“So I added midgets and I added stale bullets. I added monkeys; I added incongruous elements.”—
Incongruous elements, like, other than stale bullets, midgets, and monkeys? Rube Goldberg, who died 43 years ago today, describes something positively Rube Goldbergian in an interview for Radio Smithsonian. The full transcript is available on our site.
“You pile food on. You don’t serve one slice of roast beef on white bread with one green pea.”—
Painter Audrey Flack’s comment comparing Jewish art with Jewish food (i.e., not minimalist) seems thoroughly in the spirit of Thanksgivukkah. Pile on the pastrami-wrapped turkey and sweet potato latkes, please!
“They were worth more to me and moved me more than the whole British Museum, for I have studied that kind of thing and could in some degree appreciate them. One minute I felt like crying and the next I wanted to stand on my head and yell.”—
Bolton Coit Brown records his reaction to an exhibition of Turner drawings in a letter to his parents. Has an artwork ever moved you to tears or yelling?
“I am making some strange works lately; my fame increases as does my poverty; unable to find any teaching jobs in the past six months search; and recent exhibit in DC with tremendous focus by critics, collectors, artists, sold nothing.”—Carolee Schneemann in a letter. Michelle Moravec is analyzing Schneemann’s correspondence from a feminist perspective - this example is from a search on the phrase “the past.”
“Right now I’m doing a series using colors. Sometimes if you pick up a commercial color chart with color chips on it, you see something that says Primrose Red. And you say what the hell is Primrose Red … So I got onto this kick of making up insane stupid colors [and] giving them names. I have one called Extra Long Blue, Wild Turkey Blue — I’m somehow using blue a lot – or Yellow in a bottle.”—
Painter Nicholas Krushenick could have worked for Benjamin Moore. I would totally buy a gallon of Extra Long Blue paint.
If you could ask a Smithsonian archivist anything, what would it be?
Got a collection of treasured old photos you want to preserve? Or perhaps a not-so-old collection of emails that you don’t want to disappear into the ether? Well, today is your chance to talk to the experts. As we do every Archives Month, archivists from across the Smithsonian will be answering YOUR questions on the Smithsonian facebook page. For more info, see here.