A Brilliant Concrete Amphitheater + Maria Lassnig’s Body Awareness

We love seeing two of our favorite materials — chairs and concrete — married into the stunning amphitheater designed by artist Armand Pierre Fernandez for Milan’s Parco Sempione, Milan in 1973. Embedded into the concrete steps are the personalities that chairs inevitably evoke, each seat curiously special and intentional. It made us think of artist Maria Lassnig’s view of chairs…

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For Yoko Ono on Her 90th Birthday

As we’ve read tributes in celebration of Yoko Ono’s 90th birthday, we’ve been thinking about her too and of the many amazing things she has put into the world. She has lived through so much and never stopped making her art, speaking up, working to antidote the violence of our age. The mindshifts her work catalyzes remain refreshing, heartening, helpful. Here are a few of our favorites:

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Marsha Linehan on Building a Life Worth Living

We got interested in psychotherapist Marsha Linehan after a reader told us that it was she who first used the Buddhist concept of Radical Acceptance as a therapeutic tool in psychotherapy. It was a groundbreaking approach, as were the treatments she pioneered for patients who were previously written off as hopeless. The story of how she developed it — as a young woman she had been one of those “impossible” patients — is a marvel of resourcefulness and creativity.

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Head, Heart (For Cara de Silva)

Reeling from the news that our friend Cara de Silva had passed away, we cast about for solace for ourselves and for her close friends whom we knew were grief-struck, missing their daily conversations with her. Into our hands jumped Maira Kalman’s wonderful book “My Favorite Things”, opening to this by Lydia Davis…

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I want to make a New Year’s prayer, not a resolution. I’m praying for courage.
Susan Sontag

Reason for Optimism in 2023: The Universe In Verse on “What is Life?”

The perfect accompaniment to the reflective week between Christmas and New Years is the Universe in Verse, an event masterminded by The Marginalian’s Maria Popova, to explore the question “What is Life?” through science and poetry. A gathering of extraordinary humans “celebrate the marvel and mystery of life, from the creaturely to the cosmic, with stories from the history of science and our search for truth, illustrated with poems spanning centuries of human thought and feeling”. It offers a mightily hopeful view.

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