To Barklay

Dear Barklay,

Please thank your human partner, Charlie Rose, for his interesting broadcasts. My Female was sucked into downloading the free sample of Simon de Pury’s The Auctioneer (as she frequently does with books mentioned on her favorite PBS program).

Reading the first pages, she noticed that de Pury flaunts with some of the same words and phrases he hyped on Charlie’s show!

The Female grew up in Switzerland and is familiar with the art scene of Basel and with Art Basel. Yes, she too admired the Kunstmuseum with The Burghers of Calais in its courtyard, and she equally praises the “Museum für Gegenwartskunst,” as the Kunstmuseum Basel | Contemporary was called until last year. Upon entering the former papermill for the first time, soon after it was opened, a humongous Stella left her awestruck.

She’s also told me about Ernst Beyeler, who founded his own Museum in Riehen, but never, never will she forget the first time she and my Wolfman visited the old Galerie Beyeler, when it featured a Francis Bacon show. In that small space in the heart of Basel, mere sketches on large blank canvasses were lit by sunlight streaming trough the old windows and eventually leading to some of the Pope and George Dyer paintings. Unforgettable!

De Pury is of old Basel aristocracy, something that’s not even supposed to exist anymore in that small country’s democracy since the Swiss Federal Constitution of 1848. Charlie probably knows who his father was. One could debate de Pury’s taste of art—as long as the feeling comes from emotions, admiration, and true love for the creative.

I perceive from my Humans, that in the art business, as in contemporary politics, vanity and big money are becoming more important than substance. Future will tell what new generations of art connoisseurs will think of “must-haves” from artists like Jeff Koons and photography-“borrowingRichard Prince. We canines and our humans won’t be around by then, I guess!

De Pury mentions Julian Schnabel, whose ego, he supposes, is bigger than Mohamed Ali‘s. Schnabel made a stunning film about the painter I’m named after. I assume many people have an ego, deserving or not! Can be a good thing. I, personally, am a very shy and grouchy dog; don’t really care. I can always growl if I feel like it. As do some humans, but it’s mostly interpreted as nagging!

My Humans remember a Schnabel exhibit at the Galerie Bischofberger in Zurich, long before my time and the opening of Bischofberger’s newest galery. Pottery had fallen on the floor below Schnabel’s huge canvasses. The litter didn’t matter, they say. It was like it was meant to be; perpetual art as installation.

The Female probably won’t buy the book. Having read the sample, one knows enough about de Pury, his lovers, wives, Italian suitsname droppings, and Eurotrash.

Beg your Male to concentrate on his fabulous morning show and PBS guests that matter.


PS: Currently, we witness more exciting Swiss moments: Solar Impulse 2, is crossing the U.S.A. Do you think Charlie might interview Bertrand Picard again? He should be in your neck of the woods soon.

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