Introduction and Welcome

Welcome to All Things Bright and Beautiful. If you are new to this site, I would recommend that you read my very first entry - which is an introduction and welcome to this blog. You can view it here

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Thomas Cole Landscape, Handel's Music for the Royal Fireworks, and Consider the Lilies by Christina Rosetti

Thomas Cole was the founder of the Hudson River School of Painters. Many of his paintings were of his beloved Catskill mountains.  Today's painting is one of them.  
Painting by Thomas Cole

I also recommend that you tour the virtual gallery of his artwork at the following link:

The following link is for a film with a bit of history about Thomas Cole's life and the Hudson River School of art. 

George Frideric Handel's Music for the Royal Fireworks in two part is this week's music.  

Part 1:

Part 2:

The following is a link describing and explaining Handel's Music for the Royal Fireworks:


by: Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)

         LOWERS preach to us if we will hear:--
      The rose saith in the dewy morn:
      I am most fair;
      Yet all my loveliness is born
      Upon a thorn.
      The poppy saith amid the corn:
      Let but my scarlet head appear
      And I am held in scorn;
      Yet juice of subtle virtue lies
      Within my cup of curious dyes.
      The lilies say: Behold how we
      Preach without words of purity.
      The violets whisper from the shade
      Which their own leaves have made:
      Men scent our fragrance on the air,
      Yet take no heed
      Of humble lessons we would read.
      But not alone the fairest flowers:
      The merest grass
      Along the roadside where we pass,
      Lichen and moss and sturdy weed,
      Tell of His love who sends the dew,
      The rain and sunshine too,
      To nourish one small seed.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Expulsion from the Garden of Eden, I Know that My Redeemer Liveth, Caterpillar

 Expulsion From the Garden of Eden by Thomas Cole

The original of this painting is very large.  Notice how small Adam and Eve are as they leave the garden and head into the cursed world.  Notice the contrasts on the two sides of the gate.
For a brief biography of his life click the following link:

Again this week from George Frideric Hadel's oratorio, The Messiah, today's piece is called "I Know That My Redeemer Liveth".
It's good to know that God has provided a Redeemer and that He lives after viewing the above picture of the Fall and how it affects our lives.  

Christina Rossetti

Brown and furry
Caterpillar in a hurry
Take your walk
To the shady leaf, or stalk,
Or what not,
Which may be the chosen spot.
No toad spy you,
Hovering bird of prey pass by you;
Spin and die,
To live again a butterfly.

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Garden of Eden, And the Glory of the Lord, Who Has Seen the Wind?

Thomas Cole

I'd like to introduce you to one of my favorite painters, Thomas Cole. He was the first famous American landscape artist.  He was a Christian and a conservationist.  He lived in the Catskill mountains and painted their rugged, untouched beauty.  He was very saddened as civilization encroached on the wilderness.  He is known as the founder of the Hudson River School of painters.   Today's painting is his rendition of the Garden of Eden.  It was a huge painting. (I can't find the exact dimensions this morning but I believe it was over 5').  It took over a year to paint all the rich details it includes. 

The Garden of Eden - Thomas Cole
I'd like to recommend a picture book to go along with this painting, Thomas Cole's Paintings of Eden by Franklin Kelly.  This book focuses on this painting with close-up views of different parts of the painting and text describing and explaining it.  Our local library has this book - yours may, too if you are interested, check it out.  

The following is a website that promotes Thomas Cole and his work:
It includes a virtual tour with many of his works:

Again this week from George Frideric Hadel's oratorio, "The Messiah", today's piece is called "And the Glory of the Lord"  

Most of this oratorio comes right out of the Bible.  You might enjoy looking up more about the oratorio, The Messiah:

You can listen to parts of this oratorio one at a time on the following link:

Christina Georgina Rossetti  

Who Has Seen the Wind?

Who has seen the wind?
Neither I nor you:
But when the leaves hang trembling,
The wind is passing through.

Who has seen the wind?
Neither you nor I:
But when the trees bow down their heads,
The wind is passing by.

You also may enjoy this similar poem by Rowena Bennet:

God is Like This

I cannot see the wind at all
  Or hold it in my hand;
And yet I know there is a wind
  Because it swirls the sand.
I know there is a wondrous wind,
  Because I glimpse its power
Whenever it bends low a tree
  Or sways the smallest flower.

And God is very much like this,
  Invisible as air;
I cannot touch or see Him, yet
  I know that He is there
Because I glimpse His wondrous works
  And goodness everywhere.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Hallelujah Chorus, My Gift, Landscape with Conopion Carrying the Ashes of Phocion

 Jean-Francois Millet 

"Landscape with Conopion Carrying the Ashes of Phocion" by Jean-Francois Millet
Notice how Millet manages to portray great depth in his painting making the mountains look far distant. If you are interested in the story of Phocion and Conopion you can read it at the link below.  It is from Plutarch's Lives a classic book by Plutarch who was a Greek historian, biographer and essayist.

This is my last post of Millet's works at least for now.  If you want to view more  of his works the following link has 125 of them shown (Does include some nudity).

George Frideric Handel

Is best known for his oratorio, "The Messiah".  You might want to buy or borrow a copy from your library of the whole oratorio.  It is full of scripture prophecies about the MessiahYou are probably most familiar with the Hallelujah Chorus which is our featured piece this week.

The following informal performance of the Hallelujah Chorus in a food court in a mall is inspiring to listen to as more and more of the crowd join in.

I'd also like to recommend a Sower Biography, George Frideric Handel: Composer of Messiah.

The following link is a biographical sketch of Handel:

Christina Rosetti


What can I give Him
Poor as I am;
If I were a shepherd,
I would give Him a lamb.
If I were a wise man,
I would do my part.
But what can I give Him?
I will give my heart.

The following are links to articles about Christina Rosetti:

Friday, April 1, 2011

The Goose Girl, Cello Concerto No. 1 in A minor, Children

Jean-Francois Millet 

"The Goose Girl" by Jean-Francois Millet


 Camille Saint-Saens

Our final work by Camille Saint-Saens will be Cello Concerto No. 1 in A minor. You can watch part or all of it using the links below.  The young cellist featured in these videos is only 13 years old.


Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


Come to me, O ye children!
For I hear you at your play,
And the questions that perplexed me
Have vanished quite away.

Ye open the eastern windows,
That look towards the sun,
Where thoughts are singing swallows
And the brooks of morning run.

In your hearts are the birds and the sunshine,
In your thoughts the brooklet's flow,
But in mine is the wind of Autumn
And the first fall of the snow.

Ah! what would the world be to us
If the children were no more?
We should dread the desert behind us
Worse than the dark before.

What the leaves are to the forest,
With light and air for food,
Ere their sweet and tender juices
Have been hardened into wood, --

That to the world are children;
Through them it feels the glow
Of a brighter and sunnier climate
Than reaches the trunks below.

Come to me, O ye children!
And whisper in my ear
What the birds and the winds are singing
In your sunny atmosphere.

For what are all our contrivings,
And the wisdom of our books,
When compared with your caresses,
And the gladness of your looks?

Ye are better than all the ballads
That ever were sung or said;
For ye are living poems,
And all the rest are dead.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow