Tag Archives: paradiso

Don Draper Goes Medieval! Is Mad Men Don Draper’s “Inferno”?

Man Men - season 6 episoe 1 - don draper reading dantes inferno on the beach

Midway upon the journey of our life
I found myself within a forest dark,
For the straightforward pathway had been lost. . .

Those were the first words we hear Don Draper speak in the season 6 premier of AMC’s hit show, “Mad Men” which aired last night. Dante Alighieri’s legendary Medieval poem is not one’s expected choice to be reading on the beaches of Mauii, but for Don Draper it seems to have opened many questions of himself.

You could even point out that throughout the series, Don has endured through many of the nine circles of sin described in Dante’s “Inferno” (such as gluttony, lust, and sin), so to capture the man of perceived strength and self confidence bring alongside with him a poem about the author’s personal midlife crisis really speaks volumes. Don, however, doesn’t speak for another 10 minutes into the episode.

Dante Alighieri’s “Inferno” is a piece of Dante’s collection of poems known as “The Divine Comedy“. Written between 1308 and his death in 1321, the work is still seen as a pinnacle in literacy for mankind, and is still read today by students and scholars around the world. Split into three parts: Inferno, Purgatoria, and Paradiso; the story tells of the author’s descent into hell before ascending to paradise.

And as Don puts it, “Heaven is a little morbid. How do you get to heaven? Something terrible has to happen”.

As Dante had Virgil at his side, Don has Sterling; and like Dante’s muse Beatrice, Don seems to have found a new muse in his latest mistress who leant him the copy for his vacation. It’s strange life he is living, but luckily he notes he must stop “doing this”, before he never figures it out.

Dantes Purification on the Deserted Shore of Pergatory- The Divine COmedy - Dantes Inferno - Master of the Dominican Effigies (1325 - 1355) - AGO Revealing the Renaissance

We got a chance to see one of first illustrated copies of Dante Alighieri’s “The Divine Comedy” at the Art Gallery of Ontario’s Revealing the Early Renaissance: Secrets and Stories in Florentine Art, by The Master of the Dominican Effigies between 1325 and 1355. Today, it still one of the most important works written.

A season back, or so, Don criticized Universities as a “Medieval” system, in an almost dismissive way, so its interesting to see him now delving into the pinnacle of Medieval philosophy. I guess it’s always good to stay well-rounded. And 800 year old wisdom, is just as good as any.

One of the most famous publications of “The Divine Comedy” featured engravings by French artist Gustave Doré, offering fantastical and surreal visuals to compliment Dante’s classic words. We thought them a wonderful showcase to accompany Don Draper and his voyage of self-discovery, and maybe provide a little insight and intrigue into the world of Dante Alighieri.

Maybe we will go on one too. Anyone want to join us?

Everyone’s got a little figuring out to do.

Why not get lost a little on the way.

Until next time,

{theEye}

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E.O.F. Style Idol: Pablo Picasso

What can we say about Pablo Picasso that hasn’t been said? Genius is a word that gets thrown around a lot , and justly so – the man completely reconfigured the landscape of creative and artistic possibility for all people that continues to flourish to this day.

{THANKS, PICASSO!}

However, in our one-stop society it’s easy to forget all the other titles that come to mind: rebel, clown, father, grandfather, playboy – but rarely do we find the artistic impresario ranking the  best dressed list for men’s style, and that’s a {goddamn} shame! Here is a man that not only redefined the art world, but took on menswear with an equally individualistic eye.

Luckily, we are always looking for idols to worship here at The Eye of Faith, so it was not hard to add Pablo Picasso to our growing rank of E.O.F. Style Idols! And here’s why:

Easily one of the most effortlessly stylish men to have graced the Earth, around here we’ve come to revere the art God’s sense for simplicity when it comes to getting dressed. With little more than a pair of shorts for the beach, a great pair of leather sandals, and a striped shirt- Picasso shows it doesn’t take much to get the job done.

Look for work wear inspiration at every turn – after all, much of Picasso’s life was spent working in his studio, so it’s no surprise to see a fine collection of simple cotton button-up shirts adorning the man in most of his photos.  These shirts are more often black, but we favor some of the bolder options- like polka dot, gingham, and check. Especially, for the warm weather, feel the urge and brighten up a little!

We can definitely learn a thing or two from the nonchalance and effortlessness of such a well-rounded and inspiring man. The key, is definitely in one’s own attitude. Picasso believed:

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”

and it’s this sentiment exactly that we find in Picasso’s life day-to-day. The ability to laugh at life’s many pressures and queries, and enjoy life to the fullest is every man’s greatest challenge.

So, while the weather has shaped up for the better, best enjoy it to the fullest, and keep it easy and breezy like you’re on the beach with Picasso! That way, your time can be best spent living instead of all the fussing. After all, you never know when you might want to bust out the paint! Best pick articles of clothing that best suit paint splotches…

When it comes to summer- always look for comfort. It’s too hot to have to care, most of the time. So looking good doesn’t have to get you down whatsoever. Instead, just play your style cards few but freely, always seeking simple looks to get you through the hours, or day.

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Here in Toronto, we are lucky enough to get a visit from the artist. While under renovation, some of the artists’ most famous works from the Musee National Picasso are being housed at the AGO.

Staff of The Eye of Faith had a chance to visit the exhibition, which provided plenty of wonderful insight into Picasso’s character, as well as the chance to see some of his most famous works right up close! It’s a fairly large footprint, and the curators of the exhibit definitely do a great job at portraying Picasso’s long-lasting legacy.

“Art washes away from the soul the dust of the everyday.”

-Pablo Picasso

How exciting! It’s not every day the AGO gets shipped such iconic (and expensive) pieces of history – from Paris, nonetheless! So if you’re lucky enough to be in Toronto, or are planning to make the visit, definitely make sure you add Picasso: Masterpieces from the Musee National Picasso, Paris to your TO-DO list.

The show runs until August 26, 2012 and is sponsored by BMO. Don’t waste another minute! The show was packed when we made our visit, so make sure you don’t miss out on your chance!

Picasso shares words with Brigitte Bardot {circa. 1955}

Until next time,

{THE EYE}

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