WHAT’S ON YOUR WALL … MUCHA AND MORE!
Forty years ago on today’s date, I went shopping for a Mother’s Day gift for my Mom. I realize that I had started a couple of weeks early, but my gift was going to take a little time and effort to complete. My mother had always longed for a full length mirror, and she had the perfect place for it. It was a small rectangular alcove that opened into the bath, bedrooms and the dining room. What I didn’t realize was that most mirrors sold at retail were junk — single strength glass with a silvered back that would quickly rust or flake off. So after checking out a number of stores around town, I finally visited a glass company that was just two blocks from home.
It was a great mirror … a half-inch thick glass and six-feet tall by 18-inches wide. Also the mirror had to be attached to the wall with clamps anchored into the studs. So the mirror wouldn’t really be a Mother’s Day surprise. So, I convinced my brothers to shell out a few bucks more for a second gift that she would actually be able to unwrap on Mother’s Day. It was a reproduction of a poster painted by Alphonse Mucha, the great Czech Art Nouveau painter. It was almost the same dimensions of the mirror and I thought it would look great hanging on the wall opposite the mirror.
The poster was for a Sarah Bernhard play titled GISMONDA. It was a Greek melodrama with a plot so ridiculous it could have been turned into an opera. As a matter of fact, it was turned into an opera … one that was quickly forgotten.
But the mirror and the poster look exactly like they did forty years ago. Wish I could say the same about me.
I have one other Mucha poster. It’s the one he did for the Saint Louis World’s Fair in 1904. I always think of it as THE LUST FILLED NATIVE AMERICAN.