The conservator can talk about the nuts and bolts while I try and figure out what was going on in the artist's head and eye. In this case, what did Homer see, how did he chose to paint it, why that and how did he execute it.
The U.S. Senate has designated Monday February 4, as Rosa Parks Day, but meanwhile, seven years after her death, her own records of her extraordinary life lie hidden and inaccessible to the public and scholars alike, in a drab New York City warehouse.
"Have you tried the phone book?" my mom suggests. I hadn't. In fact, I'm embarrassed to admit that the idea hadn't even occurred to me. I'd gotten so comfortable with the assumption that all the information I could possibly want or need was available online that I was on the verge of giving up.
At a moment when cultural trend-watchers are predicting the imminent demise of the traditional book in lieu of digitization, the American Antiquarian Society is honoring the strength of print as it celebrates its 200th anniversary.
What would it take to wipe out a digital archive? What would it mean when all of our archives of film, books, everything stored in digital form is wiped out during intense solar storm electro-magnetic activity?
I've come to believe that what makes the biography of a writer crackle and pop is knowing as many lies as truths -- the lies they told to others, the lies others told of them, and, most importantly, the lies they told themselves.