[web] The Most Interesting Curator on the Internet Knows Exactly What You Want to See … more on Archillect … ‘This ever-evolving process has taken both Archillect and Pak on some unexpected detours away from their original mission. As she’s evolved and adapted to her audience, her taste has diverged quite a lot from that of her creator. Early in the project, Pak steered her towards more high-brow visual art, but over the past few months has been allowing her more free rein. “It’s not reflecting my taste anymore,” Pak says. “I’d say 60 percent of the things [she posts] are not things that I would like and share, but it’s still fun to see that they are doing better than the things I would share.” There’s a tinge of annoyance to Pak’s voice when he says this last part, as if he knows that Archillect is better at running herself than he or any other human ever could be.’
[docu] Is the Art World Responsible for Trump? Filmmaker Adam Curtis on Why Self-Expression Is Tearing Society Apart … another interview with BBC documentary maker Adam Curtis … ‘I believe you can be clever whilst also being very clear and imaginative for ordinary people. You can do it by being funny sometimes, by using music that people like, and by writing very simply and very clearly. But you can’t make ordinary people out to be chumps—I come from a working class community, and I know they’re really clever. They may feel completely isolated and fed up and pissed off, but they’re not stupid. They’re angry, and they were given a giant, big button that said “Fuck off” on it, and they pressed it. And I think the same thing happened in the Midwest, in your country. They didn’t believe Trump’s stories, they were just given this button—and they pressed it.’
‘At 12:18 a.m. Greenwich Mean Time on Aug. 2, 1971, Commander David Scott of Apollo 15 placed a 3 1/2-inch-tall aluminum sculpture onto the dusty surface of a small crater near his parked lunar rover. At that moment the moon transformed from an airless ball of rock into the largest exhibition space in the known universe. Scott regarded the moment as tribute to the heroic astronauts and cosmonauts who had given their lives in the space race. Van Hoeydonck was thrilled that his art was pointing the way to a human destiny beyond Earth and expected that he would soon be “bigger than Picasso.”
In reality, van Hoeydonck’s lunar sculpture, called Fallen Astronaut, inspired not celebration but scandal. Within three years, Waddell’s gallery had gone bankrupt. Scott was hounded by a congressional investigation and left NASA on shaky terms. Van Hoeydonck, accused of profiteering from the public space program, retreated to a modest career in his native Belgium. Now both in their 80s, Scott and van Hoeydonck still see themselves unfairly maligned in blogs and Wikipedia pages—to the extent that Fallen Astronaut is remembered at all.’
Much as I admire Steve Bell’s caricatures of George W. Bush as a dung-flinging chimpanzee, it’s hard to imagine them landing the former president in The Hague. Most daily editorial cartoonists in the United States produce work about as incisive as a prime-time sitcom, and the rest are consigned to niche markets where they preach to their demographic choirs. I have to wonder whether any of my colleagues felt the same queasy mix of emotions I did on hearing about the assassinations in Paris: beneath the outrage, sorrow and solidarity, a small, irrational twinge of guilt that we’re not doing anything worth shooting us over.
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. likened the cumulative firepower of all the art and literature directed against the Vietnam War to “the explosive force of a very large banana-cream pie — a pie two meters in diameter, 20 centimeters thick, and dropped from a height of 10 meters or more.” A lot of artists in America tend to be self-deprecating futilitarians, because we’ve grown up in a culture in which art doesn’t matter except, occasionally, as a high-end investment. When art has been controversial here it’s most often been because it’s deemed obscene. (Sex is our tawdry Muhammad, the thing that cannot be depicted.) But it’s hard to think of a time in our recent history when art gave any cause for alarm to anyone in power.
[art] Michelangelo’s David Correctly Oriented … a different way of viewing Michelangelo’s masterpiece … ‘Everyone has seen photos of Michelangelo’s David, but unfortunately the sculpture is invariably shown from the side view, rather than from the front. The image on the the right is an actual frontal view of David, as he coolly yet menacingly awaits Goliath, his sling at the ready over his shoulder and his face full of disdain. With this lighting, he actually appears to be sneering at the giant. The message of the sculpture is clearly, “You [Goliath, and by extension, Caesar Borgia and any other potential enemy of the Florentine Republic] are dead meat!” No living person has ever seen or photographed this primary view of the world’s most famous sculpture.’ [via As Above]
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April 26, 2014
[tech] Previously Unknown Andy Warhol Works Discovered on Floppy Disks from 1985 … another story of digital archeology … ‘It was not known in advance whether any of Warhol’s imagery existed on the floppy disks—nearly all of which were system and application diskettes onto which, the team later discovered, Warhol had saved his own data. Reviewing the disks’ directory listings, the team’s initial excitement on seeing promising filenames like “campbells.pic” and “marilyn1.pic” quickly turned to dismay, when it emerged that the files were stored in a completely unknown file format, unrecognized by any utility. Soon afterwards, however, the Club’s forensics experts had reverse-engineered the unfamiliar format, unveiling 28 never-before-seen digital images that were judged to be in Warhol’s style by the AWM’s experts. At least eleven of these images featured Warhol’s signature.’
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July 11, 2012
[art] Disassembly … a fascinating pictures series of disassembled old machines with their parts laid out in a forensic fashion ..
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July 9, 2012
[movies] Real Hollywood Thriller: Who Stole Jaws? … the fascinating story behind the image on the book and film cover to Jaws … ‘It was [Roger] Kastel’s execution that made the image an instant icon. “I think Kastel’s poster, like much of the best poster art of its era, tells the movie’s story instantly while making you want to learn more,” says Tom Whalen, who has made numerous second-generation, or tribute, movie posters for an Austin, Texas, publisher called Mondo. Whalen also gives props to the unnamed graphic artists at Universal who placed Kastel’s image amid the typography required to promote a movie. “The cool blue water situated opposite the blood red title just seals the deal,” he says.’ [via Boing Boing]
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May 7, 2012
[japan] Tetrapod beaches of Japan … I’d never heard of Tetrapods – and this article includes some evocative photos of them on the Japanese shore … ‘Hit the beach anywhere in Japan, and you are likely to see endless piles of tetrapods — enormous four-legged concrete structures intended to prevent coastal erosion. By some estimates, more than 50% of Japan’s 35,000-kilometer (22,000-mi) coastline has been altered with tetrapods and other forms of concrete.’ [via As Above]
ART is for weeds and sissies whose mater hav said Take care of my dear little Cedric, he is delicate you kno and cannot stand a foopball to the head. Whenever anebode mention Art they all sa gosh mikelangelo leenardo wot magnificent simetry of line. Shurely the very pinnackle of western civilisation etc.etc. Pass me my oils Molesworth that I may paint my masterpeece. The headmaster sa gosh cor is that the medeechi venus hem-hem a grate work so true to life reminds me of young mrs filips enuff said.
Molesworth sa on the contry the most beatiful form in art is a Ronald Searle GURL from St Trinian’s in a tunick with black suspenders and armed with a hockey stick to beat the daylites out of another gurl or maybe just a teacher chortle chortle.
[art] The Do It Yourself Doodle Project … ‘A friend of mine gave me this old novelty doodle pad from the sixties. It consisted of 38 sheets that were blank except for some text and the woman with missing parts. I’ve decided to doodle on all of them.’
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February 11, 2010
[art] dvdp … a tumblr of stunning images, animated GIFs and optical illusions.
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February 22, 2009
[smile] A design for Life … Jon Savage on the Smiley Face symbol … ‘It may seem weird that such a bland symbol should be used to convey emotion, in such a way that creates as much distance as real empathy. But then there is something powerfully archetypal about an image of a happy face that resembles the sun. Infantilisation or greater communication, joy or horror: the Smiley can encompass everything.’
[art] The Cat Pictures of Louis Wain — some examples of the Cat pictures of Louis Wain – a famous Victorian artist and schizophrenic. ‘…a foundation was set up for him by his peers (including the famous H.G. Wells) which enabled Wain to spend the last years of his life in comfort in private asylums in Southwark and Napsbury, where he continued to paint and draw his cats. Wain allows us a unique insight into the delusions and course of illness in a late onset schizophrenic.’
[comics] Deconstructing Roy Lichtenstein — web page with comparisons between Lictenstein’s work and the original comic images. Dave Gibbons on Roy Lichtenstein: ‘…Lichtenstein’s copies of the work of Irv Novick and Russ Heath are flat, uncomprehending tracings of quite sophisticated images … the original artists have translated reality into clear, effective compositions using economical and spirited linework.’
[art] Disinformation wonders if Jackson Pollock was a stooge of the CIA… ‘Since there was no political content, no theme to the work, in fact, there was often nothing at all but the most self-obsessed swirls in Pollock’s huge canvases, his art was easily commandeered and made a weapon. Stalin could hug as many children and lead as many peasants to the wheat fields in an evil Norman Rockwell universe as he liked, Pollock’s empty confusion spoke to the people of a shattered Europe, the wizards of America’s corporate towers and their brainwashed suburban peasants. Behind the mess and splashes of paint, there was something scary and profound enough to be real.’
[news] Michelangelo’s David has a squint!The trick of perspective – which has taken 500 years to rumble – was a typical stroke of Michelangelo genius, according to Marc Levoy, the computer scientist from Stanford University, California, who made the discovery. He suspects it went unnoticed for so long because David’s more obvious attribute – his genitalia – blinded successive generations to the “flaw”.