Weekend Words: Nose

Domenico Ghirlandaio, “An Old Man and His Grandson” (c. 1490), tempera on wood, 62 x 46 cm (Musée du Louvre, Paris) (image via Web Gallery of Art)

As Jillian Steinhauer reported in Hyperallergic on Monday, “The fight to obtain resale royalties for visual artists may be gaining momentum thanks to the newly introduced American Royalties, Too (ART) Act of 2014, but the major auction houses are determined to stop it.”

Will it succeed this time? The Visual Artists Rights Coalition and the Artists Rights Society have spent $280,000 on lobbyists like Bruce Lehman, a former commissioner of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, but, as Lehman told the New York Times, “In the past, visual artists have not been able to get their nose under the tent.”

“A soiled baby, with a neglected nose, cannot be conscientiously regarded as a thing of beauty.”

—Mark Twain

“How haughtily he lifts his nose,
To tell what every schoolboy knows.”

—Jonathan Swift, “The Journal”

“To see what is in front of one’s nose requires a constant struggle.”

—George Orwell

“Whatever tears one may shed, in the end one always blows one’s nose.”

—Heinrich Heine

“That’s not my sleeve, that’s my heart.
Not less than any other lover who ever wrote I want to describe his looks,
the way his wide eyebrows uniquely die away in a haze of fine short hairs
xxxxxxxxxxon the East and West slopes of his forehead,
the way they join in a tuft, a small explosion of longer hairs above his
the crinkled pink of a new small scar, still touched by the black recent
the fullness of his lower lip, like the excess that shaped the pear,
xxxxxxxxxx”sulky and determined, boyish and sweet,
Greek, before they got refined:
but if I’m such a lover why can’t I remember the color of his eyes?”

—James Schuyler, “Having My Say-So”

“Where do the noses go? I always wondered where the noses would go.”

—Ernest Hemingway, For Whom the Bell Tolls (Maria, when she wants to kiss Jordan for the first time.)

“Some thirty inches from my nose
The frontier of my person goes,
And all the untilled air between
Is private pagus or demesne.
Stranger, unless with bedroom eyes
I beckon you to fraternize,
Beware of rudely crossing it:
I have no gun, but I can spit.”

—W. H. Auden, “Prologue: The Birth of Architecture”

“What Romantic terminology called genius or talent or inspiration is nothing other than finding the right road empirically, following one’s nose, taking shortcuts.”

—Italo Calvino

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