Art

The art of Art Young

Saturday, 10 August, 2019

The American artist and activist Arthur Henry Young (1866 – 1943) invented a new way of seeing life, through trees. In his fifties, Young’s imagination seized upon the human-like states created by the silhouettes of trees at night. He began rendering what he imagined in pen and ink — black-and-white drawings full of feeling, mixing the playful and the poignant. No artist had done anything like this before. Young assembled the best of his silhouettes in 1927 in an out-of-print book Trees at Night.

The  End of Summer


Escherville in Barcelona

Monday, 5 August, 2019

The Catalan artist Cinta Vidal Agulló says: “I have been drawing since I was a kid. I studied at Escola Massana in Barcelona and when I was 16, I started working as an apprentice in Taller de Escenografia Castells Planas in St. Agnès de Malanyanes where I learnt from Josep and Jordi Castells to love scenography and the backdrop trade. Regarding illustration, I have never stopped experimenting.”

Escherville


Lisa

Sunday, 21 July, 2019

The artist Gregory Ferrand says, “My paintings explore the disconnection and alienation we often feel despite (and sometimes because of) the close proximity in which we live to one and other.”

Lisa


Putting on the pullover

Saturday, 13 July, 2019

The gifted Mexican artist David Álvarez told the Spanish public radio and television service, RTVE.es, that “cada imagen que ha creado está apoyada en la ‘metáfora para intentar sorprender a quien mira, para que la imagen sobreviva a la primera lectura y que, con suerte, propicie alguna pregunta.'” In other words, each image he creates is supported by the metaphor of trying to surprise the person looking at it so that it survives the first encounter and prompts some questions.

David Álvarez


A drawing a day keeps the doctor away

Tuesday, 9 July, 2019

That’s the philosophy of Mrzyk & Moriceau, both of whom “Vivent et travaillent à MontJean-sur-Loire,” where they draw daily.

Mrzyk & Moriceau


El llano en llamas: The Burning Plain

Thursday, 20 June, 2019

Born in Santiago, Chile, and now living in London, the artist Francisco Rodríguez paints pictures that “describe inner states of consciousness.” His first London gallery exhibition, The Burning Plain, ran from December last year to March this year in the Cooke Latham Gallery, a new space for contemporary art located in a 19th-century warehouse in the city’s Battersea district. As curator and critic Christian Viveros-Fauné wrote, “Rodriguez’s title is a translation of El llano en llamas, Juan Rulfo’s celebrated short story collection. Fittingly, Rulfo’s stories consist entirely of interior monologues spoken by characters that wander bleak, crepuscular landscapes. Like the painter’s figures, they haunt rather than traipse the desolate roads they travel.”

Francisco Rodríguez


Mailer on the money

Tuesday, 11 June, 2019

A parable from The Spooky Art: Thoughts on Writing by the late Norman Mailer:

“The story is that Robert Rauschenberg was once given the gift of a pastel from Willem de Kooning. Rauschenberg, with de Kooning’s permission, erased the pastel and then signed it ‘Pastel by de Kooning Erased by Robert Rauschenberg’, after which he sold it. The story bothered me. There was something profound there, but how to get a hold of it? Then it came to me: Rauschenberg was saying that the artist has the same right to print money as the financier: Money is nothing but authority imprinted upon emptiness.”

Willem de Kooning


Summer No. 2

Monday, 10 June, 2019

Because Summer No. 1 isn’t working out that well… so far. This painting, “Summer No. 2”, is by the artist Zhongwen Hu, who divides her time between China and the USA.

Summer No. 2


See Klimt, not #Klimt, in Vienna, not #Vienna

Sunday, 9 June, 2019

With Barcelona and Dubrovnik and Venice groaning under the weight of overtourism, land-locked Vienna has decided to target the dread hashtag, so beloved of hipster tourists. Following the techlash, now comes the #hashtaglash.

“This is an invitation from Vienna — an ideal place for a little bit of digital detox and for creating moments that you, and you alone, can treasure forever. Because Vienna is far more colorful when not seen through the lens of a smartphone camera.”

Vienna


Banksy in Venice

Friday, 24 May, 2019

“If you don’t own a train company then you go and paint on one instead,” said Banksy in the book Banksy: You Are an Acceptable Level of Threat. The street artist was referring to the British government’s decision to privatize rail networks “to make millions for a cabal of financiers, largely at the taxpayers expense.” Is Banksy a genius? Some have criticized the “obviousness” of his work and accused it of being “anarchy-lite” geared towards a middle-class hipster audience, while the satirist Charlie Brooker wrote in the Guardian that “…his work looks dazzlingly clever to idiots.”

Still, if you don’t own a cruise ship, you go and paint one in Venice instead. Hilarious.


Blue Monday

Monday, 20 May, 2019

Femme assise au fichu (Melancholy Woman) was painted by Pablo Picasso in 1901. The woman here is probably in a cell in the Saint-Lazare women’s prison in Paris, which Picasso visited several times to make drawings for the paintings of his “Blue Period”. With these portraits, Picasso developed a way of representing poverty and isolation at a time when many would have preferred to avert their eyes from such subjects.

Femme assise au fichu can be seen at The Young Picasso — Blue and Rose Periods exhibition until 16 June at the Fondation Beyeler, near Basel in Switzerland.

Picasso