Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

Notes of cade oil, spikenard, and labdanum

February 23, 2021

Among the scent notes in the “unisex perfume” A City on Fire — burnt match is another, but that doesn’t require looking things up — from the Imaginary Authors company, whose remarkable fragrances come with synopses of fictitious works of extravagant fiction and with striking graphic-designer labels on their bottles.

The perfumes aren’t cheap — $95 for a 50 ml bottle ($38 for a 14 ml Traveler size, $6 for a 2 ml Sample size) — but then we don’t know how many bottles get sold, and how much the perfumes are actually worn, as opposed to being treasured and displayed as art objects with an olfactory as well as visual and textual dimensions.

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The bull validates Peter’s family

February 7, 2021

Three more Bizarro cartoons from the past, from another crop on Pinterest, with: an allusion you need to catch to understand the cartoon; a complex pun; and laugh-inducing names.

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Two cartoons on the 30th

January 30, 2021

… in today’s comics feed, both connecting to earlier postings on this blog: a Rhymes With Orange on an ambiguity in the verbing to dust; and a Zippy on Magritte’s painting The Son of Man.

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Bert and Ernie’s 51st anniversary

January 30, 2021

Artist Tom Taylor’s portrait of B&E on the occasion:

(#1)

As puppets on the tv show Sesame Street, B&E haven’t aged at all in 51 years; but the characters B&E are human, so of course they have changed and developed over time. They were kids in 1969 (when Sesame Street started, 51 years before 2020, when Taylor drew this portrait); became a (closeted) gay couple about 15 years later (when writer Mark Saltzman, a partnered gay man, joined the show’s staff); and then came out and explored a new life as macho queers  — there are many varieties of homomasculinity — with Ernie taking a more dominant role in the relationship (the t role, in my writing on role differentiation in couples; see the Page on b/t roles on my blog); note Ernie’s proprietary hand on Bert’s shoulder when they pose as a couple.

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Fleurs des males

January 27, 2021

Penises as literally the flowers of manhood, which can be collected into bouquets and other floral arrangements — an occasional theme in artworks that are light-hearted and charming rather than pornographic, intended to amuse rather than to arouse.

The occasion for this posting was a Facebook posting by Greg Parkinson yesterday about a 1982 exhibition “Extended Sensibilities: Homosexual Presence in Contemporary Art” (an early exploration — almost 50 years ago — of the topic), which included one of these artworks:

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It started with a kiss

January 24, 2021

(Six male-male kisses, of different sorts and with different sociocultural meanings, plus a general suffusion of homoerotic content and undercurrents throughout, so this posting is not to everyone’s taste — but there’s nothing raunchy enough to make it plainly unsuitable for kids or the sexually modest.)

It started with a kiss in a poster (from Hana Filip on Facebook, long ago — 2/23/19) apparently signifying the union of the Soviet Army and Navy, but it turns out to be sheer invention, the work of the artist Igor Baskakov, whose specialties include a very uneasy blend of official Communism and high-commercial capitalism:


(#1) The caption: ‘Support/Strengthen the union of the Army and Navy’

Three things about this poster. First, it alludes to (as Hana put it) the fraternal socialist kiss trope, the most (in)famous of which is the kiss between Soviet President Leonid Brezhnev and East German leader Erich Honecker (1979):

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Leyendecker’s jockey

January 21, 2021

In a recent Pinterest mailing, another homoerotic ad from American illustrator J.C. Leyendecker (famous for his depictions of American masculinity in ads for Arrow shirts and collars; and then for Kuppenheimer’s men’s clothes, as here; and in his many covers for the Saturday Evening Post magazine, which considerably influenced the illustrator Norman Rockwell):

(#1)

Elegant masculinity on the left (perhaps the owner of a racehourse), athletic masculinity on the right (a jockey). As in many of JCL’s illustrations, this one strikingly features male buttocks — in this case, the jockey’s.

Two themes here: manly brand icons; and JCL’s homoeroticism.

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Loss of perspective

January 2, 2021

Today’s (1/2/21) Zippy strip, set in a diner tucked away in a corner of the small rural town of Hillsville VA:


(#1) Virgil is the counterman at the Hillsville Diner; the other speaker is an unnamed (and flatly drawn) Dingburger customer

Note that Bill Griffith’s drawing of the Hillsville Diner is perspectival, as his drawings generally are. The shift to a flat line drawing half-way though the strip is jarring.

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Name that artist

December 31, 2020

From sites that post artworks on the net (often turning up unexpected delights), two paintings, both new to me, from a single well-known artist at the beginning of the 20th century. Can you name that artist? (Answer later in this posting.)

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The fish art of Ray Troll

December 15, 2020

An accidental find in preparing yesterday’s posting on Ray Troll’s 2011 political cartoon “Octopi Wall Street”: a whole vein of Ray Troll fish art, most of it silly or raunchy, full of bad puns and surprising references to fish (“The Da Vinci Cod”, featuring the Mona Lisa with a fish). Four examples from a great many…

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