Monday, March 04, 2013

Art Stuff

Here's a list of art related stuff I've done lately but haven't blogged about:

1.  Going to the Prado Exhibit at the MFAH - twice. And I cried both times. The first painting in the exhibit was Vulcan Forging the Thunderbolt of Jupiter by Peter Paul Reubens. Peter Paul Reubens!!! It was my very first time to see a Reubens in person and I burst into tears -- both times I saw the painting. It was also my first time to see Velesquez, El Greco, Goya, and Sorolla paintings. To say that I was moved is an understatement. I'd love to go one or two more times while the exhibit is in town if anyone wants to go with me. It's on view through March 31st.

2.  After the Prado exhibit I bought a book called Sorolla: The Masterworks by his great-granddaughter, Blanca Pons-Sorolla that I've been reading....and to be honest, looking at the pictures. That's probably the best part about art books as a grown-up -- looking at pictures. Another great thing about this book is that it's written in English. The other book on Sorolla that I have is in Spanish, and even though I understand some of it, the book in English is so much easier to read.

3.  Going to see the movie "Bert" at the Menil, a documentary about the life of artist Bert Long, who recently passed away. The movie talked at length about Bert's continual financial woes. My favorite line in the movie was when Bert said that if he was given $2 million for an art project that it would take him $3 million to complete it. He also talked about his file boxes of rejection letters....that's pretty common in the art world but we artists don't talk about it very often.

4.  Going to a volunteer party at Lawndale where I participated in and won a cake in the cake walk. So fun.

5.  Going to the MFAH for the Picasso Black and White opening night extravaganza. I really appreciate Picasso's early work and later work -- it's all the stuff in between that I find hard to like. What was interesting about this, though, was seeing how he applied paint and used ink and chalk all in the same paintings (on some things). And seeing works that I had only seen in books that are flat in books, but in real life are quite alive. I enjoyed that part of the exhibit. Opening night was PACKED.

6.  Going to an exhibit of Bert Long's paintings at Houston Baptist University. This was my favorite painting, oddly enough called Road Kill. It's quite large, 72" x 96" x 4" and is acrylic on canvas with a frame of acrylic, metallic gold and silver paint, tire, reflectors and mirrors on white pine. Why does it never occur to me to use tires and reflectors in my paintings? The show came with a catalog that I'm slowly reading, too.

7.  Going to Houston Center for Contemporary Craft for the Misfit Cup Liberation project, where people bring an unused cup of their own and trade it for a newly crafted one. Each participant writes a story of why their cup was discarded. It really was a liberating experience.

8.   And finally, going to the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft for "Touch in Real Time" where artist Holly Hanessian takes a small piece of clay and puts it in a handshake. It forms to the shape of both participants hands and a (hopefully) human emotional connection is formed as well. It was a plus that the artist was so engaging and easy to like.

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