‘RIVER THAT FLOWS TWO WAYS’

‘RIVER THAT FLOWS TWO WAYS’/acrylic/gunther

March 16, 2020

By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

This is the mighty Native-American “Muhhekunnetuk,” Henry Hudson and Verrazzano’s waterway, the Dutch North River. It has carried people, goods and services through the ages of Indian itinerant travel, white exploration, war, peace, growth, depression and both the betterment and exploitation of “progress.” It will long continue to flow to Gotham and beyond, to Albany and the tributaries of upstate rural existence. It will not give up its life, its beauty, its remaining potential come viral illness, inept governing or greed. Muhhekunnetuk will remain, in troubling times or not,  “the river that flows two ways,” apt description from those here long before anyone else.

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

‘TOWARD THE MOUNTAIN’

March 9, 2020

By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

‘TOWARD THE MOUNTAIN’/acrylic on paper/gunther

2020: A republic long ago formed in living democracy yet to expand to its potential must now not stumble once again nor take steps backward. Collectively, we Americans are better than what we are, and we must climb the mountain of our original promise, individually taking every comer with us.

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

‘TOWARD THE MOUNTAIN’/acrylic on paper/gunther

2020: A republic long ago formed in living democracy yet to expand to its potential must now not stumble once again nor take steps backward. Collectively, we Americans are better than what we are, and we must climb the mountain of our original promise, individually taking every comer with us.

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

INCLUSION

ABSTRACT IN THE COUNTRY’/acrylic-canvas/gunther

By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

There is no reason why art in abstraction cannot co-exist with the figurative, an old barn with a window of shape, form, color, line. As in a nation, if it chooses to be celebratory of all its people.

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

EDWARD HOPPER’S LIGHT

 

 ‘EDWARD HOPPER’S HIGH CHAIR, BATHED IN LIGHT’/acrylic-canvas/gunther

February 17, 2020

By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

Edward Hopper, the famed American realist painter, was born in the family home at Nyack on July 22, 1882, in a second-floor bedroom that is often bathed in the special luminescence which bounces off the Hudson River and straight up Second Avenue.

Young Hopper saw this light on his first day of life, and it surely and deeply influenced the artist, who proclaimed, “… what I wanted to do was paint sunlight on the side of a house.

Today, at 82 North Broadway, at the Edward Hopper House Museum & Study Center, the artist’s high chair can be found sitting in natural and dramatic light in the upstairs hall.

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

HOPE

‘HOPE’/on canvas/gunther

February 10, 2020

By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

After the man left, the White House was dark, in black again as when the British set fire in 1812. But inside there was bright light, and the nation gradually returned to hope.

 

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

‘UP OR DOWN?’

acrylic on wood/gunther

January 27, 2030

By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

Up or down?

Does the nation, its folk working or not, in health or not, in hope or despair, of diverse belief surely go forth from the aspirations of Roosevelt, Kennedy and King or retreat to lynchings real or implied, prejudice, inequality, intolerance and no compromise?

That may be the real trial decision in the Senate. 

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

‘NEVER A BLUR’

January 20, 2020

 ‘NEVER A BLUR’/stylized photograph/gunther

     By Arthur H. Gunther III

thecolumnrule.com

Whenever there is war, and Washington adds horsepower to its response and a four-cylinder becomes a forever V-8; whenever there is peace yet troubles in the land are on the boil, the stove unwatched; whenever the elected and appointed think posturing and pensions and not of iJoe and Jane back home, a marble likeness, through it all, faces the Arlington Bridge and the dead who have been the currency of a nation “conceived in liberty” and offers a reminder of  “the great task remaining before us.”

    Unfinished work — conscience set in stone. 

 

The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

                              –30–

‘HUMANITY’S ULTIMATE GOODNESS’

‘RORSCHACH ON HUDSON’/photograph/gunther

     By Arthur H. Gunther I I I

thecolumnrule.com

     If Rockland County, N.Y.,  were to take its own Rorschach Test, it might look at the Hudson River pilings at Piermont that once supported a wooden pier from which more than a million men and some women left to confront Hitler in the European Theatre, World War II. 

     The horrors of that time, including the Holocaust, were born and fanned by manipulated hatred derived from prejudice, itself a product of inequality. That a madmen could freely steer the ship of state with so many willing countrymen at the oars is a reminder that the inclinations of history can repeat themselves.

     For thousands, the Piermont pilings were among the last sights of the USA, never to be seen again. Whatever was in the hearts and minds of those civilian soldiers off to lose life and limb and to suffer bruised emotion forever, this truth was certain: By and large these people were good and decent, from communities across the nation, from Rockland, too. 

     Those pilings remain at Piermont, no longer carrying the weight of men and women off to war against Hitler. Now, in approaching 2020, other good citizens stare at the pilings symbolically, knowing that Rockland, and the nation, hold mostly decent people, as before. This time their enemy is the hatred of anti-Semitism, the hatred of Muslims, the hatred of non-whites, the hatred of immigrants, the hatred of anyone “different.”

     Hatred again fanned by self-interest. Yet, as in 1945, the victory will go to those who stand up and do battle.

     The pilings will endure, as will the ultimate goodness of humanity.

    The writer is a retired newspaperman. ahgunther@yahoo.com

                           –30–