Friday, August 07, 2015

Arty Farty Happy Friday

Tomorrow will be NATIONAL HAPPINESS HAPPENS DAY – August 8. Founded in 1999 by the Secret Society of Happy People as “Admit You’re Happy Day”, Happiness Happens Day is celebrated each year on August 8.

"The society encourages members to recognize their happy moments and think about happiness in their daily life. They have two motto’s which include; “Happiness Happens” and “Don’t Even Think of Raining on My Parade”. Their main purpose is to stimulate people’s right to express their happiness."

For today, then, a handful of paintings from different eras, plus one photograph, depicting a variety of happy situations. (Click on images for larger or clearer versions).

16th century

Allegory of Happiness (1564) by Agnolo Bronzino of Florence, Italy, known as Il Bronzino. He eventually became court painter to the powerful Medici family of Florence and gained notoriety for his portraiture, and "mannerist" style.

18th century

Jean-Honoré Fragonard, "The Swing", aka " “The happy accidents of the swing” " (c. 1767) French, from the rococo period.

20th century

The Homecoming by Norman Rockwell. Cover illustration for “The Saturday Evening Post,” May 26, 1945.

Dining Out (1985) by Beryl Cook, one of Britain's best-loved painters of the 20th century. My old, 2007, post about her is HERE, and a nice Daily Mail piece at the time of her death HERE.

Photograph from this website: Soulful Photos that Depict Happiness

Last, and far from least, Michael Jurogue Johnson's painting of some friends who make human lives so much happier every day.
(See website HERE)


JD said...

bit of nostalgia for you - :)

mike said...

Many possible interpretations of the word "happy"...most use it to express an emotion. I'm surprised to see that dictionaries list the first definition as meaning luck and good fortune. It's up to each of us to find our own happiness: Cruella de Vil skinning puppies for soft fur; Bill Cosby having a full bottle of Quaaludes; Donald Trump having the GOP lead; Hillary Clinton having Donald Trump in the GOP lead; Ben Affleck divorcing to be with the nanny; Imelda Marcos buying another pair of shoes; Queen Elizabeth averting her Nazi salute; Dr. Walter Palmer just after spearing Cecil the lion; politicians knowing John Stewart retired. For way too many, happiness CAN be purchased. It can also be found in prescription, pill form.

late 14c., "lucky, favored by fortune, being in advantageous circumstances, prosperous;" of events, "turning out well," from hap (n.) "chance, fortune" + -y (2). Sense of "very glad" first recorded late 14c. Meaning "greatly pleased and content" is from 1520s. Old English had eadig (from ead "wealth, riches") and gesælig, which has become silly. Old English bliðe "happy" survives as blithe. From Greek to Irish, a great majority of the European words for "happy" at first meant "lucky." An exception is Welsh, where the word used first meant "wise."

“When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.” John Lennon

Twilight said...

JD ~ Thanks - good old Ken Dodd! Amazingly he's still around, according to Wiki - unlike his younger fellow Liverpudlian Cilla (RIP.)

Twilight said...

mike ~ Thanks for these additions.
LOL! The Donald was clearly showing his Regulus last night, I thought! :-) I hate to say it, but there was only one *leader* on that stage - the others were just politicians, or trying to be. That's not to say he'd be a good leader, or that he's a nice person - but leader he is.

Happiness? Being content.

Sonny G said...

I agree Happy is just perspective:)

if it RAINS on my garden- I'm Happy
if it Rains on my outdoor picnic- I'm NOT happy

in the end, its just rain and only my perspective is different.

aww contentment.. I'm getting there.. patience Sonny, patience.

Anonymous said...

Gee, that's Virgo at the centre of the Bronzino, looking like Healthy and Wealthy; of course, Wealth being a full stomach. Maslow anyone?

'This complex allegory represents Happiness (in the centre) with Cupid, flanked by Justice and Prudence. At her feet are Time and Fortune, with the wheel of destiny and the enemies of peace lying humiliated on the ground. Above the head of Happiness is Fame sounding a trumpet, and Glory holding a laurel garland.' - webgalleryofart

I'll take the children and animals, thanks. Personally, serenity trumps happiness.

Twilight said...

Sonny ~ Perspective - yep that's always helpful to happy. ;-)

Twilight said...

Sabina ~ Not familiar with Maslow - but Google has him looking happy. :-)

Oh - thank you for including an explanation of Bronzino's painting ~ I had meant to go find one when preparing the post, but then started on some other tack and forgot to do so. It makes more sense now!

LB said...

Maybe it's partly a matter of semantics, but I learned to stop chasing 'happiness' a long time ago. Had to. Every little unexpected twist and downward turn of life left me unhappy. I was wasting energy raging against and resisting reality.

With so much outside myself that's beyond my control, now I *try* to focus more on acceptance and gratitude. I still try to make things better and still feel things deeply, maybe more deeply than before. I just think my emotional responses are becoming more centered than they used to be, my grief and joy seem more connected and that's okay.

Having said that, I can't resist (haha) posting the link to Pharrell William's tune, "Happy":

LB said...

Compare the feelings evoked by the song "Happy" to this quieter piece of music by Lisa and Pieter Bourke, "See The Sun":

I realize the second one isn't everyone's cuppa tea -or maybe the first isn't either- but can you feel the difference between the two? The second one seems more accepting and peaceful.

Twilight said...

LB ~ We watched Pharrell Williams during his stint as a coach/judge on The Voice earlier this year - he seemed like a really nice guy - not full of himself, gentle, caring, calm - and probably happy. :-) I like his song; and the other song in the 2nd video too - though I couldn't understand the lyrics of that one without looking them up - just the music is very calming - rather like some of Enya's.

I guess we all have different definitions of, and requirements for, what we each see as being happy. I'll settle for contented ordinariness without undue stress. Anything exciting, over and above that, is "a treat" but not a requirement, for me. :-)

LB said...

Twilight ~ In most of her songs, Lisa Gerrard sings in her own language, one she invented as a child. It sounds ancient to me. She's one of my favorite artists.

I like the "Happy" song too. It's definitely happy!

Anonymous said...

August 7th is a big day for me every year.

A soulful situation that depicts happiness?

"'cause tramps like us, baby we were born to run."

Yesterday was the one day ... this week ... that was overcast.
Happy, happy, happy! (I had dilation drops in my eyes)


Anonymous said...

Having said that, I can't resist (haha) posting the link to Al's tune, "Tacky":

Kidd :)

Twilight said...

Anon/kidd ~ LOL! Gotta love that dog!

LB said...

Anon/kidd ~ I loved Al's "Tacky"!