Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Does Money really buy happieness?

Last night I was fortunate enough to listen to Marisa talk about the photographs she curated at the MFAh. She had been assigned the job of curating the work of Helen C. Kleberg and Toni Frissell in the exhibition, Two Women look West: Photographs of the King Ranch.
Marisa did an outstanding job given what she had to work with.
Mrs. Kleberg's work was really a family album, breifly interesting but not much more. Ms. Frissell's work while limited in quantity was clearly the work of a practised eye with editorial and technical help. To Mrs. Kleberg's credit she mase her own prints.
The photographs strike me as rather predictable and really not much more that what I've been lead to expect of the "wild west" in the 30s and 40s. Nothing very revealing and certainly nothing I haven't already seen. As Mike said to Marisa, "that picture is right out of the movie, Giant." It was indeed, it's just that Robert Kleberg has none of the pinache of James Dean. Kleberg is after all a cattleman and not an actor, or is he? He clearly knows how to promote a product judging from the pictures taken at his auctions and of his wonderful cattle breed, the Santa Getrudus.
So we learn from two previously unseen pictures that the King Ranch had a deep and abiding realtionship with the now ExxonMobil Corporation.
Then it was known as the Humble Oil and Refining Company, nothing humble about it. We also see that it was oil that allowed a man the luxury of playing with his cows all day long.
Nice work if you can get it. So, does money really buy happiness?
It does if you have enough of it!
Marisa you did an excellent job and thank you for your efforts.

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