Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Last Supper freshly painted.

Using a computer program, a group of Italian scientists/specialists recreated what the Last Supper possibly looked like back when it was painted in 1495-1497. They based the new image on master copies created by many artists through the years before The Last Supper was too far gone. And also on sketches of the Last Supper by da Vinci himself. There is question as to what exactly Christ's feet looked like considering, well, there's a big door cut into them! Oh the Humanity!

Soon after The Last Supper was created, it started spoiling almost immediately because of da Vinci's experimental medium he used. (When attempting a huge commission it's best not to re-invent the wheel!)

It looks nothing like I had expected. perfect. I guess being overly-saturated with the deteriorated view for so long, its hard to think of a flawless Last Supper.

Part of the appeal of The Last Supper is the mystery surrounding its creation. Knowing very little about it coupled with the deterioration, leaves people always questioning, always thinking.

Mastercopies by Renaissance artists
Last Supper image copyright of

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Is this a long-lost Michelangelo sculpture?

I just recently read an article in the latest edition of ARTnews about a piece of sculpture being a long-lost sculpture by Michelangelo. The sculpture in question is titled "Little Archer" and has been tucked away in a French embassy unnoticed and unappreciated for years. He's missing his arms and lower legs. But from what's left, some critics seriously think Michelangelo sculpted this...and to up the ante a little more, some think he carved it at the age of 15! I was drawing crude pictures of Led Zeppelin on school desks with colored pencils at age 15...geez...makes me feel under accomplished.

But anyway, there are qualities about it that resemble his other work like the twisting motion of movement and the style of the hair seem to point at Michelangelo. While others completely reject this notion. After some crafty googling I came across a funny article about how this sculpture doesn't pass the "Testicle test." I'll spare you the details but in a nutshell, the sculpture is lacking in it's anatomical accuracy apparently.

The plot thickens and the mystery deepens.

Who knows if it really is or isn't.

Here is a high-res picture just for kicks. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Jeanne-Claude, June 13, 1935 – November 18, 2009

Jeanne-Claude died, aged 74, on November 18, 2009, from complications of a brain aneurysm. Tis sad. I wonder how Christo will carry on. Jeanne-Claude very much seemed to run the show. Every interview I've ever seen with them, Jeanne-Claude does all the talking and even cuts off Christo to finish his sentences...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Cut with the Kitchen Knife Dada Through the Last Weimar Beer-Belly Cultural Epoch in Germany (Hi-Res)

Hannah Höch
Schnitt mit dem Küchenmesser Dada durch die letzte Weimarer Bierbauchkulturepoche Deutschlands
(Cut with the Kitchen Knife Dada Through the Last Weimar Beer-Belly Cultural Epoch in Germany)
photomontage and collage with watercolor
44 7/8 x 35 7/16 in
Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Nationalgalerie

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Little Orphan Annie Liebovitz

CNN posted a story about Annie Liebovitz. Apparently she's about to lose custody of her entire life's photographic work, real estate, and assets because of mounting debt of upwards of $24 freakin MILLION dollars if she doesn't pay back a loan! Geez. How in the world, as an artist, does she have that much debt? What is she buying? Is she using gold leaf as toilet paper? I could produce work for the rest of my life for just $1 mil....easy...which is a steal. Where do I sign up?

As a famous artist (photographer) you are supposed to be MAKING money. I could understand if she is a no-name, struggling artist who has a little bit of debt. But her case is entirely different. Liebovitz is famous for photographing everyone from The Rolling Stones to John Lennon to the controversial preggers Demi Moore and lately the awkward tweeny-bopper Miley Cyrus scantily clad...ew.

She better get busy making some prints or something.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Last Supper Perspective

If you liked this, support my blog!! I made this just for you ;)

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Death of Sardanapalus, (hi-res)

Eugene Delacroix
The Death of Sardanapalus
oil on canvas
395 x 496 cm
Musée du Louvre, paris

Da Vinci, The Last Supper, (after restoration) Hi-Res

Leonardo Da Vinci
The Last Supper
oil and tempera on gesso, pitch and mastic
181 in × 346 in
Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan

Friday, August 14, 2009

American Gothic, Hi-Res

Grant Wood
American Gothic
oil on beaverboard
29¼ in × 24½ in
Chicago Art Institute

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

From Russia with Love

I think it's sad that I had to hear about this story on nevertheless! A deranged Russian woman threw a ceramic mug at the Mona Lisa a few days ago. Add this to the list of assassination attempts against poor Mona. The woman was apparently bitter about being denied French citizenship. She's really not going to get it now. Oh well, as the French say: "C'est la vie!" But fear not, being prolly the most important painting in the world, it was deflected by bullet-proof glass. They don't just keep that painting out in open air anymore.

There have been various examples of people trying to damage the picture (from wikipedia);

In 1911 The Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre. Vincenzo Peruggia stole it by entering the building during regular hours, hiding in a broom closet and walking out with it hidden under his coat after the museum had closed. Peruggia was an Italian patriot who believed Leonardo's painting should be returned to Italy for display in an Italian museum. Peruggia may have also been motivated by a friend who sold copies of the painting, which would skyrocket in value after the theft of the original. After having kept the painting in his apartment for two years, Peruggia grew impatient and was finally caught when he attempted to sell it to the directors of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence; it was exhibited all over Italy and returned to the Louvre in 1913. Peruggia was hailed for his patriotism in Italy and only served a few months in jail for the crime.

During World War II, the painting was again removed from the Louvre and taken safely, first to Château d'Amboise, then to the Loc-Dieu Abbey and finally to the Ingres Museum in Montauban.

In 1956, the lower part of the painting was severely damaged when a vandal doused the painting with acid.

On December 30 of that same year a young Bolivian damaged the painting by throwing a rock at it. This resulted in the loss of a speck of pigment near the left elbow, which was later painted over.

In April 1974, a handicapped woman sprayed red paint at the painting while it was on display at the Tokyo National Museum.

Monday, August 10, 2009

King of Pop or King Tut?

Yes another Michael Jackson post, but this one is just too good to resist!

This egyptian sculpture has been around for awhile...but the funny thing about it is how people started noticing the uncanny resemblance to Jacko! I mean look at the nose, eyes, pale skin, hair, chin. If this isn't Michael Jackson, I don't know what is... Right down to the botched nose job. I expect it to burst out into Billie Jean at any second.

This egyptian sculpture is located in the Field Museum and is called Statue of a Woman.

Statue of a Woman
Egyptian, New Kingdom
ca. 1550 B.C.-1070 B.C.
The Field Museum, Chicago

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Warhol's Michael Jackson painting up for auction

Even though it's been quite awhile since Jacko died, he is still plastered all over the news! All the tabloids and gossip channels love the baggage and the drama...and then comes the art scene. Back in 1984 Andy Warhol did a silkscreen painting of Michael Jackson. Well, that is coming up for sale now. It is to be auctioned in New York and is expected to fetch around $10,000,000. But prolly even more considering the resurgence of memorabilia prices because of his death. So there's no telling how much it will fetch.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Flying Saucers in Classic Artwork (pt. 1)

"The Madonna and Child with the Infant St. John" aka "MADONNA COL BAMBINO E SAN GIOVANNINO" is a pretty typical Renaissance painting. Everything looks normal and expected - all except for the UFO hovering in the background! weird. The addition of this unknown flying object has mystified people for years. Conspiracy Theorists and Ufologists go cuckoo for this painting I'm sure. And this UFO can't be downgraded or passed off for a weather balloon! BURN!

But what does this flying object have to do with the subject of the painting? What is the connection? Is it a "heavenly body" or is it the mysterious flying object quoted in the book of Ezekiel? If it is a host of angels, are they holed up in that flying metal object? Some people think that it's connected to the Nativity Star to the left or the Announcement to the Shepherds from the Nativity story. Or it could just be the Millenium Falcon or ET's ride...Nobody knows. Its color, shape, lights, light rays, position in the sky all seem to hint to a real deal flying saucer. The spottings and popularity of UFOs only really picked up in the mid-50s. But did these Renaissance men and women also see them as well?

p.s. Is it about to abduct that poor soul in the background? That dog also looks like it has taken notice. Look at it howling. hehe

Here is more background information:

(Madonna and Child with the Infant Saint John)
Attributed to Sebastiano Mainardi or Jacopo del Sellaio
Firenze, Palazzo Vecchio Museum, Sala d'Ercole
photos copyright of Diego Cuoghi, 2003

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Dinner is Served!! (Menu by Michelangelo)

While Michelangelo was quarrying marble in Pietrasanta he jotted down these three menus for three different kinds of meals on the back of a letter that had been sent to him on March 18, 1518 by Bernardo Nicolini. Never the one to waste paper, Michelangelo took it upon himself to scrawl out a pictorial menu. Waste not, Want not, eh? Looks like fish, bread, and wine is on the menu.

Michelangelo Buonarroti
Three Different Lists of Foods
pen and ink on paper
Casa Buonarroti, Florence, Italy
8 3/8 x 5 3/4 in

Friday, July 17, 2009

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Self-Portrait, drawing

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
graphite on paper
Musée du Louvre
11 3/4 x 8 5/8 in

For educational purposes only

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Hi-Res, Vincent Van Gogh Self-Portraits, Paintings, Chart Diagram

Van Gogh produced many Self-Portraits (some disputed and some attributed) during his short life. Here is a visual chart that I made of his many painted Self-Portraits in chronological order. There are many I have never seen before and then there are of course the most famous ones. (Some of these are merely "attributed" to him, so in all possibility, they could even be by someone else!)

Done with thumbnails from


Boy Picking His Nose

Here's a lesser known work of Andy Warhols.
Ewwwww....Is he picking his nose with his entire hand??

Andy Warhol
Boy Picking His Nose
graphite on paper
11 x 8 1/2 in
The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh

Friday, June 26, 2009

Not a Leg to Stand On? (Computer model of "The David")

An article featured in Discover Magazine recently showcased how The David by Michelangelo is exhibiting signs of stress in his lower legs based on computer models. The areas in red suggest areas of high stress. "It suggests that the four centuries David spent leaning forward in an earlier mounting contributed to the cracks evident in both legs." At some point in the future scientists think The David probably will fail.

I would hate to be under that thing when the legs give. That thing is massive!

photo credit: M. Freytag, V. Tsukov/Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison;
Geometric Data courtesy of Digital Michelangelo project.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Ancient Beekeeping, "The Beekeepers" by Pieter Bruegel the Elder

Lately I have discovered my new past time (besides art) and it is: beekeeping! Surprising, yes, I know. For some reason I have taken an immense interest in bees. They are fascinating little critters.

So I was flipping through a book on Pieter Bruegel the Elder and found an interesting drawing by him of ancient beekeeping during the mid 1500s. The drawing shows some guys in big thick robes carrying baskets. I have no idea what sort of masks they are wearing. It looks very bizarre! I imagine it's some sort of net. Some guy is also shimmying up the tree (ready to catch a swarm?) I'm not familiar with the process or equipment from antiquity, but I'm sure it's basically the same. All you really need is a container, and the bees do the rest!

Pieter Bruegel the Elder
The Beekeepers
pen and brown ink on paper
8 x 12 1/8 in
Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Germany

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Goya's Colossus Demoted!

The painting attributed to Goya for so many years, The Colossus, has been demoted recently by the Prado Museum. It is now considered not a Goya painting! After studying the painting for years, experts think his apprentice Asensio Juliá painted the painting sometime between 1808 and 1812. For one obvious reason: his initials are painted on the painting! "AJ" is written in the lower left-hand corner. I don't know how something like that slips by curators and musesums but it did. The painting is also a little sloppier than Goya's style and it lacks a defined source of light. Both of which, go against Goya's style. I guess they'll be re-writing the art history books.

see for yourself:

Monday, June 15, 2009

Did da Vinci paint Mona Lisa nude?

Did da Vinci paint Mona Lisa nude? A painting has recently surfaced after being hid away for years that reveals a very Mona Lisa-esque painting of a nude woman. After being passed down through history by Napoleon's kinfolk the painting was discovered in the wall of a private library. The painting has similar characteristics of Mona Lisa - similar hand position, background, technique, and she's even sandwhiched between two columns...

The painting was attributed to da Vinci as recently as 1845 but many experts say that the painting is probably not by da Vinci. But it could be master copy of an original nude Mona Lisa. "There are at least six nude versions which are very close to da Vinci's hand. All are attributed to the da Vinci school. The most likely scenario is that his followers got inspired by a now-lost original," says expert Alessandro Vezzosi.

Here's the link to the original story:

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Abraham Lincoln by Mathew Brady

Mathew Brady
Abraham Lincoln
The National Archives, D.C.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Lumière Brothers, Example of early color photography

Lumière Brothers
Young Lady with an Umbrella
Fondation Nationale de la Photographie, Lyons, France

Lewis Hine, Breaker Boys

This is one of my favorite photographs:

Lewis Hine
Breaker Boys, Noon hour in the Ewen Breaker, Pennsylvania Coal Co. Location: South Pittston, Pennsylvania
January 1911
The Library of Congress

Poster Child (or Poster Children?) for Child Labor Laws and Black Lung

It's a nice little find on the Library of Congress website.

Head Rest for Sitters in Long Exposure

This is a handy little device, a head rest, used back in the olden times during photo sessions. Exposure times were often very long so they needed to keep the head still during exposure to prevent blurriness.

Portable Outfit used for outdoor photography in the 1850s

Portable Outfit used for outdoor photography in the 1850s. The backpack includes darkroom tent, camera, tripod, picture taking and process materials.

He's got baggage...photographic baggage.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Edward's Darkroom Tent

I bet this guy would be envious of digital cameras...heheh

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Niepce's Heliography experiments

Comparison between the original engraving and the heliography of Joseph Nicephore Niepce.

The Wet Plate Collodion Process

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Holmes Stereoscope

This is a Holmes Stereoscope used for viewing images in 3D. Like a primitive Viewmaster.

Camera Obscura

Camera Obscura

A Camera Obscura. The image formed by the lens (B) and reflected by the mirror (M) on the ground glass (N) is traced. From A. Ganot, Traité élémentaire de physique (Paris: 1855)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Wollaston's Camera Lucida

Illustration from 1807

Large Portable Camera Obscura

This is a Large Portable Camera Obscura. (I would hate to have to haul that thing around!)
It's an etching from 1646 by Athanasius Kircher.

Camera Obscura Image

The first published illustration of a camera obscura observing a solar eclipse in January 1544. More camera obscura images to come!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Andrew Wyeth has died at the age of 91

I saw today where Andrew Wyeth died Thursday night in his sleep. He was 91. How sad.

I really enjoyed Wyeth's work. I think the general public found it very easy to relate to him and his work. It was very un-pretentious and humble. His scenes depicted a nostalgic view of simple rural/living. He was an amazingly versatile artist capable of working in many different mediums–one of which was tempera. Tempera is very challenging, but he makes it look like a breeze.

Wyeth is probably most famous for his work "Christina's World" depicting a melancholic handicapped girl crawling in a field. I had the privilege of seeing that work this past summer. It was amazing!

Click on the images for a high-res image of Christina's World.