Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Big Beauiful World Of Art

Person At The Window
Salvador Dali

Recently I heard someone who is a supposed art expert say she thought Picasso was awful. In fact I think she said she "hated" it to use her exact word. All said while making a squinty prune face. That was not before she confused him with Dali, whom I got the impression that she doesn’t even actually know.
Inside I was laughing hysterically. Or else I was weeping with sadness.
I wanted to tell her to open her needle thin mind. The idea is that even if you don’t like an artist’s style, at least you can appreciate the work. Especially if you are an artist. Not her. Which I found rather shocking coming from someone who is a supposed art expert. She is someone who thinks Thomas Kinkade is God’s gift to art. And it was very obvious and rather sad to find that she is so limited in her appreciation of a huge, beautiful world of art variety.
To hear someone bash Picasso and praise Thomas Kinkade, I had to write this.
While I can definitely appreciate Thomas Kinkade’s work and achievement, at this point I have to wonder what happened to the actual “art” in his art?
When I saw Thomas Kinkade himself on some home shopping show pushing Thomas Kinkade teddy bears for like $100 I think I threw up a little. The way they were describing it you would have thought it was made of ancient Chinese silk and 24 carat gold. There was no art on the bear. I think it was holding an alphabet block and that was it. Big whoop. And how much are they?!! It made me feel icky. It makes me feel like at this point he is swindling little old ladies, making them think they are buying something valuable when they aren’t.
His work is so overproduced that here you have these little old ladies collecting like 26 of his prints, (as one caller claimed), thinking they have something of value when in fact it is my belief that at this point his work is less valuable than what people are actually paying for it.
15 or 20 years ago perhaps his prints were worth something but now…..uh uh. He is diluting his own value by overproducing his work.
Remember beanie babies? Everyone had to have one. Everyone was collecting them. They were selling for outrageous prices. Then they became so overproduced that now you can probably find them at any given garage sale. Unless you have one of the very early ones or you happen to encounter a beanie baby hoarder who is willing to stupidly pay anything for them, they aren’t worth much.
I see this happening to Thomas Kinkade’s work. Unless you buy one of his original paintings or early reproduction, you are wasting your money. When I saw a deck of Thomas Kinkade playing cards I knew it was all over. At least for collectors. Not for him obviously. He is making millions. But for self proclaimed “collectors” of Thomas Kinkade, his work is a money vacuum.
There is no “limited edition” in overproduced work. The value is in the rarity. So don’t waste your money. You would be better off investing in a beautiful ORIGINAL landscape by someone no one has ever heard of.
Thomas Kinkade paints pretty landscapes. There is no knocking that. But he’s a one trick pony. They are all houses with flowers and light. It’s the same thing over and over again just in a different composition. Yawn. There is no genius in that. I’m no artistic genius but I could reproduce one of his paintings stroke by stroke if I wanted to. Picasso and Dali on the other hand, it would take an artistic genius to reproduce one of their works.
Every painting Picasso and Dali painted were different from the previous. That is the true genius of their work. They painted many things and in many styles. If you think Picasso only painted cubist women you are sadly mistaken and I would encourage you to explore his other work. I would encourage you by saying don’t limit yourself to just one artist or one style. There is a great big world of magnificent art out there! If you like Thomas Kinkade’s style, have a look around, there are thousands of other unknown artists who paint paintings that are just as or more beautiful that cost far less than his reproductions and will possibly be worth a lot more. And if you still insist on buying Thomas Kinkade’s work, seek out the early pieces and research them thoroughly.
As for my work, that ‘art expert’ told me my work was “unique”. And the way she said it was not a compliment. She said it in a looking-down-her-nose-at-me way. But I actually take it as a huge compliment. Unique is what I was aiming for. Mission accomplished.

Here are some magnificent lesser known works by Picasso and Dali for you to enjoy.


Acrobat and Young Harlequin.

1905. Oil on canvas. Barnes Foundation, Lincoln University, Merion, PA, USA.

First Communion.

1895/96. Oil on canvas. Museo Picasso, Barcelona, Spain.

Still-Life with a Pitcher and Apples.

1919. Oil on canvas. Musée Picasso, Paris, France.

Portrait of Olga in the Armchair.

1917. Oil on canvas. Musée Picasso, Paris, France.

Science and Charity.

1897. Oil on canvas. Museo Picasso, Barcelona, Spain.

Self-Portrait in Blue Period.

1901. Oil on canvas.

The Family of Saltimbanques.

1905. Oil on canvas. The National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, USA.

Portrait of Suzanne Bloch


Portrait of Mme Olga Picasso.

1922-23. Pastel.

Group of Dancers.

Olga Kokhlova is Lying in the Foreground. 1919-20. Crayon.

The Old Guitarist

Boy with Pipe or Garcon a la Pipe


$104.17 million was paid for this painting at a 2004 New York auction.

The highest selling painting on record.



The Basket of Bread.

1926. Oil on panel. 31.5 x 31.5 Salvador Dali Museum, St. Petersburg, FL, USA.

Woman at the Window at Figueres.

1926. Oil on canvas. 21 x 21.5 cm. Gala-Salvador Dali Foundation, Figueras, Spain.

Portrait of Luis Buñuel.

1924. Oil on canvas. 70 x 60 cm. Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain.

Olive Trees.

Landscape at Cadaqués. ca.1922. Private collection.

The Discovery of America by Christopher Columbus.

1958-9. Oil on canvas. 410 x 310 cm. Salvador Dali Museum, St. Petersburg, FL,

The Lacemaker

(after Vermeer) 1954-55. Oil on canvas. 23.5 x 19.7 cm. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA.

Paranoiac-Astral Image.

1934. Oil on panel. 15.8 x 22.1 cm. Wadsworth Athenaeum, Hartford, CT, USA.


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