Tuesday 3 May 2011

Art and Richard Armitage

I do not know, what Richard Armitage has on him, to provoke such a lot of artful behaviour form his fans. But it is a wonderful experience to enjoy the results in the fandom and to spread one's own wings and try out old, long forgotten talents and test new things. I had stopped drawing for years, before, through fandom, coming back to it again now.

My previous post, I feel necessary to mention, was not meant as a request to fish for compliments.

My tries at drawing, especially water colour, are just completely awful. - I will spare you the experience ;o)
All figures I try look like comic figures, but as soon as I try comic figures, they look just like ... oh, just awful.

But at least my drawings are much better than my last experience I had in a German modern art museum. I will not divulge the name of the town that museum was in (not my home town, so you can rule out Munich).

They had a painting, 1,5 x 6 m in format, completely black.
When I just ignored that nonsensical painting and went by it, the museum guard standing in that room came to me and lead my attention back to this painting, as it was the most expensive of the whole museum.
As I am in general a very polite person, I listened to his explanations. So the guard continued, that this painting had been transported from New York (sorry to mention this town in these circumstances - no offence meant) to the town under the highest security and safety measures. This had been necessary, as the texture of the painting was so fragile that if one only touched it with the finger, the whole colour would fall off.

Absolutely unimpressed, my thoughts were - fortunately I did not mention them to the absolutely ecstatic guard - why did they not take a canvas of the same measurements and some black colour and did hang that up as a replacement. Nobody would have been able to tell the difference and they would have spared all that money.

By the way, I must mention, they had another painting, which was also very impressive. One painted with cow excrements. The guard also told me the fascinating story of this painting. It was a wonder, that the artist could make a colour combination to preserve the colour and original substance, so that it would not rot on the canvas.
What an achievement indeed. Next time I visit a farm, I urgently must visit the cows to get some paint.

I was hard pressed not to laugh, but the guard meant all that in earnest.

The next room held a metal construction that let out some air with silent swooosh-sounds. I thought, they had a strange air conditioning system in this room and very noisy at that. There also was no fragile picture in this room to make such a construction necessary.
When I came to the next room, the next guard asked me, if I had seen the excellent metal art thing in the previous room.

Oh, yes, I had, I confirmed. I did not mention that I had thought it to be an ugly air conditioning system.

So you see now, I have not the least sense for art ;o)


  1. Or maybe art has no sense for real people! ;) When looking at some things, sometimes I just think "but if THAT'S classed as great art ... and it's just smudges and splotches of paint ... hey, then _I_ can do that!"

    Although poetry is funnier. I love writing Vogon poetry and secretly giggle when someone makes a serious attempt at analysing it. "Oh what a great symbolism!" and so on, and all that I was writing was a poem about a guy who had a banana growing out of his ear. It was just what it said on the tin ... nothing more.

  2. @Traxy
    Vogon poetry sounds interesting. I had to look it up in Wikipedia, but now know it is the third worst ... - Of course I had to read examples of the second and first ... ;o)
    I would love to read samples of your poems. Are they available somewhere?
    I always wondered at school, what the poets really had meant with their poems, while having to endure such a lot of ... interpretation.

  3. I have to admit, the metal sculpture sounds intriguing, LOL!

  4. @bccmee
    The metal construction at least was interesting and looking like a silver air conditioning system at least was something. But with the black canvas I must add, that I checked in my mind, if I had missed that it was the 1st of April.

  5. I believe that for something to be really considered a "work of art" it needs to be something special, perhaps not unique, but something which makes us look at it or what it represents in a new way. It has to continue to hold our interest each time we look at it.
    A black canvas (or one I saw was red with a black stripe down the centre) might cause us to think for a minute, but it is very easily dismissed and would be forgotten if it didn't make us angry that so much money was wasted to purchase it!
    That's just my 2 cents! :)

  6. @phylly3
    Thank you, Phylly. I think you are absolutely right, art should hold the attention and should get into a dialogue with the mind of its watcher.
    The only thing which would have interested me in the black painting would have been, to see the paint falling off. But they had a close eye on me, so that I could not get too close to the picture. As I have not heard anything more about this picture, I think the paint must still be on the canvas.
    As I see it, we only have the word of the artist, that the paint would fall off, to make a black and boring canvas interesting. That is really a joke worth a 1st of April.

  7. Is this the artist? There is one of his works illustrated here called "Black Square".

  8. @phylly3
    Hello Phylly,
    Thank you very much for the link!!!
    I don't think it was him, though I totally forgot the name of the artist.
    But as far as I can remember, the guard told, that the artist was still living, as I had thought - other artists who really could paint had to die before they got famous and this still living one had been able to sell his painting for an enormous amount of money without being able to paint.
    Now I am even less impressed about the black painting when it was not even an original idea to do such a thing as another painter did exactly that long before him only in another format. Really boring.
    It only would have been an interesting event to see the paint falling down. Jeahhh ;o)

    I tried to find out the name of the painter at the museums website, but they do not mention him during the time I had been there. They now have a continuous exhibition with two black canvasses, but there definitely had only been a single big one back then and it had not been by a German painter as the new one's are now. Perhaps someone touched the other painting and they followed my idea to replace it by a cheaper alternative after all ;o)