Tares or wheat? – The most expensive painting in the world

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Tares or wheat? – The most expensive painting in the world

Traslated by Mara

Edvard Nordman, a retired Swedish sailor, became a shop assistant in a town on a tropical island after touring the world. At age 55, Ed thought it was time to move away. He longed for silence and solitude. For a spa-cious, secluded, cheap house. Luckily, there lived a restless painter, with whom the local girls no longer slept. The painter had previously lived also with two 13-year-old indigenous girls, as they said there: two vahines. But the painter’s legs were so purulent that there was no longer such a poor girl nearby who would have gone to his bed. Therefore, he wanted to get to a more untouched island, as he said, in order to paint the archipelago in its more unspoiled state. In fact, he hoped to find a vahine for himself in a more backward place. And he decided to sell his house. His haste is indicated by the fact that Ed was able to beat down the low price of 5,000 francs to 4,500.
The painter paid off his debts and boarded the first ship. He didn’t even bother to clear the house. Ed stood indignantly in the middle of the mess, but what could he have done? The painter was already far away. Since he didn’t feel like disposing the garbage, he asked his son, Oscar, to liquidate the manure heap.
The next day, Oscar scurried to the house, which was full of rolled can-vas, abandoned paintings and carvings. As the locals have thought so many times, Oscar also found that cannot be a good painter who paints a yellow sky. Only a few carvings seemed usable — he carried everything else out and set on fire the trash with easiness and a sigh of relief.
A completely different sigh broke out of him decades later when he read that images of a sick painter were being sold for millions in Paris. He was relieved: “How good that my father didn’t live to see that!” But whenever he remembered the painter, a wry smile sat on his face, as if even he himself did not believe that the bonfire he made from Gauguin’s legacy, that manure heap had reached up to his chest in August 1901.
(The most expensive painting of all time is also one of Gauguin’s, selling for no less than 300 million dollars – approximately 75 billion forint – in 2015.)


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  • ➡ WELL UNDER THE SUN: “He was also bothered that the itching may have been a remnant of his temporal life, and if so and—God forbid!—he was obliged to confess openly his part in the matter, what kind of disapproval he might have to face. For that very reason, he furtively but thoroughly scouted the others during vespers, Sunday mass, at evening prayers, at vigil, even kept his eyes peeled when others scratched, where and how much. When the early frosts came in late November, the leaves fell, insect life discontinued completely, at night the quacking of restless teams of ducks echoed off the ivy-clad castle walls, while by day gently snaking rosaries of cranes flew low above the tower of the basilica, he saw that the rest were also scratching. The server, Prius, Papyrus and Father Bungle just as much as the gatekeeper’s dog or Cholesterin’s cats. Even Abbot Gigas at the elevation of the Host, and more than once at that; in one hand the consecrated white Communion wafer, the body of the Lord, whereas the other, at the moment of metamorphosis, involuntarily scratched under the cover of the cassock. “If everybody scratches at once and at the same time, then there is nothing wrong with anybody. Why worry?” – CLICK ON THE PICTURE!

  • ➡ FLOATING ISLAND: “It crossed Bird’s mind that the storm had carried him further southwards, but for that to be the case he would have had to be carried out of the North West Passage, which seemed impossible, so he was more inclined to put the weather, which was more summery than anything he had experienced before, down to climate change. His scrap of island was now so minute that he could almost sense the shrinkage that was resulting from its thawing Furthermore he was obliged to chip on what little was left if he wanted to drink or cook, because there was no snow left on it. It was beside the point that he did not have all that much to eat, so he was forced back to hunkering down and starving. Along with that, his despair returned, and with it the oddly tender sensation of a death wish.”

    Photo: Centauri