Sunday, November 28, 2010
Pair of tall carvings, 20 inches high, showing our original parents looking a bit shocked. That one bite of the apple changed everything.
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Monday, November 22, 2010
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Friday, November 19, 2010
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
If you like surface, you've got to like this handmade cup with inlaid wood, c. 1930s. Age has taken its toll on the varnish, but that's only enhanced the cup's beauty.
Monday, November 15, 2010
I'm partial to visually interesting objects that were used in the workplace. The items pictured here represent the rail, agriculture and auto industries. The railroad crossing sign with reflectors has taken on a softer appearance after years of being outside. The International Harvester tractor grill, from the 1950s or earlier, has an expressive face. The shapely and colorful iron object, called Tuff Girl, is a slide hammer used to bang dents out of auto bodies. A body banging a body -- collision shop humor.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
This is a large oil on board, c. 1940s, that was displayed in a juke joint in southwest Atlanta. The grandson of the propertyowner sold the contents to a picker, and the painting made its way through the regional art market. I like that at least a portion of the body color is unrealistic.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Monday, November 8, 2010
The new show at the American Folk Art Museum includes bone structures made by Eugene Von Bruenchenhein. The wildly creative Von Bruenchenhein used chicken parts to build some of his sculptures. Unlike Von Bruenchenhein's work, the piece pictured here, using ham bone, was functional; it held a cigarette pack and matches. One bone has a cut groove to hold a pack of matches. The other held loose matches. The box in the middle held a cigarette pack. The curved bones circling the box and larger bones are held together with woven material. The paint spot decoration is quite elaborate, as good if not better than the paint on Von Bruenchenhein's pieces. Just by coincidence, the same day I received this strange creation, I saw the movie Winter's Bone. Bone -- not ham bone, not chicken bone, but human bone -- is key to solving that movie's central mystery.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
I decided to post this Malcah Zeldis painting that I've had since the early 1990s after seeing the latest post at American Folk Art @ Cooperstown, the excellent blog run by Paul D'Ambrosio, chief curator at the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y. Unlike me, Paul puts considerable thought into his posts. He is a friend of Malcah Zeldis, and in his post shares her life story and how her Jewish heritage has influenced her art. The painting pictured here dates to 1989. I had to shoot it at an odd angle because it's under glass. I bought Five Black Horses in Cooperstown, at the now defunct Toad Hall gallery.
Friday, November 5, 2010
Skeezix was a character in the comic strip Gasoline Alley. The strip began in 1919 but the infant Skeezix didn't arrive as an orphan on the doorstep until 1921, in an attempt to draw a broader audience, i.e. women. Skeezix is slang for orphaned calf. The characters in Gasoline Alley actually aged, so this oilcloth Skeezix probably dates to the late 1920s.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
This 19th century game board looks somewhat modern to me, I guess because it's reminiscent of the target paintings of Kenneth Noland, who died in January at age 85. Noland, a native of Asheville, N.C., was prominent in the mid-century abstract Color Field movement, which produced paintings of flat shapes of solid color. He was married to Paige Rense, the former editor of Architectural Digest. Noland's painting pictured here, "The Other Side of Midnight," is courtesy abstract-art.com. The game board was made well before Noland was born. I don't know what game was played on the target side; the flip side is a conventional checkerboard with slots for the pieces.