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Quintain
30" x 52" x 14"


4AM, November 7, Election Day. I am working on the naming process for this old man. Iíve decided on Quintain, I think. The Quintain was the apparatus Knights used to practice their lance work, and consisted of a rotating crossbar on a post with a shield on one end of the crossbar and a chain suspending a leather bag of sand on the other. The jouster striking the shield had to remember to duck or be unhorsed by the swinging consequences. 

Cervantesí Quixote could have tilted at this windmill with the similar effect as Brer Rabbitís confrontation with the Tar Baby.  This may be a semi-political message at a time when public dialogue is like knuckles on a grater, and often representative democracy means the lesser of two weevils, but is more likely the result of whacking at shield strikers, or from the other view, finding myself in the dirt for failure to duck a few too many times this year. The most trivial and humorous example came when, applying for Social Security, I was told I couldnít get my money until I appear with documentation to prove I am not my father. For someone with philosophic interest in genetics this can be a mind numbing puzzler.

To the owner of this piece I would advise hanging it high, so the impression is of a determined look to the horizon. This is a character you donít want to make eye contact with. The red ferocity of intent must be balanced with a cool head and heart.

  

 

   Photo:  Richard K. Webb

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