Maroger’s Magic

3 Monkeys on a roof watch a man in costume perform a ritual

Philosophical monkeys perch on a roof in this large surrealistic scene. I love imagining their gossipy conversation, so of course I had to put monkeys in my collection, Secret Formulas & Techniques of the Masters.

The opening poem, “Maroger’s Magic,” introduces the ideas of Jacques Maroger, a painter and scholar who claimed to have rediscovered  lost formulas used by early Dutch masters. By using these formulas, Maroger said, artists could achieve amazing trompe l’oeil effects.

Maroger’s ideas became the connecting theme for my collection. Monkeys provided a voice.

In one poem, Lobster for Lobster for Lunch, a monkey crouches in the corner of the frame and peels a banana. In another poem, What the Monkey Says, we’re told that the world we see is artifice, false as the skin on a wax banana.

How do we discover what’s real?  Pinch a corner. Peel.

Read online:  What the Monkey Says

Painting © Louise Craven Hourrigan

ALSO SEE:  Art & Writing — How We Draw Inspiration from the Visual Arts 


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