The Complexity of Simplicity

“Being simple is the most complicated thing nowadays.” -Ramana Pemmaraju The principle of simplicity or parsimony—broadly, is the idea that simpler explanations of observations should be preferred to more complex ones—is conventionally attributed to William of Occam, after whom it is traditionally referred to as Occam's razor. This does not mean that there will be … Continue reading The Complexity of Simplicity

The $12 Million Stuffed Shark

Why would a smart New York investment banker pay $12 million for the decaying, stuffed carcass of a shark? By what alchemy does Jackson Pollock’s drip painting No. 5, 1948 sell for $140 million? Economist Don Thompson explores it in his book, tracing the money, lust, and self-aggrandizement of the art world in an attempt … Continue reading The $12 Million Stuffed Shark

Abandoned art vs. unfinished art.

Let me start with the admission that most artistic projects are abandoned by their creators at a certain point. That doesn’t mean they’re unfinished projects: it just indicates that the artist moved on to other pastures of inspiration, style and interest. Everyone who’s artistically active, knows how difficult it is to resist the tsunami of … Continue reading Abandoned art vs. unfinished art.

Writing in Times of Pestilence

Now that society is struggling to deal with a devastating flu pandemic, I found the time ripe to give this subject some thoughts in a literary context. The first plague writings emerged around 1665 and resulted in innovative dialogues on a long endured illness. While the collective memory of the plague as an affliction was … Continue reading Writing in Times of Pestilence