Thursday, March 26, 2015

Original Mujertees at auction

Signed vintage prints from my "Mujertrees" series have sold at auction as high as $500... this 1992 original piece is opening at Ebay for less than $150 bucks!!!

I believe that this is the original drawing from which the 100 prints were pulled, so this would be a steal at the current opening price!

Bid for it here.

Holy crap! Jessica's in trouble!

Former WaPo freelance galleries art critic Jessica Dawson is in serious kimchi because of this review (I didn't even know that Jessica was still writing art reviews!).

And while Dawson's style of art criticism has a vast and serious set of negative critical issues associated with it (as I've often documented in this blog while she was a freelance art critic for the WaPo), and while The Dawsinator was (and maybe remains) a very thin-skinned recipient of return fire, and because I've met and had a lot of personal interaction with Dawson while she was the WaPo's main gallery art critic, one fact that I can say with a very high degree of assurance, is that her art criticism is not based on racism, as many people now claim because of this review.

As this blog entry is written, there are 124 comments debating Jessica (is she a racist or not, or just a bad art critic???)

From the 1990s: Cy Twombly Over Picasso?

For TBT: This review originally published in the early 1990s:

"Cy Twombly Over Picasso?"
F. Lennox Campello

Published in the Potomac News and Dimensions Magazine

Twombly over Picasso? The National Gallery of Art's latest acquisition of an exceedingly boring painting by Virginia painter Cy Twombly succinctly brings to light a perfect example of the sort of poor decisions made in the seclusion of museum walls which exemplify why the general public is often at odds with our arts intelligentsia. 

Cy Twombly's "Untitled (Bolsena)" was acquired on Friday the 13th of October by the National Gallery of Art at a cost of about one million dollars. The gallery's Collector's Committee also considered a Picasso, a Giacometti and a Baselitz before choosing the Twombly painting, which was aptly described by Washington Post art critic Paul Richards as "evoking the butt-end days of New York action painting. Or a wall besides a public pay phone."

Although it is clear that the Twombly piece will now join the National Gallery's ever growing "Gee, Mom, I can do that!" collection of art, what isn't clear is the rationale for picking Twombly over Picasso or Giacometti. It has been said that Twombly's main claim to fame is his early associations with Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg; if this is his main springboard into the walls of the National Gallery, then it is clear to me that a pathetic mistake has been made by the gallery's Collector's Committee. As a matter of fact one would be hard pressed to pick a Johns or a Rauschenberg over a Picasso!

A new Picasso acquisition would have brought the National Gallery some more public interest, and a price tag of a million dollars seems almost a bargain for perhaps the greatest painter of all time. Whatever his detractors, Picasso is a recognized entity which would attract people who both like and dislike his work. I suspect Twombly's "champions" are not enough to prevent this latest acquisition from being ridiculed by the public and dismissed by the critics. 

 It is also clear that the piece was vastly overpriced, as a similar Twombly sold less than two weeks ago in New York for $167,000. It would be interesting to see in which basement of the National Gallery this scrawling will gather dust in a few years. When it is put into storage, I hope it is well marked as a piece of art, or it may accidentally resurface on a wall next to a pay phone at the Smithsonian Metro Station.