Nu couché by Amedeo Modigliani sold for $157m
May21

Nu couché by Amedeo Modigliani sold for $157m

When even the experts are warning that prices for works of art have become obscene, it is probably time to run a dispassionate eye over the multimillion-dollar frenzy for certain works. Last week, Nu couché (sur le côté gauche) by Amedeo Modigliani sold to an unnamed buyer for $157m, and a new record was set for a David Hockney painting when Pacific Coast Highway and Santa Monica was bought for $28.5m. Clare McAndrew of consultancy Art Economics says: “It’s slightly obscene, isn’t it? When you think of the other artists who could be supported by that money.” She adds that the Modigliani transaction is an illustration of the wealthy elite’s predilection for untamed spending: “To spend money on one thing like that shows ultra wealth gone wild.” The price reached at the Modigliani auction reflects the state of the world economy, says McAndrew, who also compiles an annual study of the global art market with Swiss bank UBS. Stronger growth is fuelling the market, spiralling prices reflect rising rampant and rising inequality across advanced economies. The art market broadly matched the growth rate of the global economy between 2000 and 2017, according to the latest UBS report, with world GDP and wealth both rising last year. Even so, some paintings are so famous they can fetch dizzyingly high prices when the economy is in a downturn. Source: The...

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Painting Michelle Obama brought Amy Sherald fame
May16

Painting Michelle Obama brought Amy Sherald fame

On Thursday evening, the crowd at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis overflowed the room in which Amy Sherald was speaking, so late arrivals watched the artist talk on monitors in the atrium. It’s been a little over three months since Sherald, the artist who painted Michelle Obama’s official portrait for the National Portrait Gallery, became a public figure, admired and reviled according to the usual cleavages of race and culture that divide this country. But for an artist who confesses a “healthy amount of self-doubt,” she is poised, confident and funny when addressing a crowd of people who deeply appreciate what she has done for painting, for women, for the Obamas, and for the cause of African American artists. “I thought I was going to die when I was 39,” the 44-year-old Sherald says. Her life story is part of the bond that ties her to the people in this room, many of whom already know the basic outlines: She was a struggling painter from Columbus, Ga., when she was diagnosed with congestive heart failure at age 31. She lived with the fear of death through a fraught but formative decade that included a lifesaving heart transplant in 2012. She emerged from the nightmare stronger, more confident and with a deeper sense of artistic purpose. In 2016, the Baltimore-based artist won the National Portrait Gallery’s Outwin Boochever competition, and she was then selected by Michelle Obama to paint the first lady’s portrait. “Everybody should be a donor,” she tells the crowd, deflecting their curiosity about her health onto a constructive message about organ donation. She is good at this, inviting people into her story and then steering them to something else — to her art, or the people she has painted, or some sense of constructive social purpose.   Source: The Washington...

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The ‘Beauty of Simple Things’
Apr13

The ‘Beauty of Simple Things’

Lanesboro Arts presents “Beauty in Simple Things,” an exhibition of still-life oil paintings by Patricia Schu. The exhibit opens with an artist reception on Saturday, April 14, 2018, from 6-8 p.m., and runs through June 17, 2018. The reception will include wine and hors d’oeuvres, as well as live music. Always free and open to the public, the Lanesboro Arts Gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday through Saturday through April 28. The gallery will also be open on Sundays from 11-4 p.m. beginning on April 29. A Minnesota native, Schu was born in Minneapolis, where she now lives with her husband Carl and cat Goldie. Her love of art emerged as a child and has continued throughout her adult years. Although many of those years were spent working and raising her three children, she would eventually set aside time for art classes at various local colleges. As time moved on, so did the kids, and Schu was able to retire after 26 years in the financial services industry. The possibility of full-time art became a reality. After checking out several art schools, Schu enrolled in part-time classes at The Atelier Studio Program of Fine Art (formerly known as The Atelier Lack) in Minneapolis. Within a month, those part-time classes led to full-time studies. Using the techniques of the “old masters” in an environment of master artist/apprentice is the primary instructional method of this program. The fundamental principles of realistic drawing and painting in the classical style are emphasized throughout the four-year program, which Schu completed in May 2010.   Source: Winona...

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Frank Bowling: An exemplary artist for our time
Apr10

Frank Bowling: An exemplary artist for our time

It’s impossible to ignore the sheer scale of many of Frank Bowling’s paintings. Australia to Africa, for example, from 1971, is in excess of 7m wide. When you are face to face with it, it’s a Cinerama screen of a painting, a huge, warm, radiant, luxuriant, colour-saturated expanse, oceanic in feeling as well as in title. Yet Bowling never tries to overwhelm the viewer with scale, as some artists have done and continue to do. There’s an easy, enveloping generosity to his vision. He creates vast chromatic spaces not to impress us, but for us. Mappa Mundi, first seen at the Haus der Kunst in Munich, is a welcome retrospective survey of his work from the late-1960s. At its heart are several of the artist’s “map paintings”. He began to produce these in New York around 1967 and they featured in a landmark exhibition at the Whitney in 1971. The show’s other main strands are made up of series of works named after his father, Richard Sheridan, and his wife, textile artist Rachel Scott Bowling, and relating to his working and living environments, usually watery in nature: Great Thames, Bartica Flats, and Wintergreens.   Source : Irish...

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Carroll Davis brushes aside the conventional for a life of art
Apr04

Carroll Davis brushes aside the conventional for a life of art

At 87 years old, Carroll Davis is still a work in progress, as he continues to pursue his life’s love and passion of art – and even more so today, having overcome a double pulmonary embolism and cheating death in the process. Perhaps what is keeping him so prolific in his work is that he maintains an incredibly rigorous routine for a man of his years, making the best of life in his studio inside his apartment home in East Ridge at Cutler Bay where he currently resides with his wife, Jacqueline. Yet after all these years and having lived in so many exotic spots around the globe, Davis recounts that life-changing moment for him when his parents, unsupportive of his dreams and aspirations, wanted him to pursue a law career and put aside his love of painting and art. Carroll Davis and wife Jacqueline. His father was a hard-nosed businessman raised the hard way, born in 1880 Texas. Founder of the nationwide auto parts chain Western Auto (remember Davis Tires?), Davis credits his dad with making a fortune and being a man of the world, yet he could not bring himself to support his son’s aspirations as an artist. Nonetheless, the young Davis persisted. Today, he believes “The more recognition you can achieve, the better.” One of the most recent paintings, from his China series, sold to a wealthy South American collector. He is also proud of the painting he sold to Chase Manhattan Bank years back which remains in their permanent collection. Through exposure here in Miami, he hopes his art will continue to be displayed around the world.   Full article at: Community...

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There’s a poetry in painting that gives endless possibilities
Mar21

There’s a poetry in painting that gives endless possibilities

It was always my dream to be an artist but I never expected to be a curator. Graduates considering vocations in critical and curatorial practice went to the Royal College of Art or studied art history at university. Not me: I trained at Chelsea College of Art and then went to the British School at Rome where I was the Abbey Scholar in Painting. In general I like to work with painters – there’s a poetry in painting that gives endless possibilities and painting is often about looking inward – searching the “space within”. Silent Painting is the sixth show I have curated, featuring three women artists at an exciting new space in King’s Cross, the Tripp Gallery. The idea for the exhibition came when I stumbled across a painting I had not seen since I was a student. I was wandering around the National Gallery when I spotted Rembrandt’s Self Portrait, 1669, made at the end of his life when he was 63 years old. It’s quite a sad painting – the darkness of the work reflects the old man’s mood as he contemplates his own demise and it seems he has nothing left to say. The painting I have selected for this show from my own work is The Perfect 50s Housewife, 2018 (main picture). It tells the story of the American housewife from a bygone era, who has bought a new fridge and stuffed it with food and drink. Her daughter stands there showing off her huge homemade cake whilst the mother mimes “Isn’t it big!”. The fashionable scenes displayed in my work are populated but focus on the non-communication or separation of each figure from the other, creating a void of silence. Source: The Art...

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