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Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

A Pauper, a Prince, the Pope and Death

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I photographed this 500-year-old roundel at The Cloisters. The meaning seems pretty obvious to me. No matter what station you achieve in life, at the end you still die.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

July 16, 2017 at 7:13 pm

Posted in Art

Nude George Washington in the NY Times

Some people say that there’s nothing in the NY Times worth reading, but the article about a nude statue of George Washington demonstrates that there’s a lot of good stuff in there.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 27, 2017 at 8:09 pm

Posted in Art

Lamy Studio, a Bauhaus fountain pen


My Lamy Studio fountain pen sucked when I first bought it because it came with a lousy nib. After buying my second replacement nib (fine), I finally got it to work like it’s supposed to. Fountain pens are great when you have a good one, but QC and consistency on the nibs is very spotty. Even for much more expensive pens than a Lamy Studio.

The Lamy Studio is an interesting pen. On the one hand it’s sort of ugly, but it has an impressive German precision about it that makes you admire it (except for the inconsistent nibs). When I first got the pen, I spent a lot of time just looking at it and holding it trying to figure out the mystery of why it’s considered a “Bauhaus” design. I suppose the thing about Bauhaus is that it’s like Justice Stewart’s famous explanation of pornography, that you know it when you see it. Except that I’m not even sure that I know it when I see it. The only way to be sure that you have something with a Bauhaus design is to verify that the guy who designed it, in this case Hannes Wettstein, is known as a Bauhaus designer.

The tenets of Bauhaus are that (1) there should be no superfluous adornment or decoration; and (2) form follows function.

Indeed, the Studio has hardly any decorative design elements. What’s missing here that’s on just about every other pen is some kind of ring around either the end of the cap, or where the body meets the “section” (the area where you hold the pen). This ring is not really superfluous at all, because it’s a lot more difficult to manufacture a pen where the cap, when capped on the pen, is perfectly flush with the body, and that’s the case with the Lamy Studio (although you can’t see that in the photo above where the cap is posted on the top of the pen).

The unusual shaped clip, however, violates the rule of form follow function, because it works a lot less well for holding the pen in a shirt pocket than the clips found on even cheap $2 pens, and it also scratches the surface of the cap where it meets (which has bothered some people on internet pen forums although you don’t notice the scratch except on a very close inspection). Because this allegedly Bauhaus clip is actually less functional than the standard bourgeoisie clip on every other pen, this makes me wonder whether Bauhaus is just a big crock of b**s***.

In this official White House photo, Barrack Obama can be seen using a black Lamy Studio, perhaps confirming the viewpoint that Bauhaus designs are mostly preferred by people from the political left. However, Obama is using the ballpoint or rollerball version of the Studio because Obama does not write with fountain pens. He doesn’t even use fountain pens to sign or veto important laws.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

February 15, 2016 at 1:20 pm

Posted in Art

No longer the model minority?

Asian girls get into catfight at famous modern art show in Miami. One Asian girl stabs the other with an X-Acto knife. Other patrons think its performance art and don’t realize it’s an actual incident of violent crime.

Can’t make this stuff up.

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Good thing this was just a knife fight and no one brought a gun.

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Incidentally, this reminds me of Tom Wolfe’s latest novel Back to Blood. I am really negligent in not reviewing it.

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Darn, tomorrow’s the last day of the art show. I missed it this year.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

December 5, 2015 at 11:38 pm

Posted in Art, Books, Crime

Prole art

A commenter wrote (about my landscape painting):

What a prole choice of subject.

A bobo would paint abstract. Or better yet, just leave the canvas blank. It’s called postmodernism.

There are many commenters who seem to live for the opportunity to insult me. Unfortunately, in this case, the comment is not completely without truth. For more than a hundred years, paintings that are pretty and look like a scene from real life have been out of favor with the intellectual elites, and that has spilled over to all other elites sometime during the twentieth century.

The theory behind elite tastes in art is that any art that a regular everyday person, not educated in elite art appreciation, would like to look at is not considered to be worthy art. The elite art movement started out as a Marxist anti-bourgeoisie movement, although today it’s the bourgeoisie themselves who are spending huge amounts of money to buy art that the regular everyday person would consider to be crap. (Another example of how the different types of elites have joined together into a broad elite class.)

So why bother to paint landscapes if they will never be appreciated by the elites of the art world?

Perhaps the reason is that I see through the elite art scam and maybe I don’t want participate in it. Or perhaps I just see more opportunity in more traditional art. Contemporary abstract art is generally worthless junk unless it is somehow discovered by someone powerful enough in the art world to promote it. The vast majority of artists trying to make it in that world just have a lot of paintings or other works of “art” that are really nothing but worthless crap that people wouldn’t want to hang on their walls even if it was given away for free.

On the other hand, well-executed representational art has greater intrinsic value because there are so few artists in the developed world who can actually do it well. How to paint in a representational manner is no longer taught at art schools. And despite the propaganda from intellectual elites, there are still many rich people who want paintings in their homes that they actually like to look at, and thus you will always find galleries that sell this type of art, although such galleries aren’t found in Chelsea. However, one will never become a multi-centimillionaire like Damien Hirst from doing landscape paintings. Thomas Kinkade, the most economically successful representational artist of our time (and much hated by the elites because his paintings were very much on the prole end of landscape art), was only worth $66 million when he died, which is a much lower net worth than the wealthiest abstract artists favored by the elites.

In my defense, the style of painting that I am trying to develop, plein-air-style landscapes, is the least prole form of representational art.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

July 1, 2015 at 11:35 am

Posted in Art, Proles

Prospect Park

6×8″ oil on canvas paper.

I painted it this afternoon.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

June 30, 2015 at 9:34 pm

Posted in Art

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