All site visitors welcome here! They say that a man can DO art, OR talk about art ~ not BOTH ..... "But I am no man", (said Lady Eowyn, rightly, in 'Lord of the Rings') ..........and so:
You can visit my art linked from the Ellefagan.com homepage AND enjoy these Notes about Art here, interacting at this BLOG!
Wintry Wonder - Art from the Arctic Full Documentary of this exciting experiment in the High Arctic.
Arts Around the World!
We learn about the trends from important art shows.
Like this one, a gathering of
American Watercolors running Oct. 14, 2000 - Jan. 7, 2001
at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.
This major exhibition of rarely displayed objects
brought together highlights of more than
a century of watercolor collecting.
120 watercolors by nearly as many artists
spanning more than two centuries of styles, from the
neoclassicism of Benjamin West to the abstraction of
Robert Motherwell and beyond. The show offered
visitors a special opportunity to view some of the finest,
In addition to
Works by all of these watercolorists will be featured
examples by other renowned practitioners,
and many more.
Those outside the Arts may not realize that there is a thing called "the Arts Industry" and that millions of family folk make their living marketing some form or other of arts skills.
And so this recession has been a thing to bear, indeed, and it is nice to share the goodnews that artsales are recovering, as in other areas of enterprise.
I know my art serves and has import.
Still, times like these somehow make me think of old times, when
American Artists were all as new as the nation, and not
as well known.
When, in early American explorations, the fine artist
was an historian, since there was no photography, and
literacy among explorers was not common. So the
images and text, shared by these artists were the
only data available and readable.
Heads of state, political figures, and businessmen/
entrepreneurs considering development in the
Americas, often hired and paid these artists,
to help them in such project development.
Good art told about the the terrain, climate, peoples,
and more... enough to help in new America.
It must have been a bit different, then, to be a career artist.
- 500 years of women's portraiture, in 2 dazzling minutes !
Treat yourself to the "full-screen" option in the bottom border/right
I have the text list that identifies the artwork and am happy to share it. Just ask, or find it in 'search' as I did, when I could not ID all of them without it.
Copyright on this video has opened to the point where it is at YouTube, for the enjoyment of the world! Find this also at YouTube,
PLUS lots of other "fun with morphing" videos.
The Hollywood Hearthrob Guys Morph is super!
and galleries, to invite,delight, inform, encourage, inspire.
refreshers / reference. I hope to help it become interesting and worthwhile.
See if you can find a thing in it that communicates with you.
Five minutes after Man began to interact, he made Art.
Art is essential, and so not likely to be neglected.
from a good source; easy ready for those new to it all.
of Arts Purchase and Care, at this site, and in general.
Your interest will be rewarded, and your comments welcome.
Americans grow in respect for their own Artists.
Lots of company online, doing great work
Among my first notes online were Permissions to trade links, post the images of others
and do arts renderings / images of my own, inspired by the copyrighted works of
others. It is wonderful to share my work all over the internet, and I enjoy my legal
issues, so far, and so thought to share this:
Intellectual Property / Copyright and NYTimes "Circuits"
NYTimes' David Pogue's column "Circuits" has become a staple of technology reading. But some years ago, we happened to be getting new understanding of "the rules" for online content. When he asked for comment on the subject, I replied with the following:
ellefaganusa - 11:29 PM ET April 14, 2005 (#9245 of 9245)
I am learning... that variations of sharing intellectual property can be myriad, I really do not see how any clarity can be achieved unless the individual ( copyright ) issue is taken individually.
Artists make art from many motives: art for art's sake, yes, but very often,
to share with the world is important to the artist,( and the help from ) clarity and law.
About me - "Always an Artist"
Blessed with family with excellent vision and creative spirit, the arts have been my focus
as far back as memory goes. Since age seven, I have enthusiastically cued up for training
at the feet of private and public masters, through college, both in Connecticut and North Carolina.
I loved my Gifts, and their compatibility with my feminine destiny and family interests. By midlife,
in tandem with relevant artswork, I had also professionalized domestic skills as happy corporate
housewife (now widowed) and mother to a gifted son and daughter. I'd served with the American
Red Cross in two wars, helped in "earlydays" daycare, church ministry, civil rights, nanny rescue,
aid to homeless and women, and several physical fitness projects. This website is my work as well. I am very proud of it and I hope you find it worth the visit!
"The woods are lovely,dark and deep,
but I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep...
and miles to go before I sleep"
... from American Poet Robert Frost
Iconic miracles of science in art...
Art is life is art is life is art, so I don't really believe in being sexist about it -
If not from respect, from love ~ Father as well as Mother; Brother as well as Sister; Son as well as Daughter!
Still it is a fact that, being a Woman in the Arts brings special challenges and is graced with special graces.
And so... inspired by the book of the same title...
50 Women Artists You Should Know
This list links to good firstview biographies - it spans the timeline but is only a skeleton to inspire further study and enjoyment!
I like it that this list represents almost all nations, races and profiles - women artists "integrating the work with the life" said Kevin Roberts of Saatchi&Saatchi fame - with quite the range of variations in their results.
1. Catharina VanHemessen Flemish Painter ( 1528 - 1587) ~ among the earliest respected.
2. Sofonisba Anguissola Italian Rennaissance Painter (c. 1532 - November 16, 1625) ~ Arts Family ~ Painter to the Spanish Court Philip II
3. Lavinia Fontana Italian Painter Bologna (August 24, 1552 - August 11, 1614) ~ enjoyed some tutoring from Michelangelo
4. Barbara Longhi Italian Painter ( b. Ravenna , September 21 1552 - d. December 23 1638) ~ Sacred Artworks - daughter of Luca Longhi.
5. Artemisia Gentileschi Italian Baroque Painter - first woman in the Academia de Arte del Desegno -(July 8, 1593 - ca. 1656).
6. Clara Peeters Flemish Painter (1594 - c. 1657) miniatures and still life.
7. Judith Leyster Dutch Golden Age Painter (July 28, 1609 - February 10, 1660) Genre paintings.
8. Elisabetta Sirani Italian Baroque Painter ~ b.8 January 1638 - d.25 August 1665) Short but brilliant life and prolific artist.
9. Maria Sybylla Merian History-making German Botanical Painter (1647-1717)
10. Rachel Ruysch Painter of Dutch Florals (June 3, 1664 - Amsterdam, August 12, 1750) Royal painter and very long-lived.
11. Rosalba Carriera Venetian Rococo Painter (October 7, 1675 - April 15, 1757) voted into the Paris Academy by Acclamation.
12. Giulia Lama Venitian Painter ( bc . 1685; d after 1753) Pioneer in expanding the powers of women in art.
13. Anna Dorothea Therbusch German Portrait Painter (born Anna Dorothea Lisiewski, 23 July 1721 - 9 November 1782) Honored "Free Spirit" of a sort.
14. Angelica Kauffmann Swiss-Austrian Neo-Classical History Painter (October 30, 1741 - November 5, 1807) Friend to Reynolds and Goethe.
15. Adelaide Labille-Guiard French miniaturist and portrait Painter (11 April 1749 - 24 April 1803)
16. Elisabeth Vigee-LebrunIconic French (b. 1755-d. 1842) Rococo Painter of Marie Antoinette - skilled and social.
17. Marguerite Gerard French Portrait Painter ( 1761-1837 )
18. Constance Mayer Paris France Painter ( 1775-1821 ) famous arts romance ending in suicide, but grand arts legacy.
19. Rosa Bonheur French Painter and Sculptor - (March 16, 1822 - May 25, 1899) among the new lives in the Arts at the Turn of the Century.
20. Berthe Morisot French Impressionist Painter (January 14, 1841 - March 2, 1895)
21. Mary Cassatt American Painter and Printmaker (May 22, 1844 - June 14, 1926)
22. Eva Gonzales French Impressionist Painter (April 19, 1849 - May 6, 1883)
23. Cecilia Beaux American Portrait Painter (May 1, 1855 - September 7, 1942)
24. Elizabeth Armstrong Forbes Canadian Painter ( 1859-1912 )
25. Paula Modersohn-Becker German Post-Impressionist / Expressionist Painter(February 8, 1876 - November 21, 1907)
26. Camille Claudel French Sculptor/Graphic Artist(8 December 1864 -19 October 1943) Famous "Madwoman" Relationship with Rodin.
27. Kathe Kollwitz German Painter, Printmaker, Sculptor (July 8, 1867 - April 22, 1945)Successful in art - wife and mother, as well.
28. Gabriele Munter German Expressionist Painter (19 February 1877 - 19 May 1962) in Munich Avant-Garde
29. Georgia O'Keefe American Artist Painter (November 15, 1887 - March 6, 1986) Southwest inspirations. Famed marriage to photographer Stieglitz.
30. Hannah Hoch German Dada Painter (November 1, 1889 - May 31, 1978)
31. Tamara DeLempicka Polish Art Deco Painter - (May 16, 1898 - March 18, 1980) 'Glamour star personna'.
32. Frida Kahlo Mexican Painter -(born July 6, 1907 - July 13, 1954) Realism, Symbolism, Surrealism and Political figure
33. Lee Krasner - American Abstract Expressionist Painter (October 27, 1908 - June 19, 1984) famous wife of Jackson Pollack.
34. Louise Bourgeois French Artist and Sculptor ( born December 25, 1911) Lives and works in New York City USA.
35. Meeret Oppenheim German-born Swiss Surrealist Artist and Photographer (6 October 1913, Berlin - 15 November 1985, Basel)
36. Niki DeSaint Phalle French Sculptor, Painter and Film-maker (29 October 1930 - 21 May 2002) "Shooting paintings" - artworks like installations.
37. Eva Hesse German-born American Sculptor (January 11, 1936 - May 29, 1970) known for use of new media
38. Rebecca Horn German Installation Artists ( born: 24 March 1944, Michelstadt).
39. Barbara Kruger American Conceptual Artist (born 1945).
40. Marina Abramovic( born 30 November 1946) is a New York-based Serbian and Yugoslavian performance artist since early 1970s.
41. IsaGenzken German Multi-media Artist (born 1948, Bad Oldesloe, Schleswig-Holstein)
42. Jenny Holzer American Conceptual Artist (born 1950 in Gallipolis, Ohio).
43. Mona Hatoum Palestinian sourced Installation and Video Artist (born 1952 in Beirut, Lebanon).
44. Sophie Calle French writer, photographer, installation artist, and conceptual artist (born 1953) .
45. Kiki Smith American Multi-media Artist (born January 18, 1954, in Nuremberg, Germany) feminist.
46. Cindy Sherman American photographer and film director (born January 19, 1954) Conceptual.
47. Shirin Neshat Iranian visual artist who lives in New York. (born March 26, 1957 in Qazvin, Iran) Film, video and photography.
48. Pipilotti Rist Global person - Video artist. She lives and works in Zurich and Los Angeles. (born June 21, 1962 in Grabs, Sankt Gallen, Switzerland).
49. Tracey AminBritish (born 3 July 1963- Turkish Cypriot father and British mother ) One of the group known as Britartists or YBAs (Young British Artists).
50. Tacita Dean British Visual Artist ( born 1965 ).
Well, there they are:
the counterpart of the "Women In Art" Morphing Portraits at this page - maybe Phillip Scott Johnson will do a "morph" of their faces for us!
These are 500 Years of the Women who MAKE the portraits of the women who ARE the portraits.
Images of their work and much more description of their works and their lives can be found about each of them _ online and offline!
Just pop their names into Image Search, to start, and enjoy some of their glorious work - it's what it's supposed to be about.
It is an easy-to-buy/easy-to-own display of the data and fine images! I found my copy at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum Gift Shop in Hartford, Connecticut. But here is the general data, so you can find a copy of the book of your own!
"50 Women Artists You Should Know"
by Christiane Weidemann, Petra Larass, Melanie Klier
USA offices - Prestel Publishing
900 Broadway Suite 603
New York, NY 10003
Tel. +1 (212) 995-2720
Fax. +1 (212) 995-2733
Library of Congress Control number: 2008921120
ART IN AMERICA ~ HISTORICAL OUTLINE
Periods in American Art
Colonial Period: 1607-1788
With survival uppermost in the minds of our earliest settlers, the arts were slow to take root. The earliest painting, primarily portraiture, was accomplished by untrained artists called limners, whose main task was to record the likenesses of the stalwart colonials.
The first artwork was, naturally, derivative and found its inspiration primarily through imported prints that reflected styles then prevalent in England, Holland, and Spain. Many artist/artisans divided their time between attempts at fine art and designing utilitarian objects, such as signs and carriage decoration. Our first glimmerings of serious sculpture, for instance, were done by gravestone carvers.
The earliest trained painter to come to the colonies was John Smibert, whose hefty portrayals of landed gentry and merchants derive in style from the seventeenth-century Dutch realists. Our first native geniuses of the brush, Benjamin West of Philadelphia and John Singleton Copley of Boston, found it necessary to leave the colonies in order to fulfill their artistic visions, although Copley's highly illusionistic colonial work surely remains a monument to American ingenuity. West eventually became painter to King George III and opened his London studio to a continuous stream of emerging American artists.
Early Republic to 1812: 1789-1812
A new nation, the United States of America, continued its reliance on Old World artistic traditions, especially with few opportunities for training in this country. American artists John Vanderlyn, Washington Allston, John Trumbull, and others sought instruction in London (under our own Benjamin West) and in Paris but also sojourned in Italy, where they absorbed that country's rich classical style and subject matter.
Upon their return, these artists and enlightened American citizens recognized the need for creating institutions where artists could be trained and where art could be exhibited. Trumbull was instrumental in the running of the New York Academy of the Fine Arts (founded 1802), with its imported casts of antique sculpture, which offered a definite teaching tool to eager students. Boston followed suit with a cast collection located at the Athenaeum (founded 1804) and exhibitions that began in 1827. Charles Willson Peale was a pioneer in creating Philadelphia's art circle, establishing the first art gallery in 1782 and the first American museum in 1786.
An awareness of our history inspired the nation's leaders to recognize the need to capture images of leaders in significant portraits by Peale, Gilbert Stuart, Samuel F.B. Morse, and others, but history painting itself made little headway until later in the 1800s. When sculpture was needed for the neoclassically-inspired government buildings in Washington, D.C., Italian sculptors were hired to embellish them. Home grown sculpture, however, always flourished due to its ties to functional objects such as gravestones, ship's mastheads, and practical decorations.
The first glimmerings of landscape painting surfaced at this time, thanks to trained artists who came from abroad (for example, Robert Salmon), who concentrated mostly on recording the emerging cities, harbors, picturesque places, and native inhabitants of a new world. The unique talents of John James Audubon elevated the recording of America's flora and fauna to unprecedented artistic levels.
Jacksonian Era through Civil War: 1812-1865
With the election of Andrew Jackson in 1828, an era of democratization and equality swept America and with it a period of vast expansion of creativity in the arts. Landscape artists Thomas Doughty, Thomas Cole, Asher B. Durand, Frederic Church, and George Inness strove to document the untouched look of the "new Eden," blending their individual styles with the Old World romantic traditions of the sublime and the beautiful. It was the American landscapists who first captured the symbolic features of the new nation. Instead of ancient ruins, these painters found history in spectacular land and water formations and, especially, in the inclusion of Native Americans within their scenes. Unleashed waterfalls, soaring eagles, and other emblems of liberty came to represent the country's image.
A narrative or genre tradition of depicting everyday experiences began in the Jacksonian era when artists like John Quidor matched imagery to Washington Irving's History of New York or when William Sidney Mount committed the rural life of Long Island to canvas or when Lilly Martin Spencer explored images of her own household. An expanded audience for landscape, genre, and another relatively new Jacksonian subject, the still life, came with the mid-century explosion of magazines, newspapers, and journals, and with prints produced from original artwork, distributed through organizations like the American Art Union. Lush beautiful still life paintings by Severin Roesen, John Francis, and others celebrated the American harvest, offering little indication of a major civil war on the horizon.
The 1820s and 1830s saw the first cluster of American sculptors working in Italy, where marble was readily available and trained artisans could carry their designs to fruition. By mid-century the colony, which also included painters, was larger than ever and included Horatio Greenough, Hiram Powers, and Thomas Crawford.
Civil War to End of the 19th Century: 1866-1899
The 1860s brought to American landscape painting several options. Artists could concentrate on the tiny details of nature in close-up studies recommended by the American followers of Ruskin such as Aaron Draper Shattuck or William Trost Richards. They could expand their subjects to include highly dramatic views of the West, such as those portrayed by Albert Bierstadt and Thomas Moran, or scenes of the arctic by William Bradford and others. Or they could concentrate on quieter views that explored the full potential of light, a style known as luminism. Gradually the extreme detail of Ruskin's adherents and the dramatic subjects of late Hudson River landscape painters turned inward, capturing the spirit rather that the topography of America's natural views. Inness's conversion to Swedenborgianism, William Morris Hunt's adherence to Barbizon influences, Albert Pinkham Ryder's and Ralph Albert Blakelock's choice of dream-like subjects--all reflected the nation's somber mood at the end of a devastating internal war.
Beginning of 20th Century to World War II: 1900-1940
The twentieth century has been one of continued emulation of European styles, exploitation of those styles into unique American trends, and, beginning in the 1950s, leadership in the contemporary art world. A group of Philadelphia journalist/artists later known as the Ash Can painters--Robert Henri, John Sloan, William Glackens, George Luks, Everett Shinn--began the century with a new brand of realism, their subjects drawn from the street life of New York, where they ultimately settled. The first decade also saw the initial glimmerings of European modernism in American art in the work of Alfred Maurer, Max Weber, John Marin, Arthur Dove, Marsden Hartley-all members of the New York circle around the photographer Alfred Stieglitz. A groundbreaking event was New York's 1913 Armory Show, where Americans saw in huge numbers the work of Matisse, Picasso, Kandinsky, and Duchamp.
Between the world wars, however, American art took a more conservative bent, echoing the nation's isolationist posture. Pride in our industrial architecture-skyscrapers, grain elevators, barns, machines-found a visual counterpart in the work of the American Precisionists Charles Demuth, Georgia O'Keeffe, and Charles Sheeler. Other realist movements between the wars were Studio Realism in the work of Kenneth Hayes Miller, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Eugene Speicher, Leon Kroll, and the Soyer brothers. American Scene painters Charles Burchfield and Edward Hopper explored the sometimes lonely existence of town and rural living. Regionalists Thomas Hart Benton, John Steuart Curry, and Grant Wood celebrated agrarian life and culture as no one had done before them. Social Realism flowered in the Depression era in the scenes of heavy labor, shopgirls, and the unemployed as shown in the work of William Gropper, Ben Shahn, Philip Evergood, and, later, Jacob Lawrence, who, like many American artists, received his first incentive as an artist through the Federal government's Works Progress Administration (WPA), organized in 1935 for artists on relief.
Abstract art was kept alive in this country during the 1930s through groups like the American Abstract Artists association. A huge explosion within the American art world came in the 1940s and 1950s with Abstract Expressionism, a New York movement concerned with the process of painting itself. Painters Arshile Gorky, Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, and Mark Rothko, and sculptor David Smith were all pioneers in this new instinctual method of working.
A reaction to abstraction came with the precise geometric imagery of Josef Albers, Ellsworth Kelly, Kenneth Noland, and Richard Anuszkiewicz in painting and Donald Judd in sculpture. The 1960s brought Pop Art, suggesting in its title a celebration of the commercial world; practitioners were Claes Oldenburg, Andy Warhol, George Segal, Roy Lichtenstein, among others. Sol LeWitt's conceptual art and Robert Smithson's earthworks also evolved in the 1960s, focusing on the idea and less so on the product, if one were produced at all.
The Post Modernist era has capitalized on the art movements of the 1950s and 1960s. Abstract Expressionism in all its manifestations, pure geometric styles, the art of the absurd--have all opened up a new artistic exploration of our world. The human body, long the basis for representation, has now been fragmented and super-analyzed from both within and without. Our gender roles in society have become grist for the artists' mill; private worlds have been exposed for all to see and imagine. Democratization is key to the understanding of the new art, whether created by the professional, the untutored, or other "outsider" artists. It is important today to understand how the viewer thinks and how people learn in order to form a more engaging dialogue among the artist, the onlooker, and the art itself. A healthy questioning of the past, quoting from it with skepticism at times, has also created an atmosphere out of which new art can develop for the future.
Comment, media attention, and arts foci tend to do a wonderful thing: they provide a framework for the viewer, reader, or audience. They welcome, and invite focus, edify and resolve with us at parting, like a gracious host provides a welcoming and satisfying experience; like a walk through an art gallery, the docent guiding one through a point of thought, line, color or experience.
This idea returns to mind when I watch television - the characters, taken as a group, seem to dance around me, and I am the perfect one, the mignon, seated among them. My attributes are exemplary, while the cast and their activities often take lively positions, danding electrons in the atom of which I am the nucleus. This conclusion came to me after an absence of 20years from television, by choice. I was alone and asked myself: to whom of these characters can I relate? ...none really. We were all less zany than Lucy, more lively than Ethel, better behaved than Dharma, and less intimidated than Greg. And yet we loved and were inspired by them all, we were entertained, and few of us wonder why we felt self-satisfied as we turned off the television as the show ended. But you see, that was the whole idea.
Good Art serves Life and often Health.
Many artists, in all media, believe so, and endeavor to manage their work so. But, if you are a fan of Shakespeare, Warhol, or David Letterman, or Sesame Street, there is the understanding that to create and share the art, lifelong, and successfully means respect for the creative business disciplines. Even the most controversial superstars are pretty disciplined types, or we don't hear from them, since they cannot keep their committments. Most artists spend as much time in advertising and accounting and legal, as in creation, and personal care. I enjoy the help of technical, legal and accounting associates as needed, too. But I always make the effort to resolve on the spot; to be sure I am not "fixing a thumbtack with a sledgehammer."
Still, a few weeks ago, my normally fascinating arts-marketing experience found me in borderline litigation, and even after the issue was resolved, and in my favor, I found it comforting to chance upon these words, relaxing later, enjoying a legal moment in a play: "conspiracy, fraud, extortion, restraint of trade". I felt obliged to make note of them, and keep them for reference and insurance, and pray I will never need to actually use them. Very strong words, but they struck the chord in the matter. An artist of fine background, training and motive and experience, I strive to keep my keywords otherwise: "light, composition, values, focus".
Art is life is art is life is art.
"Kalmia"...latest work in progress....
a lifelong fondness for our state symbol, the mountain laurel, a.k.a, Kalmia, is getting some outlet in a painting...and some research on the subject.. When I began my artshows and first floral offerings, I showed them too casually, and so tolerated very rude and outspoken viewers, who thought I should be a botanist as well as an artist....but I like research and so I do try to learn a little about the flowers I paint....
theeee book on mountain laurel, it seems is authored by a resident of my home state...his ad, here"
THE MOUNTAIN LAUREL
KALMIA BY RICHARD JAYNES OF BROKEN ARROW NURSERY IN HAMDEN CONNECTICUT
Kalmia: Mountain Laurel and Related Species
by Richard A. Jaynes
List Price: $34.95...Timber press, I think
=== and my hometown, Fairfield, CT USA , is famous for its proliferating Flowering Dogwood, "cornus florida".
and I found these notes on it... Identify a flowering dogwood tree A small, spreading diciduous tree, the Flowering Dogwood is seen mostly in the eastern part of the United States. It will produce large white or pink flowers that usually measure three to four inches across.
The flowers are made up of four large bracts surrounding a mass of tiny yellow-green flowers which appear before the leaves. The fruits are shiny red berries in tight bunches at the end of a long stalk. The berries consist of a bitter, mealy pulp that encloses from one to two seeds.
The leaves of the Flowering Dogwood are oval with veins curving into the center axis at both ends and they turn bright red in the fall. They have a ferocious appetite in the spring like all flowering trees and should be show cased or planted away from other trees.
Interestingly, the name dogwood tends to cover so many different kinds of shrubs and trees that it tends to confuse most tree lovers. From ankle high creepers, to waist high shrubs, to window high trees on up to the bigger trees in tall forest.
The flowers on these trees come in several different designs with the effect coming out about the same on all trees. The leaves on each of the creepers, shrubs and trees are always the same though they vary in size.
Dogwood trees have two different flower patterns. The common flowering dogwood, like most, appear to have flowers which are actually modified leaves called bracts. They usually protect the unopened flowers, which are tiny miniature clusters of flowers. What makes the dogwood tree so spectacular in spring has to do as much with how the tree grows as it does the flowers. Shooting out long branches sideways, every flower shows because they are held face up on the branch.
One of the many varieties of the dogwood is the wild flowering dogwood which grows well in the eastern United States and sport either pink or white flowers.
The giant dogwood of the orient tends to grow much in the same manner a ceder tree grows, but is easily distinguished in May when its branches fill with masses of cream colored flowers.
The American dogwood springs into color with masses of beautiful red flowers while
the Goldspot, which is a form of the pacific dogwood, produces great white blooms that are the largest produced by any other dogwood. The largest of the dogwoods, which grows up to 100 feet in its native environment, is the Pacific dogwood. This amazing tree grows high in the hills of Oregon and brightens the forest with its brilliant branches and a second crop of high white flowers.
The best known dogwood is the Cornus florida, which has white or pink flowers in spring and grows well in the northern hemisphere. The hard wood from this tree is used for shuttles and door handles. The borer is an enemy of the dogwood family, but can be easily stopped by sprinkling a cup or two of crushed paradichloro benzene moth crystals beneath the tree on the mulch soil in early spring and late fall. Copyright 2001 by PageWise, Inc. ------------------------------------------
If you are not an artist, or especially interested in arts, you may think it
a silly and senseless remark. But it is not. I will try to tell you what it means, as I understand it:...so far my notes here ARE silly and senseless, but I am working on it.
add your own clarifying thoughts to these notes so far,via e-mail..., if you like:-)
A child is born and the consciousness of the child is aware very soon that there is a world. The things and people in the world are important to the survival of the child.
The artist perceives of an artistic idea...a world opens up. The idea, of itself, communicates an important life thing to the mind of the artist, and if the work is done well, is a life experience for the artist a viewer.
The child, each day in life doing a little better at adjusting to the world through his perceptions, and understanding the needs to relate to the world more specifically. The supplies, love, warmth, food, security...are near at hand. Manipulating the people and things in this world to satisfy survival needs, and making the exchange of something in kind for something the world its people and things need in return. So the artist , for example, a painter, prepares the canvas paper or otherwise, and plans the pictures. Supplies to do the picture have been carefully collected and arranged nearby. Each moment into the project, the artist confronts needs...what the artist desires to communicate with the picture. What the picture demands to achieve this goal.
The child is frustrated in goals, and must win over these frustrations. The artist is frustrated in goals, and must win over these frustrations.
Both experience humanity and growth and a backward sort of power, knowing that there will be always places in the work that will never be satisfactory.
This past few years of lifethreats , stunning horrors,on our own land for the first time in a very long time....the past few years have made us all mindful of power concepts, since we have sufferred the feelings of fultility...always humiliating to a person.
When the artist takes up a pencil or a brush, it is a symbol of power...I can draw a line, focus the dynamic energy, and when I am done drawing my lines, others can share this perception of energy and the story the picture tells.
Every piece of art reminds us of life in a very intense expression, and yet manageable to the viewer, who is away from the usual work for a moment , to experience life in a different way.
So we look at a picture, we notice that the artist evokes a reaction, or a nonreaction from the viewer. Our interaction with the art...the action of the artist and that of the viewer is an echo, a statement, a new point of view on the basic life equation....we look at the art, and most profoundly perceive whether or not the artist has done that bit of life well , or in a way we can undertand ...the artist may wish to provoke our understanding in pleasant and easy ways or simply provoke us to wrath, disgust, or disinterest.
And it all comes back to the act of applying some image on a canvas.....that one acute moment of power....it can be easy or as dramatic as baby's first steps.
Before televison, radio, telephone...a person could spend a lifetime completely in the dark about much of the concepts that govern his life. Humans don't like that feeling...so the first caveman began it, with a scrawl on a wall, to tell others of his sort that the bison they hunted for survival food teneded to like that neighborhood.....the first Golden Arches were the lines of the haunches of that bison.....an ad , of a sort....yet, a few miles away, a tribe died because they had no tv ads about artshows featuring bison images that identified rich hunting grounds for their food.....survivors were very instinctual....those who were capable of .....so man's attitude toward life and death was less responsible by today's standards, due to ignorance....and now w e go crazy because there is not excuse...
The Artists and the Artocrats
The author confronts the brawl over art paid for by government.
April 22, 2001
Related Link - First Chapter: 'Visionaries and Outcasts'
By ROCHELLE GURSTEIN
n 1995, Congress cut funding for the National Endowment for the Arts from $162.3 million to $99.5 million and eliminated its artist fellowship program. Michael Brenson wants to understand why this happened, and he returns to the founding of the agency for clues. When Congress established the N.E.A. in 1965, it was, according to Brenson, because of ''ideology and idealism.'' During the 1960's, people in the government still believed that a country's greatness was measured not only by military and economic power but also by what one consultant called ''the quality of its civilization'' -- specifically, its artistic achievements. And because these were the cold war years, the vision of the artist as ''independent and incorruptible,'' as ''fearless truth-teller,'' could be used to demonstrate that the American way encouraged freedom and creativity. So, Brenson argues, it was in the national interest to finance artists.
At the root of this vision, Brenson locates a conflict. On the one hand, the artist was regarded as an agent of moral uplift. As Representative Claude Pepper put it in 1965, the N.E.A. was designed to ''stimulate the intellectual, the cultural, and the spiritual interests of our people and to make this a nobler, a more beautiful and happier nation.'' But the artist was also regarded, in Brenson's words, as ''a heroic outsider,'' who poses ''radical challenges to convention'' and is ''critical of institutional power.'' To finance cutting-edge art, then, would be not only a test of the nation's tolerance, but a sign to the world of the supreme value Americans place on free expression.
The first two-thirds of ''Visionaries and Outcasts'' provide an institutional history of the artist fellowship program. We learn about the program's directors, the role of policy panels and the functions of the peer review process, which was at the heart of the program. On the basis of interviews he conducted with program directors and panelists, Brenson presents the peer review process as a model of deliberation that strove to achieve consensus about quality. He includes impressionistic comments from panelists like the sculptor Ursula von Rydingsvard: ''We would especially be good to people who did some odd numbers in the backwoods, that seemed to talk about the kind of idiosyncratic energy that we wanted supported.'' He lists key words from N.E.A. policy directives -- innovation,'' ''experimentation,'' ''creativity,'' ''process,'' ''risk.''
When he tries to capture the actual workings of the panels, Brenson, a former art critic at The New York Times who now teaches curatorial studies at Bard College, tends toward boosterism: ''The peer panel process was, at best, a reflection of the creative process at work. . . . In the creative processes of artists for whom uncertainty and unknowing are friends, nothing is unimportant, everything calling for attention is worthy of being heard. Learning and growth are important in themselves.'' Brenson fails to show how panelists judged the thousands of grant applicants each year (and perhaps this is an impossible task), but he does demonstrate that N.E.A. administrators and panelists worked in good faith to make sure the process was not just cronyism. But the question at the core of the peer review and Brenson's book goes unanswered: given the many conflicting standards, how does one judge contemporary art?
So when Brenson turns to the program's demise, beginning with ''the crisis of 1989,'' he is ill equipped to explain why the N.E.A. came under attack for financing separate exhibitions featuring Andres Serrano's ''large (40-by-60-inch), golden-yellowish photograph of a cheap plastic crucifix in a Plexiglas container filled with the artist's urine'' and Robert Mapplethorpe's ''photographs of hard-core, multiracial sex acts in a sadomasochistic gay subculture.'' Since public outrage over public financing of this work revealed how vulnerable the N.E.A. was, one would expect Brenson to analyze the arguments made by its defenders and critics -- but he does not.
Instead, he resorts to slogans from the culture wars. For Brenson (and he is not alone in this), political positioning and caricature have overtaken ideas. He claims that Mapplethorpe and Serrano are radical because they believe ''the body is a personal and political site, art a way of challenging general assumptions about the body and who has a right to decide what people choose to do with their bodies and how normality is defined.'' As for ''the Christian Right,'' N.E.A. support of such work was proof to them that ''the United States government, like the rest of their beloved country, was being infiltrated by forces intent on undermining God-fearing, flag-revering, white, heterosexual America.'' It was the rise to power of ''fundamentalists,'' in Brenson's account, that doomed the N.E.A. He complains that they demonized artists, as if Mapplethorpe and Serrano were not shrewdly playing the old game of shocking the bourgeoisie. Brenson is so intent on keeping the myth of the embattled vanguard alive that he fails to notice that provocateurs need a Jesse Helms, since their old antagonists -- the academy and the museum -- have long embraced them. As Brenson points out, without noting the irony, the work of Mapplethorpe and Serrano that caused the stir was exhibited in museums financed by the N.E.A.
Brenson thus presents yet another example of how the habit of pitting the progressive, freedom-fighting artist against the reactionary establishment has impoverished thinking about art, since any idea that does not fit this narrow formulation does not get a hearing. Surely there is more to say about the work of Mapplethorpe and Serrano than that it was radical because it was about the body, just as there is more to say about their critics, a number of whom were not backward Christian fundamentalists. Brenson concludes with advice to future art funders: be nonjudgmental, anything goes. Today, however, what is desperately needed is debate about the only question currently tabooed in the art world: is such-and-such an object art?
Imagine a new N.E.A. with only two categories, art and anti-art. Those who assume the mantle of artist and those who judge their work would then have to clarify which aesthetic practices, subjects and traditions belong to art and which are designed to push its limits to the point where its aesthetic status is in doubt, which is one working definition of anti-art. It might turn out that some things belong in natural history museums, sociology textbooks, political rallies and department stores, or on cable television. But the lists of which artists belong where, along with their reasoned arguments for their choices, would breathe new life into what has long become a dreary, predictable pseudodebate.
Rochelle Gurstein is the author of ''The Repeal of Reticence: A History of America's Cultural and Legal Struggles Over Free Speech, Obscenity, Sexual Liberation, and Modern Art.''