Friday, October 03, 2008

Quote ... Oliver Wendell Holmes




..... "A man's mind stretched by a new idea...

can never go back to its original dimensions" ....




Oliver Wendell Holmes... (1841-1935)... U.S. Supreme Court Justice... He was called the "The Great Dissenter" as he was often at odds with his fellow justices and was capable of eloquently expressing his dissents.... He had the ability to see to the heart of an issue... He is considered one of the giants of American law...



...detail of a watercolor (not of O.W. Holmes) I did in the spring...

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33 comments:

Sandy said...

Gwen, this is FANTASTIC!

mansuetude said...

wow
one well aimed breath and (me-thinks) she will come to life--the intelligence in the mouth full of strenghts, and those eyes! :) She reminds me of one of Rilke's Angels somehow--both here and there, bidden; so wise or inteligent that one glance towards us would perhaps annihilate something (not necessary) within.

Love your quote, too--it recalls a book i had, something about Poetry being one of the Dangerous Trade's. Because once an insight IS gained or given, it has to live in us, and then so we must change... or the gap within us widens and we become disgruntled among the inner characters of Selfhood. (if that makes any sense) (but I am on blog break so really I am not here at all).

Love your photos, hope you keep posting them.

Shayla said...

Very powerful image. It goes well with the quote.

Anet said...

The watercolor is fantastic!
I read, then re-read the quote. I had just that experience, of my mind being streched (by my son Caleb) on something that I held to be true all my life. Now I struggle with trying to continue the same path as I have since I was a child. It just doesn't fit any longer. Oh...that kid of mine!

Serena said...

A wonderful watercolour, Gwen...I love the expression....and a great quote to go with it.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi Sandy! Thank-you...

Hey Anet, this sounds like a mystery... also sounds like an eye/mind-opening experience...

Looks like you learn as much from your kids as I do... feels good, doesn't it? Feels like a reward! They are little pieces of our heart..

Gwen Buchanan said...

mansuetude, your observation intrigues me ...
you fill up the corners with insight...

and what you say is so true.. we need to change everyday..

you describe it so well...

even though you are not really here...

Thank you so much.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Hi Shayla ! thanks so much for visiting my blog... nice to have a hear from a fellow New Brunswicker.

Thank you Serena, We have a lot of unused gray matter up there... I wonder how much we could really stretch?

denise said...

One of my favorite quotes. I love that watercolor and the hues in there - almost macabre but beautiful too.

Interesting, isn't it, that all of the 'giants' of anything are always dissenters, individuals, free thinkers...not just go with the flow followers! :)

corine said...

I'm saving this quote. Perfect for all of them bigots! :-)

corine said...

the watercolor is yours? wow...

Hillary said...

Amazing watercolour. Such awesome ability. Thank you.

Robyn said...

This watercolour has soul. Beautiful!

Gwen Buchanan said...

Denise, I like the way you look at things... you have a very open mind and you see through things .. I like that!


Thanks Corine... Interesting quotes have a way of relating to many things.. Spurs on the thought process, wouldn't you say?


Hi Hilary, I really enjoyed touring your work yesterday... you are so prolific... It always inspires me!!

Ruth said...

The detail of the watercolor is so nice. You are becoming my favorite illustrator. Too bad your watercolor/pen&inks aren't in books. I've told you before this is my favorite type of art, having fallen in love with Arthur Rackham at a young age. You caught that moment of thought beautifully, that point where you can't go back having realized something new. The quote and the image together are profound.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Thank you Robyn,
love playing with the way paint flows on the paper... so much to learn

It's exciting to explore... as you know...



Ruth, ... to ever be as good as Rackham.. oh his lines... that will take a lifetime of practice.. but what a journey!!!
I love reading quotes and the way some trigger our responses... they make us consider and reconsider our beliefs and ideas...

Don said...

I continue to be amazed at the depth of your skills. The lines and the way she seems to have life and emotion is pretty cool.

Our son was moseying through your fair city the other day and he liked it a lot!

Gwen Buchanan said...

Thanks Don, I been thinking for a while I would like to draw some of your adorable chickens... hope that is ok, if I use some of the photographs on your blog for inspiration.

Hey good to hear that your son has been exploring Saint John... Hope he had some pleasant weather...

rivergardenstudio said...

This is a wonderful watercolor. I love the shadows and the subtle colors. And your quote. Great for me as I head into a week of work... Roxanne

Jo said...

The eye is amazing...window to the soul literally... beautiful watercoulour Gwen and wonderful quote.

Ruth said...

Speaking for Don as his photographer (:D) we would love it if you'd draw or paint our chickens! Yay!

Ruth said...

Oh, and I meant to say, Peter told me he was in a 'cool old library' in St. John. Do you know anything about it?

Gwen Buchanan said...

Beautiful morning, Ruth... oh lovely.. Those cute chicks!! I hope I can do them justice..Thanks so much!!!

...now I've put myself under pressure ... yikes!!

I am thinking the building Peter may have seen was the beautiful old Andrew Carnegie library that is now used as the Saint John Art Center where John had his show in the Spring... It has a wonderful mosaic floor in the main entrance lobby and the ceiling there is an amazing paneled and intricate designed stained glass configuration....

on this link he wrote a bit about the history of the building.. johnackerson1.blogspot.com/2008/05/art-exhibit-at-saint-john-arts-centre.html
of course over the past few years there has been a fight to save it as progress thinks we need to rip it down and build some concrete modern structures in this very spot... They have already removed almost all the surrounding historical buildings.. what a shame!

Gwen Buchanan said...

Morning Roxanne, Thanks so much... I'm always interested to see what comes out of that imagination of yours!!!


Hi Jo, Welcome back.. Are you feeling totally refreshed from your trip? ... my daughter loved Thailand too.. I'm looking forward to your new inspirations!!

Ruth said...

I hope you won't put yourself under pressure, since we have no expectations about it. Just giving you free reign.

Thanks for the link to John's blog post about the Carnegie library! I had not idea so many were built via his donations! That's a WONderful old building, and I hope to goodness it does not follow the fate of the other historical buildings around it. I remember when Jackie Kennedy went to the rescue of Penn Station (I think, or was it Grand Central?) in NYC. Some things just need to be preserved!

I forwarded the link on to Peter, asking him if this was da place.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Just joking, Ruth!!!

Arija said...

I love the qute, but your painting, I don't know, it makes me want to cry...

Gwen Buchanan said...

Arija, I didn't mean to make you feel bad....

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Incredibly true. I think that's why so many of us seem to communicate on parallel lines.

mansuetude said...

What do you mean my "observation intriques" you? I want a good rough draft essay on my desk regarding this notion; your art, Rilke's angels, the bay and its magnetic tides, moonlight, rocks, life, Leonard Cohen, all of it--i want it on my desk by moondown tomorrow night!!! :) I expect it to be insightful and intelligent and marvelous. :)

But i'm not here.

Gwen Buchanan said...

Mansuetude and Pamela!... I have to tell you I just saw the largest flock or is that a "murder" of ravens I have ever seen in my life!!!!! More kept coming and joining the flock.. It was amazing.. and they all flew off together into a glorious sunset towards the huge forest in the hills farther inland.. their wings. their togetherness and community silhouetted against the colored sky... what an impact!!

I am fit for the night now.. I didn't dare leave and grab my camera as they were flying too fast... as if they were all late for something important. .. I just couldn't take my eyes off them!!

It was Glorious.... I am so glad to share it with you girls..

Their is a 1/2 moon (1st quarter) shining now in the opposite direction in the half-lite sunset sky directly out the front window over the bay.. I feel so humbled......

mansuetude said...

Oh, I am glad you didn't grab your camera...so we don't lose the joy of words, the way they open into the inner mind such majesty all their own. Its powerful wording of experience... Thank you.I can see it all, its so beautifully said.

After reading your essay link, the ravens and their dark mass of power flying into the inner forest becomes perfect metaphor for a begining of transformation. Don't you think? It crystalizes something ...?

{...and why do you call it a "murder"; is it local to that area, in the tongue of your ancestors ?? Never heard it before... interesting though}

Thanks ...

Gwen Buchanan said...

mansuetude, I am so glad you could understand and see what I witnessed when the gathering of the ravens flew over... spellbinding, I tell you.. I wish I could have stopped time... I wish you could see the pictures stored in my mind that I rewind and watch again and again...

Oh you've never heard of a Murder of Ravens..one of the terms describing groups of animals, which I find amusingly descriptive... sometimes they are called an unkindness of ravens but that doesn't work for me.. I have found that the Murder refers to murmuring or murmuration ... their calls from a distance.
I love the intelligence of ravens and crows... probably my favourite birds... I watch them here everyday... fascinating...

You know the link and the ravens do have a solemn connection when you mention it.. I surely hope a transformation occurs and it is not too difficult for us to accept...and survive..
Thank-you...