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Monday, 7 March 2011

The Omnibus

So I succeeded in waking up on the right side of my bed this morning. The sun is shining with an intense brightness so that all of Cambridge is a reflective surface. I cycled in to town, gliding down quiet roads without tourists and went to Sainsburys hungry. I splurged and then typically couldn't fit my gluttonous load in to my bike basket. It didn't matter though, because the sun was shining and this meant that I was able to walk home. This expanded preface means that today is a good day.

Anyway today I am trying to complete my dissertation draft. I am currently writing about Omnibuses as I stare out of my tall window through the great bare tree on to all the impetuous traffic.

On the Omnibus, 1880, Maurice Delondre

I did a quick google search in an attempt to find a painting which would capture Woolf and Dismorr's exciting sense of the freedom of the Omnibus. Delondre's painting of polite Victoriana is exactly the opposite of what I was looking for but it does give an illuminating glimpse in to that 'unmannerly throbbing vehicle' which Dismorr eventually escapes from. Woolf's omnibuses are 'garish caravans, glistening with red and yellow varnish' which 'swooped, settled, were off' and Dismorr's is a floating 'luminous balloon' 'all lit from within' by advertisements. True motifs of modernity which capture the excite of movement and its ultimate freedom. The closest I can get to representing this visually is Dismorr's The Engine, which I imagine pulsating at the heart of these Victorian ghosts:

Apologies for my recent blogging silence...


  1. Ah serions nous, nous les omnibus ici cités, sans se souvenir de nos ancêtres, les carrosses à cinq sols! et de cette invention que l'on doit en France à Blaise Pascal, révolutionnaire eu égard à l'esprit de son époque!

    Blaise Pascal - Rossellini film, part 21

  2. Oh the omnibus, the beginning of traveling within small spaces with strangers. So many moments of awkward silence and frequent blank stares...