Saturday, March 31, 2012

Not exactly Men's Wearhouse

Men's Wearhouse CEO George Zimmer famously says, "You're going to like the way you look. I guarantee it." He's pretty relaxed. Not so Joseph Hanley, who made this drawing. Mr. Hanley prefers to grab customers by the lapels and win them over with wide-eyed urgency. I have my doubts about Mr. Hanley's sales approach, but I like his drawing. At the bottom it says, "Drawn by Jos T Hanley 1925"

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Two amateur paintings I'd love to own

Both of these paintings are in the permanent collection of Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, the nonprofit organization based in Chicago. To see more art in Intuit's permanent collection go here.

Monday, March 26, 2012

The babes of Speedy's world

Decals showing Speedy the skater's fantasy females decorate this World War II era wood skate box.

Friday, March 23, 2012

All in the details

One of the reasons I like this painting by a New York City woman is I like buildings. Another reason is the attention to detail -- the brick, the shingles, the partially raised shades in the dark windows. The angle, looking upward and showing just part of the house, is interesting as is the decision to leave out other details, like clouds in the stark blue sky. The painting dates to the 1970s.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Yarn bombing

Norcross, a northern suburb of Atlanta, will be yarn bombed on March 31. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., residents participating in Spring Into Yarn will afix knitted items to public objects in the city's historic center. The street art will remain in place through April. Two workshops have been held to teach knitting to prospective bombers. The photo here shows what yarn bombing can look like when the bomber is an artist. Carol Hummel, working in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, in 2005, covered this tree in colorful yarn in a juried competition. Tree Cozy won first place and remained on display for three years.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

35 stars

The American flag was 35 stars from July 4, 1863 to July 4, 1865, which leads me to believe this painting is from the Civil War period. The eagle and the stars have glitter or remnants of glitter. The painting appears to be water-based paint on heavy stock paper; it's under glass. The 35th state was West Virginia, which formed over differences with Virginia about supporting the Union or the Confederacy. The Civil War ended under the 35-star flag. The 36th star marked Nevada's statehood.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

From a group of 30 drawings

A group of 30 ink drawings sold a few days ago at Stair Antique Auctioneers and Appraisers for $7,000. They belonged to Gerald Kornblau, an art and antiques dealer from Claverack, N.Y., who died last summer. Kornblau exhibited at the Winter Antiques Show.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

When hunters wore plaid

I'm pretty sure this is not the preferred way to carry a newly shot buck. But the hunter in plaid, he plays by his own rules. Once home, he'll grab his gal and all excited plant a wet one, and she'll recoil at his peculiar taste and smell, wiping a white hair from her lips. A snapshot that sold a few months ago on eBay (saratogastash).

Friday, March 9, 2012

Burlon Craig large face vessel

Burlon Craig was a potter from Vale, N.C., who began making face jugs in the late 1970s. In 1984 he was named a National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellow because of the beautiful pottery he created using traditional methods. The NEA describes Craig's technique this way: "Craig shoveled his clay from the bottomland along the South Fork of the Catawba River, and then trucked it home to grind it in a pug mill. Next, he turned his jugs, jars, pitchers, and other forms on his foot-powered treadle wheel, pulling up the walls of the pots as he pumped the flywheel with his left foot. His alkaline glazes were made from local materials — usually crushed glass bottles, wood ashes, iron cinders, water and clay — and then finely ground in a hand-turned, water-powered stone mill. Finally, he 'burned' his wares in a huge wood-fired groundhog kiln, a long and arduous task lasting eight to 10 hours." The description continues: "There is a purity to Craig's work: His shapes are elegant, the textures of his glazes rich and earthy. His long experience shows in the deceptively simple forms he has favored." The blue tint often seen in Craig's pottery is from the titanium oxide found in the clay near the Catawba River. Craig died in 2002 at age 88. This vessel is 15.6 inches tall.

Monday, March 5, 2012

King Saul and David painting on velvet

I had this large Biblical scene painting folded up and stored in a cabinet for the longest time. Finally, I couldn't stand to see it hidden away any longer and took it to the framer. The shepherd boy David plays his harp to soothe the volatile King Saul. Among the king's peeves -- the popularity of David, who killed the giant Goliath and thus had become more popular than the jealous king. The painting is 53 inches wide and 33 inches high. The old velvet is no longer soft.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The eye of Radio Guy

The toy car mold is made from a 10-pound block of laminated wood and is 17 inches long. Might be a Ford. The display shows children's spats. And the door speaks for itself. From the shop of Radio Guy.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Husband's message from the land of souls

A chalk portrait on slate under glass that apparently is meant to reassure a widow. The sea of words is somewhat hard to read, but this much is clear: "Dear cass, passions of earth life again I reach from the land of souls to you my dear are of earth I bring to you the joy and comfort and health and peace of mind of that you need In old age but you are just ripening like the beautiful fruit in the Orchard by and by to gravitate to when you belong to the shores of eternal bliss and happiness be Of good cheer for I will receive you into the summer land with open arms And bid you welcome to our home over here And to be again as our whole family never more to part for my love for you all has grown in its purity and as a husband and father I prepared a home for you all angels bless you for I am always with you. -Smith Steel
It's from Jefferson, Ohio.