Self-style Facebook art critics review Mitch O'Connell's Times Square Trump billboard

The reviews are in! Mitch O'Connell's Trump "They Live" billboard, which many Boing Boing readers help to fund, has won wide praise among the intellectual elite who discuss fine art on Facebook. Mitch collected the reviews and posted them on his blog. Here's a selection:

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Thrift store shopper scores original drawing by Egon Schiele

A shopper at a Habitat for Humanity ReStore thrift shop in Queens, New York bought a pencil drawing that turned out to be a previously unknown piece by Austrian expressionist painter Egon Schiele (1890-1918). Jane Kallir, director of New York's Galerie St. Etienne and author of Schiele: The Complete Works, authenticated the work. From The Art Newspaper:

Kallir described the (owner) as a part-time art handler who often visits second-hand shops. “He’s got some art background—an eye,” she says. He prefers to remain anonymous, Galerie St Etienne says, and so was unavailable for an interview...

She estimates that the drawing, which is now for sale through the gallery, is worth roughly $100,000 to $200,000. It is currently on view there in an exhibition titled The Art Dealer as Scholar...

If and when the drawing is sold, the gallery says that its owner plans to donate some of the proceeds to Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit organisation that builds and repairs homes for people in need.

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Monet Money: landscape painting sells for $110.7 million

This Claude Monet landscape painting just broke a record by selling for $110.7 million dollars at auction. Read the rest

Creative Adversarial Networks: GANs that make art

Generative Adversarial Networks use a pair of machine-learning models to create things that seem very realistic: one of the models, the "generator," uses its training data to make new things; and the other, the "discerner," checks the generator's output to see if it conforms to the model. Read the rest

Fine art finger painter Iris Scott talks about being "gifted"

When Brooklyn-based artist Iris Scott begins a new piece, she doesn't get out paintbrushes. Instead, she simply puts on gloves when she starts on an oil painting. Scott is a fine art finger painter.

This 10-minute long mini documentary on her from a couple of years ago shares how she got started and what she thinks of her "gift." She's quick to point out that it's not a natural talent, that it's the result of a lot of time and practice:

I do not think I was just gifted by any means. I think that I just practiced a lot. The only gift you might say I have is a tremendous interest and willingness to put tons of hours at it. I definitely don't believe people are born with the gift to paint. I know I wasn't. I just practiced a lot starting at a very early age. And anyone can pick up painting at any time of their life and as long as you throw a ton of hours at it, you will improve in ways you just never thought you possibly could. Just watch what happens, go throw 10,000 hours at one subject or one art form and just watch what happens, suddenly everyone will start telling you you are gifted.

Here's a how-to video she made that shows her process a little closer:

Do go check out her site. I was blown away by her work.

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Art Rangers program helps save our National Parks

I've just learned about the Art Rangers program. It's a cool non-profit, founded by Oscar Nilsson and Alex Tatem, that allows artists to donate fine art photo prints inspired by the National Parks. Folks can then buy the prints to help save our park, as all of the proceeds benefit the National Park Foundation. You can look at the art here and you can become an Art Ranger yourself here.

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Childhood Lost: the photography of Justyna Neryng

A dark, gothic fantasy series by Justyna Neryng, a photographer from Poland.