Leonardo da Vinci once said, “An artist’s studio should be a small space because small rooms discipline the mind and large ones distract it.” An interesting concept, but does it necessarily hold true centuries later? With that in mind, we thought we’d take a look at some of the most inspiring ateliers of some of the world’s most famous artists. From Picasso’s spacious studio on the French Riviera that was both his home and the hub of his social life to Georgia O’Keeffe’s beloved Ghost Ranch in New Mexico where she could work both inside and out, click through to check out some of the most spectacular creative spaces in the world. Let us know in the comments which you’d most love to work in! … Read More
Everyone knows that cats make up a vast part of the non-porn Internet, inspiring meme after meme, speaking their own language, and even prompting the launch of a new film festival. Meow, man, meow. But it’s not only our daily visual culture that is constantly bombarded with the purry beasts, they’re all over the art world — and we’re not just talking about the sixty-five rehabilitated cat “guards” living the high life at the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg! Follow your fearless feline overlords’ adventures through art history in our slideshow of select highlights. … Read More
Love has spawned many a great masterpiece over the course of art history. But don’t be fooled; just because something hangs on the pristine white wall of a museum doesn’t mean it isn’t a record of extreme awkwardness. From depictions of lovers or spouses to fathers and daughters to siblings, art history is filled with uncomfortable pairings — some of which were always meant to strike us as bizarre and others that only seem strange to 21st-century eyes. We take a look at some of our favorite odd duos after the jump. … Read More
Swimming pools have long been a cornerstone of Southern California’s joyful way of living. A focal point for recreation, architecture, and entertainment, the size and shape of the pool — as well as the carefree activities that take place around it — hold big bragging rights for actors, directors, designers, and artists living in Palm Springs, LA, and the surrounding, arid region. Backyard Oasis — a colorful survey of swimming pools in Southern California photography from 1945 to 1982, which was recently on exhibit at the Palm Springs Art Museum and also comes as a comprehensive, table-top monograph, published by Prestel — captures the power of the shapely pools and beauties that surround them, in all of its glory.
From architectural gems, once inhabited by Frank Sinatra and Raymond Loewy, and signature artworks by John Baldessari, David Hockney, and Ed Ruscha to sexy celebrities like Rock Hudson and Marilyn Monroe posed poolside and skateboarders riding the curves of empty concrete bowls, Backyard Oasis — encompassing its own massive pool of creativity — packs a cool and powerful punch. Click though a selection of our favorite photos from the exhibition and the book. … Read More
1. Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol dominated the holiday box office for the second week running, pulling in an estimated $31.3 million. It was followed by Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, which made an estimated $22.1 million, and Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, which made $18.3 million. [via Moviefone]
2. Rupert Murdoch,… Read More
HIDE/SEEK, the stand-out exhibit that provoked controversy when it opened at the National Portrait Gallery in October 2010, has found a new home at the Brooklyn Museum of Art. The show, the first major museum exhibition to focus on themes of gender and sexuality in modern American portraiture, presents over 100 works by 67 artists, with almost all of the works from the original exhibit on display.
HIDE/SEEK opens with Thomas Eakins’ 1892 photograph of a geriatric Walt Whitman (whose relationship with Peter Doyle is well known) and closes with several versions of David Wojnarowicz’s A Fire in My Belly, the film that ignited the controversy with the Smithsonian Institute due to its depiction of a crucifix covered in ants. Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Andy Warhol, Nan Goldin, Glenn Ligon, Georgia O’Keefe, and Marsden Hartley are some of the artists in this high-caliber exhibition that asserts the significance of the work of gay artists to contemporary art, and presents a new paradigm for understanding the complex and tense relationship between sexuality and portraiture. Click through for a slide show of some of our favorite work on display. … Read More
From subway ads to blog posts to TV shows, the average American must see hundreds of celebrity photos a week. But just when we think we can’t stomach even one more, Booooooom points us to the captivating work of Antony Crook, whose low-key photographs tend to find their artist subjects in introspective moments and poses that reveal much about their personalities. David Byrne, for example, seems almost angelic, wearing all white and posing against high, white-trimmed city windows, with a multicolored array of effects pedals at his feet. Click through for a gallery of our favorite Crook photos, including portraits of Marina Abramović, Malcolm McLaren, Rufus Wainwright, Tim Burton, and more. Then be sure to visit his website, where you should also check out his otherworldly landscapes. … Read More
While knee-jerk Senator Jesse Helms did his unlevel best to ensure that America at-large most remembered the more pornographic work of Robert Mapplethorpe, we of sounder mind know that the lensman contained many multitudes. In addition to shooting kittens and children and mountains and coconuts and all sorts of floral exotica, Mapplethorpe shot portraits, largely of the most influential people of his time. What’s cool about the collection culled in Mapplethorpe X7, a magnificent recent release from teNeues, is that it’s curated by seven of the keenest eyes of all time. There’s David Hockney, who errs on the side of visualists (Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg, Warhol, et al), and Cindy Sherman, who digs things up close and very personal, whether wardrobed or disrobed. Robert Wilson seems to want to stir up some controversy all over again, or perhaps the playwright simply wishes that everyone see the real cause for hot fuss was Mapplethorpe’s grasp of exquisite beauty. And only a fool would want to legislate against that. … Read More
The Scissor Sisters, who opened for Lady Gaga in New York last night, are infatuated with Robert Mapplethorpe — so much so that the band featured his photography on its Night Work album and related single covers and interpreted his imagery in a recent video. An iconic artist, who both shocked and wooed art lovers with his powerful pictures of sensual nudity, unsettling sadomasochism, and obscure objects of desire, Mapplethorpe followed his own creative path, while always maintaining a magical sense of mystery. … Read More
From David Hockney’s iPad drawings of freshly cut flowers to Szabolcs Veres’ nightmarish canvases of grotesque characters, 2010 saw established and emerging artists utilizing new technologies and ancient means to express their inner realms and comment on the ever-changing world around them. Takashi Murakami transformed the Château of Versailles into a manga-inspired fantasyland; Ryan McGinley shot thousands of pictures of youthful nudes on seamless paper; and Edward Burtynsky documented the BP oil spill from an aerial point of view to reveal both the horror and beauty of manmade disasters. After the jump, click through to learn more about these exhibitions, as well as shows by Catherine Opie, Erik Parker, Pieter Hugo, and others that complete our top ten art picks of the year. … Read More