I love how Avatar makes the nonbenders just as cool and powerful. It’s like saying “hey you don’t have these cool powers but you can still be like these awesome characters” Korra fell in love with a nonbender. The fire lord fell in love with a nonbender. The self proclaimed greatest earthbender of all time had a crush on a nonbender. Some people argue that the fire princess fell in love with a nonbender. The avatars son was (for most of his life) a nonbender. The two greatest warriors to come out of the water tribe were nonbenders. The universes greatest bounty hunter was a nonbender. The fire princess chose two nonbenders for her small elite team. Two thirds of the gaang were nonbenders. I just think it’s really cool.
Michael West, born Corinne Michelle West in 1908, was an Abstract Expressionist painter of great energy and determination. She painted hundreds of canvases from the 1940s through the 1980s, and was a friend and colleague to many acclaimed artists from those decades. She was not extremely well known during her lifetime; in fact, she had to use a man’s name to achieve respect in her field.
During her life, West called the abstract works emanating around her “the New Art.” (The formal term would become “Abstract Expressionism.”) She befriended Gorky in the winter of 1932-33, and the two would spend many hours together. Though West would later describe their relationship as “a platonic love of two artists driven by our love of work,” Gorky saw things quite differently. He asked her to marry him as many as six times. Because she believed her career would have to take a back seat in such a union, she repeatedly declined.
Though she was dead serious about her work and career, she found the challenge of breaking into the art scene of her day daunting. “It was an all-men’s club,” Lewis said. So, taking the advice of Gorky, she changed her name to Michael West in 1941. Others, such as Lenore (Lee) Krasner and Grace (George) Hartigan had done the same. She did experience some success under Michael West, exhibiting in Manhattan’s prestigious Stable Gallery in 1953, alongside de Kooning, Kline, Robert Motherwell and Philip Guston.