Had a couple of hours yesterday and rushed to the Albertina for Jim Dine’s self-portraits. Almost rembrandtesque in their effort, the making of self-portraits was a central theme for the artist. The variety of takes on it is quite overwhelming: from simple charcoal drawings to sandpaper, from canvases to chess tables, usually dark, sometimes with a splash of color.

Old Rider (2008) Is there a bit of Bacon’s cardinal in it? Could there be?

Or this flat, Pygmalion-like rendering:

Self-portrait (1971)

Or this Big Crying Head (1989) - a bit of Kentridge in it and Rauschenberg and De Kooning.

And, to close up the evening, I had the chance to see Anne Carson reading some of her work (for the first time in Austria). I like her playfulness with words and apparent carelessness with meaning - an intricate game of “let it be” in the garden of language. Here’s a picture of her mismatched socks: