Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Hee, hee

By now, of course you have all read of the incident involving the Picasso painting, the casino magnate, and the elbow through the canvas. Amusing, but not so amusing as it might have been if all the parties involved had not behaved with class, integrity and style.

The part I liked best, though, was Nora Ephron's description of it on her blog:
Steve Wynn launched into a long story about the painting -- he told us that it was a painting of Picasso's mistress, Marie-Therese Walter, that it was extremely erotic, and that if you looked at it carefully (which I did, for the first time, although I'd seen it before at the Bellagio) you could see that the head of Marie-Therese was divided in two sections and that one of them was a penis.

This was not a good moment for me vis a vis the painting. In fact, I would have to say that it made me pretty much think I wouldn't pay five dollars for it.
Further noted was the fact that the art restorer says that it will take 'six to eight weeks' to make the damage go away.

Let me just say that when somebody at BWAC dropped my painting, "Thistle," on a nail while hanging it, and didn't tell me, and just hung it there with a gimongous nail hole right through the center of it, it didn't take me six to eight weeks to restore it. It took me about six hours; I cut a square of canvas to cover the hole, gesso'd it, lay the painting face down with a book on top of the patch for five hours and forty-five minutes, then I re-painted the center of the thistle head. Of course, to be fair, this option is not available to an art restorer.

Which is why art gets so much more expensive after the artist is dead.


Chris Rywalt said...

I didn't recognize the painting by title so I looked it up. Picasso's "The Dream" is one of my favorite Picassos -- I'm not a big fan, generally, but that one's really nice. John Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls has a tattoo of it on his arm. I like the Goo Goo Dolls. Mock me if you must.

I've occasionally considered getting a tattoo. I've decided that, if I did, it would probably be of Picasso's "The Dream," or more likely his "Girl Before a Mirror". I was thinking I'd get Anil Gupta to do "Girl Before a Mirror" on the inside of one forearm and a Seurat, possibly "The Models", on the inside of the other.

Then I could look down and remember that Seurat died at 31, and Picasso died in his 90s.

serena said...

I designed my own tattoo, Chris. What kind of an artist are you?

serena said...

And those Anil Guptas are way too fussy. In my opinion, less is more, when it comes to stuff carved onto your skin.

Chris Rywalt said...

Allow me to note, for the record, as it were -- Scribe, are you getting all this? -- that I have no tattoos and no intention of ever actually getting one. If I ever were to get one -- very hypothetically -- then I'd get the Picasso and the Seurat. Because, really, if I've got to look at it for the rest of my life, it should mean something.

My parents occasionally encouraged me to become a tattoo artist. They were always on the lookout for some career where I could use my talent but also make money. Making money was very important to them, which is kind of funny, because they were never very good at it themselves. But they thought maybe I could do auto pinstriping or airbrushing or tatooing and thus make a good living while enjoying myself. Or something.

Not too long ago -- after I'd decided to make a running jump at being a professional fine artist -- I passed a tattoo place with a Help Wanted sign in the window. I figured I'd stop by. The proprietress liked my quasi-portfolio and was willing to take me on. Five thousand dollars up front and 20 thousand at the end of a few months.

Yes. To apprentice to tattoo -- which I cannot believe is that hard -- I'd not only have to work for free (which I expected), I'd have to pay $25,000. Apprenticing could take two years or so.

"You can make seventy-five thousand a year at this job," she told me, as if I was supposed to be impressed. Honey, I just quit computer programming for a living, and if I was only making $75,000 at that, I'd be the most pathetic programmer of all time.

Well, I already fell for the "pay us immense tuition to get a good job" scam once and I won't do it again.

Thus ended my tattoo career.

serena said...

You've just put your finger on why it is so difficult to jump social classes in our society. Parallel structures.

I also think that this is why people can be so cavalier about other people's financial difficulties. I can't tell you how many times a friend has told me, 'Oh, you can just...(get another library job, drive a UPS truck, start prostituting yourself) as though this were a patrician blonde-girl privilege. We don't know the specific details of why a particular trajectory is not only not easy, but actually impossible for someone else with a different background.

painterdog said...

start prostituting yourself???


that's extreme, we are not in a depression yet.

And you have have a gig, doing massage.
That's a job is it not?

serena said...

that's extreme, we are not in a depression yet.

It's a slippery slope...;-)

And you have have a gig, doing massage.

I have many individual 'gigs,' which are randomly scheduled, one-time-only affairs. Sometimes the rent is made, other times not. But I am not complaining; people who can afford massages are more likely to be able to afford art than inner-city schoolchildren and their network of associates.