When all the days are totaled
and all the sums are taken
we may decide, in all we tried
In each and all the ways
with all the things, with what living brings
these were our "Best of Days."
MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU
| Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec as Pierrot|
Within the short span of the last sixteen months the Nation of France has been struck with three sobering, disastrous and murderous attacks. In this climate of uncertainty and mourning we reflect and pray as we of many nations look for solace, strength and understanding. A lesser nation than France might succumb to the senseless, wanton disregard for peace, liberty and the joy of living all people of good will seek to enjoy. The French are an exceptional people who will not succumb. Neither will the free world as we have to try to look away from the insanity toward the light of possibility. Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s life and work remain a beacon of light for the entire world. The Artist Lautrec is one of France’s national treasures.
Toulouse-Lautrec; a man possessing personal resolve and character celebrated the passions and joys of living in spite of personal obstacles. We will look to his work for it’s greatness and glory…this, as our hearts and spirits weep.
My first encounter with the art of Toulouse-Lautrec was when I walked into the “Art” department at my high school in South Western Virginia. On the wall at the entrance amid the plaster casts, drawing tables and pottery wheels was a seemingly gigantic poster reading Moulin Rouge, Moulin Rouge, Moulin Rouge. The poster colorfully featured dancer La Goulue and the patrons of the world famous establishment in a moment of feverous excitement. I was at the time and remain transfixed by the work’s exquisite beauty, sense of style and most importantly daring nature. Seeing it would be the greatest lesson I would ever receive in art. I had never experienced anything as lovely as this! I knew I was going to enjoy my journey into this larger world of art, history, culture and contemporary fashion.