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"There are two things in the painter, the eye and the mind; each of them should aid the other." - Paul Cezanne

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Album cover homage to Miles Davis?

November 19th, 2013

I turned on Spotify so I could listen to some music while I work, and was given the suggestion to try out “Big Sam’s Funky Nation.” As soon as I keyed up the first album on the list, “Funky Donkey,” from 2012, I saw the album cover and my thoughts went directly to “it looks like a visual homage to Miles Davis’s ‘On the Corner’ album cover.” At any rate, Big Sam definitely does rule over a Funky Nation … good stuff!

By the way, have you seen our feature on album cover art for Miles Davis albums?

Big Sam's Funky Nation and Miles Davis On The Corner


A slogan for the street artist

November 17th, 2013

I saw this sticker art graffiti in Upper Montclair, NJ today – it would seem to be an appropriate slogan for a street artist …

sticker art graffiti Upper Montclair NJ


Painting with glue

November 15th, 2013

How come America doesn’t have tv shows like this? A guy with a black hat and black clothes approaches a black canvas, and starts spreading glue all over it. The disco music is pumping, and 4 people stand and sit around watching him, saying nothing. Near the climactic finish, he steps back, tosses some glitter at the canvas, and voilà! It’s a portrait of the woman who was watching! No-dialogue action at its best. Art by Michael Raivard.


Project Rhythm (Reaching Youth Through Music)

November 15th, 2013

Project Rhythm (Reaching Youth Through Music) is a New York City-based 501c3 nonprofit organization that uses music as an educational tool to improve the social and emotional, cognitive, school performance and job readiness of youth who are poor in means, but rich in potential. Project Rhythm is committed to using music as a way to educate and prepare youth to become beneficial contributors in society.

If you want a simple example of how they are changing lives with their program, just watch the video below. And if you agree that what they’re doing has great value, please consider their Indiegogo campaign, as they are trying to raise funds to reach even more kids (they grew from working with 120 to over 500 kids in one year!).


Street art by Ador and Sémor

November 15th, 2013

I received an e-mail today from a French artist named Ador who explained: “I travel often and when I can, and I paint for 8 years. I work more and more with my friend Sémor, we are coming back from China.” And then he included some pictures, which really struck me as some of the more-original and creative art I’ve seen in a long time. I’d like to learn more about these artists, and where exactly in China they made these paintings and the story behind their trip. But while I’m trying to get some more info to share, I have to post a couple pictures to show you what I’m talking about. For more pictures from this trip to China, check out Ador’s web page here.

street art murals by ADOR and Semor

street art mural by ADOR and Semor


Christopher Wool at the Guggenheim

November 14th, 2013

I used to see Christopher Wool’s paintings in gallery shows quite often during the 1990’s, and the top two paintings shown below fit into the general style that I was used to seeing by him. But a recent promo e-mail from the Guggenheim for his current show there (October 25, 2013–January 22, 2014) revealed a number of paintings in styles that show he’s been moving in different directions in the past decade or so. The bottom two are examples of these newer paintings, with one of the more-surprising things being that he’s adding color after a long time of only making black and white work. From what I understand, his work fills the complete rotunda as well as a side gallery at the Guggenheim, so it’s obviously a major retrospective, and one that I look forward to seeing.

retrospective of art by Christopher Wool at the Guggenheim


Sushi rolls based on famous works of art

November 13th, 2013

Check out these sushi rolls by Takayo Kiyota – her own interpretations of Edvard Munch’s “Scream” and Vermeer’s “Girl with a Pearl Earring.” But if you don’t know how sushi rolls are made, then you’ll learn that it’s trickier than one might imagine to make these images: makizushi, or “rolled sushi,” is a cylindrical roll of sushi generally wrapped in seaweed. The ingredients are placed on rice and the chef will use a bamboo mat to help roll it out. The makizushi is then cut into 6 or 8 pieces, revealing the ingredients. So since she is building up the images as a mass, she doesn’t really know if she got the image right until the roll is finished and sliced (see middle bottom picture below) … amazing!

sushi based on Munch's Scream and Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring


The Picasso Mystery or the Not Picasso Mystery, but fun questions to ask

November 13th, 2013

I had an unusual e-mail arrive the other day, with the subject line (copied exactly as-is): “hi. this is PBLO PICASSO s painting or not? who drew this painting?” One look at the painting, and of course my 99.9% certain answer is absolutely not, because I’ve never seen any Picasso painting that even looks remotely like this style of painting.

But then the 2nd picture sent showing a close up of the signature makes it somewhat interesting … when compared to 2 examples of known Picasso signatures, it doesn’t really resemble it, and it doesn’t have the usual line drawn underneath the name. But on the flip side, the “P-i-c” letters are similar in style, but then flipping back to the other side, it appears that there’s a “C” to the left of the “P” – is that what it looks like to you? I haven’t seen any Picasso signatures with a first initial, and obviously “C” would not have been noted had the painting actually been by Pablo Picasso.

But, Pablo did have a son named Claude, could this be a painting by Claude Picasso? A Google search doesn’t bring up any results for whether Claude ever did any painting at all, so I’m kind of doubting that too. There’s always the possibility that someone was trying to forge a Picasso signature, but they obviously didn’t do enough research to know that the painting itself wouldn’t easily convince anyone that it was a Picasso.

I’m still convinced that it’s not a Picasso, but some of these questions does make it kind of fun to wonder what the true story is.

Is this a Picasso painting?  Probably not, but the signature is similar


PINTA New York: The Modern and Comtemporary Latin American Art Show

November 10th, 2013

I thought I had my finger on the pulse of art fairs in NYC, but here’s one that’s new to me, despite being around (I’ve since learned) since 2007 … PINTA New York, the Modern and Contemporary Latin American Art Show, which runs from November 14th – 17th at 82 Mercer Street in NYC. The art fair features select exhibitors invited to present the best Modern and Contemporary art from Latin America, Spain, and Portugal.

PINTA New York - Latin American Art Fair

The timing of the PINTA art fair coincides with the Contemporary and Latin American art auctions at Christie’s and Sotheby’s, so it has become an annual, must-see event for collectors, museums, and curators. PINTA NY includes the participation of fifty prominent galleries to exhibit museum-quality works of abstract, concrete, neo-concrete, kinetic, and conceptual art, as well as other contemporary art movements.

One of the exhibitors at the fair will be Museo Gurvich, which is located in Montevideo (Uruguay), created to promote the work and life of Uruguayan artist José Gurvich, whose painting titled La creación from 1968 is pictured below. I’m going to try my best to get into NYC and see this show, so hopefully some further coverage will be coming.

The Creation, a painting by South American artist Jose Gurvich


Putting used Metrocards to good use: art by Juan Carlos Pinto

November 9th, 2013

I really like these images of Jean-Michel Basquiat, made from used NYC Metrocards and subway maps by the artist Juan Carlos Pinto. To see more of his Metrocard art, check out his website here. And if you haven’t seen it yet, check out our coverage of a gallery exhibition which was made up entirely of Metrocard art here.

art by Juan Carlos Pinto


Vincent Van Gogh at Artsology Artsology offers free online games about the arts, and delivers investigations into topics in the visual arts, music, and literature. Artsology is a good resource for fun learning about the arts for people of all ages and is enjoyed by students, homeschoolers, and adults. Follow us on Twitter or become a fan of our Facebook page. Pablo Picasso paintings at Artsology

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