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Heinrich Heine

Christian Johann Heinrich Heine was a German poet and literary critic. He is best known outside Germany for his early lyric poetry, set to music in the form of lieder by composers such as Robert Schumann and Franz Schubert. Heine's verse and prose are distinguished by their satirical wit and irony, he is considered part of the Young Germany movement. His radical political views led to many of his works being banned by German authorities—which, only added to his fame, he spent the last 25 years of his life as an expatriate in Paris. Heine was born on 13 December 1797, in Düsseldorf, in what was the Duchy of Berg, into a Jewish family, he was called "Harry" in childhood but became known as "Heinrich" after his conversion to Lutheranism in 1825. Heine's father, Samson Heine, was a textile merchant, his mother Peira, née van Geldern, was the daughter of a physician. Heinrich was the eldest of four children, he had a sister and two brothers, Gustav Heine von Geldern and Maximilian, who became a physician in Saint Petersburg.

Heine was a third cousin once removed of philosopher and economist Karl Marx born to a German Jewish family in the Rhineland, with whom he became a frequent correspondent in life. Düsseldorf was a small town with a population of around 16,000; the French Revolution and subsequent Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars involving Germany complicated Düsseldorf's political history during Heine's childhood. It had been the capital of the Duchy of Jülich-Berg, but was under French occupation at the time of his birth, it went to the Elector of Bavaria before being ceded to Napoleon in 1806, who turned it into the capital of the Grand Duchy of Berg, one of three French states he established in Germany. It was first ruled by Joachim Murat by Napoleon himself. Upon Napoleon's downfall in 1815 it became part of Prussia, thus Heine's formative years were spent under French influence. The adult Heine would always be devoted to the French for introducing the Napoleonic Code and trial by jury, he glossed over the negative aspects of French rule in Berg: heavy taxation and economic depression brought about by the Continental Blockade.

Heine admired Napoleon as the promoter of revolutionary ideals of liberty and equality and loathed the political atmosphere in Germany after Napoleon's defeat, marked by the conservative policies of Austrian chancellor Klemens von Metternich, who attempted to reverse the effects of the French Revolution. Heine's parents were not devout; as a young child they sent him to a Jewish school where he learned a smattering of Hebrew, but thereafter he attended Catholic schools. Here he learned French, which would be his second language - although he always spoke it with a German accent, he acquired a lifelong love for Rhineland folklore. In 1814 Heine went to a business school in Düsseldorf where he learned to read English, the commercial language of the time; the most successful member of the Heine family was his uncle Salomon Heine, a millionaire banker in Hamburg. In 1816 Heine moved to Hamburg to become an apprentice at Heckscher & Co, his uncle's bank, but displayed little aptitude for business.

He learned to hate Hamburg with its commercial ethos, but it would become one of the poles of his life alongside Paris. When he was 18 Heine certainly had an unrequited love for his cousin Amalie, Salomon's daughter. Whether he transferred his affections to her sister Therese is unknown; this period in Heine's life is not clear but it seems that his father's business deteriorated, making Samson Heine the ward of his brother Salomon. Salomon realised that his nephew had no talent for trade, it was decided that Heine should enter the law. So, in 1819, Heine went to the University of Bonn. Political life in Germany was divided between liberals; the conservatives, who were in power, wanted to restore things to the way they were before the French Revolution. They were against German unification because they felt a united Germany might fall victim to revolutionary ideas. Most German states were absolutist monarchies with a censored press; the opponents of the conservatives, the liberals, wanted to replace absolutism with representative, constitutional government, equality before the law and a free press.

At the University of Bonn, liberal students were at war with the conservative authorities. Heine was a radical liberal and one of the first things he did after his arrival was to take part in a parade which violated the Carlsbad Decrees, a series of measures introduced by Metternich to suppress liberal political activity. Heine was more interested in studying literature than law; the university had engaged the famous literary critic and thinker August Wilhelm Schlegel as a lecturer and Heine heard him talk about the Nibelungenlied and Romanticism. Though he would mock Schlegel, Heine found in him a sympathetic critic for his early verses. Heine began to acquire a reputation as a poet at Bonn, he wrote two tragedies and William Ratcliff, but they had little success in the theatre. After a year at Bonn, Heine left to continue his law studies at the University of Göttingen. Heine hated the town, it was part of Hanover, ruled by the King of Britain, the power Heine blamed for bringing Napoleon down.

Here the poet experienced an aristocratic snobbery absent elsewhere. He hated law as the Historical School of law he had to study was used to bolster the reactionary form of government he

South African art

South African art is the visual art produced by the people inhabiting the territory occupied by the modern country of South Africa. The oldest art objects in the world were discovered in a South African cave. Archaeologists have discovered two sets of art kits thought to be 100,000 years old at a cave in South Africa; the findings provide a glimpse into how early humans produced and stored ochre – a form of paint – which pushes back our understanding of when evolved complex cognition occurred by around 20,000 – 30,000 years. Dating from 75,000 years ago, they found small drilled snail shells could have no other function than to have been strung on a string as a necklace. South Africa was one of the cradles of the human species; the scattered tribes of Khoisan and San peoples moving into South Africa from around 10000 BC had their own art styles seen today in a multitude of cave paintings. They were superseded by Nguni peoples with their own vocabularies of art forms. In the present era, traditional tribal forms of art were scattered and re-melded by the divisive policies of apartheid.

New forms of art evolved in the mines and townships: a dynamic art using everything from plastic strips to bicycle spokes. In addition to this, there is the Dutch-influenced folk art of the Afrikaner Trek Boers and the urban white artists earnestly following changing European traditions from the 1850s onwards, making for an eclectic mix which continues to evolve today; the pre-Bantu peoples migrating southwards from around the year 30,000 BC were nomadic hunters who favoured caves as dwellings. Before the rise of the Nguni peoples along the east and southern coasts and central areas of Africa these nomadic hunters were distributed, it is thought. They have left lots of signs of life, people toilets and rocks depicting hunting and magic-related art. There is a stylistic unity across the region and with more ancient art in the Tassili n'Ajjer region of northern Africa, in what is now desert Chad but was once a lush landscape; the figures are dynamic and elongate, the colours combine ochreous red, grey and many warm tones ranging from red through to primary yellow.

Common subjects include hunting depicting with great accuracy large animals which no longer inhabit the same region in the modern era, as well as: warfare among humans, domestic scenes, multiple images of various animals, including giraffes, antelope of many kinds, snakes. The last of these works are poignant in their representation of larger, darker people and of white hunters on horseback, both of whom would supplant the'Bushman' peoples. Many of the'dancing' figures are decorated with unusual patterns and may be wearing masks and other festive clothing. Other paintings, depicting patterned quadrilaterals and other symbols, are obscure in their meaning and may be non-representational. Similar symbols are seen in shamanistic art worldwide; this art form is distributed from Angola in the west to Mozambique and Kenya, throughout Zimbabwe and South Africa and throughout Botswana wherever cave conditions have favoured preservation from the elements. The contemporary art scene in South Africa is as diverse and vibrant as the population and cultures in the country.

Contemporary artists in South Africa have adopted new media technologies to produce varied and creative bodies of work, as seen in the work of Dineo Seshee Bopape and CUSS Group. Their art gives insight into the pressing issues of South African society. On a global scale, contemporary South African art is sought-after. A charcoal and oil on canvas work by leading South African contemporary artist William Kentridge was sold on auction for R3,5 million in London in 2012. Due the Bantu Education Act of 1955, Black South Africans were barred from receiving formal art training during the years of apartheid and as a result, the artistic movements that had originated from this community have, until been distinctly classified as “craft” rather than “art.” Informal art centers, that were funded by European states, became one of the few avenues in which Black South Africans could receive some form of artistic development. Throughout this time period from 1947 to the mid-90's, the first practitioners to receive this informal training began passing down their knowledge to younger generations of practitioners.

However, the traditional canon of African art, categorized as “fine art” had been formed in the 20th century by European and U. S. art audiences. South Africa’s inequality gap is larger than that of other countries in the world so the audience for art is the rich and not those who are subject to the artistic expression, giving these higher socio-economic groups a gatekeeper status in deciding what is classified as art. After the Soweto Riots of 1976, a new social consciousness emerged that retaliated against the government’s policy of segregation and reexamined the classification of certain Black South African artworks. One of the first artistic styles to receive critic attention was Venda sculpting because it aesthetically appealed to white patrons while maintaining its “artistic manifestations of ethnic diversity.” These sculptures would be considered “transitional art” rather than “craft” and would gain access into fine art galleries. Other Black artistic expressions such as beadwork and studio arts have begun to be integrated into canonical South African art forms.

The Johannesburg Biennale’s Africus and Trade Routes had a significant impact on the cultural awareness of new South African art. These events were among the first exhibitions that revealed the “new Sou

Cape Dutch architecture

Cape Dutch architecture is a traditional Afrikaner architectural style found in the Western Cape of South Africa, but other places where the Dutch settled, e.g. Australia; the style was prominent in the early days of the Cape Colony, the name derives from the fact that the initial settlers of the Cape were Dutch. The style has roots in medieval Netherlands, Germany and Indonesia. Houses in this style have a distinctive and recognizable design, with a prominent feature being the grand, ornately rounded gables, reminiscent of features in townhouses of Amsterdam built in the Dutch style. Whilst this feature is the most recognizable, it is not a defining feature of the style; the manor house on the "Uitkyk" Wine Estate, for example does not have a gable at all, but remains in the Cape Dutch Style. In the late 18th century, Georgian influenced neoclassical Cape Dutch architecture was popular however only three houses in this style remain; the houses are usually H-shaped, with the front section of the house being flanked by two wings running perpendicular to it.

The Cape Dutch architectural style is defined by the following characteristics: Whitewashed walls Thatched roofing Large wooden sash cottage panes External wooden shutters Long horizontal structures single or double story with dormer windows Green detailing is usedMost Cape Dutch buildings in Cape Town have been lost to new developments – to high-rises in the City Bowl during the 1960s. However, the Cape Dutch tradition can still be seen in many of the farmhouses of the Wine Route, historical towns such as Stellenbosch, Swellendam and Graaff-Reinet. One characteristic feature of South African colonial architecture which has attracted the attention of many observers is the extensive use of gables. Earlier research has sought to justify the term `Cape-Dutch' by comparing the decorative form of these gables to those of Amsterdam. However, in the second half of the 18th century, the period in which, the entire development of the South African gable tradition occurs, gable architecture had ceased to be built in Amsterdam.

North of Amsterdam, along the river Zaan, gable design remained vigorous until the capture of the Cape. South African gables have many features in common with gables along the river Zaan, in spite of the different materials used. By the middle of the 19th century the style had fallen out of popularity and many of the buildings were left to decay. In 1893 Cecil John Rhodes purchased the farm Groote Schuur and hired architect Sir Herbert Baker to redesign the manor house. Baker drew influence from Cape Dutch buildings. In reality he created an English country home with Cape Dutch style Gables; this led to the Cape Dutch Revival style. In 1902, Baker was brought to Johannesburg by the Randlords following the British victory in the Anglo-Boer War and included the Cape Dutch Gable on many homes on the Rand. Following Union in 1910, the Cape Dutch Revival style became popular as a South African vernacular style. Unlike real Cape Dutch Architecture, the Cape Dutch Revival style is defined exclusively by ornate gables.

The rise in popularity of the Cape Dutch Revival style led to a renewed interest in Cape Dutch architecture and many original Cape Dutch buildings were restored during this period. List of house styles History of Cape Town A Guide to the Old Buildings of the Cape Notes by Dr. Hans Fransen, architectural historian and author of The Old Buildings of the Cape and Old Towns and Villages of the Cape. History and Evolution of Cape Dutch Architecture McGregor – the best preserved and most complete example of mid-19th-century townscape in the Cape Province Contemporary Cape Dutch Style @ architectcapetown.co.za Cape Dutch Architecture