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PROFESSIONAL ARTIST (FORMERLY ART CALENDAR)
Welcome to the first issue of Professional Artist! We’ve specifically tailored this issue to those of you who want to take your art career to the next level, with the ultimate goal of envisioning a plan that will help you achieve creative and financial independence.
I have taken Art Calendar for years. This overhaul is welcome with more useful information and resources.
Just as visual artists understand the relationship between positive and negative space in their work, France’s master filmmaker Henri-Georges Clouzot (Diabolique) understood–and set about demonstrating via The Mystery of Picasso–the relationship between creation and destruction in the artistic process. In 1955, Clouzot teamed with his friend Pablo Picasso to capture as many aspects of the brilliant painter’s working methods as possible. Clouzot innovatively placed the camera in front of Picasso while the latter worked, thus capturing astonishing reverse images of brush strokes and “bleeding” inks in volatile motion. The result is that Clouzot’s film–the screen, the frame–become Picasso’s canvas, and we find ourselves inside his prodigious genius as works of beauty spontaneously burst forth and are instantly crushed beneath the weight of new images, new ideas. A viewer would be forgiven if, more than once, he felt like screaming at such nonchalant carnage. –Tom Keogh
Like a matador confronting a bull, the artist approaches his easel. As he wields his brush, the painting dances into being before our eyes. Pablo Picasso, the most influential artist of the 20th century, is making art, and famous French director Henri-Georges Clouzot (Diabolique, The Wages of Fear) is making a movie. This entirely new kind of art documentary captures the moment and the mystery of creativity; for the film, the master created 20 artworks, ranging from playful black-and-white sketches to widescreen color paintings. Using inks that bled through the paper, Picasso rapidly created fanciful drawings that Clouzot was able to film from the reverse side, capturing their creation in real time. When the artist decided to paint in oils, the filmmaker switched to color film and employed the magic of stop-motion animation. By contract, almost all of these paintings were destroyed when the film was completed. Unavailable for more than a decade, “The Mystery of Picasso” is exhilarating, mesmerizing, and unforgettable; it is simply one of the greatest documentaries on art ever made. The French government agrees; in 1984 it declared the film a national treasure.
Love viewing drawings as they are often the precursor to the artist’s final work. Many years ago I saw a film about Picasso just drawing. It was shown on television. It was fascinating to see a master of his caliber in-process.
Master Drawings New York 2011 consists of roughly two dozen drawing exhibitions in galleries mostly on or near Madison Avenue. The exhibitions, organized by local and European dealers, can all be seen through Saturday and longer in some cases.
“These shows amount to a geographically dispersed art fair while offering total immersion in the most intimate of art mediums, presented in some of the city’s coziest gallery spaces,” Roberta Smith writes.
Left, “Triumph of Amphitrite,” a drawing by Pierre Brebiette estimated to be from the 1630s, at the Alexander Gallery.
The river flows on to its goal….
Here is a fine reading of Trees from Hermann Hesse’s publication, Wandering, and a small excerpt from the ending of Hesse’s well known book, Siddhartha. Read printed version of Trees on Natural Thinker
Main site: http://www.naturalthinker.net/
I first heard John McLaughlin radical fusion guitar work with the great one, Santana on Love, Devotion, Surrender. It is not for the weak. It will challenge your musicality even if you are a heavy rock guitar lover.
then with Jeff Beck……
Now, John takes on a new project inspired by John Coltrane and his work Love Supreme. NPR story: John McLaughlin: On Coltrane And Spirituality In Music
Guitarist John McLaughlin never saw saxophonist John Coltrane perform. The jazz icon died in 1967, before McLaughlin had the chance. But Coltrane’s historic 1965 album A Love Supreme has inspired every twist and turn of McLaughlin’s career since he first heard it.
“It took me, actually, a year of listening to that record almost every day to finally hear what [Coltrane] was doing musically,” McLaughlin says. “The least I can say is that he was very advanced, as a human being and a musician.
What value is our national heritage? When is it ok to take historical items and sell them off, essentially, commoditizing them? What is our personal responsibility to protect such items from auction and thus protect our heritage? Seems these days everything is up for sale. And respect for our country, for its history and heritage, has waned in certain areas. It is a very disturbing trend. Typically public and academic libraries have been the repositories for historical ephemera, important documents, private and public papers, journals, diaries, and books. I have always wanted to visit certain libraries to view letters by Virginia Woolf or Henry David Thoreau. Or perhaps see Audubon’s, Birds of America. Lucky for us, the Smithsonian has an original copy of the worlds most expensive book. An original copy of John Audubon’s, Birds of America, recently sold for $11.5 million to a private party. According to the WSJ who wrote an extensive article on the book….”Currently, only 11 of the roughly 200 original “Birds of America” sets are in private hands. About 100 belong to institutions. The rest have been destroyed, lost, or broken up and sold as individual prints.”
To be sure, private collectors have for eons spent money on things they covet – for pride of ownership, love of beauty, or both. The question becomes when an item has value that goes beyond its intrinsic value or as an object of art, and reflects a whole country and its history – should we draw the line at putting these items up for sale? Is a letter to Lincoln belong to the nation, or relegated as a personal asset? How about our flag?
That was what one woman asked as director of a small library in Little Falls, NY, when two such items were auctioned off.
A 13-star flag and an invitation to Abraham Lincoln’s inaugural ball should never have been put up for auction, argued the director, Marietta Phillips. And she was also bothered, she said, that trustees sometimes took artifacts home, for good reason, perhaps, but without anyone’s bothering to note it on her sign-out sheet at the circulation desk.
“You can’t get your history back,” she said. “People don’t realize: once it’s gone, it’s gone.”
“Apparently, the board of trustees decided these items were not historically significant to the area and voted to have them sold at auction,” she wrote. “I have resigned from my position and accept the responsibility for the significant loss of historical material.”
Deaccessioning is the kind of word that makes eyes glaze over and can seem to be the preserve of dusty intellectuals and large museums. But it’s just a fancy name for the sale or giving away of art and artifacts by museums and other cultural organizations, and the dust-up here in this city of about 5,000 demonstrates that such debates occur in all kinds of places, big and small, where people feel protective about materials in their care.
I urge you to read the rest of the story for it is an important one. The commodification of culture is something we need to examine as to its real cost to our heritage, for as Ms Phillips said, once an item is gone, it’s gone. There has been numerous stories this year about the selling off of art-assets at museums and libraries due to the economic downturn. This is precisely the time we should be holding onto these most valuable of items for we need them to remind us of who we are as a nation, united in our cause and our Constitution. Our arts & letters are not just for us, or for one person, they are for all of us, for our children, and for future generations to enjoy and inspire anew that which is America.