"Turning the concept of authenticity on its head, genuine forgeries — whether created with the intention of deceiving or not — are riding the crest of the art-scene zeitgeist, and commanding sums in excess of figures fetched by the so-called ‘original greats’ " - The Fake's Progress by Stuart Husband
"Series of murals painted on a few of the thousands of icebergs freshly broken off from a nearby glacier. In the short time I was there, I witnessed the extreme melting rate first hand as the sound of ice cracking was a constant background noise while painting. Within a few weeks these murals will be forever gone, but for those who find them, I hope they ignite a sense of urgency, as they represent the millions of people in need of our help who are already being affected from the rising sea levels of Climate Change.” [more inside]
"What's in a Necronym?" by Jeannie Vanasco: "Whether the knowledge affected van Gogh—that he shared both his name and birthday with a dead sibling—remains unknown, the guide said. 'Does anyone have any questions?' he asked. My mind filled with loud, hurried thoughts and just as suddenly emptied, like a flock of birds scattering from a field." [more inside]
Twitch, the social media platform for video games, just launched ‘Twitch Creative': a section of the site dedicated to non-gaming videos from artists. There you'll find people creating paintings or illustrations, composing songs, designing costumes, and even glass blowing. To celebrate, Twitch is holding an 8-day marathon livestream of every single Bob Ross The Joy of Painting episode.
But even then, Beckmann will be there before you, and seem more at ease. And in how he stands and where he’s chosen to stand, it’s also clear that he can leave, that he can move out the door just to his right. Again, the sense that he belongs here, that he knows better than you how to dress and what to do, gives the impression that you aren’t an audience viewing him, but that he is giving you an audience instead. He belongs, we don’t, or don’t so well as he. Max Beckmann's 1927 Self-Portrait in Tuxedo, appreciated by Harvard art historian Joseph Koerner. [more inside]
Ivan Aivazovsky (1817–1900) - "In 1840, Aivazovsky traveled to Rome, where he became friendly with Nikolai Gogol. He also received high praise from the Roman critics, newspapers, and even Pope Gregory XVI. The pope purchased Aivazovsky's 'Chaos' and hung it in the Vatican... [more inside]
Since 1933, the Cambridge University Library has had a pristine copy of Shi zhu zhai shu hua pu, the Ten Bamboo Studio collection of calligraphy and painting from 1633. Because the book was so fragile, the butterfly bound (Google books preview) manual for teachers of art and writing was not opened until it could be properly digitized. That day has come, and the entire book is online, giving the world a view of “the earliest and the most beautiful example of multicolor printing anywhere in the world,” according to Charles Aylmer, head of the Chinese department at Cambridge University Library. [more inside]
Gaahl is the former vocalist for Gorgoroth, Norwegin black metal powerhouse and satanic ideologues. In 2005 he was sentenced to 14 months in prison for beating and torturing an intruder in his home. In 2007 Vice went to the remote Norwegian hamlet of Espedal (named for/owned by Gaahl's family for generations) to talk music, philosophy, painting, and get some insights into True Norwegian Black Metal. [more inside]
Caravaggio [Part 1] [Part 2] [Part 3] [Part 4] [Part 5] [Part 6] [Part 7] Art critic Robert Hughes reflects on the work of troubled Italian artist Caravaggio.
‘I shot against Daddy, all men, small men, tall men, big men, fat men, men, my brother, society, the church, the convent, school, my family, my mother, all men, daddy, myself, men. I shot because it was fun and made me feel great. I shot because I was fascinated watching the painting bleed and die…’— Niki de Saint Phalle. [more inside]
José Manuel Ballester removes the people from classical paintings, turning da Vinci's Last Supper into a still life, Goya's Third of May into a landscape, Géricault's Raft of the Medusa into a study of flotsam on an empty sea.
New York Magazine on MoMA's identity politics and gender balance. Art Basel Miami Beach gender balance by the numbers. The White Review on gender balance in the London gallery scene. Georg Baselitz in Der Spiegel:
As always, the market is right. [...] Women simply don't pass the test. The market test, the value test. Women don't paint very well. It's a fact.Collectors still pay more for male artists. [previously]
"In creating a work that portrays real internal struggle and transformation, Caravaggio converted painting. [more inside]
Three years ago, a man punched a hole in a Monet painting as it hung in Ireland's National Gallery. Conservationists have restored it. This is their story. [more inside]
In 1959, iconic Surrealist painter Salvador Dalí agreed to design several holiday greeting cards for Hallmark, "with several stipulations. He asked for $15,000 [$122,200 in 2014 dollars] in cash in advance for 10 greeting card designs, with no suggestions from Hallmark for the subject or medium, no deadline and no royalties." [more inside]
Simon Schama's Power of Art is available in full. Part 1 Caravaggio. Part 2 Bernini. Part 3 Rembrandt. Part 4 David. Part 5 Turner. Part 6 Van Gogh. Part 7 Picasso. Part 8 Rothko. [more inside]
Henrique Oliveira "paints" in three dimensions with plywood, as he describes it in a short interview with Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland. The video focuses on a 2012 work in progress, Carambóxido, which is made from, and still smells like, industrial debris found in the Flats and along the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland. The artist, who hails from São Paulo, is most recognized for his large installation pieces that burst through gallery walls and coil around pillars, appearing to grow from the spaces around them. You can see many more of his paintings, sculptures and installations at Oliveira's own website, which requires flash to navigate.
Five year old Iris Grace has taken up painting. Iris is autistic, and her parents introduced her to painting as a means to help with her speech therapy. She has attracted attention worldwide and her paintings have sold quite well. Iris in action. Originals, prints, and calendars can be purchased here. Iris has a constant companion, her name is Thula. The homepage of irisgracepainting.com.
“I want to install it in my house,” Ségalot recalls Bryant saying, “but my wife hates it. She can’t live with a work that says ‘SELL THE HOUSE SELL THE CAR SELL THE KIDS.’ So do you know anyone who might want to buy it?” What the 350,000% rise in value of a single painting by Christopher Wool says about the contemporary art world.
Paul Klee: The Silence of the Angel (2005; 51:14) is a documentary about the painter whose lectures/notebooks, The Thinking Eye and The Nature of Nature, have been called "the most complete presentation of the principles of design ever made by a modern artist ... it constitutes the Principia Aesthetica of a new era of art, in which Klee occupies a position comparable to Newton's in the realm of physics."
Mario: animated short An animation of a chilling Italian children's (?) song, created by painting frames on glass! [via mefi projects]
A Piece of Monologue is a treasure trove of modern, contemporary, and avant-garde expression in literature, philosophy, art, design, painting, music, theater, and more. A smattering of insides: Flannery O'Connor on Ayn Rand. An online guide to the life and work of Samuel Beckett. Twin Peaks Behind the Scenes Photographs. Rare photographs of John Coltrane. And wow.
In the weeks following Kinkade’s death , his estate tried to protect his brand: the gag order on his mistress and a statement attributing his death to natural causes were among the efforts they made to prevent the public from learning about the seedier side of Kinkade’s life. They didn’t work—but it didn’t matter. The Thomas Kinkade Release Calendar
Huge collection of (and commentary on) matte art from classic films that has been rescanned for HD releases. Much more on the process of creating and filming this type of setup at last month's post. (previously)
Was the pilfered painting worth it? Detroit's 555 Gallery saved a stencil from scrappers, but now wants to sell it.
Twenty Seven pieces of artwork that defy comprehension; not because of the quality of work, which is amazing, but for the quality of work performed in the mediums used. [more inside]
Gritty Cityscapes by Jeremy Mann. Dramatically and skillfully rendered, the cityscapes and figurative works of Jeremy Mann give visual form to the emotive essence of modern life (nsfw).
Creation and Destruction of Sand Mandalas. Spontaneous Temporary Sand Paintings by Joe Mangrum. New Flower Mandalas by Kathy Klein. Geometric Paintings Inspired by Sacred Mandalas by Amy Cheng.
"[We] were looking at Hieronymus Bosch’s painting The Garden of Earthly Delights and discovered, much to our amusement, music written upon the posterior of one of the many tortured denizens of the rightmost panel of the painting which is intended to represent Hell. I decided to transcribe it into modern notation, assuming the second line of the staff is C, as is common for chants of this era." via Dangerous Minds
Witchsona Week is a week for artists, doodlers, webcomicers, and more to draw themselves as witches.
The 100 Greatest Painters in Western History (according to the editors of This Recording). [more inside]
Dating an Impressionist's Sunset. "Famed French Impressionist Claude Monet created a striking scene of the Normandy coast in his 1883 painting, Étretat: Sunset. Now a team of Texas State University researchers, led by astronomer and physics professor Donald Olson, has applied its distinctive brand of forensic astronomy to Monet’s masterpiece, uncovering previously unknown details about the painting’s origins." [Via]
B E A U T Y. "A path of sighs through the emotions of life. A tribute to the art and her disarming beauty." A short video by Rino Stefano Tagliafierro. [Via, possibly nsfw]
David Briggs' The Dimensions of Colour, a comprehensive online explanation of traditional (what you've probably been taught) and modern colour theory, and its applications to visual art. Invaluable for artists and non-artists alike. (The answer: probably some kind of brown. Yes, your kindergarten teachers fed you lies.)
Tim's Vermeer - how a Texas inventor might have reconstructed the methods used by Dutch baroque painter Johannes Vermeer. [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.
Prosperous Suzhou (20,353 × 546 pixel JPEG) is a 1757 scroll painting by Xu Yang illustrating the everyday life of the city, including more than 4,600 figures and 400 boats. It combines Western perspective with traditional Chinese style, and is currently on display at the Masterpieces of Chinese Painting exhibition at the London V&A.
The Eidophusikon, an early form of motion picture, is a theatrical technology developed by fine art painter and theatrical set designer Philip de Loutherbourg using sound, colored filters, mechanical works, light from newly invented Argand lamps, mirrors and more . It was first exhibited at his home in 1781, featuring five scenes of land and seascape. In recent years, recognition of this as an early chapter in cinema history has prompted several institutions to recreate the experience. Among the most successful is the 2005 storm at sea depicted in Eidophusikon Reimagined by the Australian National University.
Denis Forkas Kostromitin is a Russian artist that considers himself to be a modern symbolist painter (symbolism mentioned previously). The dark and dreamy quality of his work has lead him to be a frequent collaborator with metal musicians. Here he explains the process that led to the cover of Horseback's Half Blood and recently he was commissioned to create the cover of Polish blackened death metal stalwart, Behemoth's, new album, using lead singer Nergal's own blood.
Combining famous historical paintings with images of 21st century technology, Art X Smart has transported them into another time. [more inside]
It took me nine minutes to notice that the shape of the boy’s ear precisely echoes that of the ruff along the squirrel’s belly—and that Copley was making some kind of connection between the animal and the human body and the sensory capacities of each. It was 21 minutes before I registered the fact that the fingers holding the chain exactly span the diameter of the water glass beneath them. It took a good 45 minutes before I realized that the seemingly random folds and wrinkles in the background curtain are actually perfect copies of the shapes of the boy’s ear and eye, as if Copley had imagined those sensory organs distributing or imprinting themselves on the surface behind him. And so on. What this exercise shows students is that just because you have looked at something doesn’t mean that you have seen it.
Although best known for iconic photographs of his Weimaraner dogs, artist William Wegman is also a painter. While Wegman's combined the two before, recently painting atop commercial travel postcards, he's just published Flo & Wendell, a children's storybook illustrated by dog photos painted over to tell a whimsical tale. Images and review (LA Times); video (YouTube).
Francesco Francavilla is an artist who has been producing minimalist posters for each of the last 8 episodes of Breaking Bad.
In the aftermath of one of the strangest political scandals ever to plague the mayor of a major North American city, Rob Ford oversees the unveiling of a high-profile portrait of himself by a sitting councilor, made at the request of Ford's mother. The artist describes the piece as complex, but a lot remains unsaid regarding the weight Ford's personality carries into the realm of portrait.