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Posts tagged art

Nate:
a Cool Hunting post by Doug Black, 5 September 2008

Robert Blackson is a trailblazer in the nascent field of conceptual scent art. He recently curated an exhibition at the Reg Vardy Gallery in Sunderland, England, that took viewers through fourteen significant points in time and space using only the olfactory sense.

The concept, according to Blackson, came from reading Eric Schlosser’s “Fast Food Nation.” The book mentions how food corporations can use artificial chemicals to engineer smells and tastes that replicate virtually any substance. With this in mind, Blackson tasked perfumers, chemists, botanists and even a NASA scientist to engineer smells that most humans might never experience. Scents created include everything from long extinct plants to the fragrance immediately following an atomic bomb explosion. They even recreated the smell of the surface of the Sun, which scientists approximated by using the scents of seven earth metals heated to their melting point.

If There Ever Was” is the companion book to the art exhibit. It features paper inserts that correspond to the exhibit smells, all manifested through scratch-and-sniff technology. That way, you can smell the putrid odor of Russian gym socks on the Mir space station without having to leave the comfort of your home. “If There Ever Was” costs $25 in the Cornerhouse store.

via Fed By Birds

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from "Super Kingdom," by London Fieldworks (Bruce Gilchrist and Jo Joelson), opened 21 September 2008 at Stour Valley Arts in Kent, England :: via designboom
Nate:
Andy:
from "The End of Art," by Roger Kimball, First Things, June/July 2008 :: via Arts and Letters Daily

Fra Angelico, a deeply religious painter, was a great artist, but then so was Titian, a conspicuously worldly one. Bach was a pious soul and was possibly the greatest composer who ever lived, but what about Beethoven? If he was religious it was in a vastly different sense. Jane Austen was conventionally religious in her personal life, but her novels achieve greatness through their secular wit and wisdom. Art and ­ religion are both eulogistic words: Calling something a work of art endows it with a nimbus of value; the same is true of religious. But is that the same sort of value?

The twentieth-century Welsh Catholic poet David Jones had it right when he suggested that “no integrated, widespread, religious art, properly so-called, can be looked for outside enormous changes in the character and orientation and nature of our civilization”—changes, I think, that would be deeply at odds with our commitment to liberal democracy. Jones agrees that it would be nice if “the best of man’s creative powers” were “at the direct service of the sanctuary.” But that can happen only “if the epoch itself is characterized by those qualities.” It is not, he goes on to note, a matter of will: What is possible to the artist in the way of creating religious art “has little or nothing to do with the will or wishes of this or that artist.” Be a painter ever so pious, he cannot “change himself into an artist of some other culture-sequence.” Some things were possible in the Middle Ages that are not possible today.

The real threat to the arts, Jones thought, was the modern world’s increasing submission to technocracy, to a thoroughly instrumental view of life that had no room for what Jones called the intransitive—for the freedom and disinterestedness traditionally thought the province of religious experience, on the one hand, and aesthetic experience, on the other.

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A page from the "Nepal Horse Book," date unspecified, from the Oriental art collection of Copenhagen's Royal Library :: via BibliOdyssey
Nate:
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via FFFFOUND!
Nate:
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"Portrait of Andries Stilte II" (2006), oil on canvas, 96 x 72 in., by Kehinde Wiley, at the Columbus Museum of Art
Nate:
Nate:
from "Boston's newest classrooms: schoolyards," by Stacy Teicher Khadroo, Christian Science Monitor, 20 August 2008

Since 1995, Boston has reconstructed 71 schoolyards, covering 125 acres and serving more than 25,000 children a day, Mr. Comart says. The yearly capital investment is about $1.2 million from the city and $600,000 from the Funders Collaborative, which also gives about $450,000 for operating expenses and professional development for teachers. By 2010, 87 yards should be complete, he says, and 27 will include outdoor classrooms. The hope now is to complete the 10 remaining elementary- and middle-school yards.

The teachers on hand during the tour made it easy for visitors to imagine children’s delight in the outdoor classroom at the William Monroe Trotter Elementary School in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood. Third-grade teacher Christine Whittemore’s face lit up as she explained the concept of the garden she stood in: Corn, beans, and squash all grow in one plot – a “three sisters” garden like the kind the Wampanoag Indians showed to the Pilgrims. It ties in well with social studies lessons, she said.

The area used to be a vacant, trashy lot and now nurtures plants that attract butterflies. A square wooden pole sports a weather vane and thermometers, so students can correlate temperature to where the sun is.

“[The kids] sort of recognize this as kind of a special place. They’re quieter, more orderly,” Ms. Whittemore said.

The only really effective apologia for Christianity comes down to two arguments, namely the saints the Church has produced and the art which has grown in her womb. Better witness is borne to the Lord by the splendor of holiness and art which have arisen in the community of believers than by the clever excuses which apologetics has come up with to justify the dark sides which, sadly, are so frequent in the Church’s human history.

—Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger

We, holding Art in our hands, confidently consider ourselves to be its masters; boldly we direct it, we renew, reform and manifest it; we sell it for money, use it to please those in power; turn to it at one moment for amusement — right down to popular songs and night-clubs, and at another — grabbing the nearest weapon, cork or cudgel — for the passing needs of politics and for narrow-minded social ends. But art is not defiled by our efforts, neither does it thereby depart from its true nature, but on each occasion and in each application it gives to us a part of its secret inner light.

—Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Nobel Lecture, 1970

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"Moses Writing in Eden," from the Leo Bible (the earliest surviving illustrated Byzantine Bible), c.940
Nate:
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from The Prayer Book of Claude de France, illuminated pocket manuscript, c.1517, at The Morgan Library & Museum, New York City :: via BibliOdyssey
Nate:
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from "Tunnel of Beauty," by Jeff Shinabarger, 21 July 2008
Andy:
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Mona Lisa Fever”, by Rehan Shaikh, 2008 :: via FILE Magazine
Nate:
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Panel 3, from "The Migration Series", paintings by Jacob Lawrence, on exhibition at the Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. :: via Dayo Olopade, TheRoot.com
Andy:
Nate:

To the strains of modern opera, he used cutting-edge technical trickery to make Leonardo’s Christ appear like a three-dimensional hologram while a radiant sun rose and fell over his head. He turned the original colourful image red, grey and black before the artist’s gentle brush strokes were replaced with a chalk outline of the 13 figures, as if Leonardo had drawn a crime scene. Dawn broke, dusk fell and by the end the disciples had been dramatically cast into the shadow of prison-like bars.

To at least one of the world’s experts on Da Vinci, Greenaway’s work amounted to cultural vandalism. But to others it may have saved The Last Supper’s reputation from The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown’s blockbuster novel, which frustrated many experts by reducing the painting’s hidden meanings to a plot device.

“It has reconsecrated the painting after Dan Brown deconsecrated it,” said Vittorio Sgarbi, a leading art critic and former head of arts for the Milan local government.

 

"Dancing (2008)", from Where the Hell is Matt?, where you can also watch the 2006 and 2005 versions of Matt's one-man global dance craze :: via David Taylor
Andy:
Andy:

[The cave at] Chauvet was a bombshell. . . . Its earliest paintings are at least thirty-two thousand years old, yet they are just as sophisticated as much later compositions. What emerged with that revelation was an image of Paleolithic artists transmitting their techniques from generation to generation for twenty-five millennia with almost no innovation or revolt. A profound conservatism in art, [author George] Curtis notes, is one of the hallmarks of a “classical civilization.” For the conventions of cave painting to have endured four times as long as recorded history, the culture it served, he concludes, must have been “deeply satisfying”—and stable to a degree it is hard for modern humans to imagine.

Nate:
from the All Known Metal Bands book site



The 300 page book All Known Metal Bands is a simple listing of every heavy metal band name that exists or has ever existed, in every genre, that I could find, in what turned out to be a year and a half of research. Where a name was used by more than one band, the name is listed once for each band. The pages are black, the type is silver, and it will make you want to do naughty things. Of the 51,000 bands listed, the most commonly used name is Legion. There are 24 bands named Legion. There are 20 bands named Genocide, and 20 called Requiem. There are 2 called Cryptic Stench, but there is only one Black Darkness.

Nate:
a Tomorrow Museum post by Joanne, 18 June 2008

NYT reports on an NEA census: “Among artists under 35, writers are the only group in which 80 percent or more are non-Hispanic white.”  Tayari Jones responds, “A question worth thinking about is whether this means times are good or hard for writers of color. On the one hand being so darn rare makes us attractive, or at least it does, theoretically. But on the other hand, the scarcity suggests steep challenges.”