November 4, 2021
[art] Jacksonpollock.org … Waste some time creating your own Jackson Pollock painting within your web browser.
November 4, 2021
[art] Jacksonpollock.org … Waste some time creating your own Jackson Pollock painting within your web browser.
September 24, 2021
[funny] Ceci n’est pas une pipe …
September 29, 2020
[london] A Jack the Ripper mural – are you serious? How the Eastenders hit back … A look at why a Jack the Ripper mural got painted over in Whitechapel. ‘The Duke of Wellington had offered the wall as a “blank canvas” for Zabou – a French-born, London-based street artist – and her spray cans. It’s just a few metres away from a barber called Jack the Clipper, and not too much of a distance from Jack the Chipper. Pre-Covid, there were constant Jack the Ripper tours here, with large groups traipsing round pavements led by theatrical guides acting out the gory details of the murders, stopping at sites where the mutilated bodies of the women were found, at pubs where they drank, flop-houses where they stayed when they could afford it. There’s even a Jack the Ripper museum, which opened in spite of much local protest.’
June 19, 2019
[twitter] Cold War Steve: satire is my antidote to a scary world… Profile of the Twitter artist and satirist. ‘Over the years, depression and alcoholism took a hold, and in 2016 he had a “complete breakdown” and attempted suicide. After a period in hospital, he began to make collages on his phone and sharing them on Twitter. “It was a coping mechanism. If I was creating things, I could focus my mind on that rather than crashing anxiety attacks.” Cold War Steve – a series of images of Phil Mitchell/Steve McFadden superimposed into cold war scenes – “definitely helped my recovery”. He has not touched alcohol for more than three years.’
June 26, 2018
[rorschach] The Eye of the Beholder … A look at the history, art and theories behind Rorschach’s inkblots. ‘The science of the Rorschach, to the extent that one can refer to it as a science, is a science of artistic response as the key to personality.’
June 22, 2018
[art] How to spot a perfect fake: the world’s top art forgery detective … Fascinating look at using forensics to find forged art. ‘Like criminals of every stripe, modern forgers have kept easy pace with the techniques that attempt to trap them. The mismatch between the purported age of a painting and the true age of its ingredients is the workhorse of Martin’s technique. So forgers have grown more rigorous in their harvesting of materials, taking the trouble, for instance, to source wooden panels from furniture they know is dateable to the year of the fake they are creating. (The trick isn’t wholly new; Terenzio da Urbino, a 17th-century conman, scrabbled around for filthy old canvases and frames, cleaned them up, and turned them into “Raphaels”.) Forgers also test their own fakes to ensure they’ll pass. Wolfgang Beltracchi, a German artist who served three years in prison for forging paintings worth $45m, surveyed the chemical elements in his works by running them under X-ray fluorescence guns – the same handheld devices, resembling Star Trek phasers, that many art fairs now train upon their exhibits.’
March 28, 2018
March 8, 2018
[mario] Mario on shrooms … Running a Conway’s Game of Life simulation on Mario.
June 23, 2017
[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.’
June 22, 2017
December 14, 2016
[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.’
August 11, 2015
[space] The Sculpture on the Moon… fascinating story of the only work of art on the Moon…
‘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.”
January 21, 2015
[funny] Artist Always Carries Around Sketchbook In Case He Feels Like Making Someone Uncomfortable … ‘You never know when you’ll catch a glimpse of some random person and feel that sudden urge to sketch them without their permission as they fidget under your gaze…’
January 16, 2015
[charlie_hebdo] When Art Is Dangerous (or Not) … Tim Kreider On Charlie Hebdo …
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.
June 8, 2014
[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]
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.’
January 7, 2013
[funny] The Best Creative Drawings on Fingers …
July 11, 2012
[art] Disassembly … a fascinating pictures series of disassembled old machines with their parts laid out in a forensic fashion ..
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]
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]
February 6, 2012
January 13, 2012
[people] Ronald Searle Obituary written by Nigel Molesworth of St Custard’s …
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.
March 7, 2011
October 3, 2010
[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.’
February 11, 2010
[art] dvdp … a tumblr of stunning images, animated GIFs and optical illusions.
December 29, 2009
February 26, 2009
[mail] Return to sender: Artist puts Royal Mail to the test … nicely done envelopes addressed with artistic brain-teasers …
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.’
December 18, 2005
[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.’
August 11, 2005
June 23, 2005
[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.’
November 29, 2000
[plagiarism] Comparison of Glenn Brown’s The Loves of Shepherds 2000 and Tony Robert’s book cover Double Star.
November 7, 2000
[pictures] An image of Piss Christ — which I’d never seen. I was expecting something a bit more extreme and blasphemous to be honest… ‘Medium: Esoteric medium’
September 27, 2000
[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.’
June 8, 2000
[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”.