Thursday, September 13, 2012

Kiki




Kiki

"all I need is an onion, a bit of bread, and a bottle of red [wine]; and I will always find somebody to offer me that."


Under the streetlamped
Paris sky
she was the model she was meant to be
lovechild, baker's brat 
runaway
from  leavened loaves to
high rising loafers,
le violin d'Ingres, playing herself
with a hand drawn catgut bow
resilient as a rubber ball
bounced to dance and sing
for a bottle of red wine
and an onion.

~September 2012






55 French bread crumbs for  the g-man



also
Posted for   real toads
Challenge: Out of Standard with Izy
Isadora Gruye extends her bad girl challenge to all comers. This time I have chosen a different rebellious girl.





Process Notes: Kiki de Montparnasse(born Alice Prin) was a singer, actress, memoirist, and an artist's and photographer's model of the DaDa/Surrealist movement of 1920's Paris. You can read her biography here at wikipedia.

The title of the header photo by Man Ray is 'Le violin d'Ingres,' defined by dictionary.com thusly: violon d'Ingres '"an occasional pastime, an activity other than that for which one is well-known, or at which one excels," from Fr., lit. "Ingres' violin," from the story that the great painter preferred to play his violin -- badly -- for visitors instead of showing them his pictures.'


Both images in this post are by the Dada/Surrealist photographer Man Ray, KiKi's companion during her early days as "Queen of Montparnasse." 
via wikipaintings.org
All copyright remains with the copyright holders.

37 comments:

  1. playing herself
    with a hand drawn catgut bow....ha love that line...and cool shot to accompany as well...must admit i am unfamiliar, but that wont last long...she is an interesting character which means i must look some more...smiles.

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  2. I've always loved this. Man Ray was an early love of mine. Your poem captures the timbre and the tempo of those times. I wonder if we've really processed all the ideas about art that they were thinking, and producing then. Wonderful small piece.

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  3. Agh! lost comment - so sorry if duplicating -

    Love ManRay - great pic, great story, great poem - I love the all the resin-ances of playing herslf, the cat gut bow, the bouncing all. Great fun.

    Thanks for this. k.

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    1. I meant to say bouncing "ball" but all perhaps works as well! (Ha!)

      I am laughing which is fun- I've been so pre-occupied by all this business overseas. (As if I could do anything.) Nice to think of Kikis. k.

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    2. Ha! and re overseas, I know--I watched TV all last night seeing how things were going, something I very rarely do--it makes me very uneasy. Thanks for reading, and I am pretty sure Kiki would have liked it that she made you smile

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  4. Your 55-worders are not to be missed, and this is no exception. I love the portrait you have given of this self-reliant bad girl, who became someone in spite of being born a nobody.

    le violin d'Ingres, playing herself
    with a hand drawn catgut bow...

    Excellent. I always leave your blog feeling I have learnt something new.

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    1. Thank you Kerry--I enjoyed revisiting the challenge--seems there's an endless supply of rebellious females out there, which is a good thing, imo.

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  5. Oh, to have roamed the streets of Paris during Kiki's lifetime .. the headiness that accompanies changing mores and avant-guarde lifestyle. In 55 words, you captured it all perfectly.

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  6. How neat to look at this image and finally know it is of KiKi who is NOT an object but a subject:
    "le violin d'Ingres, playing herself
    with a hand drawn catgut bow
    resilient as a rubber ball"
    Some of the women who seem simply to bounce, bounce back again and again, surviving against all odds. She took risks;I hope she had fun.

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  7. Wow! 55 words and you have introduced me to someone I knew nothing about, but I find I am now intrigued by. I love rebellious women!

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  8. Wonderfully said and done, Joy. Your work is inspirational, your talent admirable, or vice versa. I'm in awe.
    K

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  9. I liked the whole presentation. Set my imagination running. I love her attitude. Beautiful and free. The model that was meant to be. I love the last picture. Old time but timeless. Her look.
    I love Knopfler. Brothers in Arms is a favorite. I have the CD with Emmylou. I know what he means. I got a tire in the corner too...just in case.

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    1. that should read "tire iron"..

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    2. Thanks, Scott. Yes, she was constantly photographed and painted in the nude--I wanted a shot with her clothes on, and I also liked that look, with its secret smile. Knopfler is a great lyricist, understated, hip and snarky, but I love him best for the way he bends the strings. Emmy Lou's voice is always great in harmony, but seems to really blend well with his, maybe because neither is overpowered. Glad you looked in.

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    3. I followed--yes, a tire is a poor defensive weapon, unless you're the Hulk, I guess.

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  10. To play one's self is the best thing a person can do, I think, taking it in a broad sense. I know that you don't think you write short poems well, but you do, Joy. Besides that, I learned about someone interesting with this. I had not heard of her before.

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    1. Thank you, Shay. You know your assessments mean a lot to me.

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  11. PS--your "very small witch" on the side bar is a doorbell, as you would say.

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  12. Madame Joy Ann...
    (Reaches for his slotted spoon and La Fee Verte)
    C'est Magnifique!
    J'Adore la Cinquant-Cinq!!
    This was indeed really really cool Hedge.
    One of your very best.
    Thanks for playing, and have a Kick Ass Week-End

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  13. Loved this tribute! and in 55 words is impressive.

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  14. Bravo! In honor of your great piece I'd like to make a toast: French! (ducks and runs) ;-)

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  15. LOVE this, Joy, but i'd have to have some cheese, too... maybe some olives...

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  16. AH! Pareee! Play that violin beneath Paris skies, under the lamp posts. Sure I could do that.

    Lovely biography in 55 words!

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  17. Loved first the Man Ray photo, but didn't know much about Kiki, a most fascinating creature. Those days in Paris... what I would not give to be transported there (except I don't speak French). This was a love letter to Kiki, to free women everywhere, and to a culture and city that has long passed into legend. Amy
    http://sharplittlepencil.com/2012/09/14/space-cadet-for-my-fellow-bloggrrrls/

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  18. Loved the tribute... and also how much info you have linked us to!
    Taste of wine n French. Silly grin, google translator's my friend :)

    Lovely weekend hugs xoxoxo

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  19. What a beautiful tribute and a memoir in just 55! You go girl!! I love Kiki, red wine and your 55!Mine is here
    Have you an AWESOME WEEKEND!
    hugs
    shakira

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  20. I wish we could recapture some of the excitment of the Surrealist Movement in 1920's Paris, the awesome amount of creativity generated in those times, nobody watching reality TV and playing fantasy football at the conversation level of junior high boys. Thanks for the history blurb. One could dance and sing for much less. I would only throw in a chunk of cheese!

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  21. "playing herself
    with a hand drawn catgut bow"

    I love that. She sounds marvelous!

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  22. I think women need a bit of the rebel in them and I was happy to be introduced to another strong one here. You did her justice in this short piece for G-Man...loved those photos too.

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  23. Again, your poem taught me something. I had never heard of Kiki. What an interesting woman and a wonderful tribute to her! I understand the bread and red wine but am wondering about the onion...

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    1. Onion soup?? French onion dip??? Thanks, LM.

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  24. hedgey, you done so much here in such a small space, your words tremble with might.

    runaway
    from leavened loaves to
    high rising loafers

    I think I want this on my gravestone.....well done twice now. You outshine as always!

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  25. Love the compressed expression of this one. Amazing! Also amazing imagery so economically expressed

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  26. you have met this woman at her game. she comes alive with your words, I think it was the rubber ball phrasing that bounced to the center for me.. this is an excellent and vivid recollection. there are few things I enjoy more than art, layered with art, layered with art. you do that here.

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  27. Amazing imagery and what a great take on this prompt. It read in black and white....and yet, as colorful as they come. That quote is so telling and so good. Bless the rebel girls, they keep my mind busy during those devils workshop moments...lol.

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  28. ... and we think we are so full of sass and sexuality now. I don't think we can touch this with such elegance and glamour... All this in 55 words... Wow. Going to check out the link!

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'Poetry is an echo asking a shadow to dance' ~Carl Sandburg