To Be Looked At (from the Other Side of the Glass) with One Eye, Close to, for Almost an Hour

Thus spoke Marcel, and we obliged (for five minutes).

Looking for ”almost an hour” would have a hallucinatory effect similar to Marc Chagall’s experience, some years earlier.

Marcel Duchamp
To Be Looked At (from the Other Side of the Glass) with One Eye, Close to, for Almost an Hour, 1918
Oil, silver leaf, lead wire, magnifying lens on glass (cracked) mounted between panes of glass in a standing metal frame, on painted wood base

”The title of this work, which Duchamp said he ”intended to sound like an oculist’s prescription” tells the viewer exactly how to look at it. But peering through the convex lens embedded in the work’s glass ”for almost an hour” would have a hallucinatory effect, the view being dwarfed, flipped and otherwise distorted. Meanwhile the viewer patiently following the title’s instructions is him-or herself put on display for anyone else walking by. 

Duchamp called this his ”small glass”, to distinguish it from his famous Large Glass of 1915-23. He made the work in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he had fled earlier in 1918 to escape the oppressive atmosphere of the United States during World War I. When he shipped it back to New York, the glass cracked in transit, en effect that delighted him.”

Marc Chagall
I and the Village, 1911
Oil on canvas

@MoMA

August 8th, 2018

Trip Hoppin’ w/Escher

A master manipulator of architecture and perspective, creator of geometric paradoxes, aka M.C. Escher.

Extase, 1922
Samuel Jessurun de Mesquita (M.C. Escher’s mentor)
Woodcut


Castle in the Air, 1928
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Woodcut


Tower of Babel, 1928
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Woodcut


Emblemata, 1932
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Woodcut


Dream (Mantis Religiosa), 1935
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Woodcut


Tropea, Calabria, 1931
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Lithograph


Lion of the Fountain in the Piazza at Ravello, 1932
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Wood engraving


”The crucial turning point in Escher’s artistic development was his second trip to Southern Spain in 1936. There, he visited famous Moorish architectural landmarks, such as the Alhambra Palace in Granada and the Mezquita in Cordoba. These visits inspired him to methodically study the patterns that 14th-century artisans used to decorate the walls and the arches of the Moorish monuments. He then developed a passion for tessellation: geometric decoration in which triangles, stars or squares are repeated like tiles to cover a plane without leaving any gaps. He meticulously produced 137 watercolours showing different motifs of tessellation in an exercise book. These motifs represented 17 different ways of filling a flat surface with regular patterns and included a study of various colouring possibilities.”


Hand with Reflecting Sphere (self-portrait) in Spherical Mirror, 1935
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Lithograph


Circle Limit IV (Heaven and Hell), 1960
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Woodcut, printed from two blocks


Circle Limit III, 1959
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Woodcut, printed from five blocks


Depth, 1955
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Wood engraving and woodcut, printed from three blocks


Drawing Hands, 1948
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Lithograph


Ascending and Descending, 1960
Maurits Cornelis Escher
Lithograph


From ”Escher: The Exhibition and Experience” – a travelling exhibition that ran in Industry City from June 2018 February 2019.

Brooklyn, N.Y.

August 4th, 2018

Bodys Isek Kingelez || City Dreams @MoMA

I first became aware of the work of Bodys Isek Kingelez, captivated by his intricate, colourful maquettes, at the retrospective that was presented at MoMA during the second half of 2018. There is a joyous, optimistic quality about these toy-like cities that brought a smile to the child in me; but make no mistake – these tiny sculptures, made from modest materials like glue and paper, straws and bottles, soda cans and bottle caps, are no toys. They are a delicate body of artwork, visions of utopian cities, images of a better world. Like, for example, the U.N. (1995), made in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the United Nations, reflecting the artist’s belief in a world of democracy, peace, and cooperation. Or his Ville Fantôme (1996), a peaceful city in which doctors and police are unecessary.

An extract from the artist’s bio (for more info click on his name):

”Visionary artist Bodys Isek Kingelez created dazzling, intricate architectural sculptures that he called “extreme maquettes.” Born in the agricultural village of Kimbembele Ihunga in the Belgian Congo (now the Democratic Republic of the Congo) in 1948, he came of age in a period of enormous political and social transformation. In 1970, he relocated to Kinshasa—the capital of the newly independent nation renamed Zaire—to pursue a university education. After his studies, motivated by a desire to make a civic contribution to his country, Kingelez worked briefly as a secondary school teacher. However, he soon became “obsessed with the idea of getting my hands on some scissors, a Gillette razor, and some glue and paper…” and began to create sculptures that took the form of buildings, constructed from modest materials like paper, cardboard, and repurposed commercial packaging, and embellished with push-pins, straws, elaborate hand-applied designs, and more. It was through these sculptures that he felt he could help shape “a better, more peaceful world.” The technical excellence of Kingelez’s early work led to his hiring as a restorer at the National Museums Institute of Zaire, where he repaired traditional objects in the collection until he devoted himself to art making full-time in the early 1980s.”


“Art is the grandest adventure of them all…art is a high form of knowledge, a vehicle for individual renewal that contributes to a better collective future.” – Bodys Isek Kingelez (1948–2015)

MoMA, New York

July 28th, 2018

Funny Ladies at The New Yorker: Cartoonists Then and Now

”With the vote won in 1920, and a new found freedom, many women moved to the city to find work. In 1925, journalist Harold Ross and his wife Jane Grant, a reporter for the New York Times, created The New Yorker, a humor magazine for the urban elite. When Ross began to look for talent to contribute to this new endeavor, he sought the best. Some of the best included cartoonists who were women; with the support of The New Yorker, they became some of the most heralded cartoonists the art form has known.” [source]

”I’m going to leave him – I’m tired of being Duse* inside.” – by Barbara Shermund

*Eleonora Duse (1858-1924) was an Italian actress, often known simply as Duse. She is regarded as one of the greatest actresses of all time, noted for her total assumption of the roles she portrayed.”

Barbara Shermund
Dear no, Miss Matberry – just the head.” – by Mary Petty
Doris Matthews
Liza Donnelly
Mary Lawton
Carolita Johnson
Liana Finck
Victoria Roberts
Pia Guerra
Maggie Larson
Maggie Larson
Bishakh Som
Julia Suits
Nurit Karlin
Nurit Karlin
Kim Warp
Kim Warp
Roz Chast

These were just a few of the many talents showcasing their work in this exhibition, their creative, witty personalities expressed in their cartoons and beyond – as in Roz Chast’s bio, above.

All of the cartoons shown in the exhibition were published in The New Yorker magazine, © The New Yorker & the artist. The majority of art is the property of the cartoonist.

The Society of Illustrators

July 28th, 2018

Scrambled Yeggs in Party Dresses

Original art from the Museum of Illustration

The Scrambled Yeggs by Robert McGinnis
Cover illustration for the story by Richard Prather
Fawcett Gold Medal Books, 1960, 1968
Designers Colours and Casein White on hot press illustration board


Cafe Sinister by Martha Sawyers
Illustration for the story of the same name by Ben Hecht
Caption: ”I noticed a few evenings later that the baron had a different girl with him. ‘Well, we’ve got a new clue,’ I said. ‘We’ve found out the baron has a redhead fetish.”’
Collier’s magazine, August 21, 1943
Pastel


Hail and Farewell by A. Carter
Illustration for the story by Williston Rich
The American Magazine, December 1938
Oil on canvas


The Party Dress by Henry Patrick Raleigh
Interior illustration for the serialized novel by Joseph Hergesheimer
Caption: ”Lea cut in on Francis. ‘Against my better judgement,’ he said to Nina, ‘I am obliged to tell you are a sweet affair.’ Nina was in a glow of triumph. What especially engaged her was the fact that men rather than women spoke of her dress and praised it.”’
Hearst’s International combined with Cosmopolitan, November 1929
Ink and watercolour on illustration board


Portrait of Billie Burke by Frederic L. ”Eric” Pape
Published in the theatre section of the Sunday New York Herald Tribune, advertisement for ”The Truth Game”, December 28, 1930
Litho crayon on paper


Society of Illustrators

July 28th, 2018

The Art of The Avengers and Other Heroes

For all the Marvelites out there…!

Daredevil King-Size Special #1
Electro, and the Emissaries of Evil! – 1967
Written by: Stan Lee || Penciled by: Gene Colan
Inked by: Marie Severin || Lettered by: Sam Rosen


The Avengers #1
Once an Avenger… Page 16-17 – 1968
Written by: Kurt Busiek || Penciled by: George Pérez
Inked by: Al Vey || Lettered by: Richard Starkings


Marvel Knights = Black Widow #1
The Itsy-Bitsy Spider 1/3: ”Uninvited” Cover – 1999
Written by: Devin Grayson || Art by: J.G. Jones
Lettered by: Richard Starkings


The Amazing Spider-Man #94
On Wings of Death! Page 4 – 1971
Written by: Stan Lee || Penciled by: John Romita Sr.
Inked by: Sal Buscema || Letter by: Artie Simek


The Amazing Spider-Man #94
On Wings of Death! Page 6 – 1971
Written by: Stan Lee || Penciled by: John Romita Sr.
Inked by: Sal Buscema || Letter by: Artie Simek


The Incredible Hulk #287
Loose Ends Cover – 1983
Written by: Bill Mantlo || Penciled by: Ron Wilson
Inked by: Al Milgrom || Lettered by: Jim Novak


Incredible Hulk Special Vol 1
Battles the Inhumans (Preliminary) – 1972
Art by: Jim Steranko


Avengers Assembled – Private Commission, 2009
Art by: John Byrne


The Mighty Thor #159
The Answer at Last! Page 20 – 1968
Written by: Stan Lee || Penciled by: Jack Kirby
Inked by: Vince Colletta || Lettered by: Sam Rosen


The Amazing Spider-Man #119
The Gentleman’s Name is… Hulk! Page 1 – 1973
Written by: Gerry Conway || Art by: John Romita Sr.
Lettered by: John Costanza


The Amazing Spider-Man #86
Beware… The Black Widow! Page 9 – 1970
Written by: Stan Lee || Penciled by: John Romita Sr.
Inked by: Jim Mooney || Lettered by: Sam Rosen


From an exhibition at the Society of Illustrators with original artwork showcasing characters from the Marvel Universe, featuring the Avengers and other heroes. It run between July – October 2018.

July 28th, 2018