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Vincent Van Gogh

Remembering John Berger, The Old Master of Seeing

by Paddy Johnson on January 4, 2017
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“The silence after a felled tree has fallen is like the silence immediately after a death,” wrote John Berger in his 1984 book And Our Faces, My Heart, Brief as Photos. “The same sense of culmination.” Of course, today, two days after the great art critic’s death that’s not exactly what he got. So far, it’s been a cacophony of Twitter alerts, Facebook notifications and hastily written obituaries. In the world of social media, the same tree can fall continually for months even years. Like most celebrities largely out of public view, we can expect Berger’s death to be rediscovered several times over the coming decade—his death tweeted a new, a tree felled once more.

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Friday Links

by Reid Singer on October 14, 2011

  • Didn’t recognize an overbearingly handsome Republican presidential candidate in the above photo? Look again. [Young Manhattanite]
  • Still under close watch by the Chinese government since his release in June, Ai Weiwei has nevertheless managed to co-produce a photo shoot for W Magazine at Rikers Island, Skyping notes as he watched from his laptop. [NYT]
  • An eminently recognizable portrait of Charlie Lumley, neighbor and friend of Lucian Freud, sold for £3 million at Sotheby’s yesterday, several clicks shy of the £4 million pre-auction estimate. [The Independent]
  • Did Van Gogh really kill himself? Biographers Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith have their doubts. More on the story from Morley Safer on “60 Minutes” this Sunday. [Culture Monster]
  • “The G-strings have to stay on until daylight goes out,” said the lawyer of Andy Golub, who was granted permission by a Manhattan criminal court to body paint nude models in Times Square — but only after dusk. [Reuters]
  • A painting by Jules Breton stolen during World War I from a museum Douai, France, has been returned to French authorities. Entitled “Une Fille de Pecheur” (A Fisherman’s Daughter), the painting had been missing since 1918. It was accompanied by a pair of keys and several unmatched socks. “Thanks. We’d been looking for those,” a spokesman from French customs said Thursday. [Art Daily]
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Ten Great Works of Art, Shrunk and Restretched

by Whitney Kimball on August 5, 2011
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Can you spot the Vermeer? See if you can name ten great paintings after each has been photographed, shrunk, then blown up again.

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Alright, What Contemporary Artist Should Be The Next Barbie Make Over?

by Paddy Johnson on June 30, 2011
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Does high art suddenly have mass culture appeal? Even with the growing number of reality shows on the subject my guess would be no — most people I know outside the field aren’t exactly spending a lot of time reading up on the subject –but clearly the creative folks over at Mattel don’t agree.  This week, the toy company released three new Barbies inspired by well known works of art.

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