I also wonder about odd habits of other great men (great as in "highly influential"). Is a man with great inspirations but without quirky habits unrelated to their field doomed to mediocracy?
Though the tortoise blessed with magic powers lives long,
Its days have their allotted span;
Though winged serpents ride high on the mist,
They turn to dust and ashes at the last;
An old war-horse may be stabled,
Yet still it longs to gallop a thousand li;
And a noble-hearted man though advanced in years
Never abandons his proud aspirations.
Man's span of life, whether long or short,
Depends not on Heaven alone;
One who eats well and keeps cheerful
Can live to a great old age.
And so, with joy in my heart,
I hum this song."
Во тьме ночной
Пропал пирог мясной.
Пропал бесследно, безвозвратно.
Куда и как девался, непонятно.
In the darkness of the night
A meat pie vanished.
It disappeared tracelessly, irrevocably.
It's a mistery (literally it's ununderstandable, one can have no idea) where has it gone.
In Russian it rhymes.
Once their mother baked a meat pie meant to be served to the guests and everybody for a supper and his younger brother ate the entire pie secretly he didn't tell anybody and wrote this poem.
As far as I know this was the one and only poem Lenin wrote.
Even the better ones still look odd, like kitschy comics. For lack of a better description, his paintings completely lack any kind of poetic depth.
edit: the article actually contains a better description by John Gunther:
"They are prosaic, utterly devoid of rhythm, color, feeling, or spiritual imagination. They are architect's sketches painful and precise draftsmanship; nothing more. No wonder the Vienna professors told him to go to an architectural school and give up pure art as hopeless"
But of course he was a Bad Man, so he cannot be allowed to have any good qualities, therefore his art is bad.
But he seem to be quite competent at drawing architecture, which is also what the Vienna school told him.
You would think the same was true of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_Darks_in_Red, and yet...
The tendency the "art establishment" prefer abstract, avant-garde art is much more recent. Probably in part spurred by Nazisms campaign against "entartete Kunst"!
I think Nazims famous opposition to modern art have been conflated with Hitlers own rejection from the academy. He wasn't rejected due due different genre preference, but because he wasn't good enough in drawing anything beside architecture.
This one makes me think that it would be an amazing trolling opportunity to remove the signature, create high-quality reproductions of this “Mary with Jesus” and give them out to American Evangelicals, as the art style generally matches the Christian fundamentalist taste:
I have zero artistic talent and the only art I know is what I learned from an art appreciation class in highschool and and art history class in college. With that being said, those paintings look pretty similar to the kind of stuff I see in museums or in people's homes. I was expecting to see crude stick figures based off of the descriptions.
It is easy to see why they recommended him architecture instead though. The buildings are drawn technically good and precise, but they are also the only thing that really works. Nature and people looks pretty bad. But of course with appropriate training he might have learned that also, who knows.
1) the European colonial powers were losing their empires,
2) the EU wouldn't exist in any form until several years after he died,
3) USSR (in which he was in command for a good chunk of time) was propelled from a rural provincial power into one of the two global superpowers (who, among other things, was crucial in defeating the Nazi Germany)
4) he had an iron rule in said USSR, and managed to secure half of Europe (and half of what is now EU, including half of Germany) for his extended empire
Plus a lot of murders and political power plays...
So, yeah, he was hardly just someone "writing poems" and losing time...