Whew!!

Rudolf Herman Eisenmenger, Runners at the Finish Line, Silver Medal 1936

Rudolf Herman Eisenmenger, Runners at the Finish Line, Silver Medal 1936

Whew!  The week’s almost over and Friday’s finish line ribbon flutters around the bend. I hear the wheezing huff of fellow teammates pushing to finish deadlines. The flop of others who put their projects off until next week, pens tapping like seconds ticking.

But we still have a bit of time, so let me interrupt your programming to remind you of some obscure Olympic yore.

As it turns out the Olympic Committee did award medals for painting, sculpture, architecture and literature  from 1912-1948.  Artists weren’t too keen on the idea. The subject matter had to be sport and the competitions were held alongside sporting events. Imagine the feverish writing in the Olympic literary salon. Or paint splattered spectators in Olympic stadium. Surprise – not a lot of takers.

I imagine this picture above is a portrait of most artist’s reaction to the idea. A pack of panicked artists sprinting away, in droves.

Finally, in a fit of reason, the Committee converted the “competitions” to “exhibitions” for the 1952 games in Helsinki. But the few medalists from the brief, well-intentioned but frightfully misguided period were scratched from the Olympic games’ official record. What? Removed. Delete buttoned. I’d love to pull that move on my epic fails.

Where will you find me in the Friday PM pack? Panting to the nearest happy hour for a tall pint of bronze or maybe a glass of gold (chardonnay please).

Cheers!

http://www.slate.com/blogs/five_ring_circus/2012/07/26/olympic_art_competitions_yes_they_really_awarded_gold_medals_in_literature_painting_and_sculpture_.html


2 Comments on “Whew!!”

  1. Courtney Crow Wyrtzen says:

    “A pack of panicked artists sprinting away, in droves.” Remember you told me once, “you are writing a book, not trying to win a contest.” I would’ve reacted to the Olympics as a contest and tried to scratch some athletics-themed masterpiece, all the while feeling just a bit icky (and panicked) inside. I still go for contests, but writing ‘to the contest’ pollutes it for me.

  2. […]   “Runners at the Finish Line” by Rudolf Herman Eisenmenger, 1936 Silver Medal (via igetitart) […]


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