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Author Topic: What art has impressed you lately?
The Batebe of Toro Foundation
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(the "Shite Center" comment was being somewhat facetious...)

[ 27.03.2007, 19:58: Message edited by: Sixth-form Voltoro ]

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ursus arctos
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No, really?

I am in complete agreement with Amor (shock) on Rothko's particular inadaptability to reproductions. One understands intellectually why something of vast scale (like a Morris Louis painting) or something with very complicated textures (like a large Kiefer) doesn't work in a cheap print, but one has more of a tendancy to think "is that all there is?" with Rothko when there really is much, much, more.

Rockefeller wasn't particularly known as being a great connoisseur of modern art. This piece is important from an art historical perspective (it is quite early), and, I am willing to bet, quite stunning in person. Rothko was ursus minor's favourite artist as an infant; he used to go into a reverie similar to the one that Amor described when visiting the Whitney or MOMA is his push chair.

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Amor de Cosmos
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Toro: Yeah, sorry, it was just the most obvious line to cut and paste.

I guess I'm especially skeptical about repros of large colour-field abstract paintings because they lose more of what's essential about them. Edit: Cross-post with Ursus who said it more eloquently than I.

Rockefeller himself says he never really liked it, just bought it to keep his collection advisor happy,

Jesus fuck! What a premier class prat!

[ 27.03.2007, 20:14: Message edited by: Amor de Cosmos ]

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The Batebe of Toro Foundation
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Innit.

[ 27.03.2007, 20:18: Message edited by: Sixth-form Voltoro ]

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Amor de Cosmos
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My wife's gone away leaving this on my pillow:

 -

It poses the kind of questions and has details I find fascinating in medieval illustrations. Adam is really odd looking. Why is his head old and small and his body young? Is the model being flattered, if so why? I wonder if he commissioned the book this is from? The figures are very spiky: horns, wings, ears and beaks protrude everywhere. Is reaching over six centuries to claim sexual significance too much of a stretch do you suppose? I love the angels leaning over the back fence discussing livestock, and the mysterious creatures that look like floating peacocks in the lake. And what's that next to them leaping in the air, an otter or a salmon?

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Femme Folle
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My boyfriend.

(his name is Art)

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G-Man
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Vandelay?
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Tubby Isaacs
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What a wonderful scene, Amor. I don't tend to push symbols in Gothic art very much because I just like looking at it, but what you say is not too far fetched. And they were pretty good at interpreting things symbolically.

I wonder, does this correspond even loosely to a scene from Genesis? If not, where has it come from? Why would the patron want to be pictured as Adam?

That's a wonderful piece of unobtrusive perspective as well. And those angels leaning on the fence are indeed great, and the animals. I like the mix of the fantastic (the unicorn) and the banal (a chicken). What's that horsey thing in the water at the back?

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Amor de Cosmos
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I wonder, does this correspond even loosely to a scene from Genesis? If not, where has it come from?

It's from a copy of Des Proprietez des Choses which was intended to be a kind of encyclopaedia apparently. I've no idea what God(?) is doing marrying Adam and Eve though. Like you I can only guess at the symbology. I think the spring may be the "source" and I remember once reading the unicorn is associated with purity. It's tough to make out what the horsey thing(s) (there are two of them) are, I thought peacocks. Unfortunately the half-tone screen on the reproduction makes it impossible to see them more clearly.

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ursus arctos
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The source/spring of knowledge/experience/worldlieness motif is quite common in Byzantine imagery. In the mosaics at Ravenna and in San Marco, for instance.

It's a great image. The animal at the rear right looks strikingly like a kangaroo, which I wouldn't have thought would have been known to the artist.

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Tubby Isaacs
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Maybe they are peacocks. The spring/knowledge symbol makes sense. I don't really picture the Garden of Eden as being like a farm. Maybe I'm muddling it up a bit with the Golden Age pagan myth, but wasn't the point that everything they wanted was there, and they wouldn't have needed to do build enclosures or whatever? Actually, farm is a bit of an overstatement maybe. Still, interesting.

I've come across this wonder, by Masaccio about whom I know nothing- in fact, I thought he and Mantegna were the same.

 -

Presumably not that much later than Amor's Gothic postcard, but how different. I'd like to know much
more about these early Renaissance types.

[ 30.03.2007, 11:09: Message edited by: Tubby Isaacs ]

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ursus arctos
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Ah, as noted here, my personal pick for the most powerful image of the entire Italian Renaissance, and one that still causes me to tear up though I must have seen it at least a dozen times by now.

You should seriously consider taking your free day to go to Florence, Tubby.

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Tubby Isaacs
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Ah yes, I need to PM you about this. Can't believe it's next week!
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Amor de Cosmos
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Presumably not that much later than Amor's Gothic postcard, but how different.

No Kidding. The Masaccio is only about ten years younger than the image on the card. Masaccio is boss Tubbs, you should check him out. Besides his ability to render the human body his use of perspective was way ahead of anyone else's and he often flaunted it like mad.

I think the Garden of Eden on the card is perhaps analogous with mystery plays. In that it uses a language and context that viewers of the time would be able to relate to?

<tongue in cheek> Also the cost of producing the book would have been equivalent to a small farm, so if "Adam" is the commisioner of the work maybe it's a kind of visual invoice? </tongue in cheek>

[ 30.03.2007, 16:26: Message edited by: Amor de Cosmos ]

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Tubby Isaacs
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Did he overdo perspective as much as Uccello? Vasari says he used to talk about it in bed or something.

Kenneth Clark is interesting on perspective. He says it's not just an aid to realism in painting (he says, more dubiously, that you can do "realism" without it, and cites some "realistic painters of Flanders"- any idea who he means?) but more importantly, it is a way of making sense of the world, like a scientific theory.

That sentence was as tortuous as Satan's serpentine form.

I don't know much about mystery plays but it would be interesting to see if, as well as the symbols, they can work in an instant like your your Gothic postcard.

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