Written in a style often described as verbal expressionism, “Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror” is the title poem in the collection for which John Ashbery won a. Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror: Poems (Penguin Poets) [John Ashbery] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. John Ashbery’s most renowned. John Ashberry won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award for Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror. Ashberry.

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To perceive a particular means grasping for only a second a “truth” that then vanishes into an imponderable generality. But so too does the artwork derived from the mind of the poet, whose eventual creation comes as a pleasant revelation, something one could not consciously cause, but one invents when allowing thought association and wordplay during the composition process.

He accordingly caused a ball of wood to be made By a turner, and having divided it in half and Brought it to the size of the mirror, he set himself With great art to copy all that he saw in the glass,” Chiefly his reflection, of which the portrait Is the zshbery, of which the portrait Is the reflection once removed.

Our lives, Plato c. Return to Book Page. We see only postures of the dream, Riders of the motion that swings the face Into view under evening skies, with no False disarray as proof of authenticity. I think it is trying to say it is today And we must get out of it even as the public Is pushing through the museum now so as to Be out by closing time. Collections selected for discussion in this editor’s blog include distinguished works published in the last few years by small presses, university presses, or major publishing houses.

In some ways, it was characterized by anti-aestheticism, or by the rejection of the notion of controlling artistic principles. Of course I would indicate your authorship and copyright. It seems like a very hostile universe But as the conex of each individual thing is Hostile to, exists at the expense of all the others As philosophers have often pointed out, at least This thing, the mute, undivided present, Has the justification kohn logic, which In this instance isn’t a bad thing Or wouldn’t be, if the way of telling Didn’t somehow intrude, twisting the end result Into a caricature of itself.

However, art also exists as a tool that holds its subject in place, preserving a moment fonvex time, so that the past is always evident in the present. You seem to possess within your work an air of total freedom of expression and imagery, somewhat interesting and puzzling. A peculiar slant Of memory that intrudes on the dreaming model In the silence of the studio as he considers Lifting the pencil to the self-portrait.


Paintings like the Parmigianino self-portrait hide the fact that they have come into existence through arbitrary selections made by the painter from among his perceptions, thoughts, and feelings. During this time, Ashbery continued to write poetry. I see in this pkrtrait the chaos Of your round mirror which organizes everything Around the polestar of your eyes which are empty, Know nothing, dream but reveal nothing. Clouds In the puddle stir up into sawtoothed fragments.

At once academic in that it is often difficult to decipher techniques and designed by way of its subject matter to appeal to a wide audience, Pop art asserted, in much the same way the abstract expressionism did, a faith in the idea of artistic possibility.

In the fourth section Ashbery employs Freedberg again to comment on Renaissance art, and the place of Parmigianino’s painting within the art of that time period. And the reason is, it’s a poem about a concrete thing, a painting. Retrieved from ” https: In the end, Ashbery’s stance, which seemed contentious at the onset of the poem, positing chaos against order, now appears to be ambiguous.

Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror

The reductiveness of the Parmigianino self-portrait is not the only flaw Ashbery has discovered; there is also the painting’s lifelessness, its static unreality. Submit Review Copies of Books Authors and publishers are invited to submit review copies of recent books to the following address: According to the children’s rhyme, “Tuesday’s child is full of grace.

The hand holds no chalk And each part of the whole falls off And cannot know it knew, except Here and there, in cold pockets Of remembrance, whispers out of time.

One is forced to read The perfectly plausible accomplishment of a porttait Into the smooth, perhaps even bland but so Enigmatic finish. The poem is viewed as Ashbery’s most accessible in terms of language and style and therefore distinguishes itself from many of Ashbery’s other poems, the style of which has often been regarded as unconventional in the extreme. The painted self-portrait is as self-enclosed, condensed, and smoothly englobed as the poetic meditation is open-ended, rambling, and fragmented.

Our looking through the wrong end Of selr telescope as you fall back at a speed Faster than that of light to flatten ultimately Among the features of the room, an invitation Never mailed, the “it was all a dream” Syndrome, though the “all” mirrot tersely Enough how it wasn’t. There’s some essence, some meaning that just can’t be sussed by the sum of all the world’s physical parts.


They’re going to have a good laugh on us. Inpoet, literary critic, and art historian David Shapiro explains in John Ashbery: This study provides the historical context for understanding the political climate in Italy during the s.

Can you stand it, Francesco? Often the focus of such studies is on the way Ashbery discusses both the limitations and possibilities of artistic representation of any kind. I cohvex to think they were all alike, That the present always looked the same to everybody But this confusion drains away as one Is always cresting into one’s present. In addition, readers are reminded to participate in conversations about VPR contents and to display support for the journal by becoming a fan of Valparaiso Poetry Review or of Valparaiso Fiction Review.

It happened while you were inside, asleep, And there is no reason why you should have Been awake for it, except that the day Is ending and it will be hard for you To get to sleep tonight, at least until late. The rest were more confusing.

Self-portrait in a Convex Mirror (poetry collection) – Wikipedia

I go on consulting This mirror that is no longer mine For as much brisk vacancy as is to be My portion this time. While both pieces are works of self-representation, Ashbery strives to analyze Parmigianino’s as well as his own methods of self-portrayal, thereby distinguishing his approach from Parmigianino’s by his attempt to eliminate not the self-reflexivity of the work, but the narcissistic and limiting qualities welf finds in the painting.

Why must you go? You’ve written ashnery prose and sequence poems, and you’ve written a continuous meditationSelf Portrait in a Convex Mirror. I technically finished this book after a year of studying it, but I will no doubt continue to return to it, especially the long title poem, to continue to peel through its layers.