined the tortuous relationship between work and spectator

2. GIOTTO DI BONDONE (c.1267-1337) – It has been said that Giotto was the first real painter, like Adam was the first man. We agree with the first part. Giotto continued the Byzantine style of Cimabue and other predecessors, but he earned the right to be included in gold letters in the history of painting when he added a quality unknown to date: emotion

3. LEONARDO DA VINCI (1452-1519) – For better or for worse, Leonardo will be forever known as the author of the most famous painting of all time, the “Gioconda” or “Mona Lisa”. But he is more, much more. His humanist, almost scientific gaze, entered the art of the quattrocento and revoluted it with his sfumetto that nobody was ever able to imitate

4. PAUL CÉZANNE (1839-1906) – “Cezanne is the father of us all.” This famous quote has been attributed to both Picasso and Matisse, and certainly it does not matter who actually said it, because in either case would be appropriate. While he exhibited with the Impressionist painters, Cézanne left behind the whole group and developed a style of painting never seen so far, which opened the door for the arrival of Cubism and the rest of the vanguards of the twentieth century

5. REMBRANDT VAN RIJN (1606-1669) – The fascinating use of the light and shadows in Rembrandt’s works seem to reflect his own life, moving from fame to oblivion. Rembrandt is the great master of Dutch painting, and, along with Velázquez, the main figure of 17th century European Painting. He is, in addition, the great master of the self-portrait of all time, an artist who had never show mercy at the time of depicting himself

6. DIEGO VELÁZQUEZ (1599-1660) – Along with Rembrandt, one of the summits of Baroque painting. But unlike the Dutch artist, the Sevillan painter spent most of his life in the comfortable but rigid courtesan society. Nevertheless, Velázquez was an innovator, a “painter of atmospheres” two centuries before Turner and the Impressionists, which it is shown in his colossal ‘royal paintings’ (“Meninas”, “The Forge of Vulcan”), but also in his small and memorable sketches of the Villa Medici.

7. WASSILY KANDINSKY (1866-1944) – Although the title of “father of abstraction” has been assigned to several artists, from Picasso to Turner, few painters could claim it with as much justice as Kandinsky. Many artists have succeeded in painting emotion, but very few have changed the way we understand art. Wassily Kandinsky is one of them.

8. CLAUDE MONET (1840-1926) – The importance of Monet in the history of art is sometimes “underrated”, as Art lovers tend to see only the overwhelming beauty that emanates from his canvases, ignoring the complex technique and composition of the work (a “defect” somehow caused by Monet himself, when he declared that “I do not understand why everyone discusses my art and pretends to understand, as if it were necessary to understand, when it is simply necessary to love”). However, Monet’s experiments, including studies on the changes in an object caused by daylight at different times of the day; and the almost abstract quality of his “water lilies”, are clearly a prologue to the art of the twentieth century.

9. CARAVAGGIO (1571-1610) – The tough and violent Caravaggio is considered the father of Baroque painting, with his spectacular use of lights and shadows. Caravaggio’s chiaroscuro became so famous that many painters started to copy his paintings, creating the ‘Caravaggisti’ style.

10. JOSEPH MALLORD WILLIAM TURNER (1775-1851) – Turner is the best landscape painter of Western painting. Whereas he had been at his beginnings an academic painter, Turner was slowly but unstoppably evolving towards a free, atmospheric style, sometimes even outlining the abstraction, which was misunderstood and rejected by the same critics who had admired him for decades

11. JAN VAN EYCK (1390-1441) – Van Eyck is the colossal pillar on which rests the whole Flemish paintings from later centuries, the genius of accuracy, thoroughness and perspective, well above any other artist of his time, either Flemish or Italian.

12. ALBRECHT DÜRER (1471-1528) – The real Leonardo da Vinci of Northern European Rennaisance was Albrecht Dürer, a restless and innovative genious, master of drawing and color. He is one of the first artists to represent nature without artifice, either in his painted landscapes or in his drawings of plants and animals

13. JACKSON POLLOCK (1912-1956) – The major figure of American Abstract Expressionism, Pollock created his best works, his famous drips, between 1947 and 1950. After those fascinating years, comparable to Picasso’s blue period or van Gogh’s final months in Auvers, he abandoned the drip, and his latest works are often bold, unexciting works.

14. MICHELANGELO BUONARROTI (1475-1564) – Some readers will be quite surprised to see the man who is, along with Picasso, the greatest artistic genius of all time, out of the “top ten” of this list, but the fact is that even Michelangelo defined himself as “sculptor”, and even his painted masterpiece (the frescoes in the Sistine Chapel) are often defined as ‘painted sculptures’. Nevertheless, that unforgettable masterpiece is enough to guarantee him a place of honor in the history of painting

15. PAUL GAUGUIN (1848-1903) – One of the most fascinating figures in the history of painting, his works moved from Impressionism (soon abandoned) to a colorful and vigorous symbolism, as can be seen in his ‘Polynesian paintings’. Matisse and Fauvism could not be understood without the works of Paul Gauguin

16. FRANCISCO DE GOYA (1746-1828) – Goya is an enigma. In the whole History of Art few figures are as complex as the artist born in Fuendetodos, Spain. Enterprising and indefinable, a painter with no rival in all his life, Goya was the painter of the Court and the painter of the people. He was a religious painter and a mystical painter. He was the author of the beauty and eroticism of the ‘Maja desnuda’ and the creator of the explicit horror of ‘The Third of May, 1808’. He was an oil painter, a fresco painter, a sketcher and an engraver. And he never stopped his metamorphosis

17. VINCENT VAN GOGH (1853-1890) – Few names in the history of painting are now as famous as Van Gogh, despite the complete neglect he suffered in life. His works, strong and personal, are one of the greatest influences in the twentieth century painting, especially in German Expressionism

18. ÉDOUARD MANET (1832-1883) – Manet was the origin of Impressionism, a revolutionary in a time of great artistic revolutions. His (at the time) quite polemical “Olympia” or “Déjeuner sur l’Herbe” opened the way for the great figures of Impressionism

19. MARK ROTHKO (1903-1970) – The influence of Rothko in the history of painting is yet to be quantified, because the truth is that almost 40 years after his death the influence of Rothko’s large, dazzling and emotional masses of color continues to increase in many painters of the 21st century

20. HENRI MATISSE (1869-1954) – Art critics tend to regard Matisse as the greatest exponent of twentieth century painting, only surpassed by Picasso. This is an exaggeration, although the almost pure use of color in some of his works strongly influenced many of the following avant-gardes

21. RAPHAEL (1483-1520) – Equally loved and hated in different eras, no one can doubt that Raphael is one of the greatest geniuses of the Renaissance, with an excellent technique in terms of drawing and color

22. JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT (1960-1988) – Basquiat is undoubtedly the most important and famous member of the “graffiti movement” that appeared in the New York scene in the early’80s, an artistic movement whose enormous influence on later painting is still to be measured

23. EDVARD MUNCH (1863-1944) – Modernist in his context, Munch could be also considered the first expressionist painter in history. Works like “The Scream” are vital to understanding the twentieth century painting.

24. TITIAN (c.1476-1576) – After the premature death of Giorgione, Titian became the leading figure of Venetian painting of his time. His use of color and his taste for mythological themes defined the main features of 16th century Venetian Art. His influence on later artists -Rubens, Velázquez…- is extremely important

25. PIET MONDRIAN (1872 -1944) – Along with Kandinsky and Malevich, Mondrian is the leading figure of early abstract painting. After emigrating to New York, Mondrian filled his abstract paintings with a fascinating emotional quality, as we can se in his series of “boogie-woogies” created in the mid-40s

26. PIERO DELLA FRANCESCA (1416-1492) – Despite being one of the most important figures of the quattrocento, the Art of Piero della Francesca has been described as “cold”, “hieratic” or even “impersonal”. But with the apparition of Berenson and the great historians of his era, like Michel Hérubel -who defended the “metaphysical dimension” of the paintings by Piero-, his precise and detailed Art finally occupied the place that it deserves in the Art history

27. PETER PAUL RUBENS (1577-1640) – Rubens was one of the most prolific painters of all time, thanks in part to the collaboration of his study. Very famous in life, he traveled around Europe to meet orders from very wealthy and important clients. His female nudes are still amazing in our days

28. ANDY WARHOL (1928-1987) – Brilliant and controversial, Warhol is the leading figure of pop-art and one of the icons of contemporary art. His silkscreen series depicting icons of the mass-media (as a reinterpretation of Monet’s series of Water lilies or the Rouen Cathedral) are one of the milestones of contemporary Art, with a huge influence in the Art of our days

29. JOAN MIRÓ (1893-1983) – Like most geniuses, Miro is an unclassificable artist. His interest in the world of the unconscious, those hidden in the depths of the mind, link him with Surrealism, but with a personal style, sometimes closer to Fauvism and Expressionism. His most important works are those from the series of “Constellations”, created in the early 40s

30. TOMMASO MASACCIO (1401-1428) – Masaccio was one of the first old masters to use the laws of scientific perspective in his works . One of the greatest innovative painters of the Early Renaissance

31. MARC CHAGALL (1887-1985) – Artist of dreams and fantasies, Chagall was for all his life an immigrant fascinated by the lights and colors of the places he visited. Few names from the School of Paris of the early twentieth century have contributed so much -and with such variety of ideas- to change modern Art as this man “impressed by the light,” as he defined himself

31. GUSTAVE COURBET (1819-1877) – Leading figure of realism, and a clear precedent for the impressionists, Courbet was one of the greatest revolutionaries, both as an artist and as a social-activist, of the history of painting. Like Rembrandt and other predecessors, Courbet did not seek to create beauty, but believed that beauty is achieved when and artist represents the purest reality without artifice

33. NICOLAS POUSSIN (1594-1665) – The greatest among the great French Baroque painters, Poussin had a vital influence on French painting for many centuries. His use of color is unique among all the painters of his era

34. WILLEM DE KOONING (1904-1997) – After Pollock, the leading figure of abstract expressionism, though one of his greatest contributions was not to feel limited by the abstraction, often resorting to a heartbreaking figurative painting (his series of “Women” are the best example) with a major influence on later artists such as Francis Bacon or Lucian Freud

35. PAUL KLEE (1879-1940) – In a period of artistic revolutions and innovations, few artists were as crucial as Paul Klee. His studies of color, widely taught at the Bauhaus, are unique among all the artists of his time

36. FRANCIS BACON (1909-1992) – Maximum exponent, along with Lucian Freud, of the so-called “School of London”, Bacon’s style was totally against all canons of painting, not only in those terms related to beauty, but also against the dominance of the Abstract Expressionism of his time

37. GUSTAV KLIMT (1862-1918) – Half way between modernism and symbolism appears the figure of Gustav Klimt, who was also devoted to the industrial arts. His nearly abstract landscapes also make him a forerunner of geometric abstraction

38. EUGÈNE DELACROIX (1798-1863) – Eugène Delacroix is the French romanticism painter “par excellence” and one of the most important names in the European painting of the first half of the 19th century. His famous “Liberty leading the People”also demonstrates the capacity of Painting to become the symbol of an era.

39. PAOLO UCCELLO (1397-1475) – “Solitary, eccentric, melancholic and poor”. Giorgio Vasari described with these four words one of the most audacious geniuses of the early Florentine Renaissance, Paolo Uccello.

40. WILLIAM BLAKE (1757-1827) – Revolutionary and mystic, painter and poet, Blake is one of the most fascinating artists of any era. His watercolors, prints and temperas are filled with a wild imagination (almost crazyness), unique among the artists of his era

41. KAZIMIR MALEVICH (1878-1935) – Creator of Suprematism, Malevich will forever be one of the most controversial figures of the history of art among the general public, divided between those who consider him an essential renewal and those who consider that his works based on polygons of pure colors do not deserve to be considered Art

42. ANDREA MANTEGNA (1431-1506) – One of the greatest exponents of the Quattrocento, interested in the human figure, which he often represented under extreme perspectives (“The Dead Christ”)

43. JAN VERMEER (1632-1675) – Vermeer was the leading figure of the Delft School, and for sure one of the greatest landscape painters of all time. Works such as “View of the Delft” are considered almost “impressionist” due to the liveliness of his brushwork. He was also a skilled portraitist

44. EL GRECO (1541-1614) – One of the most original and fascinating artists of his era, with a very personal technique that was admired, three centuries later, by the impressionist painters

45. CASPAR DAVID FRIEDRICH (1774-1840) – Leading figure of German Romantic painting, Friedrich is still identified as the painter of landscapes of loneliness and distress, with human figures facing the terrible magnificence of nature.

46. WINSLOW HOMER (1836-1910) – The main figure of American painting of his era, Homer was a breath of fresh air for the American artistic scene, which was “stuck” in academic painting and the more romantic Hudson River School. Homer’s loose and lively brushstroke is almost impressionistic .

47. MARCEL DUCHAMP (1887-1968) – One of the major figures of Dadaism and a prototype of “total artist”, Duchamp is one of the most important and controversial figures of his era. His contribution to painting is just a small part of his huge contribution to the art world.

48. GIORGIONE (1478-1510) – Like so many other painters who died at young age, Giorgione (1477-1510) makes us wonder what place would his exquisite painting occupy in the history of Art if he had enjoyed a long existence, just like his direct artistic heir – Titian.

49. FRIDA KAHLO (1907-1954) – In recent years, Frida’s increasing fame seems to have obscured her importance in Latin American art. On September 17th, 1925, Kahlo was almost killed in a terrible bus accident. She did not died, but the violent crash had terrible sequels, breaking her spinal column, pelvis, and right leg.. After this accident, Kahlo’s self-portraits can be considered as quiet but terrible moans

50. HANS HOLBEIN THE YOUNGER (1497-1543) – After Dürer, Holbein is the greatest of the German painters of his time. The fascinating portrait of “The Ambassadors” is still considered one of the most enigmatic paintings of art history

51. EDGAR DEGAS (1834-1917) – Though Degas was not a “pure” impressionist painter, his works shared the ideals of that artistic movement. Degas paintings of young dancers or ballerinas are icons of late 19th century painting

52. FRA ANGELICO (1387-1455) – One of the great colorists from the early Renaissance. Initially trained as an illuminator, he is the author of masterpieces such as “The Annunciation” in the Prado Museum.

53. GEORGES SEURAT (1859-1891) – Georges Seurat is one of the most important post-impressionist painters, and he is considered the creator of the “pointillism”, a style of painting in which small distinct points of primary colors create the impression of a wide selection of secondary and intermediate colors.

54. JEAN-ANTOINE WATTEAU (1684-1721) – Watteau is today considered one of the pioneers of rococo. Unfortunately, he died at the height of his powers, as it is evidenced in the great portrait of “Gilles” painted in the year of his death

55. SALVADOR DALÍ (1904-1989) – “I am Surrealism!” shouted Dalí when he was expelled from the surrealist movement by André Breton. Although the quote sounds presumptuous (which was not unusual in Dalí), the fact is that Dalí’s paintings are now the most famous images of all the surrealist movement.

56. MAX ERNST (1891-1976) – Halfway between Surrealism and Dadaism appears Max Ernst, important in both movements. Ernst was a brave artistic explorer thanks in part to the support of his wife and patron, Peggy Guggenheim

57. TINTORETTO (1518-1594) – Tintoretto is the most flamboyant of all Venetian masters (not the best, such honour can only be reclaimed by Titian or Giorgione) and his remarkable oeuvre not only closed the Venetian splendour till the apparition of Canaletto and his contemporaries, but also makes him the last of the Cinquecento masters.

58. JASPER JOHNS (born 1930) – The last living legend of the early Pop Art, although he has never considered himself a “pop artist”. His most famous works are the series of “Flags” and “Targets“.

59. SANDRO BOTTICELLI (1445-1510) – “If Botticelli were alive now he would be working for Vogue”, said actor Peter Ustinov. As well as Raphael, Botticelli had been equally loved or hated in different eras, but his use of color is one of the most fascinating among all old masters.

60. DAVID HOCKNEY (born 1937) – David Hockney is one of the living myths of the Pop Art. Born in Great Britain, he moved to California, where he immediately felt identified with the light, the culture and the urban landscape of the ‘Golden State’

61. UMBERTO BOCCIONI (1882-1916) – The maximum figure of Italian Futurism, fascinated by the world of the machine, and the movement as a symbol of contemporary times.

62. JOACHIM PATINIR (1480-1524) – Much less technically gifted than other Flemish painters like Memling or van der Weyden, his contribution to the history of art is vital for the incorporation of landscape as a major element in the painting.

63. DUCCIO DA BUONINSEGNA (c.1255/60 – 1318/19) – While in Florence Giotto di Bondone was changing the history of painting, Duccio of Buoninsegna provided a breath of fresh air to the important Sienese School.

64. ROGER VAN DER WEYDEN (1399-1464) – After Van Eyck, the leading exponent of Flemish painting in the fifteenth century; a master of perspective and composition.

65. JOHN CONSTABLE (1776-1837) – John Constable (1776-1837) is, along with Turner, the great figure of English romanticism. But unlike his contemporary, he never left England, and he devoted all his time to represent the life and landscapes of his beloved England.

66. JACQUES-LOUIS DAVID (1748-1825) – David is the summit of neoclassicism, a grandiloquent artist whose compositions seem to reflect his own hectic and revolutionary life.

67. ARSHILLE GORKY (1905-1948) – Armenian-born American painter, Gorky was a surrealist painter and also one of the leaders of abstract expressionism. He was called “the Ingres of the unconscious”.

68. HIERONYMUS BOSCH (1450-1516) – An extremely religious man, all works by Bosch are basically moralizing, didactic. The artist sees in the society of his time the triumph of sin, the depravation, and all the things that have caused the fall of the human being from its angelical character; and he wants to warn his contemporaries about the terrible consequences of his impure acts.

69. PIETER BRUEGEL THE ELDER (1528-1569) – Many scholars and art critics claim to have found important similarities between the works by Hyeronimus Bosch and those by Brueghel, but the truth is that the differences between both of them are abysmal. Whereas Bosch’s fantasies are born of a deep deception and preoccupation for the human being, with a clearly moralizing message; works by Bruegel are full of irony, and even filled with a love for the rural life, which seems to anticipate the Dutch landscape paintings from the next century.

70. SIMONE MARTINI (1284-1344) – One of the great painters of the Trecento, he was a step further and helped to expand its progress, which culminated in the “International Style”.

71. Frederic Edwin Church (1826-1900) – Church represents the culmination of the Hudson River School: he had Cole’s love for the landscape, Asher Brown Durand’s romantic lyricism, and Albert Bierstadt’s grandiloquence, but he was braver and technically more gifted than anyone of them. Church is without any doubt one of the greatest landscape painters of all time, perhaps only surpassed by Turner and some impressionists and postimpressionists like Monet or Cézanne.

72. EDWARD HOPPER (1882-1967) – Hopper is widely known as the painter of urban loneliness. His most famous work, the fabulous “Nighthawks” (1942) has become the symbol of the solitude of the contemporary metropolis, and it is one of the icons of the 20th century Art.

73. LUCIO FONTANA (1899-1968) – Father of the “White Manifesto”, in which he stated that “Matter, colour and sound in motion are the phenomena whose simultaneous development makes up the new art”. His “Concepts Spatiales” are already icons of the art of the second half of the twentieth century.

74. FRANZ MARC (1880-1916) – After Kandinsky, the great figure of the Expressionist group “The Blue Rider” and one of the most important expressionist painters ever. He died at the height of his artistic powers, when his use of color was even anticipating the later abstraction.

75. PIERRE-AUGUSTE RENOIR (1841-1919) – One of the key figures of Impressionism, he soon left the movement to pursue a more personal, academic painting.

76. JAMES MCNEILL WHISTLER (1834-1903) – Along with Winslow Homer, the great figure of American painting of his time. Whistler was an excellent portraitist, which is shown in the fabulous portrait of his mother, considered one of the great masterpieces of American painting of all time.

77. THEODORE GÉRICAULT (1791-1824) – Key figure in romanticism, revolutionary in his life and works despite his bourgeois origins. In his masterpiece, “The raft of the Medusa”, Gericault creates a painting that we can define as “politically incorrect”, as it depicts the miseries of a large group of castaways abandoned after the shipwreck of a French naval frigate.

78. WILLIAM HOGARTH (1697-1764) – A list of the great portrait painters of all time should never miss the name of William Hogarth, whose studies and sketches could even qualify as “pre-impressionist”.

79. CAMILLE COROT (1796-1875) – One of the great figures of French realism in the 19th century and certainly one of the major influences for the impressionist painters like Monet or Renoir, thanks to his love for “plen-air” painting, emphasizing the use of light.

80. GEORGES BRAQUE (1882-1963) – Along with Picasso and Juan Gris, the main figure of Cubism, the most important of the avant-gardes of the 20th century Art.

81. HANS MEMLING (1435-1494) – Perhaps the most complete and “well-balanced” of all fifteenth century Flemish painters, although he was not as innovative as Van Eyck or van der Weyden.

82. GERHARD RICHTER (born 1932) – One of the most important artists of recent decades, Richter is known either for his fierce and colorful abstractions or his serene landscapes and scenes with candles.

83. AMEDEO MODIGLIANI (1884-1920) – One of the most original portraitists of the history of painting, considered as a “cursed” painter because of his wild life and early death.

84. GEORGES DE LA TOUR (1593-1652) – The influence of Caravaggio is evident in De la Tour, whose use of light and shadows is unique among the painters of the Baroque era.

85. GENTILESCHI, ARTEMISIA (1597-1654) – One of the most gifted artists of the early baroque era, she was the first female painter to become a member of the Accademia di Arte del Disegno in Florence.

86. JEAN FRANÇOIS MILLET (1814-1875) – One of the main figures of the Barbizon School, author of one of the most emotive paintings of the 19th century: The “Angelus“.

87. FRANCISCO DE ZURBARÁN (1598-1664) – The closest to Caravaggio of all Spanish Baroque painters, his latest works show a mastery of chiaroscuro without parallel among any other painter of his time.

88. CIMABUE (c.1240-1302) – Although in some of his works Cimabue already represented a visible evolution of the rigid Byzantine art, his greatest contribution to painting was to discover a young talented artist named Giotto (see number 2), who changed forever the Western painting.

89. JAMES ENSOR (1860-1949) – Violent painter whose strong, almost “unfinished” works make him a precursor of Expressionism

90. RENÉ MAGRITTE (1898-1967) – One of the leading figures of surrealism, his apparently simple works are the result of a complex reflection about reality and the world of dreams

91. EL LISSITZKY (1890-1941) – One of the main exponents of Russian avant-garde painting. Influenced by Malevich, he also excelled in graphic design.

92. EGON SCHIELE (1890-1918) – Another “died too young” artist, his strong and ruthless portraits influenced the works of later artists, like Lucian freud or Francis Bacon.

93. DANTE GABRIEL ROSSETTI (1828-1882) – Perhaps the key figure in the pre-Raphaelite movement, Rossetti left the poetry to focus on classic painting with a style that influenced the symbolism.

94. FRANS HALS (c.1580-1666) – One of the most important portraitists ever, his lively brushwork influenced early impressionism.

95. CLAUDE LORRAIN (1600-1682) – His works were a vital influence on many landscape painters for many centuries, both in Europe (Corot, Courbet) and in America (Hudson River School).

96. ROY LICHTENSTEIN (1923-1977) – Along with Andy Warhol, the most famous figure of the American Pop-Art. His works are often related to the style of the comics, though Lichtenstein rejected that idea.

97. GEORGIA O’KEEFE (1887-1986) – A leading figure in the 20th century American Art, O’Keefe single-handedly redefined the Western American painting.

98. GUSTAVE MOREAU (1826-1898) – One of the key figures of symbolism, introverted and mysterious in life, but very free and colorful in his works.

99. GIORGIO DE CHIRICO (1888-1978) – Considered the father of metaphysical painting and a major influence on the Surrealist movement.

100. FERNAND LÉGER (1881-1955) – At first a cubist, Leger was increasingly attracted to the world of machinery and movement, creating works such as “The Discs” (1918).

101. JEAN-AUGUSTE-DOMINIQUE INGRES (1780-1867) – Ingres was the most prominent disciple of the most famous neoclassicist painter, Jacques Louis David, so he should not be considered an innovator. He was, however, a master of classic portrait.

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Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso in 1962

Portrait of Giotto, by Paolo Uccello

Portrait of Giotto, by Paolo Uccello

Self-portrait of Leonardo da Vinci

Self-portrait of Leonardo da Vinci

Self-portrait of Paul Cézanne

Self-portrait of Paul Cézanne

Self-portrait of Rembrandt van Rijn

Self-portrait of Rembrandt van Rijn

Wassily Kandinsky

Wassily Kandinsky

Self-portrait of Claude Monet

Self-portrait of Claude Monet

Self-portrait of William Turner

Self-portrait of William Turner

Self-portrait of Alberto Durero

Self-portrait of Alberto Durero

Self-portrait of Paul Gauguin

Self-portrait of Paul Gauguin

Self-portrait of Vincent van Gogh

Self-portrait of Vincent van Gogh

Self-portrait of Édouard Manet

Self-portrait of Édouard Manet

Self-portrait of Rafael

Self-portrait of Rafael

Self-portrait of Jean-Michel Basquiat ©Estate of Jean Michel Basquiat

Self-portrait of Jean-Michel Basquiat ©Estate of Jean Michel Basquiat

"Self-portrait in hell", by Edvard Munch

“Self-portrait in hell”, by Edvard Munch

Posible self-portrait by Piero della Francesca

Posible self-portrait by Piero della Francesca

Andy Warhol in 1977

Andy Warhol in 1977

Posible self-portrait by Tomasso Masaccio

Posible self-portrait by Tomasso Masaccio

"The desperate man", self-portrait by Gustave Courbet

“The desperate man”, self-portrait by Gustave Courbet

Self-portrait by Titian

Self-portrait by Titian

Self-portrait by Paul Klee

Self-portrait by Paul Klee

Self-portrait by Francis Bacon ©Estate of Francis Bacon

Self-portrait by Francis Bacon ©Estate of Francis Bacon

Self-portrait by Kazimir Malevich

Self-portrait by Kazimir Malevich

Greco

Posible Self-portrait by El Greco

Self-portrait by Caspar David Friedrich

Self-portrait by Caspar David Friedrich

Posible Self-portrait by Giorgione

Posible Self-portrait by Giorgione

Self-portrait by Edgar Degas

Self-portrait by Edgar Degas

self-portrait by Frida Kahlo

Self-portrait by Frida Kahlo

Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí

Self-portrait by Tintoretto

Self-portrait by Tintoretto

Self-portrait by Sandro Botticelli

Self-portrait by Sandro Botticelli

Self-portrait by Umberto Boccioni

Self-portrait by Umberto Boccioni

Self-portrait by John Constable

Self-portrait by John Constable

Self-portrait by Jacques-Louis David

Self-portrait by Jacques-Louis David

Self-portrait by El Bosco

Self-portrait by El Bosco

Posible Self-portrait by Pieter Brueghel

Posible Self-portrait by Pieter Brueghel

Lucio Fontana by Lothar Wolleh

Lucio Fontana by Lothar Wolleh

Portrait of Franz Marc, by August Macke

Portrait of Franz Marc, by August Macke

Self-portrait by Pierre Auguste Renoir

Self-portrait by Pierre Auguste Renoir

Self-portrait by William Hogarth

Self-portrait by William Hogarth

Gerhard Richter in 2005

Gerhard Richter in 2005

Amedeo Modigliani

Amedeo Modigliani

Jean-François Millet

Jean-François Millet

Bust of James Ensor, by Edmond de Valériola

Bust of James Ensor, by Edmond de Valériola

Self-portrait by Egon Schiele

Self-portrait by Egon Schiele

Self-portrait by Artemisia Gentileschi

Self-portrait by Artemisia Gentileschi

Fernand Léger, photo by Carl Van Vechten, 1936

Fernand Léger, photo by Carl Van Vechten, 1936

 

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WOODY WEDNESDAY Ranking Woody Allen’s 47 movies!!!! Part 20

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I am moving the WOODY WEDNESDAY to a monthly feature on http://www.thedailyhatch.org. My passion has been recent years to emphasize the works of Francis Schaeffer in my apologetic efforts and most of those posts are either on Tuesdays or Thursdays.

The Best & The Rest: Every Woody Allen Film Ranked

This week, Woody Allen‘s 2016 title (for as we all know, there’s one each year), “Cafe Society,” starring Kristen Stewart, Jesse Eisenberg, Steve Carell, Corey Stoll, Blake Lively and Anna Camp, opens after a warm reception as the opening film at the most recent Cannes Film Festival. You can read our take from Cannes here, or hang on to scroll through and see where it lands on the list below, but we thought this would be a good time to gussy up our previous sprawling two-part Allen retrospective, and because we’ve been a little harmonious around here of late and miss the sounds of sobbing and breaking crockery, to rank it.

READ MORE: The Best And The Rest: Every Stanley Kubrick Ranked

Weathering personal scandal and coming in and out of fashion like flares, Allen’s been at constant work as a director for five decades now, and “Cafe Society” marks his 47th theatrically-released feature. Which means we have a lot to get through, so let’s get straight to it, shall we? Here, ranked worst to best, are all of Woody Allen’s theatrical features —with any list this long, there’s bound to be massive disagreement, so remember, the comments section awaits your ire. Or your congratulations, on the slim chance you agree with all of it.

 

 

 

 

Annie Hall (1977) Best Scenes

Annie Hall – The Opening Scene [HD]

Annie Hall Official Trailer #1 – Woody Allen Movie (1977) HD

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annie hall woody allen diane keaton1. “Annie Hall” (1977)
The film that bridges the so-called early funny ones with the more serious later work that would come, “Annie Hall” is also easily Allen’s most autobiographical film up to that point (and possibly ever) and it landed four major Oscars — Best Actress (Diane Keaton), Best Director, Best Screenplay and Best Picture. But you know all this — it’s perhaps his most beloved film, named constantly by filmmakers as the Platonic form of the romantic comedy that all others aspire to. And that’s because it’s terrific; insightful, playful, moving and beautifully acted, particularly by Keaton, who essentially creates the manic pixie dream girl archetype here, but has it spring from so deep within that it feels truthful for the first and maybe only time ever. She’s so era-definingly strong, in fact, that the somewhat mean-spirited portrayals of Alvy’s other women (Shelley Duvall and Carol Kane), pale into insignificance. Perhaps not a surprising choice of number 1, but an inevitable one, “Annie Hall” remains one of the apotheoses of cinematic romance because with lacerating wit and an ocean of self-awareness, it describes every moment of a love affair, from dazzle to disillusion, between characters so awkward and hopeful and real that you feel like you’ve lived it yourself. Lah-di-dah.

— with The Playlist Staff

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 149E Sir Bertrand Russell “A Free Man’s Worship”

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Image result for bertrand russell

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

Nick Gathergood, David-Birkett, Harry-Kroto

I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif Ahmed, Sir David AttenboroughMark Balaguer, Horace Barlow, Michael BatePatricia ChurchlandAaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky,Alan DershowitzHubert Dreyfus, Bart Ehrman, Stephan FeuchtwangDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca GoldsteinDavid J. Gross,  Brian Greene, Susan GreenfieldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan HaidtTheodor W. Hänsch, Brian Harrison,  Hermann HauserRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodHerbert Huppert,  Gareth Stedman Jones, Steve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart Kauffman,  Lawrence KraussHarry Kroto, George LakoffElizabeth Loftus,  Alan MacfarlanePeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow,  Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff,  Jonathan Parry,  Saul PerlmutterHerman Philipse,  Carolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceLisa RandallLord Martin Rees,  Oliver Sacks, John SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongRonald de Sousa, Victor StengerBarry Supple,   Leonard Susskind, Raymond TallisNeil deGrasse Tyson,  .Alexander Vilenkin, Sir John WalkerFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

Bertrand Russellin full Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell of Kingston Russell, Viscount Amberley of Amberley and of Ardsalla (born May 18, 1872, Trelleck, MonmouthshireWales—died Feb. 2, 1970, Penrhyndeudraeth, Merioneth), British philosopher, logician, and social reformer, founding figure in the analytic movement in Anglo-American philosophy, and recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1950. Russell’s contributions to logicepistemology, and the philosophy of mathematics established him as one of the foremost philosophers of the 20th century. To the general public, however, he was best known as a campaigner for peace and as a popular writer on social, political, and moral subjects. During a long, productive, and often turbulent life, he published more than 70 books and about 2,000 articles, married four times, became involved in innumerable public controversies, and was honoured and reviled in almost equal measure throughout the world. Russell’s article on the philosophical consequences of relativity appeared in the 13th edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica.

In  the first video below in the 14th clip in this series are his words and I will be responding to them in the next few weeks since Sir Bertrand Russell is probably the most quoted skeptic of our time, unless it was someone like Carl Sagan or Antony Flew.  

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Quote from Bertrand Russell:

Q: Why are you not a Christian?

Russell: Because I see no evidence whatever for any of the Christian dogmas. I’ve examined all the stock arguments in favor of the existence of God, and none of them seem to me to be logically valid.

Q: Do you think there’s a practical reason for having a religious belief, for many people?

Russell: Well, there can’t be a practical reason for believing what isn’t true. That’s quite… at least, I rule it out as impossible. Either the thing is true, or it isn’t. If it is true, you should believe it, and if it isn’t, you shouldn’t. And if you can’t find out whether it’s true or whether it isn’t, you should suspend judgment. But you can’t… it seems to me a fundamental dishonesty and a fundamental treachery to intellectual integrity to hold a belief because you think it’s useful, and not because you think it’s true.

[Philosophy] A Free Man’s Worship, by Bertrand Russell, Essay, Audiobook

Published on Apr 10, 2014

[Philosophy] A Free Man’s Worship, by Bertrand Russell, Essay, Audiobook

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Bertrand Russell’s “A Free Man’s Worship”

If you were an atheist, what should you worship? What should you give your life to? Bertrand Russell’s answer was: worship “Goodness.” Russell capitalizes ‘Goodness,’ and in a later writing admitted that “Free Man’s Worship” may have been a bit too idealistic. Nevertheless, I do think Russell captures the logic of atheism.

By the “logic of atheism” I mean: what life is like if atheism is true. In one of the most famous atheistic paragraphs ever written Russell says:

“Such, in outline, but even more purposeless, more void of meaning, is the world which Science presents for our belief. Amid such a world, if anywhere, our ideals henceforward must find a home. That man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve an individual life beyond the grave; that all the labours of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man’s achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a universe in ruins — all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”

Here are the Russell bullet-points.

  • Russell says, without God, “Science” is the only tool we have to understand the world.
  • Science gives us three bleak certainties:
  • 1) Your life has no purpose – it’s but an accidental put-together of atoms.
  • 2) There’s no existence after death.
  • 3) All the achievements of humanity are destined to be destroyed by the inexorable onslaught of nature’s power.
  • Realize the certainty of these three things. They form a “foundation of unyielding despair.” Build your life on them.

Anticipating Richard Dawkins’s The Blind Watchmaker, Russell writes next: “A strange mystery it is that Nature, omnipotent but blind, in the revolutions of her secular hurryings through the abysses of space, has brought forth at last a child, subject still to her power, but gifted with sight, with knowledge of good and evil, with the capacity of judging all the works of his unthinking Mother. In spite of death, the mark and seal of the parental control, Man is yet free, during his brief years, to examine, to criticise, to know, and in imagination to create. To him alone, in the world with which he is acquainted, this freedom belongs; and in this lies his superiority to the resistless forces that control his outward life.”

So, while Nature is the big, bad, blind, pointless consuming Beast, it has mysteriously produced us, and we in our minds are free. How weird! For Russell this makes us “superior” to the “resistless forces” of Nature. In our minds we are free. We can make choices. And we can choose to worship, not Nature, but Goodness.

The big choice for us is this: “Shall we worship Force, or shall we worship Goodness? Shall our God exist and be evil, or shall he be recognized as the creation of our own conscience? The answer to this question is very momentous, and affects profoundly our whole morality. The worship of Force, to which Carlyle and Nietzsche and the creed of Militarism have accustomed us, is the result of failure to maintain our own ideals against a hostile universe: it is itself a prostrate submission to evil, a sacrifice of our best to Moloch.” Russell thus rejects the Nietzschean choice of the worship of Power.

Were I an atheist, I would follow both Nietzsche and Russell this far, being forced to acknowledge points 1-3 above, with the Nietzschean addition of the loss of a moral foundation (the moral ontology of atheism does not provide a foundation for objective moral values). For this reason I would be forced to choose the “worship” of Power, not Goodness. I’d also seriously entertain the idea that, on atheism, we don’t have free will (by “free will” meaning: choices not fully reducible to antecedent causal conditions). Then I’d really struggle with that last sentence, since it implies that there is an ‘I’ to “choose” to “entertain” any ideas. I’d have to look into the abyss of nihilism, admitting that there’s little hope of overcoming it.

Image result for bertrand russell

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Image result for francis schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer noted in his book HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? (p. 182 in Vol 5 of Complete Works) in the chapter The Breakdown in Philosophy and Science:

In his lecture at Acapulco, George Wald finished with only one final value. It was the same one with which English philosopher Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) was left. For Wald and Russell and for many other modern thinkers, the final value is the biological continuity of the human race. If this is the only final value, one is left wondering why this then has importance. 

Now having traveled from the pride of man in the High Renaissance and the Enlightenment down to the present despair, we can understand where modern people are. They have no place for a personal God. But equally they have no place for man as man, or for love, or for freedom, or for significance. This brings a crucial problem. Beginning only from man himself, people affirm that man is only a machine. But those who hold this position cannot live like machines! If they could, there would have been no tensions in their intellectual position or in their lives. But even people who believe they are machines cannot live like machines, and thus they must “leap upstairs” against their reason and try to find something which gives meaning to life, even though to do so they have to deny their reason. 

Francis Schaeffer in another place worded it like this:

The universe was created by an infinite personal God and He brought it into existence by spoken word and made man in His own image. When man tries to reduce [philosophically in a materialistic point of view] himself to less than this [less than being made in the image of God] he will always fail and he will always be willing to make these impossible leaps into the area of nonreason even though they don’t give an answer simply because that isn’t what he is. He himself testifies that this infinite personal God, the God of the Old and New Testament is there. 

Instead of making a leap into the area of nonreason the better choice would be to investigate the claims that the Bible is a historically accurate book and that God created the universe and reached out to humankind with the Bible. Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?)

Francis Schaeffer has correctly argued:

The universe was created by an infinite personal God and He brought it into existence by spoken word and made man in His own image. When man tries to reduce [philosophically in a materialistic point of view] himself to less than this [less than being made in the image of God] he will always fail and he will always be willing to make these impossible leaps into the area of nonreason even though they don’t give an answer simply because that isn’t what he is. He himself testifies that this infinite personal God, the God of the Old and New Testament is there. 

Instead of making a leap into the area of nonreason the better choice would be to investigate the claims that the Bible is a historically accurate book and that God created the universe and reached out to humankind with the Bible. Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?, under footnote #94)

We looked earlier at the city of Lachish. Let us return to the same period in Israel’s history when Lachich was besieged and captured by the Assyrian King Sennacherib. The king of Judah at the time was Hezekiah.

Perhaps you remember the story of how Jesus healed a blind man and told him to go and wash in the Pool of Siloam. It is the same place known by King Hezekiah, approximately 700 years earlier. One of the remarkable things about the flow of the Bible is that historical events separated by hundreds of years took place in the same geographic spots, and standing in these places today, we can feel that flow of history about us. The crucial archaeological discovery which relates the Pool of Siloam is the tunnel which lies behind it.

One day in 1880 a small Arab boy was playing with his friend and fell into the pool. When he clambered out, he found a small opening about two feet wide and five feet high. On examination, it turned out to be a tunnel reaching  back into the rock. But that was not all. On the side of the tunnel an inscribed stone (now kept in the museum in Istanbul) was discovered, which told how the tunnel had been built originally. The inscription in classical Hebrew reads as follows:

The boring through is completed. And this is the story of the boring: while yet they plied the pick, each toward his fellow, and while there were yet three cubits [4 14 feet] to be bored through, there was heard the voice of one calling to the other that there was a hole in the rock on the right hand and on the left hand. And on the day of the boring through the workers on the tunnel struck each to meet his fellow, pick upon pick. Then the water poured from the source to the Pool 1,200 cubits [about 600 yards] and a 100 cubits was the height of the rock above the heads of the workers in the tunnel. 

We know this as Hezekiah’s Tunnel. The Bible tells us how Hezekiah made provision for a better water supply to the city:Now the rest of the acts of Hezekiah and all his might, and how he made the pool and the conduit and brought water into the city, are they not written in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah?(II Kings 20:20). We know here three things: the biblical account, the tunnel itself of which the Bible speaks, and the original stone with its inscription in classical Hebrew.

From the Assyrian side, there is additional confirmation of the incidents mentioned in the Bible. There is a clay prism in the British Museum called the Taylor Prism (British Museum, Ref. 91032). It is only fifteen inches high and was discovered in the Assyrian palace at Nineveh. This particular prism dates from about 691 B.C. and tells about Sennacherib’s exploits. A section from the prism reads, “As for Hezekiah,  the Jew, who did not submit to my yoke, forty-six of his strong walled cities, as well as small cities  in their neighborhood I have besieged and took…himself like a caged bird, I shut up in Jerusalem, his royal city. Earthworks I threw up against him,” Thus, there is a three-way confirmation concerning Hezekiah’s tunnel from the Hebrew side and this amazing confirmation from the Assyrian side.

Image result for taylor prism

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______ Top 10 Woody Allen Movies PBS American Masters – Woody Allen A Documentary 01 PBS American Masters – Woody Allen A Documentary 02 __________ John Piippo makes the case that Bertrand Russell would have loved Woody Allen because they both were two atheists who don’t deny the ramifications of atheism!!! Monday, August 06, 2012 […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 4)

THE MORAL ARGUMENT     BERTRAND RUSSELL But aren’t you now saying in effect, I mean by God whatever is good or the sum total of what is good — the system of what is good, and, therefore, when a young man loves anything that is good he is loving God. Is that what you’re […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 3)

Great debate Fr. Frederick C. Copleston vs Bertrand Russell – Part 1 Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript and audio (Part 2)

Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, out of UK/BBC copyright. Pardon the hissy audio. It was recorded 51 […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript and audio (Part 1)

Fr. Frederick C. Copleston vs Bertrand Russell – Part 1 Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, out of […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 4)

THE MORAL ARGUMENT     BERTRAND RUSSELL But aren’t you now saying in effect, I mean by God whatever is good or the sum total of what is good — the system of what is good, and, therefore, when a young man loves anything that is good he is loving God. Is that what you’re […]

Bertrand Russell v. Frederick Copleston debate transcript (Part 3)

Fr. Frederick C. Copleston vs Bertrand Russell – Part 1 Uploaded by riversonthemoon on Jul 15, 2009 BBC Radio Third Programme Recording January 28, 1948. BBC Recording number T7324W. This is an excerpt from the full broadcast from cassette tape A303/5 Open University Course, Problems of Philosophy Units 7-8. Older than 50 years, out of […]

MUSIC MONDAY “Badfinger” PART 1

 I am thinking about moving MUSIC MONDAYS  to a monthly feature on http://www.thedailyhatch.org. My passion has been in recent years to emphasize the works of Francis Schaeffer in my apologetic efforts and most of those posts are either on Tuesdays or Thursdays. I have already done so many ahead that MUSIC MONDAYS will remain weekly for now, but at some point I will be making them weekly.

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Badfinger – Without You – Pete Ham

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Badfinger

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Badfinger
Also known as The Iveys (1961–69)
Origin SwanseaWales
Genres
Years active 1961–1969
(as The Iveys)
1969–75
1978–84
Labels Apple
Warner Brothers
Elektra
Radio Records
Associated acts The Dodgers, Natural GasThe BeatlesDavid Garrick
Website http://www.badfingersite.com/http://www.badfingeruk.com
Past members Principal:
Pete Ham
Joey Molland
Tom Evans
Mike Gibbins

Badfinger was a British rock band that, in their most successful lineup, consisted of Pete HamMike GibbinsTom Evans, and Joey Molland. The band evolved from an earlier group called The Iveys that was formed in 1961 by Ham, Ron Griffiths and David “Dai” Jenkins in Swansea, Wales. The Iveys were the first group signed by the Beatles‘ Applelabel in 1968. The band renamed themselves Badfinger and in 1969 Griffiths left and was replaced by Molland. In 1970, the band engaged American businessman Stan Polleyto manage their commercial affairs. Over the next five years the band recorded five albums for Apple and toured extensively, before they became embroiled in the chaos of Apple Records’ dissolution.

Badfinger had four consecutive worldwide hits from 1970 to 1972: “Come and Get It” (written and produced by Paul McCartney), “No Matter What“, “Day After Day” (produced by George Harrison),[1] and “Baby Blue“. In 2013, “Baby Blue” made a resurgence onto the Billboard Hot Rock Songs chart at number 14 after it was featured in the series finale of the television show Breaking Bad.[2] Their song “Without You” has been recorded many times, including a Billboard number-one hit for Harry Nilsson and a UK number one by Mariah Carey.

After Apple Records folded, Badfinger signed to Warner Bros. Records, but Polley’s financial machinations resulted in internal friction that soon caused Ham to quit Badfinger, to be replaced by Bob Jackson on keyboard and guitar, then led to Ham rejoining and Molland leaving the band instead. However, a lawsuit filed by Warner’s music publishing arm against Polley over missing escrow account money led Warner to withdraw Badfinger’s 1974 Wish You Were Here from the market seven weeks after its release, which effectively cut off the band’s income. Warner then refused to accept (or pay the band for) Badfinger’s next album, Head First, because of the dispute with Polley, leaving the band destitute. Three days before his 28th birthday, on 24 April 1975, Ham committed suicide by hanging himself, leaving a note that included damning comments about Polley.

Over the next three years, the surviving members struggled to rebuild their personal and professional lives against a backdrop of lawsuits, which tied up the songwriters’ royalty payments for years. The Badfinger albums Airwaves (1979) and Say No More (1981) (both of which excluded both Gibbins and Jackson) foundered, as Molland and Evans see-sawed between cooperation and conflict in their attempts to revive and capitalise on the Badfinger legacy. Having seen Ham’s body after Ham’s wife had called him immediately after Ham’s death, Evans reportedly never got over his friend’s suicide, and was quoted as saying in darker moments, “I wanna be where he is.”[3] On 19 November 1983, Evans also took his own life by hanging.

The Iveys[edit]

Early days[edit]

The Iveys formed in 1961 in Swansea, Wales from The Panthers, whose line-up consisted of Pete Ham (lead guitar) (b. Peter William Ham, 27 April 1947, Townhill, Swansea, d. 23 April 1975), Ron Griffiths (bass guitar) (b. Ronald Llewellyn Griffiths, 2 October 1946, Swansea), David “Dai” Jenkins (rhythm guitar) (b. David Owen Jenkins, 30 October 1945, Swansea), and Roy Anderson (drums). Playing under various names including The Black Velvets and the Wild Ones,[4] by 1964 they settled on The Iveys, after a street in Swansea called Ivey Place.[5]

In March 1965, drummer Mike Gibbins (b. Michael George Gibbins, 12 March 1949, Swansea, d. 4 October 2005) joined The Iveys. The group secured concerts around Swansea area, opening for prominent British groups such as the Spencer Davis GroupThe WhoThe Moody Blues and The Yardbirds.[6]

By June 1966, Bill Collins (the father of actor Lewis Collins[7]) had started to manage the group.[8] In December 1966 the entire group moved into Collins’ home at 7 Park Avenue, Golders Green, London, sharing space with an act called The Mojos.[9][10] The house was terminally overcrowded, so the only place to find any privacy was in a room equipped with a two-track recording machine.[11]

The group performed a wide range of cover tunes on the London circuit,[9] from Motownbluessoul to Top 40, psychedelic pop, and Beatles hits, which garnered interest from record labels.[11] Ray Davies of The Kinksauditioned to produce them, recording three of their songs at a 4-track demo studio in London’s Old Kent Road on 15 January 1967: “Taxi” and “Sausage And Eggs”, songs by Ham; and Griffiths’ “I Believe in You Girl”.[12] On 8 December 1966, Collins and the group signed a five-year contract giving Collins a 20% share of net receipts, the same as the individual group members, but only after managerial expenses had been deducted.[12] Collins said at the time, “Look, I can’t promise you lads anything, except blood, sweat and tears”.[11] The group performed occasional concerts backing David Garrick, while performing as The Iveys across the United Kingdom throughout the rest of the decade.[13]

In August 1967, Dai Jenkins was asked to leave the group,[14] and was replaced by Liverpudlian guitarist Tom Evans, formerly of Them Calderstones (b. Thomas Evans Jr., 5 June 1947, Liverpool, d. 19 November 1983).[15]Jenkins’ departure was remembered by Griffiths as being “politely asked if he would step down”, as Jenkins seemed more interested in girls than the music.[11]

Signing to Apple[edit]

After receiving an invitation from Collins, Beatles roadie/assistant Mal Evans and Apple Records’ A&R head Peter Asher saw the Iveys perform at the Marquee Club, London, on 25 January 1968. Afterward, Evans consistently pushed their demo tapes to every Beatle until he gained approval from all four to sign the group.[16] The demos were accomplished using a mono “sound-on-sound” tape recorder: two individual tracks bouncing each overdub on top of the last.[17] When Evans signed the Iveys to Apple on 23 July 1968, they became the first non-Beatle recording artists on the label.[11] Each of The Iveys’ members were also signed to Apple Corps‘ publishing contracts.[18] The Iveys’ early sessions for Apple were produced by either Tony Visconti or Evans.

The group’s first single, “Maybe Tomorrow“, produced by Visconti, was released worldwide on 15 November 1968. It reached the Top Ten in several European countries and Japan, but only number 67 on the US Billboard Hot 100, and failed to chart in the UK.[19] The US manager of Apple Records, Ken Mansfield, ordered 400,000 copies of the single—considered to be a bold move at the time in the music business—and pushed for automatic airplay and reviews from newspapers, which he secured. Nevertheless, Mansfield remembered the problems: “We had a great group. We had a great record. We were missing just one thing … the ability to go out and pick up people, and convince them to put their money on the counter”.[20] A second Tom Evans composition, “Storm in a Teacup”, was included on an Apple EP promoting Wall’s Ice Cream, along with songs by Apple artists such as James TaylorMary Hopkin and Jackie Lomax.[21] The chart success of “Maybe Tomorrow” in Europe and Japan led to a follow-up single release in those markets in July 1969: Griffiths’ “Dear Angie“, also produced by Visconti.[22] An LP containing both singles and titled Maybe Tomorrow was released only in Italy, Germany and Japan. This limited release strategy was thought to be the work of Apple Corps’ president, Allen Klein; an Apple Corps’ press officer, Tony Bramwell, remembered: “[Klein] was saying, ‘We’re not going to issue any more records until I sort out this [Apple Corps] mess.'”[23]

Intervention of Paul McCartney[edit]

After the unexpectedly limited releases of “Dear Angie” and Maybe Tomorrow, Griffiths complained about The Iveys’ handling by Apple in an interview for the Disc & Music Echo magazine, saying: “We do feel a bit neglected. We keep writing songs for a new single and submitting them to Apple, but they keep sending them back, saying they’re not good enough”.[14] McCartney read the interview and offered the song “Come and Get It” to the group,[24] although he had written the song for the soundtrack of The Magic Christian.[25] Before the recording on Saturday, 2 August 1969, Griffiths remembered the whole group being so excited they couldn’t sleep.[11]Producing the track in under one hour,[26] McCartney made sure that they copied his own demo note-for-note:[27] “They were a young band … they said, ‘We want to do it a bit different, wanna get our own thing in’. I said ‘No, this has gotta be exactly like this, [McCartney’s demo] ‘cos this is the hit’.”[11]

McCartney had been commissioned to contribute two other songs to the film’s soundtrack; after “Come and Get It” was successfully recorded, he offered to produce two of The Iveys’ original compositions to fulfill those commissions, for which he selected “Carry On Till Tomorrow” (commissioned as the main title theme for the film) and “Rock of All Ages” (commissioned as background music for a party scene). All three tracks appeared both in the movie and on its soundtrack album. McCartney then recruited George Martin to provide the string arrangement for “Carry On Till Tomorrow”. As Griffiths fell ill midway through these sessions, Evans played bass on “Rock of All Ages”.[28]

Badfinger[edit]

Name change[edit]

In October 1969, pending release of “Come and Get It”, the band and Apple agreed that the name “The Iveys” was too trite for the prevailing music scene, plus The Iveys were sometimes confused with “The Ivy League“, so a name change for the band was needed. Suggestions were put forward, including Lennon’s “The Glass Onion”, “The Prix”,[14] “The Cagneys”, and “Home” from McCartney.[29] Apple Corps’ Neil Aspinall proposed “Badfinger”,[30] in reference to “Bad Finger Boogie”;[31] an early working title of Lennon–McCartney’s “With a Little Help from My Friends“, as Lennon had hurt his forefinger on a piano and was using only one finger.

Harrison would later state that the band was named for Helga Fabdinger, a stripper the Beatles had known in Hamburg.[32]

Departure of Griffiths and hiring of Molland[edit]

At the end of October 1969, Griffiths, who was the sole married occupant of the communal group’s home and also was raising a child (born in December 1968), left the group. His responsibilities created friction, mainly between Griffiths’ wife, Evans, and manager Collins. Griffiths later said: “Tommy [Evans] created the bad blood. He’d convinced the others that [I was] not one of the boys any more”.[11] Drummer Gibbins remembered that he wasn’t even consulted about the decision: “I was considered a nothinghead at that point. I wasn’t even worth conversing with”.[33]

As the release date of “Come and Get It” was approaching, Badfinger looked for a replacement for Griffiths. After unsuccessfully auditioning a number of bassists, they hired guitarist Joey Molland, who was previously with Gary Walker & The Rain, The Masterminds,[34] and The Fruit-Eating Bears.[35] His addition required Evans to shift from rhythm guitar to bass.[34]

Initial success[edit]

“Come and Get It” was released as a single in December 1969 in the UK, and January 1970 in the US. Selling more than a million copies worldwide,[36] it reached Top Ten throughout the world: number seven on the US Billboard chart on 7 February 1970,[37][19] and number four in the UK.[27] Because The Iveys’ Maybe Tomorrow album had only been released in a few markets, the band’s three songs from The Magic Christian soundtrack album were combined with other, older Iveys tracks (including both of The Iveys’ singles and five other songs from Maybe Tomorrow) and then released as Badfinger’s first album Magic Christian Music (1970).[38] The album peaked at number 55 on the Billboard album chart in the US.[39] In addition, Derek Taylor commissioned Les Smithers to photograph the band in March 1970. His photograph has been acquired by the National Portrait Gallery.[40]

New recording sessions for Badfinger also commenced in March 1970, with Mal Evans producing.[41] Two songs were completed, including “No Matter What”, which was rejected by Apple as a potential single.[41] Beatles engineer Geoff Emerick then took over as producer, and the band completed its second album in July 1970.[42] During the recordings, the band were sent to Hawaii on 4 June, to appear at a Capitol/Apple Records convention, and then flew to Italy to play concerts in Rome.[43] No Dice was released in the US in late 1970, peaking at number 28 on the Billboard album chart.[38] The Mal Evans-produced track “No Matter What”, as re-mixed by Emerick, was finally released as a single,[37] and reached numerous Top Ten charts around the world—peaking at number eight in the US, and number five in the UK.[41] An Emerick-produced album track from No Dice entitled “Without You” became even more successful after Harry Nilsson covered the song in 1972; his version became an international hit, reaching number one on Billboard in the US, and also spending five weeks at the top of the UK chart.[44] The song began as a merger of two separate songs, with the verses penned by Ham and the chorus penned by Evans. The song won Ham and Evans the 1972 Ivor Novello award for “Song of the Year”.[45]

Signing with Stan Polley[edit]

In April 1970, while in the US scouting prospects for a tour, Collins was introduced to New York businessman, Stan Polley,[34] who signed Badfinger to a business management contract in November 1970.[46] Polley established Badfinger Enterprises, Inc., with Stan Poses as vice-president.[11] This signed the band members to various contracts dictating that receipts of touring, recording, publishing and even songwriter performance royalties would then go into holding companies controlled by Polley.[11] This led to a salary arrangement for the band, which various members later complained was inadequate in comparison to their gross earnings.[11]Gibbins: “My first impression was, Stan [Polley] is a powerful guy”, while Molland thought that Polley seemed more of a father-figure. At the same time, Polley was also managing Al Kooper, of Blood, Sweat & Tears, and Lou Christie.[11]

Although Polley’s professional reputation was admired, his dubious financial practices eventually contributed to the band’s downfall.[47] A financial statement prepared by Polley’s accountants, Sigmund Balaban & Co., for the period from 8 December 1970 to 31 October 1971, showed Polley’s income from the band: “Salaries and advances to client, $8,339 (Joey Molland), $6,861 (Mike Gibbins), $6,211 (Tom Evans), $5,959 (Pete Ham). Net corporation profit, $24,569. Management commission, $75,744 (Stan Polley)”. Although it is not known if the band members saw the statement, Collins certainly had, as his handwriting was on the document.[48]

Badfinger toured America for three months in late 1970, and were generally well received, although the band were already weary of persistent comparisons to the Beatles. “The thing that impressed me so much was how similar their voices were to The Beatles”, Tony Visconti (producer, “Maybe Tomorrow”) said; “I sometimes had to look over the control board down into the studio to make sure John and Paul weren’t singing lead vocals …”[49]Rolling Stone critic Mike Saunders opined in a rave review of No Dice in 1970: “It’s as if John, Paul, George, and Ringo had been reincarnated as Joey, Pete, Tom, and Mike of Badfinger”.[50] Media comparisons between them and the Beatles would continue throughout Badfinger’s career.

Apple session work[edit]

Various members of Badfinger also participated in sessions for fellow Apple Records labelmates, most notably playing acoustic guitars and percussion on much of Harrison’s All Things Must Pass triple album (1970), including the hit singles “Isn’t It a Pity“, “My Sweet Lord” and “What Is Life“.[51] Ham and Evans also provided backing vocals on Ringo Starr‘s Harrison-produced single, “It Don’t Come Easy“.[52] Evans and Molland then performed on Lennon’s album Imagine (1971), although Molland has said that their tracks were not used.[53] Most famously, on 26 July 1971, all four members of Badfinger arrived at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport, to rehearse for Harrison’s Concert for Bangladesh, which took place on 1 August 1971.[54] Ham duetted on acoustic guitar with Harrison on “Here Comes the Sun” during the concert.[47]

Straight Up[edit]

In 1971, the group rented Clearwell Castle, in Gloucestershire, living and recording there.[55][56] They finished recording their third album, again with Emerick as producer, but the tapes were once again rejected by Apple, because Apple felt that Badfinger needed a producer who could bring a more polished sound to the recordings.[57] Thus, George Harrison himself took over as producer in spring of 1971,[58] including Leon Russell and Klaus Voormann in the sessions as well.[59][60] Commenting on the recording of the dual slide guitars on “Day After Day”, Molland remembered: “Pete and I had done the backing track, and George came in the studio and asked if we’d mind if he played … It took hours, and hours, and hours, to get those two guitars in sync”.[61] However, Harrison stopped the sessions after recording just four songs because of his commitments to The Concert for Bangladesh, which Harrison included Badfinger in as well.[62] After the concert, Harrison was tied up with producing the tapes from that concert, and so was unable to resume with Badfinger.[63] Instead, the Badfinger album was completed by Todd Rundgren, who mixed the tapes from the Harrison sessions, re-recorded the songs from the Emerick sessions, and also produced some newer, previously unrecorded songs.[64][65]

The album, ultimately entitled Straight Up, was released in the US in December 1971,[58] and spawned two successful singles: “Day After Day” (Billboard number four),[37] which sold over a million worldwide,[66] and “Baby Blue” (US number 14).[19] The album reached number 31 on the US charts. However, the disintegration of Apple Records in Britain led to “Baby Blue” never being released as a UK single, although a release number and date had already been assigned to it.[67]

The band embarked on a US tour in 1972, but after problems with Evans, Gibbins left and was replaced for the tour by drummer Rob Stawinsky, who was described as Badfinger’s “solid, new drummer”.[68] Stawinsky was not used after the tour, though, and Gibbins rejoined the band in September.[69][70]

End of Apple[edit]

At the start of 1972, Badfinger were contracted for one last album with Apple Records. Despite Badfinger’s success, Apple was facing troubled times and its operations were being cut back by Klein. According to Molland, Polley told the band that Klein wanted to cut Badfinger’s royalty rate and make them pay for their own studio time.[71][34] By this time, manager Polley was openly suspected of financial mismanagement by his other clients, Christie and music arranger Charlie Calello. A series of allegations also represented Polley as a one-time “bagman” for the Mafia.[72]

Sessions for Badfinger’s fourth and last album for Apple, Ass, had begun as far back as early 1972 and would continue at five recording studios over the next year. Rundgren was originally hired to produce, but quit in a financial dispute during the first week. The band then produced itself, but Apple rejected their version of the album. Finally, Badfinger hired Chris Thomas to co-produce and complete the project.[73] In the meanwhile, Polley negotiated a deal with Warner Bros. Records,[74] that required a new album from the band every six months over a three-year period. By this time Evans had become suspicious of Polley’s oversight, but the band nevertheless signed the deal. Released in 1973,[38] the Ass front cover featured Evans’ idea: a jackass staring at a huge dangling carrot.[75] The Ass release was further stalled because of legal wrangling, with Polley using Molland’s unsigned song publishing as a negotiating ploy. Attempting to sweep discrepancies under the carpet to secure the LP’s release Apple attributed the songwriting credits to “Badfinger”. But both Ass (US number 122),[76] and its accompanying lead single, “Apple of My Eye“, fell short of reaching the Billboard Hot 100.[19]

Move to Warner Bros. Records[edit]

After the Apple contract had been fulfilled, Polley signed the band to a management contract demanding two albums a year.[77] Poses, as vice-president of Badfinger Enterprises Inc.,[78] repeatedly told the band not to sign the contract.[11] Polley organised a $3 million recording contract with Warner Bros., telling the band, “You’re all millionaires!”[79] The deal gave the band 12% of retail in the US—the price Warner Brothers received from record outlets—and 8.5% for the rest of the world, with a $225,000 advance for every album delivered.[80]

Only six weeks after the Ass sessions had been completed, Badfinger re-entered the studio to begin recording material for its first Warner Bros. release, Badfinger (the intended title, For Love or Money, was omitted from the album pressings). The album was produced by Thomas, even though the songs were being written in the studio as they recorded.[73] Ass and Badfinger were released almost simultaneously, and the accompanying singles from Badfinger, “Love Is Easy” (UK) and “I Miss You” (US), were unsuccessful. Badfinger did manage to retain some US fan support as a result of their touring schedule. A March 1974 concert at the Cleveland Agora was recorded on 16-track tape for a possible live album release, even though the performance was deemed unsatisfactory at the time.[81]

Following the American tours, Badfinger recorded Wish You Were Here at the Caribou Ranch recording studio in Colorado, and at George Martin‘s AIR Studios in London.[82] The album was well received by Rolling Stone and other periodicals upon its release in October 1974.[38] However, over the previous year, Warner Brothers’ publishing arm had become increasingly troubled by a lack of communication from Polley regarding the status of an escrow account of advance funds. Per their contract, Polley was to deposit $250,000 into a mutually accessible account for safekeeping, which both Warner Publishing and the band could potentially access.[83] But Polley did not reveal the account’s whereabouts to Warner Publishing, and he reportedly ignored Warner’s demands to do so.[84] As a result, in a letter dated April 30, 1974, WB’s publishing arm terminated its relationship with Badfinger, but, other than having the group sign some new contracts, Polley took no action to resolve the Warner’s publishing issue.[85] Consistent with the termination notice, on August 14, 1974, Warner’s publishing arm refused to accept the tapes of Wish You Were Here, but the album was released anyway.[86]

Turmoil and personnel changes[edit]

Crises in band management, money and band leadership were creating growing frictions within Badfinger. Molland’s wife, Kathie, had been taking a more assertive role in the band’s politics, which did not endear her to the rest of the band, particularly Ham. She remembered complaining that even though the band had had hit records, they “still didn’t have a fridge, and didn’t have a TV”.[11] However, one of the band’s assistants said, “Kathie was a wishful Linda McCartney. If she had her way, she would have ended up part of the band.”[87] Just before the start of rehearsals for an October 1974 UK tour, Ham suddenly quit Badfinger during a management meeting,[88]standing up and shouting “I don’t want Kathie managing the band! I’m leaving”.[89] He found a cottage in Wales, where he hoped to build a studio.[90] He was quickly replaced by guitarist/keyboardist Bob Jackson, who was then idle after previous involvement with The Fortunes.[91] During Ham’s three-week hiatus from the band, Polley tried to interest record companies in Ham as a solo act, but under pressure from Warner Brothers, Ham rejoined the band in time for the tour, as the company made it clear that it would have little to no interest in promoting Badfinger if Ham was not a part of it. Jackson remained as full-time keyboardist, making the band a quintet. After the UK tour, Molland quit of his own accord to pursue a solo career in December 1974.[92]

A photo of Bob Jackson in 1990

With the Warners situation becoming increasingly unstable, Polley’s next ploy was to press the band to pass up a US tour to go back into Apple Recording Studios to record its third album under the Warner Brothers’ contract. Because Thomas, the producer of Badfinger’s last three albums, thought that the band was rushing into the studio too quickly, Polley hired KISSproducers Kenny Kerner and Richie Wise to produce the album. Over only eleven days at the Apple studios,[79] tracks were recorded for the Head First album (eventually released in 2000),[93] and rough mixes were distributed to the musicians and Warner Brothers Records in America. However, because Warner’s publishing arm had already filed a lawsuit against Polley and Badfinger in the L.A. Superior Court on 10 December 1974, the album tapes could not be formally accepted by Warner Bros. — and Warner executives also thought the rough tapes sounded “thrown together in a hurry” in “an obvious attempt [to] extract further advances from us.”[94] The legal action also led to the company stopping the promotion of Wish You Were Here after seven weeks,[44] and ending its distribution worldwide, thus completely halting Badfinger’s career.[95]

Ham’s suicide and break-up[edit]

With their current album suddenly withdrawn and their follow-up rejected, Badfinger spent the early months of 1975 trying to figure out how to proceed under the unclear legal situation. Their March 1975 salary cheques did not clear, and the April cheques never arrived.[96] Panic set in, especially for Ham, who had recently bought a £30,000 house in WokingSurrey,[97]and whose girlfriend was expecting a child.[98] According to Jackson, the band tried to continue without Polley’s involvement by contacting booking agents and prospective managers throughout London, but they were routinely declined because of their restrictive contracts with Polley and impending legal actions. Ham reportedly tried on many occasions to contact Polley by telephone during the early months of 1975, but was never able to reach him.[11]

On the night of 23 April 1975, Ham received a phone call from the United States, telling him that all his money had disappeared. Later that night he met Tom Evans and they went to The White Hart Pub in Surrey together,[11][99] where Ham drank ten whiskies.[100] Evans drove him home at three o’clock on the morning of 24 April 1975.[11] Ham hanged himself in his garage studio in Woking later that morning.[11][101] His suicide note—addressed to his girlfriend, Anne Herriot, and her son, Blair—blamed Polley for much of his despair and inability to cope with his disappointments in life.[102][103] The note read: “Anne, I love you. Blair, I love you. I will not be allowed to love and trust everybody. This is better. Pete. P.S. Stan Polley is a soulless bastard. I will take him with me”.[104] Ham had shown growing signs of mental illness over the past months, with Gibbins remembering Ham burning cigarettes on his hands and arms.[11] He was cremated at the Morriston Crematorium, Swansea; his ashes were spread in the memorial gardens.[105] Ham’s daughter, Petera, was born one month after his death.[106] In May, Warner Bros terminated its contract with Badfinger, and Badfinger dissolved.[107] Around that time, Apple also deleted all of Badfinger’s albums from its catalogue.[108]

Post-Badfinger[edit]

Gibbins joined the Flying Aces,[109] and performed session drumming for various Welsh acts, including Bonnie Tyler‘s international hit “It’s a Heartache“.[109] Evans and Jackson became part of a group called The Dodgers.[101]They released three British singles on Island Records in 1976.[110] “Don’t Let Me Be Wrong” was the act’s only US release, but failed to chart. Subsequently, the management of the Dodgers fired Evans in 1977 for insubordination and deleted all his performances from the group’s subsequent album recordings (later released as Love on the Rebound).[111] The group finally broke up in 1978, after which Jackson joined The Searchers and the David Byron Band. Molland started a band in 1975 with Colosseum‘s Mark Clarke and Humble Pie‘s Jerry Shirley using the moniker Natural Gas. They performed a few concerts as the opening act for Peter Frampton in 1976. Natural Gas released a self-titled album and three singles, but none managed to chart.[112]

By 1977, both Molland and Evans were out of the music business. Molland later described his dire economic circumstances: “Thank God I had guitars and I was able to sell some of that stuff. We were flat broke, and that’s happened to me three times, where my wife and I have had to sell off everything and go and stay with her parents or do whatever. I installed carpeting for a while in Los Angeles and stuff like that. You do what you’ve got to do to survive.”[113] In London, Evans briefly had jobs insulating pipes, and driving a taxi.[114] Collins was having trouble paying the lease on the group’s two-room rehearsal studio at No. 6 Denmark Street, London.[115] After advertising for new occupants, he was contacted by Malcolm McLaren, manager of the Sex Pistols, who gave Collins £650 (equivalent to £4,900 in 2015[116]) and a Fender Rhodes piano as down payment.[117]

A reunion, another break-up, and Evans’ suicide[edit]

Later in 1977, United States-based drummer Kenny Harck and guitarist Joe Tansin recruited Molland to start a new band.[114] When they needed a bass player, Molland suggested Evans, who joined after a visit to California in 1978. Encouragement from the Elektra record company led to the decision to rename the new band Badfinger. Their “comeback” album, Airwaves, was released in 1979.[38] Harck was fired from the band during the sessions and Tansin left the band immediately after the album was completed.[118] To promote the album Molland and Evans recruited Tony Kaye (ex-Yes) on keyboards,[37] and Peter Clarke on drums from Stealers Wheel.[47] The single “Love is Gonna Come at Last” from Airwaves reached No. 69 on the Billboard chart.[19] With Glenn Sherba added on second guitar and Richard Bryans (from the band Aviary) replacing Clarke on drums, Badfinger released their second post-Ham album, Say No More, in 1981,[38] with the album being distributed by Radio Records.[114] The second single, “Hold On“, reached number 56 on the Billboard charts.[19]

The Warner Brothers lawsuit against Polley lasted four years, with Polley finally being forced to pay a “substantial sum” back to the company in late 1978.[119] However, Polley managed to retain approximately half of the original $100,000 escrow payment, representing about three album’s worth of payments.[120] In 1987, detective John Hansen, working for the Riverside District Attorney’s office, started an investigation into fraudulent bank dealings by Polley.[121]

After the failure of Say No More, Molland and Evans operated rival touring bands, each using the name “Badfinger”, during 1982 and 1983, which created even more personal and professional conflict. In 1982, Evans teamed with pre-1975 Badfinger members Jackson and Gibbins, first adding guitarist Adam Allen,[109] and then, in the fall of 1982, adding guitarists Reed Kailing of The Grass Roots and (Chicago’sDonnie Dacus.[122]

In 1983 Evans and Jackson were joined by post-1975 Badfinger members Kaye and Sherba, with drummer Lenny Campanaro.[123] Meanwhile, for his Badfinger concerts, Molland had teamed with post-1975 member Tansin. Evans and Jackson signed a management contract with Milwaukee businessman John Cass, which led to a disastrous tour and a $5 million lawsuit, which was finally settled on 21 October 1985, in Cass’s favour, although both musicians argued that their responsibilities of the contract could not be enforced because certain management obligations had not been performed.[124] Early in 1983, Evans and Jackson, with assistance from new member Al Wodtke, completed four demos in Minneapolis, under the name “Badfinger”. The demos included Jackson’s “I Won’t Forget You”, a tribute to Ham. The songs were briefly promoted but failed to generate strong interest, despite the involvement of David Bowie/Stevie Wonder manager Don Powell.[125]

On the night of 18 November 1983,[126] Evans and Molland had an extensive and heated argument on the telephone regarding past Badfinger income still in escrow from the Apple era,[127] and the “Without You” songwriting royalties Evans was now receiving, which Molland, former manager Collins and Gibbins all wanted a share of. Following this argument, Evans hanged himself in the garden at his home in Richmond, England on the morning of 19 November 1983.[101] He was cremated at the Woking Crematorium, Surrey, on 25 November 1983.[128]

Subsequent Iveys and Badfinger releases and activities[edit]

In 1984, Molland, Gibbins and Jackson reunited as Badfinger, along with Al Wodtke and Randy Anderson, playing thirty-one dates as part of a “20th Anniversary of the British Rock ‘N’ Roll tour”, which included Gerry and the PacemakersThe TroggsBilly J. Kramer and Herman’s Hermits.[129] In 1986, Molland and Gibbins resumed sporadic touring as Badfinger, with Randy Anderson on guitar and either Mark Healy or A.J. Nicholas on bass. Gibbins left for good in February 1990 following appearances at three auto shows in Columbus, OH, West Allis, WI, and Flint, MI.

All four Badfinger albums on Apple, which were deleted from release in 1975, have been reissued twice; first in the early 1990s as part of a revival of the Apple catalogue and again in 2010, when the albums were available individually or as part of the 17 Apple Box Set. The sole Iveys’ album Maybe Tomorrow was also reissued in the early 1990s but was not part of the 2010 campaign.[130]

Badfinger’s first collection titled Shine On, spanning their two Warner Brothers albums, was released in the UK in 1989. In 1990, Rhino Records released another Warner Brothers-era compilation, The Best of Badfinger, Vol. 2, including material from both Airwaves and the previously unreleased Head First. A greatest hits collection taken from Badfinger’s four albums on Apple, Come and Get It: The Best of Badfinger, appeared in 1995 on the EMI/Apple/Capitol label, which was the band’s first release since 1973’s Ass to be assigned a standard Apple catalogue number: SAPCOR 28. A more comprehensive collection, with tracks from both record labels, was 2000s The Very Best of Badfinger.[131] In 2013, a new compilation entitled Timeless was issued by EMI/Universal both to capitalize on the use of “Baby Blue” in the finale of Breaking Bad and to include the 2010 remastered versions of Badfinger’s songs on a greatest-hits album.[132]

In 1990, Rykodisc released Day After Day: Live, billed as a Badfinger live recording from 1974.[34] The album underwent substantial re-recording,[133] and a rearranged track order by the album’s producer, Molland,[134] and had a mixed critical reaction. The album’s release then sparked a lawsuit filed by Molland. The band’s accounting firm, collecting for a 1985 court order settlement, had re-adjusted against Molland’s Apple royalty income by deducting away the percentage amounts of that court order, then reimbursing those amounts to the other Badfinger parties. The Rykodisc contract did not include artist royalty payments, because Molland had advised Rykodisc he would take care of that distribution himself under another company name.[135] Molland subsequently sued the other members and their estates to recoup his expenses plus a producer’s royalty. He was awarded a partial settlement, as the judge stated the evidence against Molland was insufficient to justify a severe penalty, also noting that since both parties had conceded the original tapes were of a poor quality, Molland’s salvaging of them to a commercial level merited consideration.[136]

After the success of Mariah Carey‘s recording of “Without You” in 1994, Molland and Gibbins collected an award from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) in 1995, incurring the anger of the Ham and Evans families.[137]

While in a 1988 readers poll for Goldmine magazine, Straight Up (1971) ranked as the most-requested CD release among out-of-print albums, the album made it to CD only in 1993. In 1995, Molland was paid to re-record the ten most popular Badfinger songs.[138] These recordings were variously packaged in the market, often showing the original 1970s line-up of the band with little or no disclaiming information, despite Molland being the only original member of Badfinger who performed. A detailed biography of Badfinger by Dan Matovina was published in 1998, titled Without You: The Tragic Story of Badfinger. The 2000 update of the book was accompanied by a CD of rare material and interviews.[139]

In 2000, a rough mix version of Head First (taken from an open-reel tape prepared by Apple engineer Phil McDonald in December 1974) was released on CD.[38] (According to Dan Matovina, Warner Brothers could not locate the original master tapes for remixing at that time, but they were eventually found about 10 years later.) In 2002, Gibbins released a two-disk set of a Badfinger performance recorded in Indiana, on 19 October 1982, which had been captured on a basic cassette recorder, which was initially (and inaccurately) titled Live 83 – DBA-BFR. The band at that time had consisted of Evans, Gibbins, Jackson, Kailing and Dacus.[140]

In 2003, and again in 2006, two separate CDs of related Apple Publishing music, 94 Baker Street,[141] and An Apple a Day, were released.[142] The CDs contain nine songs by the pre-Badfinger Iveys. In 2008, another CD of Apple-related songs, Treacle Toffee World: Further Adventures into the Pop Psych Sounds from the Apple Era 1967–1969, included two more Iveys demos.[143]

By 2013, the issue of royalty payments had been resolved in court. The main songwriter receives 32 percent of publishing royalties and 25 percent of ASCAP royalties. The other band members and Collins share the rest. Revenue from album sales is shared equally with 20% going to each member as well as Collins. In 1994, the year in which Mariah Carey covered the song “Without You”, the royalties for Ham’s estate spiked up to $500,000 USD.[144]

Post-Badfinger solo activities[edit]

Following the demise of Badfinger, each of the three living former members (Joey Molland, Bob Jackson, and Mike Gibbins) continued to record and play new music. Molland has released four solo albums, After the Pearl(1983), The Pilgrim (1992), This Way Up (2001), and Return to Memphis (2013). In 1998 he released a collection of demos called Demos Old and New on his own label, Independent Artists.[145] In 1995, Jackson re-joined The Fortunes, where he sang lead, and they consistently performed Badfinger songs in their set. In 1996, Gibbins contributed two songs to the compilation album, Young Savage Florida (1996). He later released four solo albums through Exile Music: A Place in Time in 1998, More Annoying Songs (featuring ex-Iveys member Griffiths singing on 2 tracks) in 2002, Archeology (Griffiths on 1 track) in 2005, and In the Meantime, also in 2005.[146] The latter included different re-recordings of both the Badfinger hit “Come and Get It” and Gibbins’ “In the Meantime”, originally from the Wish You Were Here album in 1974.[137]

Also, posthumous collections were released for both Pete Ham and Tom Evans. In both 1997 and 1999, two collections of Ham’s home recordings were released: 7 Park Avenue (1997), and Golders Green (1999),[44] with extra instruments added by Jackson and Griffiths.[147] In 1995, a posthumous Evans album was released, Over You: The Final Tracks, which was produced by Evans’ friend and songwriting partner Rod Roach.[148]

Former manager Bill Collins died in August 2002, aged 89,[149] and on 4 October 2005, Mike Gibbins died in his sleep at his home in Oviedo, Florida from a brain aneurysm. He was 56, had been married twice and had three sons.[137]

In June 2006, a Badfinger convention took place in Swansea, featuring a performance by Bob Jackson. The event brought together Bob Jackson, Ron Griffiths, and some members of the Ham, Evans and Gibbins families. On 1 January 2008, BBC Wales broadcast a one-hour documentary about Badfinger.[150]

On April 27, 2013 an official blue plaque was unveiled by the Swansea City Council to honour Pete Ham in his home town of Swansea. The public event was also attended by two former members of the original Badfinger band, The Iveys, Ron Griffiths and Dai Jenkins, plus former Badfinger member, Bob Jackson. The plaque, designed by Dan Matovina, honored Pete and all the Iveys and Badfinger members of Pete Ham’s lifetime. A concert followed the unveiling of the plaque featuring former Badfinger members Bob Jackson and Al Wodtke.[151]

Joey Molland’s wife, Kathie Molland, died on 24 March 2009,[152] and Stan Polley died on 20 July 2009 in California.[153]

Badfinger today[edit]

Former member Joey Molland continues to tour under the name Joey Molland’s Badfinger in the United States.[154]

In 2015, former member Bob Jackson formed his own version of Badfinger with current members Andy Nixon, Michael Healey, and Ted Duggan to honour the memory of Pete Ham, Tom Evans, and Mike Gibbins and undertook a 23 date UK theatre tour, playing to over 20,000 people.[155][156] In 2016 the band continued to play UK shows.

Bob Jackson’s Badfinger in 2016 with former Iveys bassist Ron Griffiths

Members[edit]

1965 – 1967
The Iveys
  • Pete Ham – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • David Jenkins – vocals, guitar
  • Ron Griffiths – vocals, bass
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion
1967–1969
The Iveys
  • Pete Ham – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, guitar
  • Ron Griffiths – vocals, bass
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion
1969
Badfinger
  • Pete Ham – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, guitar, bass
  • Ron Griffiths – vocals, bass
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
1969–1974
  • Pete Ham – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
Additional personnel
  • Rob Stawinsky – drums (US tour, 1972)
October – November 1974
  • Pete Ham – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Bob Jackson – vocals, keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
November 1974 – April 1975
  • Pete Ham – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Bob Jackson – vocals, keyboards, guitar
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
May 1975 – 1978
Disbanded
1978
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Joe Tansin – vocals, guitar
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Kenny Harck – drums
1978
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Joe Tansin – vocals, guitar
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
1979
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Bob Schell – guitar
  • Tony Kaye – keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Peter Clarke – drums
1979
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Tony Kaye – keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Peter Clarke – drums
1979–1980
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Tony Kaye – keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Ian Wallace – drums
1980
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Rod Roach – guitar
  • Tony Kaye – keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Richard Bryans – drums
1980–1981
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, piano
  • Glen Sherba – guitar
  • Tony Kaye – keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Richard Bryans – drums
1981–1984 Two variations of Badfinger in existence.
1984
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar
  • Randy Anderson – vocals, guitar
  • Bob Jackson – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Al Wodtke – vocals, bass
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
Molland’s Badfinger
1981
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Joe Tansin – vocals, guitar
  • Larry Lee – vocals, bass
  • Bobby Wickland – drums
1982
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Ted Turner – vocals, guitar
  • Craig Howlett – bass
  • Bobby Wickland – drums
1983
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Andrew Russell – keyboards
  • Rick Reid – bass
  • Steve Craiter – drums
1984–Present
  • Joey Molland – vocals, guitar
  • Mark Healey – bass, vocals (1986–Present)
  • Steve Wozny – keyboards, vocals (2001–Present)
  • Mike Ricciardi – drums (2010–Present)
  • varying line-ups since 1984
Evans & Gibbins’ Badfinger
1982
  • Bob Evans – vocals, keyboards, guitar
  • Jimmy McCullogh – guitar
  • Steve Johns – keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums
1982
  • Bob Evans – vocals, keyboards, guitar
  • Fred Girard – guitar, vocals
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums
1982
  • Bob Jackson – vocals, keyboards, guitar
  • Adam Allen – guitar, backing vocals
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
1982
  • Bob Jackson – vocals, keyboards, guitar
  • Reed Kailing – vocals, guitar
  • Donnie Dacus – vocals, guitar
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass, guitar
  • Mike Gibbins – vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards
1983
  • Bob Jackson – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Glen Sherba – guitar
  • Tony Kaye – keyboards
  • Tom Evans – vocals, bass
  • Lenny Campanero – drums
Bob Jackson’s Badfinger
2015–Present
  • Bob Jackson – vocals, guitar, keyboards
  • Andy Nixon – Vocals, guitar (2015–Present)
  • Michael Healy – vocals, bass (2015–Present)
  • Ted Duggan – drums (2015–Present)

Timeline

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

As The Iveys:

Year Album US Top 200
1969 Maybe Tomorrow

As Badfinger:

Year Album US Top 200
1970 Magic Christian Music 55
No Dice 28
1971 Straight Up 31
1973 Ass 122
1974 Badfinger 161
Wish You Were Here 148
1979 Airwaves 125
1981 Say No More 155
2000 Head First

Compilations/live albums[edit]

Year of Release Title
1989 Shine On (UK only)
1990 The Best of Badfinger, Vol. 2
1990 Day After Day: Live
1995 Come and Get It: The Best of Badfinger
1997 BBC in Concert 1972–1973
2000 The Very Best of Badfinger
2002 Live 83 – DBA-BFR
2010 Magic Christian Music; No Dice; Straight Up; Ass (remastered albums on CD, with bonus tracks)
2010 Apple Records Extra: Badfinger
2013 Timeless…The Musical Legacy

Singles[edit]

Year Song CAN US Hot 100 US CB Top 100 UK Singles Album
1969 Maybe Tomorrow 67 51 Maybe Tomorrow
Dear Angie Maybe Tomorrow
Come and Get It 4 7 6 4 Magic Christian Music
1970 No Matter What 7 8 6 5 No Dice
1971 Day After Day 2 4 3 10 Straight Up
1972 Baby Blue 7 14 9 73
1973 Apple of My Eye 102 88 Ass
1974 Love Is Easy Badfinger
I Miss You
1979 Lost Inside Your Love Airwaves
Love Is Gonna Come at Last 69 79
1981 Hold On 56 67 Say No More
I Got You
Because I Love You

References[edit]

External links[edit]

 

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