What’s your favourite colour?

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Part of “The Queen and her Heart”, James Presley 2017

When people ask me “what’s your favourite colour?”  I don’t seem to find it as easy to answer as I did when I was a kid.  Then it was just a case of being a boy, so it has to be blue, the same as if you were a girl it was pink or purple.  Now, however, I look at colours in a completely different light, (or dark).  Colours are so much more than just colours associated with your identity.

But what’s really in a colour?  Do the colours we choose, define us?  Here’s what Psychologists think, according to psychologytoday.com.  See if you agree, leave your opinion.

Black. People who choose black as their favourite colour are often artistic and sensitive.  While these people aren’t introverts, they are careful with the details of their lives and do not share easily with others.

White. People who like white are often organized and logical and don’t have a great deal of clutter in their lives.

Red. Those who love red live life to the fullest and are tenacious and determined in their endeavours.

Blue. If blue is your favourite colour you love harmony, are reliable, sensitive and always make an effort to think of others.  You like to keep things clean and tidy and feel that stability is the most important aspect of life.

Green. Those who love the colour green are often affectionate, loyal and frank.  Green lovers are also aware of what others think of them and consider their reputation very important.

Yellow. You enjoy learning and sharing your knowledge with others.  Finding happiness comes easily to you and others would compare you to sunshine.

Purple. You are artistic and unique.  You have a great respect for people but at times can be arrogant.

Brown. You are a good friend and try your hardest to be reliable and dependable.  Flashy objects are not something you desire; you just want a stable life.

I guess my favourite colour is rainbow, because there are bits of everything in me.  To be quite honest, like writing it depends on the context.  What is beautiful in one painting or picture might not appeal to me in the slightest in another setting.

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Van Gogh Meets Presley


Van Gogh Meets Presley by JamesPresley

For sale: $350.00 Buy it now at Artbreak!


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via ArtbreakShare and sell art online

Elie Nadelman, Birthday

Born into a middle-class Jewish family in Warsaw, Poland, Elie Nadelman was encouraged to study art and music from an early age. During his early twenties, he spent time in Munich, where the important collection of early classical Greek sculpture in the city’s Glyptothek museum made a deep and lasting impression. By 1904, he was living in Paris, where he became a part of the avant-garde circle of artists and intellectuals that included Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Guillaume Apollinaire, and Gertrude Stein (who wrote a prose portrait of Nadelman). At a time when many dismissed classical art as outmoded and inimical to modernism, Nadelman daringly asserted its enduring validity as the ultimate standard of aesthetic and formal beauty. In his own work, he struggled to discover and emulate classicism’s underlying principles of balance, harmony, and proportion. Intense and melancholic, poor but utterly passionate about his art, the young sculptor “seemed to live on plaster,” wrote the poet André Gide.

 

With the outbreak of World War I, Nadelman moved to New York. Although his first impression of the United States was not positive-he described it as “a country of bluffers and snobs”-he soon became enamored of the energy and optimism of American life. Thanks to the support of prominent New York art world figures, such as Alfred Stieglitz and Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, his career blossomed. His sources of inspiration also began to take on a new and decidedly American cast, and included the popular culture of his adopted country. Nadelman was delighted by vaudeville performances and other popular amusements, which he sometimes incorporated into his work. He was also fascinated by American folk art, which he admired for its directness of expression, simplicity, and charming lack of pretension. In 1919, he married a wealthy American widow, Viola Flannery, and together they formed a collection of American and European folk art that eventually exceeded 10,000 objects. In 1926, a portion of their country estate in Riverdale, New York, was transformed into the Museum of Folk and Peasant Arts, the first museum of its kind in this country.

The crash of the stock market in 1929 devastated Nadelman financially and emotionally, and forced him to close his beloved museum. He became increasingly withdrawn, stubbornly refusing invitations to exhibit his work. The artist was, however, coaxed into lending three works to an exhibition of American sculpture at Carnegie Institute in Pittsburgh in 1938 after initially declining the institution’s invitation for submissions. In 1946, plagued by debts, illness, and depression, he took his own life. At the time of his death, Nadelman’s studio was filled with hundreds of small figurines-none of them ever exhibited-created during the last decade of his life.

Classicism
Nadelman’s first fame and commercial success in America came from bronze and marble busts that overtly-in style, subject matter, and technique-paid homage to the classical past. A number of exceptionally beautiful examples are on view, among them his Woman’s Head (Goddess) (marble, ca. 1916), whose serene expression, idealized features, and crisply chiseled contours are derived from ancient Greek images of female deities. Although Nadelman soon began to experiment with subjects and forms derived from American culture, classical art remained-albeit sometimes quite subtly-a source of inspiration throughout his life. For example, the exhibition includes Woman with Leg Raised, a marble of ca. 1930-35: While the figure’s softly rounded, rather plump physique owes little to canons of classical art, her pose is modeled after the Thorn-Puller, a famous Hellenistic image of a young boy pulling a thorn from his foot.

Folk Art
Beginning around 1917, Nadelman began to incorporate references to European and American folk art in his sculptures. The apparent crudeness of these images, often made of painted wood and carved with doll-like features and limbs, startled many admirers of Nadelman’s classicizing sculptures. (One critic accused him of making a bizarre and grotesque joke.) Today, they are regarded as among Nadelman’s most original and visionary works. The exhibition features a number of these homages to folk art, including the celebrated Orchestra Conductor (Chef d’orchestre) (1918-19, carved 1919-23). In this deceptively simple work, the figure stands stiffly at attention, on clothes-pin like legs; and yet the image is imbued with an extraordinary elegance of line and economy of form.

Dancers and Performers
Another significant and very American source for Nadelman’s art were performers from the circus and vaudeville stage, who astonished him with their athleticism and feats of coordination. One of the most famous works in this genre is Dancer (High Kicker) (ca. 1918-19), in which a female figure is balanced on the tiny ball of one foot as she thrusts her other leg high in the air. Carved from cherry wood, the smooth, simplified forms of the dancer are reminiscent of American folk art. In fact, however, it is a work of enormous sophistication, whose carefully orchestrated curves and counter-curves emulate the formal harmony of classical sculpture. This section also includes The Acrobat (bronze, 1916-20) in which Nadelman captures the fleeting moment of equilibrium in a hand-stand.

Modern Life
Nadelman was an astute observer of the habits and fashions of contemporary life, which he often, quite wittily, transposed into classical high-art modes of representation. His Man in a Top Hat (bronze, ca. 1924), for example, is strikingly similar to antique conventions for representing great military leaders, which showed them bust-length, bearded, and with their helmets pushed high on their head. The exhibition also includes what is undoubtedly Nadelman’s most famous classicizing take on contemporary life-Man in the Open Air (1915). In this life-size bronze, a young gentleman wearing a derby hat strikes a casual pose against a stylized tree. The contrapposto stance, with the weight on one leg, is a hallmark of Greek sculpture. Specifically, the Nadelman bronze alludes to a well-known sculpture by the Greek master Praxiteles, showing a marble faun resting one arm on a tree trunk.

The Late Work
During the last decade of his life-a period of financial hardship and increasing ill health-Nadelman spent his time in seclusion, obsessively producing hundreds of small clay figurines of young girls. The exhibition features forty-three of these works, which were never exhibited during his lifetime and whose purpose remains a mystery. Most are small enough to be held in the hand, and, indeed, must be, for they cannot stand on their own. Plump and child-like in their proportions, some assume coy and flirtatious poses, others appear to be giggling, still others stare out in solemn silence. The so-called Tanagra figures, small clay sculptures of females produced during the Hellenistic period, have been cited as a possible classical source for these works. Some of Nadelman’s figurines wear the conical hat typical of many Tanagra figures. However, many of these diminutive nymphets also bear a striking resemblance to fun-house kewpie dolls. Once again, Nadelman seems to have deftly combined “high” and “low” art, popular imagery and classicism, in the creation of something totally original.

Photos That Make Me Smile

Here is a group of photos I have taken in the past few months that I would like to share with everyone.  Later I will post some more art articles, but I am very tired now.

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Jaune Quick-to-See Smith

I found this Native American artist and really liked Her work.  As Jackson Pollock was influenced by Native Americans I had to include her, so here she is.

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Jaune Quick-to-See Smith (1940- ) Native American artist, whose best-known works combine traditional Native American symbols with a sophisticated understanding of modern abstraction. Native American identity and social issues form the focus of many of her paintings and collages.

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Quick-to-See Smith was born at the Saint Ignatius Mission on the Combined Salish and Kootenai (Flathead) Reservation of western Montana, and traces her ancestry through the Salish, Shoshone, and Cree tribes. In 1976 she received a B.A. degree in art education from Framingham State College in Massachusetts, and in 1980 earned an M.A. degree in fine art from the University of New Mexico.

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In the early 1980s Quick-to-See Smith began to create paintings that address the complexities of Native American identity, both on the personal level and as a communal experience. Since 1990, many of her works have drawn attention to specific issues affecting this community, including preservation of the environment, racial and gender stereotyping, and problems of alcoholism.

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For a large-scale collage titled Genesis (1993, High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia), Quick-to-See Smith layered dripping blue, yellow, and red paint; news clippings about Native Americans; and line drawings of a bison and other Native American symbols. The result is a composition that combines the vigorously applied paint of abstract expressionism with images that suggest stories to the viewer.

Antoni Tàpies

Antoni Tàpies was born December 13, 1923, in Barcelona. His adolescence was disrupted by the Spanish Civil War and a serious illness that lasted two years. Tàpies began to study law in Barcelona in 1944 but decided instead within two years to devote himself exclusively to art. He was essentially self-taught as a painter; the few art classes he attended left little impression on him. Shortly after deciding to become an artist, he began attending clandestine meetings of the Blaus, an iconoclastic group of Catalan artists and writers who produced the review Dau al Set.

Antoni Tapies, Creu I R, 1975

Tàpies’s early work was influenced by the art of Max Ernst, Paul Klee, and Joan Miró, and by Eastern philosophy. His art was exhibited for the first time in the controversial Salo d’Octubre in Barcelona in 1948. He soon began to develop a recognizable personal style related to matière painting, or Art Informel [more], a movement that focused on the materials of art-making. The approach resulted in textural richness, but its more important aim was the exploration of the transformative qualities of matter. Tàpies freely adopted bits of detritus, earth, and stone—mediums that evoke solidity and mass—in his large-scale works.

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In 1950, his first solo show was held at the Galeries Laietanes, Barcelona, and he was included in the Carnegie International in Pittsburgh. That same year, the French government awarded Tàpies a scholarship that enabled him to spend a year in Paris. His first solo show in New York was presented in 1953 at the gallery of Martha Jackson, who arranged for his work to be shown the following year in various parts of the United States. During the 1950s and 1960s, Tàpies exhibited in major museums and galleries throughout the United States, Europe, Japan, and South America. In 1966, he began his collection of writings, La practica de l’art. In 1969, he and the poet Joan Brossa published their book, Frègoli; a second collaborative effort, Nocturn Matinal, appeared the following year. Tàpies received the Rubens Prize of Siegen, Germany, in 1972.

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Retrospective exhibitions were presented at the Musée National d’Art Moderne, Paris, in 1973 and at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York, in 1977. The following year, he published his prize-winning autobiography, Memòria personal. In the early 1980s, he continued diversifying his mediums, producing his first ceramic sculptures and designing sets for Jacques Dupin’s play L’Eboulement. By 1992, three volumes of the catalogue raisonné of Tàpies’s work had been published. The following year, he and Cristina Iglesias represented Spain at the Venice Biennale, where his installation was awarded the Leone d’Oro. A retrospective exhibition was presented at the Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume, Paris, and the Guggenheim Museum SoHo, New York, in 1994–95. Tàpies lives in Barcelona.

More Greetings Cards

I spent all day Saturday cutting and cropping, slicing and glueing these damn greetings card and I only got 1/3 of the order done, I still have another 200 left to do but don’t they look great 🙂

Anyway, back to the chopping board have a great Sunday everyone. I am off to draw.