sacheverell sitwell on facts & style

“After Lisbon and Oporto, there are only two considerable towns in Portugal, Coimbra and Évora, and Évora, the smaller of the two, is the more interesting.*

* I find that Braga has a slightly larger population than Coimbra, but leave the remark unchallenged in order not to spoil my argument.”

(Sacheverell Sitwell, Portugal and Madeira, p. 142.)

an unambiguous attitude

“Sergio envied the few resolute anti-Fascists he knew, Communists and the like, because their attitude was as clear as that of the Fascists. But he was not able to distill his doubts and disgust into an unambiguous attitude, a plan of action. Even though he hated Fascism, he felt that it had wormed its way into his blood, not in the form of political allegiance, but rather as a kind of torpor and mortal passivity, like a poison that slowly intoxicates and weakens the body.”

(Alberto Moravia, The Two Friends, trans. Marina Harss, version A, p. 11.)

july 1–july 15


  • John Ashbery, April Galleons
  • Julio Cortázar, The Winners, trans. Elaine Kerrigan
  • Erica Baum, Dog Ear
  • Amaranth Borsuk, Handcraft
  • Cees Nootebaum, The Following Story, trans. Ina Rilke


  • Naked Lunch, directed by David Cronenberg
  • Charade, dir. Stanley Donen
  • Magic Mike, dir. Steven Soderbergh
  • Der amerikanische Soldat (The American Soldier), dir. Rainer Werner Fassbinder
  • Das blaue Licht (The Blue Light), dir. Leni Riefenstahl
  • Lisbon Story, dir. Wim Wenders

loss of recognition

“There are problems in this for the modern reader. Few of us share the extent and depth of Camões’s knowledge or the classics, and the pleasures of recognition, that agreeable Renaissance game of spotting how the poet has adapted a favourite passage from a classical author and refurbished it to serve a contemporary purpose, plays little part in our reading.”

(Landeg White, introduction to Luis Vaz de Camões’s The Lusíads, p. xiii.)

june 16–june 30


  • Ben Gocker, The Pisces
  • Anthony Madrid, I Am Your Slave Now Do What I Say
  • Clarice Lispector, The Hour of the Star, trans. Benjamin Moser
  • Mary Gaitskill, Veronica
  • St. Augustine, Confessions, trans. R. S. Pine-Coffin


  • Les Vampires, directed by Louis Feuillade
  • M. Butterfly, dir. David Cronenberg


  • “Carl Andre/John Wesley: Serial Forms,” Mitchell-Innes & Nash
  • “Hélio Oiticica: Penetrables,” Galerie Lelong
  • “Rachel Harrison: The Help,” Greene Naftali
  • “Heinrich Kuehn and his American Circle: Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Steichen,” Neue Galerie
  • “Gustav Klimt: 150th Anniversary Celebration,” Neue Galerie
  • “Sharon Lockhart | Noa Eshkol,” LACMA
  • “Children of the Plumed Serpent: The Legacy of Quetzalcoatl in Ancient Mexico,” LACMA
  • “Chris Burden: Metropolis II,” LACMA
  • “Michael Heizer: Levitated Mass,” LACMA