I'm going to imagine you have the basics: over ₤10M in the bank, a yacht, luxury London apartment, second home in Monaco, offshore bank account, and if not a private jet, at least access to one. Good, are you sitting comfortably in your designer Italian armchair? Then we can begin. -The Banker's Guide To Art
New trend: adding funny captions to classic (or at least OLD) works of art. Steve Melcher's "That Is Priceless" has found slightly-off-center pieces of classical painting and given them more contemporary (and very logical) contexts since 2009. Now, "Popquotery" matches Old Art (some familiar, some not) to Less-Old Movie Quotes (mostly familiar). And "Classic Programmer Paintings" re-contextualizes art in terms Software Engineers can understand. Fine Art is for everybody, right?
The rise and fall of Lance Armstrong is not simply a story of one man’s moral failures. To understand Armstrong you have to understand the people who use their money and power to shape the culture of competitive sports. And if you follow the trail of money and power in this particular case, it will lead you to Thomas Weisel, which is where the real story begins.
The sale of Glenn Brown's "Ornamental Despair (Painting For Ian Curtis) Copied from the Stars Like Dust, 1986 by Chris Foss" (1994) for roughly $5.7 million has again raised questions over whether copying something but larger and slapping your name on it constitutes art and how it can sell for so much. Here's why it does. Just don't talk about Shia LaBeouf.
NYTimes: At $142.4 Million, Triptych Is the Most Expensive Artwork Ever Sold at an Auction
It took seven superrich bidders to propel a 1969 Francis Bacon triptych to $142.4 million at Christie’s on Tuesday night, making it the most expensive work of art ever sold at auction. William Acquavella, the New York dealer, is thought to have bought the painting on behalf of an unidentified client, from one of Christie’s skyboxes overlooking the auction.[more inside]
The late 19th century Armenian-Russian painter Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky created some truly spectacular paintings of seascapes that capture the beautiful, shimmering essence of the tumultuous waters. The marine artist gained recognition for his impeccable ability to recreate the expressive quality of oceans with over half of his 6,000+ paintings from his lifetime being devoted to the subject.
Njideka Akunyili's acrylic painting over photocopies combines figurative, domestic scenes with the cacophony of globalism and traditional decorative motifs.
Heinrich Caesar Berann is known as the father of the modern cartographic panorama and is also credited as the most prolific panorama artist ever. His style and work could be credited with the lasting appeal of stylized panoramic maps that often feature exaggerated or distorted features as the preferred map type for ski resorts and trails (PDF) but Berann's true passion was art, as seen in these collections of his paintings and drawings found on the tribute site maintained by his grandson, Matthias Troyer. [more inside]
The apparent hack of several e-mail accounts has exposed personal photos and sensitive correspondence from members of the Bush family, including both former U.S. presidents, The Smoking Gun has learned. Among this leak are some of George W.'s self-portraits.
Artist Zak Smith addresses the problem of Big Art made by assistants for artists who don't claim to use assistants. good bit starts at 3:40
Brooke Shaden is an LA-based fine-art photographer. (Note: none of the directly linked images are NSFW but there is some fine-art nudity in the photostream.) [more inside]
"Punk-artist-anthropologist Cameron Jamie has made three documentaries on violence; I’ve read about them all and seen just this one." The author speaks of "Kranky Klaus," LA-born artist Jamie's peek into the Austrian folkloric character Krampus, a sort of photo-negative of Santa Claus who comes on Christmas to punish bad children. [more inside]
RUBBER (Not THAT one) is the story of Robert, an inanimate tire that has been abandoned in the desert, and suddenly and inexplicably comes to life. As Robert roams the bleak landscape, he discovers that he possesses terrifying telepathic powers that give him the ability to destroy anything he wishes without having to move. At first content to prey on small desert creatures and various discarded objects, his attention soon turns to humans, especially a beautiful and mysterious woman who crosses his path. [more inside]
America on Stone: 19th Century American Lithographs is a browsable collection of lithographs on topics from advertising to uniforms. The viewer includes pan and zoom functions. (Harry T. Peters, who amassed this collection, was particularly interested in Currier & Ives.) Lithography became popular very quickly after its discovery at the end of the eighteenth century, rapidly finding its way into such commercial uses as sheet music covers. Needless to say, it also came in handy for far more exalted applications. (For previous MeFi adventures in lithography, try these posts.)
The bike racing world has a tradition of attention-getting designs, but some spectators at this year's Tours of California or France might have done double-takes at some of the art on Lance Armstrong's rides. As it turns out, Trek and Nike have commissioned custom designs promoting Livestrong, and as I write this Lance is cycling into Paris on a bike covered with butterfly wings, courtesy of Damien Hirst. [more inside]
FineArtFilter: Taco Photography. Plus Hatemail and Critiques. And you can buy them on this recommendation - "Probably the best fine art taco photography I've seen".
Lightmark Cenci Goepel and Jens Warnecke of Germany create fabulous fine art images via light painting. In a word: beautiful. [more inside]
To the august company of "I now pronounce you man and wife" and "I bet you sixpence it will rain tomorrow," artist Sean Landers adds a new utterance for study, albeit one that perhaps he alone is capable to perform: "I am vastly underappreciated . . . as an artist . . . in my time." [MP3]
Please God, make everyone die. Amen. Todd Goliath, the creator of the infamous "Boys Are Stupid, Throw Rocks At Them" t-shirts/paintings/flash games/etc. (previously x2) has been discovered to have a piece in a gallery show which is remarkably similar to this Purple Pussy cartoon by Dave Kelly (a/k/a Schmorky) of Keenspot and SA. Not only that, but he's got another character, Eve L. who bears more than a passing resemblance to Lenore, The Cute Little Dead Girl by Roman Dirge. (other examples in the main link -- a surprisingly on-topic thread for SA)
If you're one of those types who could never get into so called "fine art" because it didn't feature enough images of women having sex with cephalopods & crustaceans, then Tabitha Vevers is the artist for you.
The Fine Art Adoption Network works to "place artworks by committed artists into deserving homes and institutions, as well as to offer a channel for new audiences for contemporary art. It is the intention of FAAN to engage art enthusiasts who never thought of themselves as art collectors, and to introduce them to the experience and pleasures of owning and caring for contemporary art." Amazing. via Gothamist
Decameron Web: A Growing Hypermedia Archive of Boccaccio's Masterpiece.
Vatican Art is now viewable online at the Vatican website. View the Sistine Chapel and Raphael's Rooms in all their glory (sort of).
Tune In To The Fine Art Search Machine: Artcyclopedia continues to be too good to be true. It's updated regularly and all you have to do is follow your favourite artists around the many participating museums, going "Aaah..." at every click. My particular obsession is Milton Avery. I first saw a painting of his at the old Tate Museum in London, when I was about 12, and have been intrigued by him ever since. Is he an American Matisse or just a less obviously picture-postcardish Raoul Dufy? To cut to the chase: what painter keeps you unable to make your mind up about him or her?