Who doesn’t know this painting, Gustav Klimt’s The Kiss?  This year marks the 150th birthday of Klimt and Austria is celebrating it in various ways. If you are in Vienna, you are in for a treat, for several museums such as the Albertina, the Belvedere, the Kunsthistorisches, the Leopold, and the Wien Museum are showing exhibitions devoted to his work.

Recently I watched an almost unpretentious American comedy entitled This Means War. To make a long story short, a guy learns that the girl likes Gustav Klimt and because he’s a secret agent and there’s nothing he can’t do, he shows the girl the original Klimt paintings. Watch the fragment here. Isn’t it every girl’s dream to be pampered like that?

What is your favorite Klimt painting and why?

Happy Friday Everyone! Next week I’m in a different country, living a different life. Stay tuned.

Smiles, Marta.


Categories: Icons | Tags: , , , , | 23 Comments »

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Greetings! Today I thought I would share beautiful photographs with you here. I first saw Polidori’s exhibition in Berlin in 2006 and it was love at first sight. You might have seen his work in The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Metropolitan Museum of Art. I am especially fond of his Havana and Versailles images–they make me want to visit both places. How different these two, yet how heartbreakingly beautiful. Have you been?

Hope you enjoyed these. Smiles, Marta.

Photo credits: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7


Categories: Icons, illustrations, photographs | Tags: , , | 6 Comments »

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In the Guest House

May 10, 2012

Hello fellow English Muse readers! Jess again from Bodies Never Lie.

I am in a right state of excitement today because I am conducting an interview with the amazing Ballerina Kimberly Cowen from Kansas City Ballet. KCB is one of the over 30 US companies coming to my hometown of St. Louis for the Spring To Dance Festival– a three-day concert where companies in various mediums  (ballet, jazz, modern, tap, African, Indian, flamenco-you name it!) come and perform under one roof. New York City is the only other place that does something like this with their Fall for Dance Concert and with St. Louis being smaller, not as generously funded or flooded with a surplus of rich art aficionados, I’m really proud that my little city pulls this out. I’m also excited because Pilobolus and River North Dance Chicago are coming this year (two of my favorites!)

I’m just particularly excited about this upcoming interview because I have actually shared the stage with Ms. Cowen many many years ago. When KCBallet went under a different moniker, ‘State Ballet of Missouri’ the company performed The Nutcracker here in St. Louis. Ms. Cowen was the Sugar Plum Fairy when I was a soldier in act one and candy bon bon in act two. She was one of my first ballerina idols and here I am about sixteen years later, with the opportunity to pick her brain. (My interview will be shared on my site on Monday if you get curious to see how it goes!) I love being able to meet people that have inspired me, to say thank you and get to know them a little bit.

Which idol from your childhood would you like to speak with?

On another note, I mentioned how incredible the Festival is because so many amazing companies come together for one concert series.  I’d like to take a second now to address the other guest writers here on Tina’s wonderful site. I think we all signed up for this guesting gig because we hoped to reach a wider audience, possibly expand out own readership back on our homesites, that kind of thing. I would just like to say to you that I am so inspired, challenged, delighted by you and your posts. I don’t know if you wonder if any of the other folks sharing this guest house are paying attention. I am. So here is a response to a few posts that really touched me:

I dream of elegant costumes, a dark theatre with a full house, everyone holding their breath with me under pink and blue stage lights. (Loved your list Marthe- I will say that I lived in New York and it’s an experience for sure!) There is actually only one book on my shelves that I haven’t read, and it’s ‘Player Piano’ by Kurt Vonnegut. I went through a ‘phase’ where I wanted to read everything he wrote and I maybe overdosed. So I haven’t gotten around to that one yet. I now want to go to Wroclaw, Poland. I wish Dizzy Lizzy would make me a mix tape or DJ my new birthday party. Karen, that picture of the girl with bird in her hair honestly made me tear up. The first poetry contest that I won was when I was in college and I wrote a poem about my Dad watching the goldfinches in our backyard. My Dad passed away in September from cancer and goldfinches always remind me of him. I made that picture my computer wallpaper. Gulfem, I love your DVD collection, especially that you have ‘The Prestige’ and ‘The Illusionist’ right next to each other.I wish all of the bloggers here could have big ‘getting to know each other’ dinner party where we could share pictures, ideas, and of course, macaroons.  Maybe we could meet up in Bluebeard’s barn (another Vonnegut reference) and share our secrets. Pass me that plate! (artwork by another hero, my Grandfather, Herbert Ruhlin)

Cheer friends! xo- Jess

Categories: Icons | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

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I came across a letter which F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote his daughter, Scottie, when she was 11. He gives simple and yet important advises on life to Scottie towards the end of the letter!

After reading it, I thought that I definitely should share it with you, dear English Muse readers! Reading it gave me very much of courage, hope and motivation, I hope it would do the trick for you as well 🙂

Here comes the list of F. Scott Fitzgerald:

Things to worry about:

Worry about courage
Worry about cleanliness
Worry about efficiency
Worry about horsemanship

Things not to worry about:

Don’t worry about popular opinion
Don’t worry about dolls
Don’t worry about the past
Don’t worry about the future
Don’t worry about growing up
Don’t worry about anybody getting ahead of you
Don’t worry about triumph
Don’t worry about failure unless it comes through your own fault
Don’t worry about mosquitoes
Don’t worry about flies
Don’t worry about insects in general
Don’t worry about parents
Don’t worry about boys
Don’t worry about disappointments
Don’t worry about pleasures
Don’t worry about satisfactions

Things to think about:

What am I really aiming at?
How good am I really in comparison to my contemporaries in regard to:

(a) Scholarship
(b) Do I really understand about people and am I able to get along with them?
(c) Am I trying to make my body a useful instrument or am I neglecting it?

With dearest love,


Wise words, don’t you agree? If only we could internalize them in the course our daily lives…  And, don’t worry about insects in general, I wish I could do this 😉

Guest Post by Gulfem@All Happy Things Around

Photo Credits List of Note and Nantucket Youth)

Categories: Books, Icons | 16 Comments »

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 Doris Day is the epitome of kindness, sincerity, and femininity. I first became a fan at thirteen and forever became transfixed with the wonderful music and movies of this great lady. She teaches us all to be better human beings with her enormous work for the care of animals.  At almost eighteen my love for her has not diminished a bit. Doris Day continues to inspire young women to always remember to stay true as well as sweet. – Dominique Lessing

“I like joy; I want to be joyous. I want to smile and I want to make people laugh. And that`s all I want.  I like being happy. I want to make others happy.” ― Doris Day

( images from dorisday.com/Brian from dorisday.net/life.com)

Posted by guest blogger Dominique Lessing.

Categories: Icons, It Girls & Icons | 8 Comments »

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Life is strange, in a beautiful and mystical way. Reading this blog on a regular basis was a true motivation for me to start my own blog and now I am writing a post as a guest blogger for my favourite blog ever! I am Gulfem from All Happy Things Around, just thrilled by being a part of English Muse.

As this blog was my inspiration to dive into blogging world, I thought that it would be a good idea to write about another substantial inspiration of mine, women who ages in a distinguishably elegant and beautiful way..

I have extreme curiosity about how I will be looking like when I will turn into my 30s, 40s, 50s and so on? What about the look on my face, my smile? Will they all be more meaningful than today or will I just appear sad about all those past years? I am not afraid of having wrinkles on my face in future. For me, they will be just signs of all experiences I have in my life, no matter good or bad. Those experiences are ones what determines our current state of being, who we are at the moment.

Look at those ladies, Meryl Streep, Audrey Hepburn, Julianne Moore and Catherine Deneuve ! How elegant, refined and wise they look… They just embrace what past years offer to them, they did not fight with those years! Their photos have so much to tell us, right?

I am looking forward to hear examples you’ve got dear English Muse readers! Who might be other women who age in a distinguishably fabulous way?

(Text is from Gulfem@All Happy Things Around, photos from joemcneilis, RareAudreyHepburn, miradademiranda, LovesJulie)


Categories: Icons | 8 Comments »

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