Culture

Podcast-academic art

I pick up last episode’s discussion about Clement Greenberg and the avant-garde and kitsch, and talk about academic art. Artists mentioned: Gerome, David, Bouguereau, Ingres, and Thomas Couture.

Turpentine diaries 3/3/19

Bah! I am grinding my way (trying to anyway) through a volume of Clement Greenberg’s essays. In case you haven’t heard of him, Greenberg was once considered the preeminent writer on post-war American art. Greenberg’s writings are filled with hilarious pronouncements hurled from the Marxist Olympian heights. As a champion of the Abstract Expressionists, he…

Destroy that painting!

At the Whitney Biennal last spring, protestors made headlines when they demanded that the museum destroy an artwork they found offensive.  The protesters didn’t want the painting removed from the Biennial, they wanted it destroyed.  The painting by Dana Schutz, Open Casket, is based on a well-known photograph of Emmett Till in his coffin. Till was an African American…

What I am reading

I am a voracious reader.  Since I got acclimated to my Kindle (actually the Kindle app on my iPad mini), I think I am reading more than ever, which I didn’t think possible.  Add my Audible app to the mix and my day is spent reading (or listening) to books from can’t see to can’t…

Visiting the Republican National Convention

Living in NE Ohio, I had to the visit the RNC. I spent two hours yesterday in downtown Cleveland. I took a lot of photos but I was still surprised when I got home and discovered that I’d taken 1300 photos!  I’m always taking photos for use in my paintings, of course, and I was…

The Stendhal Syndrome

I am familiar with the great French author Stendhal’s novels–The Red and the Black, and The Charterhouse of Parma–having read them some years ago, but until I read an article in the online magazine The Point I’d never hear about Stendhal Syndrome. The Stendhal syndrome is a psychic disorder that causes dizziness, fainting, confusion and even hallucinations when someone is exposed…

How Art Became Irrelevant

Michael J. Lewis‘ long piece in Commentary titled, How Art Became Irrelevant, is a tour de force of cultural analysis.    In his well-written and long article (did I mention it is long?), Lewis’ breadth of knowledge provides a wealth of thoughtful observations and quotable passages. To buttress his main thesis, which I think is reasonably embodied in the…