Critical Nudity

Their bodily proportions insured that their nakedness aroused little in the way of public indignation. They were about as sexy as the Macy’s balloons, and their seemingly inflated blandness lent them the cheerful and benign look one associates with upscale folk art. The sculptures were a shade less ingratiating, a shade more dangerous than one of Walt Disney’s creations, but in no way serious enough to call for critical scrutiny. Though transparently modern, Botero’s style is admired mainly by those outside the art world.

Warcrimes highlighted by Nudity

Now, Mr. Botero, 73, who lives in Paris and New York, has taken on an even more explosive topic: the torture of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib. Forty-eight paintings and sketches – of naked prisoners attacked by dogs, dangling from ropes, beaten by guards, in a mangled heap of bodies – will be exhibited in Rome at the Palazzo Venezia museum on June 16. “These works are a result of the indignation that the violations in Iraq produced in me and the rest of the world,” Mr. Botero said by telephone from his Paris studio.

Sculpting Sexuality

Telegraph | Entertainment | How lust shaped the art of Rodin To eyes accustomed to the conventions of beaux-arts classicism, the sculpture was shocking because it peeled off a layer of artifice to show the human body as it really is, not as his viewers expected to see it. From now on, Rodin would translate…

The Scream Returned

Art News Blog: The Scream Returned Two years after the daylight robbery of Edvard Munch’s “The Scream”, the painting has been returned safely. In August 2004 “The Scream” and “Madonna” were stolen by masked gunmen from the Munch Museum in Norway. Different stories from the media have been linked to at Art News Blog. I…

Veterans enjoy Nudity

Art’s elders still drawing life from a pad | The Arts | The Australian: DOYENS of Australian art Charles Blackman and Judy Cassab might be a ripe old age – with two OBEs, an AO and two Archibald prizes between them – but they still get a thrill sitting down with sketch pads, pencils and a nude model…. Many people see life drawing as something to do as a student, purely a learning exercise, but it’s great to hear that even the best artists still use and enjoy life drawing. I’d pay to be in on one of those sessions!

Art is really really great… for Porn!

That photos of heavy-duty consensual sadomasochistic sex may be alarming and not for faint hearts, but they are a lot more fun to look at than all those flowers he insisted on photographing?There’s a new exhibition of Mapplethorpe’s work in Edinburgh that is raising some interesting questions about the artist’s choices and subject matter…. Vilified or loved, his image (yes the one with the bullwhip) will be synonymous with the fine line between art and pornography.I think there aren’t many pioneers of art these days, as our boundaries grow broader and we accept more than ever before there are less walls to break down, less ways to shock people…. I guess history will be the judge as to whether shock or subtle wins in the end.Just a further note, I never understood why people got so shocked by Mapplethorpe’s works, Bosch painted scenes that were just as graphic and anally retentive (heh).

The Proper Pickling of Dead Sharks

Art News Blog: Replacing a Dead Shark Perhaps his most famous work (The physical impossibility of death in the mind of someone living) will soon be replaced with a new dead shark. The work was made in 1991 and is already falling apart, the liquid is murky, and the shark has changed shape. Dear Damien…

More on Klimt

Guardian Unlimited | Columnists | This miser’s hoard is the last vestige of the imperial world-viewThe truth is that applying words such as “worth” and “value” to art is an abuse of language…. The picture was expensive because, unless Christie’s was pulling a fast one in a “negotiated” secret deal, there must have been another buyer prepared to pay nearly as much…. not a month goes by that we don’t hear about the new highest price paid for a work of art. Sotheby’s and Christies are rolling in sales and the curators in New York are combing the art schools looking for the next big thing (over here!).

Money Paintings – Euro Series

Art News Blog: Money Paintings – Euro SeriesI have yet to decide whether I love this idea or hate it…. Each piece is painted in order.however I wonder if they will be investment pieces or kitsch in the end….. But, I give him snaps for the idea and for selling them and making money.