Tag Archives: painting

The Venus Effect and the Artifice of Assumption: Watching the World Watch You Watching Your Screen

The Venus Effect” is a fascinating concept in painting and film that shatters the illusion of the perceived, the perceiver and the preceptor.  In the example below, the woman is peering into a mirror.

At first glance, we think she is looking at her own reflection, but the angle of the mirror deceives us, because she is really directly looking at us, not herself.  In fact, the artifice of assumption is something of an aesthetic cheat because we fail to realize she is watching us while we watch her.  She is incapable of viewing her own reflection in that particular angle of yaw.

Read more

Sing for Hope with 88 Pianos in New York City

Street theatrics are the ultimate form of an Urban Semiotic, and this Summer, in the five boroughs of New York City, you can place your hands on 88 pianos dotting the city core and open your throat in song to light up the neighborhood with your shared joy:  Sing for Hope!

Read more

A Shed Story: 27 into 5 Does Not Go

Notwithstanding all the emotions involved the hardest part of moving several thousands of miles to a new country is what you take with you. Many people who undertake moves of this distance move en-masse as a family, often with the assistance of an outside agency such as work that will ultimately pay for your removals and help you through the last frantic months in one location and assist you at the other end. Large organisations have their own relocation services, either their own in-house or a specialist company contracted to do the same.

Read more

Is Copying the Mona Lisa Inspiration or Stealing?

On October 26, 2007 in our WordPunk blog, I wrote an article — Is Stealing Ever Good? — advocating the theft of inspiration as a qualified original intent:

Some call stealing inspiration, but if you see or experience something and then change or employ those experiences in your life — you have effectively borrowed and stolen the thoughts of others and I wholly encourage that effort.

I am not condoning plagiarism, but I am supporting the opportunity to consider and use ideas that are not your own because there are no original thoughts left in the world.

Over the weekend, I read a fascinating article in the New York Times indicating that the world-famous “copy” of the Mona Lisa was probably actually sanctioned by the great Leonardo da Vinci himself:

Read more

Painting Tables

by Steve Gaines

the morning my Grandfather died
he was painting picnic tables
making his way slowly down a long line of them
aluminum colored and pealing in the sun
badly wearing their too many years

he was bringing them back to a shining new life
and he was quietly dying on his way
one foot in front of the next
one breath on top of the last
slower and slower

Read more