Post #969 • March 9, 2007, 10:24 AM • 35 Comments
In a brilliant piece of art historical detective work, two Dutch academics have solved the puzzle of Jan Steen's 1655 painting The Burgomaster of Delft and His Daughter. The work does not depict a burgomaster, but the merchant who supplied grain for the artist's brewery. We also now know about a bitter marital row which lay behind the apparently placid figures of the father and his daughter.
Aspiring superhero comic artists: Heed the sad tale of Greg Land, and beware the Curse of Pornface. David Thompson also links to the ultimate in vanity publishing, and generally has just been a damn good read lately.
Geoff has the numbers on the ICA.
Tyler scores some primary source material on the turf wars at Maastricht.
Quote of the week:
Doug Marlette: I was a tool of Satan.
Political cartoonists daily push the limits of free speech. They were once the embodiment of journalism's independent voice. Today they are as endangered a species as bald eagles. The professional troublemaker has become a luxury that offends the bottom-line sensibilities of corporate journalism. Twenty years ago, there were two hundred of us working on daily newspapers. Now there are only ninety. (Reddit)
[Dr. Bill] Lydiatt enlisted two professional observers—Scottish artist Mark Gilbert and former U.S. poet laureate Ted Kooser—for a pilot program aimed at teaching students observation skills that usually come from years of medical experience. The three-session seminar included drawing demonstrations and a writing activity that called for students to dissect a green pepper.
Here is a tick-list of criteria for commercial success: a reasonably prolific oeuvre (beans or Blochs, dealers need a constant flow of stock); membership of an art movement; recognition in art history; artwork in public galleries; backing from powerful collectors such as Charles Saatchi. One might add: high quality art. But the market does not judge art; it merely rides the reputation merry-go-round. (AJ)