During the 1950s, surrealist and ethologist Desmond Morris mentored Congo, a chimpanzee, in the great ape's artistic pursuits. Congo painted more than 400 works that were purchased by the likes of Joan Miró and Pablo Picasso. And now Morris is selling his collection of 55 of Congo's paintings at London's Mayor Gallery. He's keeping just one of them. The paintings -- which will be priced around £1,500 – £6,000 -- will first be on exhibit from December 3-19. From It's Nice That:
Morris worked with a number of apes in his research but explains that none matched Congo’s apparent artistic instinct. “No other apes were controlling the mark making and varying the patterns as he was,” Morris says. “I originally picked Congo out as one of the more boisterous at the zoo and felt that his strong personality would respond well to to focused periods of working together..."
Morris commented on his decision to sell all but one of his favourite paintings from the time, saying “I am holding onto the serious, scientific research notes that I made during my years working with Congo, but, at 91 years old, I now would rather that the paintings and drawings be made available to other collectors, to whom I hope they will bring as much pleasure as they have to me.”
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Mindbending work by Portugal-based graffiti artist Rodrigo Miguel Sepúlveda Nunes, aka Vile. See more at his Instagram feed, vile_graffiti.
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You know what's better than a smartwatch? Literally everything else. But especially: the centuries' worth of wrist-mounted paint palettes worn by some artists.
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Joan C Gratz's animated short "Mona Lisa Descending A Staircase" is a lovely and trippy 2D claymation of iconic artworks transforming one into another. After spending a decade on the piece, Gratz won the 1992 Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film. Gratz called her animation technique "clay painting." From Educational Media Reviews Online:
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“Clay-painting” is a unique process that blends film and painting, and an innovation that garnered Joan Gratz’s Mona Lisa Descending A Staircase a 1992 Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film. In this true landmark of animation, numerous famous and iconic paintings from 20th century art are “reproduced as exactly as possible but the transitions between these paintings [are] used to communicate the relationship of artistic movements” as Gratz has stated. “In the clay painting technique, which I began developing in 1966, I work by painting directly before the camera, making changes to a single painting, shooting a frame, repainting and shooting, etc. In the end there is one painting with the process recorded on film, the product is the process.”
I heard a rumor that Willem Dafoe will be filming a movie for Disney near where I've been dry camping these past six months. All of the employees at the lodge where he'll be staying have been instructed to only speak to him if he talks to them first. Gross.
But not quite gross enough to keep me from wanting to see At Eternity's Gate, a new film starring Dafoe about the trials and tribulations in the life of Vincent Van Gogh. Read the rest
Yoko Eda, a recent grad from Musashino Art University's Science of Design department, has produced a series of gorgeous, hyperealistic acrylic paintings showing everyday objects (glue bottles, toothpaste tubes, packages of plastic tubs, cleaning brushes, boxes of matches, lip balm tubes) sliced and arrayed like sashimi. Spoon and Tamago has lots more of Eda's outstanding work.
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Kareem Waris Olamilekan is a Nigerian artist who paints astounding hyperreal portraits. He's 11. From his Instagram @waspa_art:
I am waspa the bitty artist
Art is my calling
It's in me
I draw, paint and design.
All Africa interview: "My Legs Shook As I Drew the Portrait of French President"
(Thanks Bob Pescovitz!)
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For centuries, many fine books have held a magical secret not within their pages but on the edges. Stunning fore-edge paintings are only visible when the book's pages are slightly fanned. Great Big Story introduces us to Martin Frost, one of the world's last fore-edge painters.
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This lovely trilogy of videos by Vugar Efendi collects shots from movies that are homages to notable paintings. Read the rest
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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Artist Peter Combe turns hardware store paint swatches into gorgeous pixellated portraits. Read the rest
Most of us have enjoyed the soothing, soft-spoken art instructions of public TV painter Bob Ross, but how many of us have actually tried to paint using his methods?
I guessed "not many" but I was wrong. On YouTube, there's this "Bob Ross Challenge" which means lots of folks are taking a stab at creating their own "happy little trees," with mixed results.
In the Buzzfeed video from 2017 (above), watch as three beginning painters fearlessly try their hand at following the master.
Then, watch these two brave souls do the same thing:
Previously: Zen out on Bob Ross peeling off contact paper
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Tatsuo Horiuchi, 77, creates lovely landscape paintings using the color graphing features of Excel. As William Gibson said, "The street finds its own uses for things."
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This is called "Gettin' Wet on Wet with Deadpool 2" and it's the slick new, and wonderfully bizarro, teaser trailer for Deadpool 2. It shows Deadpool actor Ryan Reynolds (we assume) dressed in the superhero's costume and then dressed like the late TV painter Bob Ross, giant white fro and all. You have to sit through a minute and a half of weird, and hilarious, banter and "painting" just to see flashes of the film.
Even the description is off the wall:
After surviving a near fatal bovine attack, a disfigured cafeteria chef (Wade Wilson) struggles to fulfill his dream of becoming Mayberry’s hottest bartender while also learning to cope with his lost sense of taste. Searching to regain his spice for life, as well as a flux capacitor, Wade must battle ninjas, the yakuza, and a pack of sexually aggressive canines, as he journeys around the world to discover the importance of family, friendship, and flavor – finding a new taste for adventure and earning the coveted coffee mug title of World’s Best Lover.
Deadpool 2 hits theaters June 1, 2018.
Here's a closer look at that Norman Rockwell-esque painting at the end of the trailer:
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Micki Myers paints very realistic vegetables and fruit. Just one item in each case, floating in a pure existential realm of nutritious plant life. Pictured above is an apple. Here's a pickle:
Also, an obligatory banana. Read the rest
San Francisco-based artist Lina West creates these beautiful hand-painted mandala stones covered in gorgeous fractal patterns. Read the rest
Many of us who play fantasy and sci-fi roleplaying and tabletop miniature games struggle with our ability to paint minis so that they look halfway decent on the table. Getting me to paint my minis is like getting 8-year-old me to eat his broccoli. I'm something of a perfectionist and I look at a lot of pro painted miniatures, in gaming magazines and online. My miniatures never look as good as what I see, so it's an effort for me to even bother. But also being a perfectionist, I wouldn't think of "gaming in the nude" (playing with unpainted miniatures). And so I press ahead, and try to do at least a little painting every night.
My pal, James Floyd Kelly, who I wrote about previously when he launched his new dungeon crafting channel, Game Terrain Engineering, was in a similar boat of not being happy with his painting chops. So, he decided to buy the Reaper Miniatures Learn To Paint Bones Kit and record a series of videos of him painting the three minis that come in the kit. It's really encouraging to watch the series and to see how much his painting improves over the three videos and three miniatures. Bolstered by that improvement, Jim plans on now getting the next kit in the series, the Layer Up Bones Miniatures Learn to Paint Kit and to paint (and hopefully document) those three miniatures.
Also: Here's a list of beginner painting tips that I ran into recently. These are all of the same tips that I share with people. Read the rest