Art (Her)story

Dating back to the Renaissance, male artists have often taken the spotlight over their female contemporaries.

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According to theartwolf.com, the fifty most influential artists in history are all men, except for number 49!

Yet, many lesser-known women artists deserve more attention than they’ve received.

As an under-appreciated artist of the 17th century, female artist Lavinia Fontana’s classical style rivals that of the great Caravaggio, Michelangelo, and Donatello.

Holy Family with Saints Margaret and Francis by Lavinia Fontana

Unfortunately, Fontana’s gender led to insurmountably biased reactions within the fine art world that both stunted her acclaim and limited her painted subject matter.

Like Fontana, American painter and printmaker Mary Cassatt, one of the first more well-known female artists, painted what she, as a woman of the 19th century, knew best — domestic affairs.

Women with their children recurred throughout much of Cassatt’s artwork, depicting impressionistic maternal portraits.

A Kiss for Baby Anne (no. 3) by Mary Cassatt

Following Cassatt, Mexican painter Frida Kahlo and American artist Georgia O’Keeffe also explored the truths of womanhood in the early 1900′s, exploiting hardship and femininity.

Self-portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird by Frida Kahlo and Light Iris by Georgia O’Keeffe

But it wasn’t until the late 1960′s and 1970′s that women artists and art historians took full charge of their art influence and founded a feminist art movement, examining the role of women in history and culture.

Through performance art and photography, esteemed female American artists like Carolee Schneemann, Hannah Wilke, Judy Chicago, and Cindy Sherman exposed the real experiences of women and the female body.

Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party is a monumental installation, comprised of a triangular table, each side 48 feet long, on which 39 women in history are represented by place settings. Inscribed in the Heritage Floor where the table rests are the names of 999 other historic women.

The Dinner Party by Judy Chicago

Throughout Cindy Sherman’s prolific body of work, she addresses the stereotypes of women in society with self-portrait photographs, representing themes like naivete, self-obsession, and sexuality.

Untitled #360 by Cindy Sherman

Yet, the feminist art movement did not reign the art world for long.

With the 1960′s pop art movement and post-modernism beginning in 1970, male artists Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Gerhard Richter, and Anselm Keifer became kings of the court.

And so female artists continued to fall into the shadow of their male peers.

Hopefully the young and talented African American artist Kara Walker, British painter Jenny Saville, and American photographer Zoe Strauss will pave the way for women of the art world to easily shine.

Camptown Ladies by Kara Walker

Hypen by Jenny Saville and Daddy Tattoo by Zoe Strauss

- Ava Cotlowitz

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Crimes Of The Art: Desecration, Destruction, and Delusions of Grandeur (Part 1)

The sycophantic adoration of millions. Teams of burly security guards. A personal maintenance staff, and a motion-sensor alarm system for undesired others that get too close. Then there’s the eight-figure life insurance policy. Not to mention the gilded frame and Plexi-glass sneeze-guard.

These are things you deserve.

We at The Bare Square are well aware, when it comes to the art establishment, there are plenty of reasons to harbor contempt towards inanimate objects. Though we do not advocate violence against art, we believe that all people are aesthetically intriguing, and come complete with the conceptual underpinnings worthy of curatorial analysis. You too can be art.

And plenty have tried to make their mark.

Be it for motives of envy or insanity, many an iconoclast have bore the brunt of international outrage, through vandalistic endeavors that hit the art world right where it hurts. Here are three of the most audacious acts of art desecration in modern history.

Because sometimes we all have to rage against the machine.

1. London’s Sh*t Artist Sprays All Over Malevich, 1997

On January 4, 1997, Russian-born performance artist Alex Brener sought to express his feelings about the “corruption and commercialism” of the art world. The objet danger: Kazimir Malevich’s Suprematisme (1920-27), at the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, Amsterdam. Armed with green spray paint and a plan, he hand-scrawled a dollar sign on the painting, in line with the anatomical positioning of Christ on the crucifix. According to Brener, “Malevich wanted to change to the world using art. But now he is just a commercial site. [And] I’m a poet,” the artist said in his defense to Dutch prosecutors. The Amsterdam Criminal Court was by no means swooned by Brener’s noble intentions, and sentenced the artist to ten months imprisonment and two years probation. Along with a two-year ban from the Stedelijk Museum galleries.

Alex Brener puts a price on art, in "dialogue" with Malevich. (Photo Credit: ArtCrimes)

But this was not nearly the artist’s first or last attempt at controversy. In 1994, he shat himself in front of a Van Gogh painting at the Fine Art Museum, Moscow. In 1995, he was arrested for masturbating on the diving board of a church swimming pool. And earlier in 2009, he was forcibly removed from the Gagosian Gallery in London for attempting yet another number-two in a public forum, among many other live-action installations involving corporeal fluid and excrement. For these reasons and more, ArtNet has affectionately dubbed Brener “London’s Shit Artist,” wreaking havoc at a European Gallery near you.

 2. Criminal Slasher Returns To The Scene Of The Crime, 1997

A rough year for Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum, just a few weeks after Brener’s vandalism of the Malevich masterwork, unknown Dutch realist Gerard Jan van Bladeren, took a razorblade to Barnett Newman’s Cathedra (1951), shredding the $12 million canvas in a matter of twenty seconds. According to Stedelijk Museum director Rudi Fuchs, “It changes your life.”

$300,000 later, the fully-restored version of Barnett Newman's Cathedra (1951). (Photo Credit: PortlandArt)

But this was not the slasher’s first hate crime against the art establishment – in 1986, he destroyed another of Newman’s abstract works, “Red, Yellow, and Blue” (1966-67) originally valued at $1.3 million dollars, causing nearly $300,000 worth of damage. Convinced that his tryst with the razorblade “added something” to the original work, van Bladeren describes his motives as such: “I don’t hate all art. I just hate abstract art.” Be it a personal vendetta against Barnett Newman, be it a moral dilemma with the Abstract Expressionist’s trademark “zips,” van Bladeren was sentenced to a maximum of two years in prison, and a $15,000 fine paid to the court. The result: a well-deserved re-appraisal of museum security, to say the least.

 3. Australian Psychopath Wails On The Virgin Mother

Australian geologist Laszlo Toth proved that if you mess with Michelangelo, you mess with the world. On May 21, 1972, the then thirty-three year old – later deemed a “cultural terrorist” by mass media outlets – broke from the crowds of camera-toting tourists at the Vatican’s St. Peter’s Basilica, and stormed Michelangelo’s Vatican Pieta (circa 1555), depicting Jesus Christ cradled in the arms of the Virgin Mary.

Laszlo Toth slappin' the Virgin, 1972. (Photo Credit: Zippy 1300)

Armed with a sledgehammer, screaming “I am Jesus Christ, risen from the dead,” he let slip fifteen blows upon the marbleized Madonna, taking out a chunk of her elbow, nose, and eyelid in the midst of his ravings.

Toth was later apprehended by Italian police, and had he been convicted, would have served up to nine years in prison. However, the court deemed him clinically insane, and sentenced him to two years in an Italian psychiatric hospital. Deported as an undesirable alien in 1975, he currently resides in Australia, living a quiet life as the second coming of Christ.

So the next time you find yourself at MoMa, blood boiling in front of a Breton, resist the urge to pee on the Mondrian. However justified in your feelings you might think yourself, an impending date with criminal court looms.

- Tom McKee

 

 

 

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Art (Her)story

Dating back to the Renaissance, male artists have often taken the spotlight over their female contemporaries.

According to theartwolf.com, the fifty most influential artists in history are all men, except for number 49!

Yet, many lesser-known women artists deserve more attention than they’ve received.

As an under-appreciated artist of the 17th century, female artist Lavinia Fontana’s classical style rivals that of the great Caravaggio, Michelangelo, and Donatello.

Holy Family with Saints Margaret and Francis by Lavinia Fontana

Unfortunately, Fontana’s gender led to insurmountably biased reactions within the fine art world that both stunted her acclaim and limited her painted subject matter.

Like Fontana, American painter and printmaker Mary Cassatt, one of the first more well-known female artists, painted what she, as a woman of the 19th century, knew best — domestic affairs.

Women with their children recurred throughout much of Cassatt’s artwork, depicting impressionistic maternal portraits.

A Kiss for Baby Anne (no. 3) by Mary Cassatt

Following Cassatt, Mexican painter Frida Kahlo and American artist Georgia O’Keeffe also explored the truths of womanhood in the early 1900′s, exploiting hardship and femininity.

Self-portrait with Thorn Necklace and Hummingbird by Frida Kahlo and Light Iris by Georgia O’Keeffe

But it wasn’t until the late 1960′s and 1970′s that women artists and art historians took full charge of their art influence and founded a feminist art movement, examining the role of women in history and culture.

Through performance art and photography, esteemed female American artists like Carolee Schneemann, Hannah Wilke, Judy Chicago, and Cindy Sherman exposed the real experiences of women and the female body.

Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party is a monumental installation, comprised of a triangular table, each side 48 feet long, on which 39 women in history are represented by place settings. Inscribed in the Heritage Floor where the table rests are the names of 999 other historic women.

The Dinner Party by Judy Chicago

Throughout Cindy Sherman’s prolific body of work, she addresses the stereotypes of women in society with self-portrait photographs, representing themes like naivete, self-obsession, and sexuality.

Untitled #360 by Cindy Sherman

Yet, the feminist art movement did not reign the art world for long.

With the 1960′s pop art movement and post-modernism beginning in 1970, male artists Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Gerhard Richter, and Anselm Keifer became kings of the court.

And so female artists continued to fall into the shadow of their male peers.

Hopefully the young and talented African American artist Kara Walker, British painter Jenny Saville, and American photographer Zoe Strauss will pave the way for women of the art world to easily shine.

Camptown Ladies by Kara Walker

Hypen by Jenny Saville and Daddy Tattoo by Zoe Strauss

- Ava Cotlowitz

FacebookOrkutPrintFriendlyEmailShare
posted by ava in Artist,Commentary and have Comments Off

Crimes Of The Art: Desecration, Destruction, and Delusions of Grandeur (Part 1)

The sycophantic adoration of millions. Teams of burly security guards. A personal maintenance staff, and a motion-sensor alarm system for undesired others that get too close. Then there’s the eight-figure life insurance policy. Not to mention the gilded frame and Plexi-glass sneeze-guard.

These are things you deserve.

We at The Bare Square are well aware, when it comes to the art establishment, there are plenty of reasons to harbor contempt towards inanimate objects. Though we do not advocate violence against art, we believe that all people are aesthetically intriguing, and come complete with the conceptual underpinnings worthy of curatorial analysis. You too can be art.

And plenty have tried to make their mark.

Be it for motives of envy or insanity, many an iconoclast have bore the brunt of international outrage, through vandalistic endeavors that hit the art world right where it hurts. Here are three of the most audacious acts of art desecration in modern history.

Because sometimes we all have to rage against the machine.

1. London’s Sh*t Artist Sprays All Over Malevich, 1997

On January 4, 1997, Russian-born performance artist Alex Brener sought to express his feelings about the “corruption and commercialism” of the art world. The objet danger: Kazimir Malevich’s Suprematisme (1920-27), at the Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, Amsterdam. Armed with green spray paint and a plan, he hand-scrawled a dollar sign on the painting, in line with the anatomical positioning of Christ on the crucifix. According to Brener, “Malevich wanted to change to the world using art. But now he is just a commercial site. [And] I’m a poet,” the artist said in his defense to Dutch prosecutors. The Amsterdam Criminal Court was by no means swooned by Brener’s noble intentions, and sentenced the artist to ten months imprisonment and two years probation. Along with a two-year ban from the Stedelijk Museum galleries.

Alex Brener puts a price on art, in "dialogue" with Malevich. (Photo Credit: ArtCrimes)

But this was not nearly the artist’s first or last attempt at controversy. In 1994, he shat himself in front of a Van Gogh painting at the Fine Art Museum, Moscow. In 1995, he was arrested for masturbating on the diving board of a church swimming pool. And earlier in 2009, he was forcibly removed from the Gagosian Gallery in London for attempting yet another number-two in a public forum, among many other live-action installations involving corporeal fluid and excrement. For these reasons and more, ArtNet has affectionately dubbed Brener “London’s Shit Artist,” wreaking havoc at a European Gallery near you.

 2. Criminal Slasher Returns To The Scene Of The Crime, 1997

A rough year for Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum, just a few weeks after Brener’s vandalism of the Malevich masterwork, unknown Dutch realist Gerard Jan van Bladeren, took a razorblade to Barnett Newman’s Cathedra (1951), shredding the $12 million canvas in a matter of twenty seconds. According to Stedelijk Museum director Rudi Fuchs, “It changes your life.”

$300,000 later, the fully-restored version of Barnett Newman's Cathedra (1951). (Photo Credit: PortlandArt)

But this was not the slasher’s first hate crime against the art establishment – in 1986, he destroyed another of Newman’s abstract works, “Red, Yellow, and Blue” (1966-67) originally valued at $1.3 million dollars, causing nearly $300,000 worth of damage. Convinced that his tryst with the razorblade “added something” to the original work, van Bladeren describes his motives as such: “I don’t hate all art. I just hate abstract art.” Be it a personal vendetta against Barnett Newman, be it a moral dilemma with the Abstract Expressionist’s trademark “zips,” van Bladeren was sentenced to a maximum of two years in prison, and a $15,000 fine paid to the court. The result: a well-deserved re-appraisal of museum security, to say the least.

 3. Australian Psychopath Wails On The Virgin Mother

Australian geologist Laszlo Toth proved that if you mess with Michelangelo, you mess with the world. On May 21, 1972, the then thirty-three year old – later deemed a “cultural terrorist” by mass media outlets – broke from the crowds of camera-toting tourists at the Vatican’s St. Peter’s Basilica, and stormed Michelangelo’s Vatican Pieta (circa 1555), depicting Jesus Christ cradled in the arms of the Virgin Mary.

Laszlo Toth slappin' the Virgin, 1972. (Photo Credit: Zippy 1300)

Armed with a sledgehammer, screaming “I am Jesus Christ, risen from the dead,” he let slip fifteen blows upon the marbleized Madonna, taking out a chunk of her elbow, nose, and eyelid in the midst of his ravings.

Toth was later apprehended by Italian police, and had he been convicted, would have served up to nine years in prison. However, the court deemed him clinically insane, and sentenced him to two years in an Italian psychiatric hospital. Deported as an undesirable alien in 1975, he currently resides in Australia, living a quiet life as the second coming of Christ.

So the next time you find yourself at MoMa, blood boiling in front of a Breton, resist the urge to pee on the Mondrian. However justified in your feelings you might think yourself, an impending date with criminal court looms.

- Tom McKee

 

 

 

FacebookOrkutPrintFriendlyEmailShare
posted by admin in news and have Comments Off