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Blog Category: Around the web

December 12, 2014

Friday links: Fake art, a talking mouse, and a typing dog

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

  • In Japan’s Otsuka Museum of Art, nothing in its entire collection of art is original. On the plus side, you can touch the art, and you can get a tour from a speaking robot guide.
  • Having run out of paper and ink, the famed Dr. Livingstone used the juice from a berry to write his diary on an old newspaper. As early as 1874, the juice had faded and the newspaper’s dark type made it impossible to decipher. Until now.
  • Stuart Little, the talking mouse, had a role in finding a long-lost avant-garde painting. Seriously.
  • An artist has spent the last ten years carving a sandstone cave. The results are pretty spectacular.
  • According to a number of recent studies, you can boost your creativity by looking at art.
  • Is there a connection between an artist’s collecting habits and her work? Maybe.
  • The Digital Public Library of America held an animated gif contest, and it only takes two words to entice you to check out the winners:  typing dog.

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November 21, 2014

Friday links: Flemish hippos and superheroes, problematic dioramas, more

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Flemish hippo
How did Rubens manage to make an accurate painting of a hippopotamus without having ever seen one? (And why was Dürer not so lucky with his rhino?)

Flemish superheroes
And while on the subject of Rubens, did you ever wonder what superheroes would have looked like in 17th century Flanders? Neither did we, but we were still very amused.

The most important unknown artist ever
What if we told you that an artist you’ve never heard of named John G. Rand changed the history of painting forever? [LINK CORRECTED 11/24/14]

Fixing dioramas
Dioramas of indigenous cultures have been disappearing from natural history museums worldwide because they’re perceived as making their subjects seem less than fully human. But there might just be a way to replace them responsibly. (You may also want to check out our post about the Museum of Natural History’s dioramas in The Catcher in the Rye.)

“New” ancient mosaics
Archaeologists discovered three mosaics at the ancient Greek city of Zeugma, in south Turkey. They look amazing.

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November 14, 2014

Friday links: Frida Kahlo’s baby pictures, shattered Renaissance sculpture

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Portrait of the artist as a young baby
Frida Kahlo as photographed through her childhood and youth by her father.

Watching people look
A three-hour portrait of the National Gallery, London. (If that leaves you hungry for more, you can enjoy 2,400 images of their masterpieces in the Artstor Digital Library.)

Watching people work
A two-minute time-lapse video of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art over four days as they set up one scene of the last surviving 19th-century panorama of the Mississippi River. (The complete artwork is so large that we have it documented in 25 different images in the Artstor Digital Library.)

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November 7, 2014

Friday links: a very interesting list

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Very witty
Fine art selfies.

Very touching
Legendary actress Lauren Bacall was infatuated with British sculptor Henry Moore.

Very early
The first photograph to include people. (We’ve written about Louis Daguerre here before.)

Very frustrating
The problem with food carts outside of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Very controversial
Was Vincent Van Gogh murdered?

Very advanced
The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the British Museum are now offering 3D prints of their sculptures.

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October 31, 2014

Friday links: Monsters, ghosts, and taxes

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Classicism in living color
We may interpret the white of classical sculpture as the height of purity and elegance, but research indicates that sculptures were originally painted. An exhibition at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen gives us some idea of what they might have looked like—surprisingly garish!

Sea monsters are real
Sea serpents, leviathans, hydras, mermaids, and the kraken are real—they just got creative embellishments along the way.

Playlist from beyond
If that previous link didn’t scare you, this might: ghosts, skeletons, witches, and monsters in folk music and stories.

Last-minute yet historically accurate
Still don’t have a costume? No problem, the Smithsonian Magazine has you covered.

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October 24, 2014

Friday links: doodles, slow art, DIY archaeology

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Doodle books
We’ve confessed our love of doodling in a previous link roundup, so we were of course excited to run into these two items: An exhibition at the Cambridge University Library featuring books with inscriptions, scribbles, and doodles, and doodles in some of the world’s oldest books as cataloged by medieval book historian Erik Kwakkel.

Speed limits in museums
The average museum visitor spends only 15 to 30 seconds in front of a work of art. What happens if you slow down and look at an artwork for 20 minutes?

DIY archaeology
This one made us snort laugh. An amateur finds what he presumes to be a fragment of a stone relief from an ancient Roman fort and comes up with a creative recreation of the full work.

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October 17, 2014

Friday links: Corbusier vandalized (sort of), live Alice in Wonderland, and more

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Virtual vandalism
Le Corbusier’s modernist masterpiece Villa Savoye vandalized with graffiti, its windows smashed? Thankfully, it’s only a virtual attack by Brussels-based artist Xavier Delory.

Alice through the theater curtains
A 1932 production of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland literally brought the original illustrations by Sir John Tenniel to life. See for yourself in the Museum of the City of New York blog. (Incidentally, Artstor has 48,000 images from MCNY, with lots more on the way.)

This is what happens when the model won’t stand still
Evidently, artists throughout history have always gotten their depictions of how people run wrong.

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October 10, 2014

Friday links: Doodles, bikes, “new” Rembrandts, and old cave paintings

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Can’t help doodling
As major doodlers ourselves (mostly during meetings), we are fascinated by anything that justifies our habit. Check out why researchers think that doodling may be a kind of language and may be hardwired into humans.

“New” Rembrandts
The Rembrandt Research Project says 70 paintings, many of them attributed to Rembrandt followers, are actually the work of the master.

Titian the entertainer
Yes, there are historical interpretations, yes, there are textual readings, yes, there is formal analysis, but sometimes we love art simply because it’s beautiful. In defense of art as escapism, using Titian’s Danaë as an example. (Incidentally, the Artstor Digital Library boasts more variations of the painting.)

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October 3, 2014

Friday links: Dali and Harpo, secret diaries, and a disappearing ermine

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

The odd couple

A friendship as unexpected as the chance meeting on a dissecting table of a sewing machine and an umbrella: Salvador Dalí and Harpo Marx.

Moving vases

This is really fantastic: ancient Greek vases turned into animations.

Unusual supports

This artist uses coins as his canvas, which reminded us of “hobo nickels.”

And this artist uses Baltimore as his canvas as he draws with two wheels.

The perfect accessory 

New discoveries on a 500-year old Da Vinci painting: The Lady with an Ermine didn’t always include the ermine.

Dear diary

The secret diaries of American artists, not so secret anymore.

Russia before it turned red

Pre-revolutionary Russia, in color.

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September 26, 2014

Friday links: mannequins, musicals, and more

Robert Howlett, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern, ca. 1857-1858. George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Photographer: Robert Howlett | Isambard Kingdom Brunel, builder of the Great Eastern | ca. 1857-1858 | George Eastman House, eastmanhouse.org

Some stories we’ve been reading this week:

Artists at work

Legendary French weekly Paris Match is sharing a trove of images of artists in their studios. Want more? The Artstor Digital Library offers more than 1,500 images from Alexander Liberman’s series “Artists and Personalities.”

And this would’ve been good for Halloween: the history of the artist’s mannequin from the 16th to the 20th century.

Rebooting the Renaissance

A restoration project offers a rare look at an unfinished Leonardo Da Vinci.

A controversial rehanging of Mantegna’s Lamentation Over the Dead Christ offers a new way to look at the painting’s famous—and puzzling—foreshortening.

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