Thursday, April 23, 2009

Sara and Gerald Murphy

Not sure why, but I have been thinking about the Murphys today on and off. Maybe it's just the warm, sunny weather here in Ohio. The Murphys were always nice and tan because they spent a lot of time near the ocean, and Gerald was known to rake the beach at Antibes to make it a nicer and more aesthetically pleasing place for his friends to gather. Sara often wore her long string of pearls to the beach along with her bathing suit.

The Murphys were independently wealthy (Gerald's father was the founder of Mark Cross, the luxury goods store), and they lived their lives as high art. The Murphy's friends were mainly artists, as well. Their group of friends included: Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Cole Porter, Jean Cocteau, and Pablo Picasso. It was said that Fitzgerald had quite a crush on Sara Murphy. It is also believed that the Murphy's were the models for the characters of Dick and Nicole Diver in Fitzgerald's novel, Tender is the Night.

Gerald Murphy was a noted semi-abstract painter in his day. He also assisted on sets for Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes.

For having such bright, beautiful, promising young lives, the Murphys later years were filled with anguish. Gerald was forced to take over as President at Mark Cross (a job he detested), due to medical bills, and he never painted again. Both of the Murphy's sons died tragically young--one of TB and the other of meningitis.

Sara and Gerald were lovely and elegant and kind. They were even known to finance their artist friends who were down on their luck.

There are several good biographies of the Murphy's available if you want to read more about them. The books make for a nice summer read.


Lou said...

You are going to be my "go to" blog for different and interesting books.

Sarcastic Bastard said...

Great, Lou! I need all the traffic I can get. Ha.

Being an English major, I have plenty of interesting books to recommend.

I hope all is well with you. Thank you for reading and commenting, as always.

Anonymous said...

In a similar way I am interested in Victoria Sackville West who was an English eccentric.
She lived a great life.
BTW on my reply to your comment yesterday I missed a word out.
I meant to say KNOW you with the arrrows.LOL
not you with the arrows. Sorry cos it sounded bad.
Anyway hope ya have a cool day SB

nan said...

They seem like an amazing couple. I can't wait to read up on them. Great post. Thanks SB.

Sarcastic Bastard said...

I'll check out Sackville West, Nick.

Don't worry about the reply to my comment. Typos happen, man.

Love ya.

Sarcastic Bastard said...

Thanks for reading, Nan. Glad you liked the post.

I hope you have a great weekend. We are finally forecasted to have two nice sunny days in a row here in Ohio. I am SO looking forward to it!

My best to you.