Wouter Johannes van Troostwijk, The Raampoort in Amsterdam, 1809

After a night of half sleep in damp straw, I sneak out of the falling-down barn into the thick, white air. My feet are still wet and cold. My back still aches. But I barely feel these discomforts anymore. They are no more than nagging. What I can't ignore—what flashes bright and insistently at the … Continue reading Wouter Johannes van Troostwijk, The Raampoort in Amsterdam, 1809


No. 17: My Aunt Judy Collection

Artist: Judy BeamanTitle: Various GiftsDate: 1992ish-2018Culture: AmericanProvenance: Gifts given to EAH by her aunt over the years I didn't quite notice until I learned that my aunt was dying how many treasures she has given me over the years. There are a million and one reasons why I loved her, but these seven objects give … Continue reading No. 17: My Aunt Judy Collection

Dorothea Lange, End of an Era: Funeral Cortege in a Small Valley Town, California, 1938

Uncle Bob was the last of the elder generation to go. It started when my great-aunt Louisa passed two years ago. A steady stream of the older generation falling away: Uncle Larry and Aunt Kay died within days of each other in their home, too weak to tolerate the flu, the doc said. My mother … Continue reading Dorothea Lange, End of an Era: Funeral Cortege in a Small Valley Town, California, 1938

No. 15: Heirloom Autograph Book

Artist: Unknown/Olive May McQuown Title: Autograph Book Date: 1884 Culture: American, Remington, Indiana Provenance: Olive McQuown's sister (or cousin?) Anna (my great-grandmother), passed this on to her daughter Elma (my grandmother) who passed it on to my mother. It ended up with me after my mother's death. As far back as I can remember, my … Continue reading No. 15: Heirloom Autograph Book

Dormition Cathedral, Vladimir, 12th Century

Its stone walls stood sentinel on the tall embankment overlooking the Klyazma River, which wended its way sluggishly through an ocean of marshy green meadows. One end of the building swelled away from them toward the sunrise like an overripe fruit ready to burst. The other walls stood erect and prim, a musical rhythm in … Continue reading Dormition Cathedral, Vladimir, 12th Century

Anne Brigman, The Breeze, 1910

Up here—shrouded in mist and the scent of pine, a halo of fuzzy golden light surrounding my fragile silhouette—I am like a goddess. And so I strip myself of those most dull human identifiers. My hip-length jacket with the brass buttons that march up my torso, and my wide-brimmed hat with the plumage of feathers … Continue reading Anne Brigman, The Breeze, 1910

Giuseppe Pellizza, Il Sole, 1904

Forty days, they told me—quaranta giorni—but I think it was more. Sixty? Seventy-five? No matter. It's over now. During my solitude, my bedroom quickly became a dark, fusty, unwelcoming place, so I slept on my balcony most nights, in spite of the cold, my down comforter and flannel pajamas wrapped tightly around me, the slender … Continue reading Giuseppe Pellizza, Il Sole, 1904