The Party

One evening on a laundry boat
in Montmartre Picasso's clique
cheer & honour the painter Rousseau
"all aboard the Bateau-Lavoir"
so the merriment begins
a cast of hundreds herd

pre-drink the Lapin dry then amber
uphill and cram into the impromptu
studio banquet now a farcical soirée
Henri's singing tears accompany his violin
the rowdy crowd shout
over the speeches

Gertrude & Alice leave early anticipating
modern dancing ushering the era's end
Andre floored now gazes stars reciting
poetry the sozzled Marie face-firsts
dessert Apollonian remains seated
Henri under the table is eventually found

such a notorious party that some
go on to claim it as their own Sonia
still insists it was her engagement
to Robert and that grew like a soufflé
ah yes, who came, left & with whom?
the once in a decade rave went off
in a laundry on a boat in Montmartre


The Dinner 1909 - acrylic paint on linen / on board 120 X 120cm, 2009 JS

private collection.

notes on 1909 / The Dinner 

The original Diner painting (above image) is privately owned and a much small version exists (40x40cm) and will also be seen in an upcoming book, comprising paintings, supporting material, essays and verse to be titled 1909. 
In Diner, a grand banquet is seen here in place, midway through which tells the story of the now legendary but still out of view - extraordinary event that takes place one Dec evening in 1909,  in Picasso's quite squalid and small studio (before fame catapults him to the elevated status of an artist who has many studios, wealth and influence derived from his art). 
A plan was hatched to put on a diner, honoring the also yet to be very famous naive painter Henri Rousseau. The whole affair is loaded with irony, game-playing, comedic bungling and finally takes place, attended by the AAA list of the contemporary and emerging modernist art world. The event was also gate crashed and much debauchery flowed.

more to come - stay tuned.

An initially self-published booked edition will be published along the lines of my earlier self-published Silk on the Road, (see homepage to preview or order). 

The aim is to get it properly published ASAP after my other written work in progress - A Sydney Opera is also published and available in 2023, to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Sydney Opera House in September 1973. 

A S O is another very original project that depicts the telling of a new Opera  - one I dreamed up that portrays the SOH as the main character who regardless of its sheer size, inhabits the current site and historical surrounds of Sydney Harbour, just as if it were a stage for an imagined opera. 
Throughout this there is opera singing, dancing and accomapning music to give voice yo the sublime cement character, who freeley transits time and place via projections and multi-media to unfold the uniquely Sydney stories at the core of the nattative of my ASO.

So some busy scheduling and vigorious work lays ahead, however, the majority of the work is eirhter done or in place and ready to be edited and finalised asap.

The thematic current of 1909 is a fictional narrative of the period and goings-on of the early birth of modernism told through my original paintings, artworks essays and verse. 

stay tuned ....

#painting #poetry 
#story #verse 
#dinerparty #wildparty
#1909 #art #history 


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