Wednesday, January 11, 2012


When I first heard that Mom was going to the art gallery, I told her that she should take pictures of as many dogs as she could find in the artwork.  And since Mom has gone to lots of obedience classes, she sometimes actually does what she is told to do!

Mom and Aunt LaDene were really only planning to see the two exhibits that I already told you about in my last entry, but then they got distracted and went in the room that has all the ceramics in it, which is one of Mom's favorite rooms.  And after that, Aunt LaDene said she wanted to see the cloister, and in order to get to it, they had to walk past a bunch of other artwork.  A lot of this artwork was religious, but sometimes there are dogs even in religious paintings, maybe because God made dogs, the same as he made people.

Anyway, here is a really big boy dog that is by the entrance to the ceramics room.  He is on one side of the door, and there is a girl dog on the other side.  I guess they have to be kept apart so they don't make puppies.  Each of these dogs is 19 inches tall, and they have big holes in their backs, like maybe you are supposed to plant geraniums inside them.  Except they don't really have any geraniums in them right now.

The two dogs have a date of 1724, and it's written right on their collars, which is how we know what year they were made.  But we don't know if they came from Germany or from England.

This is a tankard, which is something you can drink ale out of.  Dogs usually like to drink out of something wider and more shallow, but a tankard is designed for humans to use, and not for dogs.  This one is from England, like maybe in the 17th century, and it shows a bunch of hounds chasing a fox.  Or at least they are probably chasing a fox, because that's what hounds usually chase.  You can't really see what they are chasing because that is around on the other side.

Mom did not write down any notes about the stuff she took pictures of, and this was partly because she did not have a pencil and paper with her.  And also she was too lazy to take notes.  Some of the artwork is in Mom's book about the gallery's collection, but some of it isn't.  So sometimes I can tell you more about stuff than other times.  This is totally Mom's fault, so don't blame me!

This little dog is not in the book.  He's only about 4" or 5" tall.  His mouth is kind of funny-looking, but he has intersting designs all over him.  He's from England, like a lot of other stuff in the ceramics room.

Here's another little dog and a great big rabbit.  If I were that dog, I think I would be afraid that the rabbit  would kill me and eat me to get revenge for all the times that dogs have killed and eaten rabbits!

This box is supposed to be for sticking flowers in it to make sort of an arrangement or bouquet.  But the most important thing about the box is that the man on it is going for a nice ride on his horse, with his faithful dog trotting along in front.

Mom found two paintings that had dogs in them, so she took pictures of them.  The first painting is called The Knighting of Saint Martin by the Emperor Constantine, and the man who painted it was Bernard van Orley.  He was Flemish.  Saint Martin is wearing something that looks like a dress, and he has hair that is very curly, so at first Mom thought he was a woman.

Anyway, the best part of the painting is the two dogs in the lower left-hand corner. They look like they are probably greyhounds.  My brother Nicky thinks every painting should have a greyhound in it!

Okay, then there is this very strange painting that we don't even know who painted it.  Mom started looking at it because she liked all the bright, fun colors.  The other paintings in that gallery were very dark and religious-looking, but not this one.  So when Mom looked at it, she was shocked to learn that it was really a picture of a saint being roasted to death over some coals.    We don't know for sure which saint it was because Mom didn't take notes, like I told you before.  But I did some research, and I learned that there was a St. Lawrence who got killed in this nasty way.  So maybe it's him.  Or not maybe not.

Anyway, in the picture that Mom took, you can just barely see the saint's hands, and you can also see the hot fire under him.  And on the lower left of the painting, there is a little dog.  But the amazing thing about this dog is that you can see right through him.  This is called being translucent.  It's strange that the painter made the dog in this way, because you can't see through any of the people or anything else in the picture.  It's like the artist couldn't decide if he should include the dog or not, and so he painted it in lightly, just to see if he really wanted a dog in the picture.  Then he never went back and finished the dog.  At least that's my theory.

I think there would be some good things about being a translucent dog, like for instance, you wouldn't have to get x-rays if something was wrong inside you.  Mom thinks this would save her some money by not paying for x-rays, but she's not sure she would want to look at all of her dogs' insides all the time.

Okay, well, that's enough about artwork for right now. Mom took a few more pictures that I might talk about, but they don't have dogs in them, so they will have to wait until the next entry.


  1. I think it's a ghost dog.

    --Zest, superstar in training
    and not at all ghostly

  2. Dear Zest,
    You might be totally right! I have never seen a ghost dog before, so that's why I didn't recognize what it was!
    Your friend, Piper

  3. Wow...very interesting! I know I usually have more to say, but trying to catch-up on your blog(s).
    Love, AP

  4. Me again ---- it only took me maybe an hour but finally got my profile picture changed. LOL!! I have NO idea why "I" made it so difficult, but...was NOT giving up until the profile showed a "Russian Blue!" Disclosure: it's not of Di, but close enough. Maybe in another few months, I can change the profile to Dodi!
    Love, AP