The Diary of One Who Disappeared is the title of a song cycle written by the Czech composer Leoš Janáček. One of the purposes of this site is to be a sort of diary where I can keep a record of some of the things that I have spent my time doing, as well as memories that I want to preserve. The tabs above also contain some essays that I have written on subjects that interest me.
Although I am English I have disappeared from my native land and now split my life between my house in the south west of France and an apartment in the north east of Italy. This gives me the opportunity to take advantage of a range of activities, including attending concerts and operas by favourite composers such as Janáček, Mahler, Stravinsky and others, I go to art exhibitions throughout Europe and love to travel and explore as much as I can.
In Montcabrier in the Lot , south-west France, for the ‘8 de Montcabrier’ festival. An extremely enjoyable concert with wind quintet and the excellent pianist Morgane Fauchois-Prado.
Bach: ‘Suite francais no.2’; Ravel: ‘Tombeau de Couperin; Poulenc: ‘Sextet for piano and wind quintet’.
The Musée des Beaux-Arts in Tournai has an eclectic collection of paintings from all periods but is especially rich in modern art, having the only two works by Manet exhibited in Belgium.
Edouard Manet ‘Argenteuil’ (1874)
Edouard Manet ‘The Père Lathuilk Restaurant’ (1879)
Henri Fantin-Latour ‘L’etude. Portrait of Sarah Elizabeth Budgett’ (1883)
Georges Seurat ‘Beach at Bas Butin, Honfleur’ (1886)
James Ensor ‘Pierrot and Skeletons’ (c.1905 – 07)
In the ‘Old Masters’ section of the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in the Belgian capital of Brussels, whose permanent collection includes an excellent display of early Netherlandish art.
Robert Campin ‘Annunciation’ (c.1420s)
Rogier van der Weyden ‘La Pieta’ (c.1441)
Rogier van der Weyden ‘Portrait of Antoine de Bourgogne’ (c.1460)
Quentin Metsys ‘Madonna Enthroned’ (c.1595)
Hieronymus Bosch ‘Temptation of St. Anthony’ triptych (c.1500 – 05)
Pieter Bruegel the Elder ‘Fall of the Rebel Angels’ (1562)
Paul Gauguin ‘Breton Calvary’ (1889)
James Ensor ‘The Strange Masks’ (1892)
At the Festival des Minimes in Brussels for an excellent Clara Schumann (trio, opus 17) and Fanny Mendelssohn (Trio, opus 11) concert with Trio Yehudi.
Back in Ghent to see the reinstallation of the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts. The museum has a particularly varied collection of paintings from the middle ages to the modern period.
Robert Campin ‘The Man of Sorrows’ (c.1430)
Rogier van der Weyden ‘Virgin with the Carnation’ (c.1480)
Hieronymus Bosch ‘St. Jerome’ (c.1485 – 95)
Hieronymus Bosch ‘Christ Carrying the Cross’ (c.1510 – 16)
Pieter Breughel the Younger ‘Peasant Wedding in a Barn’ (1616)
Peter Paul Rubens ‘St. Francis receiving the Stigmata’ (c.1635)
James Ensor ‘Old Lady with Masks’ (1889)
James Ensor ‘Pierrot and Skeleton in a Yellow Robe’ (1893)
The Ensor collection of the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Antwerp has been on a world tour whilst the museum has been closed for renovation. It is fitting that the final exhibition of the collection before it returns to Antwerp is in the artist’s home town of Ostend.
James Ensor ‘The Astonishment of the Mask Wouse’ (1889)
James Ensor ‘Skeletons Fighting over the body of a Hanged Man’ (1891)
James Ensor ‘The Skeleton Painter’ (1896)
St. John’s hospital in Bruges was founded in the mid-twelfth century and contains some of Europe’s oldest surviving hospital buildings. It also contains the Hans Memling museum with a number of triptychs and other works by the German artist who worked in Flanders.
Hans Memling’ Diptych of Our Lady and Maarten van Nieuwenhove’ (1487)
Hans Memling ‘Triptych of Jan Floreins’ (1479)
Hans Memling ‘The Shrine of St. Ursula’ (c.1489)