Gout, Whites, Darks, and the Golden Ratio

November 17: First, the bad news: We (Hunterdon) had 35 new cases of coronavirus yesterday. https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/usa/new-jersey

Stay home, stay safe. I have the odious task of alerting my hair dresser, who needs the money, that I can't come in for awhile. Again.



I've probably bored you enough with the golden ratio. (There are silver and bronze ratios also!!! But I digress.) Use the above links to get the basic math for the golden ratio if you want to, but otherwise just know that it is one key to our understanding of beauty ...

or, maybe humor ...!

So I'll end the conversation with this painting, by Louis-Léopold Boilly, “The Gourmand” (19th century). I stumbled across it here:

Once the Disease of Gluttonous Aristocrats, Gout Is Now Tormenting the Masses

Link to NY Times Magazine article. (November 12)

I love this painting, which I had never seen until it was in the Times magazine. It is by an artist I’ve never heard of. I love the white table cloth, the white socks and the black shoes that almost disappear. In fact, lots of his rotund self disappears into the background. Look at that glass next to his right hand! So, I had to check, and sure enough, would you look at that! This is a golden rectangle with its corner lines added. So many details fit right in! It can’t be an accident.

The thing I think I love the most is that this guy (the artist) must be at least relatively unknown — I’ve never heard of him and I do have a collection of credits in art history. This tells me that all through time there have been great artists, just like all of us, who are not recognized for the geniuses we obviously are!

[Side note: I downloaded a software app that allows you to upload a photo and then supplies the grid, as shown above, for you to play with. If anyone wants more info, please just email me at wwetherill@gmail.com.]

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