Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Classic Coup Catalog

Photographer: Jenny Mandeville
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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Dante, Rodin, and Camelot Rising

Classic Coup moves us to  read, think, discuss, and engage.  We're about connecting ideas and people. We challenge those who want to live deliberate lives to embrace diversity as we not only read about life together but do life together--learning from our differences.  We recognize the relationship between the humanities-literature, music, the visual and performing arts--because all explore the human condition.   As exemplified by artists such as Rodin who sculpted both The Kiss and The Thinker, our shared humanity delights and plagues us.  The fine arts celebrate our cerebral and our passionate sides.  While they remind us of being human they also reveal our capacity for being humane.  They challenge us to listen, to understand, to imagine, to hope.

The legendary King Arthur  called his knights to the Round Table, a symbol of unity and equality, to harness Might for Right to problem- solve for peace.   At the end of T. H. White’s The Once and Future King, Arthur envisions a round table even greater than the hub of Camelot: “a table without boundaries between the nations who would sit to feast there.”  He decides “the hope of making it  would lie in culture."

I was asked to write an article on history being made September 9th when twenty –three of Auguste Rodin’s posthumous original bronze sculptures are sold at a private gala event--not in New York City or Paris-- but in Franklin, Tennessee.  Proceeds will benefit the future, children of New Hope Academy, a college preparatory school in Williamson County that serves economically, racially and culturally diverse families, with more than half the students attending through private donations.

The philosophy of New Hope Academy is that positive change "begins with understanding and that understanding takes place in genuine relationships. Separately, we remain impoverished and underprivileged—the poor and affluent alike. Together, we become empowered and enlightened."

The Rodin works and those of 24 other artists will be on exhibition to the public September 10-13 from  at Bella Luce, a 30- acre Tuscan villa.  The setting, according to John Davis, was the draw to bringing the art sale and exhibit to Tennessee.  He is with Dragon Fine Arts, a fine art consulting firm, who, in association with Twenty 21 Collections/Gallery Rodin, is producing the exhibition.  “We believe that this is one of the most important and impressive exhibits of work by such major artists ever to be brought together for our local audience.”

How fitting that Rodin's The Thinker will be set against an Italian backdrop considering Dante, author of The Divine Comedy, was from Florence, cradle of the Renaissance marking the rebirth of the classics.  The result?  The funding of a quality education in a diverse community giving new hope to children…  our future.  Just another example of art meets life and of the benefits of learning from one another--the stuff Classic Coup is made of.

Stay tuned for the release of our Once and Future King shirt that looks to the future made legendary by the past.  For those of us who dare to see the good around us...be ready to wear Camelot Rising.