Bathing in Bouguereau

Oh My Dear Chevalier

If 1800’s avante-garde impressionist Adolphe-William Bouguereau were alive today, it would require the best French wine (though I don’t drink) to compose me for an interview.  It would likely take place in his home studio in La Rochelle, France, and I would have to get over feeling hopelessly starstruck (which I never am).  I knew nothing about him when I was introduced to his work.  As with most artists, nothing about his personal background influenced my response to his creations. Bouguereau’s mastery pierces my soul and gets inside my head as easily as light penetrates the eye.  His paintings whisper their invisible drug into my heart.  Before I can blink, the most private spirits that live there stream to the surface.  My deepest emotions of love for my two older sisters and family flood my consciousness.  With zero resistance, I am  raptured into memories of innocence, elation, and loss. How is it possible that each impression paddles me away to a place so cavernously archived in my heart?

In pure mental and physical submission, I see myself sunning in my childhood enchantments ….unable to casually look away, at least not until the surreal interlude is completely satisfied.

It’s like being smitten for the first time, only again.

Every look, every story, every secret, every surprise… commands my attention and illuminates all my senses.

It’s supernatural when you feel like someone you don’t even know actually sees you and then paints the mirrors of your soul.

Bougeureau was not your common starving artist ~ not financially.  He was well educated, lauded by elite societies, and honored by royal academies.  As a boy, his uncle tutored him in Latin, Greek, and the Bible.  In 1859, he was made a knight (chevalier) of France and then later in the order of Leopold in Belgium.  He was no stranger to intense suffering either.  He lost his first wife and several of his five children including Adolphe-Paul (to Tuberculosis) at the age of 30.  Perhaps Bougeureau died of a broken heart (he passed after several years of heart disease).  Ironically, so many of his works have stolen mine.

[Reference: Bouguereau by Fronia E Wissman, Pomegranate Artbooks, 1996]
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About Light Stream

Casandra Moreno Lombera is an author, blogger, and Emmy nominated television producer who grew up in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Denver communities. In junior high school, she promised her single mother that she would get straight A’s in order to graduate early and help her relocate to Aurora, Colorado. She did… and though women and Latinas were scarcely visible in television, she dreamed of a future in broadcast journalism. From an early age, Casandra wanted children and loved to write. She began her career in television (writing and reporting on camera) at the age of 18. She also began raising two very successful children as a single mom. Throughout her career, she became an award winning, television producer/program creator (receiving both the Imagen and Golden Eagle Awards); was executive producer of both public affairs and children’s programming at KWHY-TV, Channel 22; and worked on camera hosting public affairs talk shows for many years. More distinctive opportunities came her way, however her desire to write children’s books and to blaze new trails in the publishing world became irrepressible. Her dreams today focus on empowering youth, writing (particularly about God’s love for them), and raising money for the impoverished through organizations like Hope Worldwide https://www.hopeww.org/sslpage.aspx. Throughout her life, she has been passionate about hands-on giving to the community and has received many forms of appreciation (including a congressional commendation) for her efforts. She has served on several boards including Communications Bridge Institute, training disadvantaged youth in television production; St. Anne’s, building futures for at risk teens and unwed mothers; HOPE, Hispanas Organized for Political Equality; the American Diabetes Association fund raising committee; and the Consumer Advisory Committee for the California Contractors State Licensing Board. Casandra is also a recipient of La Opinion’s 2012 Mujeres Destacadas (Exceptional Women) Award. She is completely smitten with her husband, two children, and four grand babies who inspired Light Riders. Follow her @casandratweets and @Lightersbook on Twitter. Her blog is at http://www.shewentthere.wordpress.com. Direct Contact: Lightridersbook@gmail.com
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14 Responses to Bathing in Bouguereau

  1. Beautiful…! Thank you for introducing us to this wonderful painter.

    BTW, love, love the photograph on your header/banner.

    Best,

    Angelica

  2. Priscilla Luna says:

    Casandra you have the gift of writing! Wow, it was so moving to read your posts. You write with such passion. I love how I can see your Heart through your writing. Thank you for sharing these paintings with us and an opportunity to learn about Adolphe-William Bouguereau.

    • I’m sooo thrilled you are happy with my posts Priscilla! I want our babies to know their Grandma and how much she wanted to share her heart and spirit with them!!! Laloo : )

  3. Marissa says:

    Beautiful writing Aunt Casandra! I’ve never seen this artist before but I really like his work. I feel like I can connect with both your feelings and his pieces through your words!

  4. Olga Moreno Tapia says:

    I am so proud of you Mija. Of course I have the advantage of knowing you were always a prolific writer. I love this blog as much as the others you have written because they communicate more than mere words. They uplift and inspire. Love you soooo much Mija. Mom

    • Thank you Mom! You never left me short of inspiration growing up!! I could write about anything and you would have the insider’s box seat over anyone. Thank you for being proud of whatever I do. What Tina Fey said about her parents, I say about you and the Lord, “I want to thank my parents for somehow raising me to have confidence that is disproportionate with my looks and abilities.” I just want our babies to have that confidence so I write, write, write, LOL. Love you sooo much!!! xoxo

  5. Oh wow…. such beautiful artwork! thanks so much for sharing this post. I love looking at beautiful art. 🙂

    Oh yes, I’m busy wishing that I could be right there in your header image – beautiful place that is! 🙂

    Gabi

  6. Annette Badger says:

    I found you on facebook and linked to your blog. Amazing writing. You have me loving this artist and wanting to go see Thor! I hope you don’t mind if I add my name to your list of followers? Thanks for an inspirational read!

    • Dear Annette, Thank you for visiting my blog. I’m so touched by your kind words and of course I would love for you to be a subscriber. Please let me know how you like Thor too : ) Don’t know where I’m going to find another Bouguereau, but, if I do s/he will get some blog space from me! Thanks again!

  7. Danielle says:

    Your words were visually appealing, breathtaking at times, and I could not stop reading. Please write more! I had a morsel of what your talent giveth. I cannot wait for your next piece. Thanks for writing what my heart longs to read. You have such depth, and my eyes and ears were satisfied. 🙂 DC

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