French photographer Lucien Clergue, who penned the autobiography Picasso My Friend, passed away this month. “I had a good fortune to meet Pablo Picasso at a bullring. I had stopped playing violin, and for the lack of funds I could not go to school in Paris. I started taking photographs with different cameras owned by a man close to my home,” Clergue wrote. “Picasso signed one of the print, not my best, but now it is the most expensive. When I reached the age of 20 I was still working in a factory, but I was taking photographs of five children dressed with clothes designed by me [inspired by Picasso’s circus paintings]. I was trying to make Picasso happy: he had said at the bullring, ‘I want to see more prints.’” Their relationship lasted until Picasso’s death in 1973, and that close friendship is revealed in photos of the artists together and Clergue’s portraits of the painter in his studio. Inspired by Clergue, we gathered other photos of famous artist …Read More
Love him or hate him (and his balloon sculptures), Jeff Koons had a pretty fantastic birthday cake this year, courtesy of his wife, fellow artist Justine Wheeler. “My Picasso ‘Kiss’ birthday cake baked by Justine. My favorite birthday cake ever!” he Tweeted earlier this week. The 1969 painting hangs in Koons’ bedroom (natch). “I think it’s about his conquests in life, his artistic and sexual conquests,” he said in a 2010 interview. (Flashbacks to Koons’ Made in Heaven series.) With a hunger for frosting and sweet, spongy layers of yumminess, we searched for other incredible cakes inspired by the art world.
For a man who passed away 40 years ago, Pablo Picasso has had little trouble getting his name out these days. This week, his masterpiece Guernica, which depicted the bombing of a Basque village during the Spanish Civil War, will be welcomed as a source of inspiration in the conflict-weary National Center for Modern Art in Tunisia. Earlier this month, the apartment where Picasso painted Guernica became an object of dispute when the Chambre des Huissiers de Justice, which donated the space to a local arts group, decided the apartment was too valuable to give away, and sought to reclaim it. And yesterday, a Picasso painting worth $11.5 million was seized by US authorities in New York. According to the Associated Press, it will be held for the Italian government indefinitely, pending the outcome of criminal proceedings in an Italian court against the collector Gabriella Amati, who stands accused of smuggling.
When he passed away, Andy Warhol left behind the Warhol market, an ecosystem within itself. Sometimes, collectors and speculators in the Warhol market find themselves in dispute with the Andy Warhol Foundation, which has been dedicated to research, and to granting funds to projects that are in keeping with the generous and forward-thinking spirit of Warhol’s work. The latest of these disputes characteristically stinks.
We’re fascinated, and slightly unnerved, by Flóra Borsi’s photo manipulations, which bring abstract figures from paintings to life. They apply a surreal and cartoonish twist to the traditional notion of the model as subject, and mischievously toy with our separation of real and aesthetic dimensions. Of course, the two are intimately related, and the real-life models of the fine art world have their own fascinating stories to tell. Fortunately, the advent of photography offered artists the opportunity to capture their sitters for reference. See famous artworks and the models that inspired them, side by side, in our …Read More
Literature and art often work best together. Walk into the New York Public Library and you’ll find a heaven of books amid decadent paintings. Frank O’Hara’s 1957 poem, “Why I Am Not a Painter,” is best read alongside Michael Goldberg’s painting, Sardines. More recently, Taiyo Onorato and Nico Krebs came up with Bookcam, a sculpture that, as its title suggests, is a working camera made out of books. And The Book Lovers, the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts‘ current exhibition, which features novels by Carl Andre, Salvador Dalí, and Andy Warhol, is all about the relationship between books and art. The show inspired us to explore that relationship further by matching artworks to our favorite pieces of literature – we think these would make fantastic illustrations.