“Marvelous and somehow sad, flamboyant, and threatening.”
The words are Elizabeth Bishop’s, writing in a letter to describe the extraordinary tropical plant life encountered at the Sítio Burle Marx, the hundred-acre home and nursery of Roberto Burle Marx, Brazil’s best-known landscape architect and a key figure in the country’s modernist movement. Although Bishop had already lived in Brazil for ten years when she wrote this, the Sítio Burle Marx, located on the western outskirts of Rio de Janeiro, was and continues to be an incomparably rich showcase for botanical exotica collected on the designer’s many scouting expeditions to remote Brazilian biomes.
Situated off the River Calder in West Yorkshire, the Hepworth Wakefield is a bright, airy gallery with ceiling to floor windows that draw in views of the waterfront and gardens outside; these demand to be taken in alongside the artwork within.
Seven years after the “little magazine” BLAST published the Vorticist manifesto, one of its signatories won the Grand Prix for sculpture at the 1921 Milan Exhibition. The prize was given to a work titled L’Oiseau, and the artist in question was Lawrence Atkinson (1873-1931).
At the time, Atkinson had also made his name as a painter, poet, and music teacher, and especially as an acclaimed performer of classical lieder.