Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

Still more about Jean Tinguely’s Le rêve de Sofia Loren

Things are really bad when the only articles you can find about something are the ones you’ve written yourself. Even worse when the things you find aren’t relevant at all (e.g., I think she is being serenaded with “impossible dream” in the film version of “Man of La Mancha”).

On the other hand, Tinguely did another work called “Sophia Loren’s Nightmare” in 1985 which is housed in the Fukuoka Art Museum in Japan (seriously, I’ not making this up). thingelyThis one was made the same year  “Le rêve de Sofia Loren” according to this work’s other mention on the web. Unfortunately, these are two different works. The Fukuoka Art Museum does describe “the Nightmare of Sophia Loren”:

The material culture of the 20th century left behind massive amounts of discarded trash. “Junk Art” is a form of art that makes use of such waste to create works of art. Born in Switzerland and active in France, Tinguely is a representative artist of this genre. His creations, with their strange motor-generated movements, are sometimes also classified as “Kinetic Art.” This work, made up of old motor parts and a doll’s head and whose title carries the name of a famous actress, performs with much noise a nonsensical set of repeated mechanical motions. The work is grotesque but at the same time seems to cheerfully brush away the anxieties of contemporary life and reveals Tinguely’s style in the 1980s at its best.

I hope you get the idea.

Not that a picture does justice to these works of art. A video would be much more useful. I am still trying to find a video or picture of “Le rêve de Sofia Loren”, or to see the thing again.

Now, to find a video of the sculpture of a Monk that was at the entrance to the Royal Museum of Modern Art in Brussels

“Looked a lot like Che Guevara”

This is  artist Jim Fitzpatrick with his iconic poster of Che Guevara.01.che-edL

Loads of history for Jim and Me.

Jim’s side of the story:

In 1967 I was outraged by the manner of Che Guevara’s execution while a prisoner of war in Bolivia and it led me to create this now world-famous image.

I have now also made this image available for free download so that it can be used by everyone -including those who cannot afford my prints or canvas of El Che: the unemployed, the oppressed, the victims of banker-imposed austerity here in Ireland, the EU and elsewhere, those who fight against the legal/political elite and the corrupt banker cartels who think they rule us -and those who rage against injustice.

This image is yours. Use it!

No resale or commercial usage please -it has been exploited enough.

Please remember I do NOT ever license this image for commercial usage. Misuse this image or resell any reproductions thereof and you will be liable for a fine of $10,000 per item sold or for any violation of my copyright of this image.


Free usage for leftist causes under Creative Commons Licence.
No fee for leftist/socialist political usage.

There’s more to Jim’s side in that people attempted to suppress the image. Toss in that it has been used for commercial purposes, as he points out above.

My side of this is that I heard Horslip’s “Book of Invasions” and it got me into the “Celtic” thing. The only copy I could find of this (besides Lady Gregory’s) was his. Actually, I think Jim published this after Horslips made their album.

Many years later, I encounter Jim on the ‘net and it turns out he is the one who did the poster of Che.

Because, long before Horslips’ Book of Invasions (Feck, Happy to meet, Sorry to Part, if we are going to go there). I WANTED a copy of this poster, but none was to be found.

So, I am happy to pass around the link to it so anyone else who wants an official Jim Fitzpatrick version of it.

Now, whether I got a copy of the signed, limited edition shall be between Jim and me: unless he comments here. But, what would you think if I have been looking (and lusting) for so long for a hard to find icon like this?

I am happy to help recclaim Che for Jim.

La quête pour trouver le rêve de Sophia Loren

Robert Doisneau Jean TinguelyYes, I’m still trying to get a picture of Jean Tinguely’s Le rêve de Sophia Loren. Alas, I have a monopoly on this subject, which seems odd since no one can properly comment about it without having some sort of reference to the work (photo or video).

I am of the opinion it is in the basement of the Musée Modern Museum in Brussels.  As of now, the museum is closed for renovations, which means this work is truly inaccesible.

I know Paris is Sandrine Voillet’s city, but maybe she might be able to arrange a private viewing of this work if I bribed her with a good meal.  She may be a Parisian, but she is also an art curator. Perhaps, she might be persuaded that this work needs more publicity and come to my aid.

In the mean time, I came upon Robert Doisneau’s 1959 photograph of Jean Tinguely, Portrait de l’artiste, which I think captures the artist and his personality.

We can only imagine that the smoke is the beginning of the self-destruction process.

Yes, I realise the title for this is truly French.


Two videos which remind me of each other.

The first is OK Go’s The Writing’s On the Wall:

The second is this advert for the Honda CRV:

Some more fun trompe-l’œil.  I particularly like Cafe Trompe L’oeil, which is now in the Linday Murals and Public Art Society in Lindsay, CA:

Posted 27/10/2014 by lacithedog in Art, Trompe-l'œil, video

Tagged with , ,

More about Jean Tinguely’s Le rêve de Sofia Loren

For some reason, I am the top post about this work, which kinda bugs me since I was hoping to actually see a picture of the thing (not bad anyway since it’s stashed away somewhere in the Museum of Modern Art in Brussels)

Anyway, it’s also mentioned at Recherches en histoire de l’art contemporain in the post La métaphysique dans la sculpture de Jean Tinguely: Axes de recherche.   Of course, it’s just mentioned since I think very few people have seen the thing in the past 21 years. My comment that “you push a button and the thing started moving and making noise” is about as erudite as you will get about the work for above reason.

But what do you expect from an artist who made a self destruction sculpture (Homage to New York, which you can sort of see in videos)?

What izzit?

By mistake, I pasted the following into a response and thought about leaving it:


A little hint by providing a QR code if you have any thoughts that this might be a password.

It’s more of a bleed through from my real blogging passion (that is not an optical effect in the centre).  I wasn’t sure what exactly a QR code was when I first saw one on an advert at a train station.  I thought it might be the work of one of those Banksy types who have tended to proliferate with work of varying quality–mostly crap.

I like this from the Wikipedia article on Banksy:

Banksy does not sell photos of street graffiti directly himself;[9][10]
however, art auctioneers have been known to attempt to sell his street
art on location and leave the problem of its removal in the hands of the
winning bidder.

Somebody say something about one being born every minute?

If you figure out what is going on here, you will find that my taste in art is a bit more traditional–although clever modern “art” is appreciated.

I do find Banksy to be quite clever–even if I can’t hang his work in my front room.

But would I really want to anyway?

BTW, don’t waste your time or freedom trying to use this as a password.  It is what it purports to be.

Homage to New York

OK, I really loved Jean Tinguely’s Le rêve de Sofia Loren when the Museum of Modern Art in Brussels had it out. Of course, I liked it because you pushed a button and it started up, causing the museum guards to go nuts. That is my theory on why it vanished to storage.

But, good art is meant to be experienced.

In that spirit, I bring you Jean Tinguely’s most renowned work: Homage to New York

Here’s a better idea of what is going on in the above picture.

Don’t blink–

I understand that the entrance to New Barnes Museum (subject of the film “The Art of the Steal”) in Philadelphia is going to have a sculpture commissioned just for it by Jean Tinguely of Albert Barnes spinning in his grave.


OK, I tend to avoid reading the stats for this blog, but my curiousity gets the better of me every so often.  Mostly because I am curious as to what people read when they come here.  It’s usually not what I consider my better posts, but what the heck?

In this case, I had a funny surprise in that the BBC (which sends me a fair mount of traffic) did it with my post: You can save your money.  That post is about the Production of Anna Nicole Smith the Opera which was presented at the Royal Opera House.  You can save your money since the opera was broadcast by the BBC. Note the referrer,

That is the BBC’s site for the broadcast.  You need to blow up the picture to see the Buzz about this programme–Discussion on Blogs (on right) has a link to You can save your money.

The amusing bit is that the post only netted 4 views with the top three views being:
Home page 30
Was Anne of Cleves really a dog? 20
Michael Portillo, Bradshaw’s Guide, and Great British Railway Journeys 9

I never fail to be amazed by what people choose to read!

Rereading the You can save your money post, my guess is that my making a comment that the BBC gives you value for your licence fee was what did the trick.  After all, you can see a sold out Covent Garden Opera for less than one ticket would cost if you pay your licence fee!

Guitar lessons with Pierre Bensusan

at a mere 300 bucks a pop (I’m assuming US$)!

The rest of us poor souls will have to make do with his music book.

Posted 31/03/2011 by lacithedog in Art, arts, Guitar, music, Pierre Bensusan

Salsa Celtica!

I love Salsa Celtica, mainly because they have the only version of Auld Lang Syne that I can tolerate. Yeah, I realise that’s blasphemy to say for the most part that you can’t tolerate that Hogmanay standard, but…

I should add that one of the best Hogmanays I ever celebrated was in a Hispanic household! Dancing to salsa music in my kilt!

Anyway, it seems that the US may have a changing demographic where there will be more Hispanics than white folk.

Live with it! Especially since it produces interesting music.

Desperate Romantics

This is the trailer for the BBC Two series Desperate Romantics which was last broadcast a year ago. The show was based on the book by Franny Moyle. Fortunately, it is available on DVDeven in the culturally deprived USA!

You can save your money!

A while back, I had a previous post about Anna Nicole The Opera, which is an opera based on the life of the American Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith performed at the Royal Opera House. The same person who was involved with Jerry Springer the Opera had a part in creating this. While it does have all the motifs of the opera, tragedy, sex, money, and so on, it seems too modern for my taste. As I said to someone off line: 20th Century (and in this case, 21st Century) opera seems to be lots of discordant music.

Anyway, the BBC has broadcast this work on BBC 4 and it’s available on iPlayer for the time being (Available until 1:09AM Tue, 5 Apr 2011). Here’s the BBC’s write up:

The television premiere of the hit opera based on the life of the young American Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith, who was thrust into the global media spotlight when she married an octogenarian billionaire, became a reality TV star and, after a drug overdose, died tragically early.

Composer Mark-Anthony Turnage and librettist Richard Thomas have created a darkly comic work for the Royal Opera which satirises celebrity and consumer culture. Eva-Maria Westbroek sings the challenging and complex title role, and the two central men in her life, her billionaire husband and her lawyer, are sung by Alan Oke and Gerald Finley. Musical director Antonio Pappano conducts the Orchestra and Chorus of the Royal Opera House.

I’m not sure I would want to pay Covent Garden prices to see this, but it will defintely be worth the TV Licence fees on the BBC!

Thank you, Auntie! yer darn tootin’ I added it to my iPlayer playlist!

Also, the BBC has something on Opera’s Fallen Women which ties into the above. Here’s the Beeb’s write up:

Bizet’s Carmen, Puccini’s Madame Butterfly, Verdi’s Violetta – some of the most famous and powerful roles in opera and they are all, in different ways, fallen women.

And now there’s a newcomer to their ranks – Anna Nicole. The Royal Opera’s new smash hit is an operatic version of the life of former Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith. Antonio Pappano, music director of the Royal Opera House and conductor of Anna Nicole, delves into the world of opera’s fallen women and discovers how for centuries composers and librettists have used female characters in opera to explore and challenge society’s attitudes and prejudices.

As I said, Anna Nicole the Opera has all the elements of Opera. My trepidation is how sensational and weird would it be?

Anna Nicole the opera

I opened the paper to find this article about an opera about Anna Nicole Smith that described the work as “one of the strangest shows ever to reach the Royal Opera House”.

The libretto is by Richard Thomas, co-creator of Jerry Springer: The Opera

The Guardian’s review can be found here.

I’ll give it a pass.

Beau Bo D’Or

Thank you, White Rabbit for mentioning Beau Bo D’Or.  He’s a British artist who creates political images which are more meaningful to the British Market, but some of them have relevance to the US.  Such as this one of Rupert Murdoch.  It’s quite appropriate since the Tea Party is basically a Fox News creation


Change the Date to the Coming US election and this is quite appropriate!


Anyway, here is a video of Beau Bo D’Or’s images.

Unfortunately, the site has been closed down and the images removed.  So, the video is the best sampling you will have of his work.

“You want me to throw 30,000 pounds into a dustbin…

Who do you think I am? The Arts Council?”

I don’t think the above is an exact quote, but it came from The BBC Show Ideal (I think S6E7–The Ear). The point is there are somethings out there which people attempt to pass off as art that are really pushing the envelope. In this case, Sally Davies’s McDonalds Happy Meal Project. Ms. Davies bought a McDonalds Happy Mean back on 10 April 2010. According to Ms. Davies this:

McDonalds Happy Meal. Purchased fresh from McDonalds on April 10, 2010 and have been photographing subsequently ever since. Its sitting on my coffee table with nothing covering. it. No bugs, no mould, no smell, nothing.

I’m not exactly sure what Ms. Davies is trying to demonstrate here, but it is a better argument for going vegetarian than anything PETA will provide you. Salon has mentioned this under the topic of Food technology. It seems that McDonalds’s food is impervious to rot and Ms. Davies is documenting this fact. But it seems Ms. Davies is not the only one to point out the unnatural long life of McDonalds products:

For more on Ms. Davies’s project see:
Why We’re Scared Of Happy Meals
McDonald’s Hamburgers: Almost Entirely Indestructible
The secret to the immortality of McDonald’s food

and you can see pictures of this amazing burger at:
Davies McDonalds Happy Meal Project

I have to admit that my proposal for quantitative easing is to give more money to the arts, but I think we need to be a bit selective about funding and what is considered art. Ms. Davies seems to be engaging in a rather unique science project: not art.

The thing is that Art and culture are super for revitalising the economy, but it has to be something that is approachable: not something that makes you want to puke. In the US, its 100,000 nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences generate $166.2 billion annually in U.S. economic activity. They support 5.7 million jobs and provide nearly $30 billion in government revenue. Arts and culture are central to tourism in the UK: this was worth £86 billion in 2007 – 3.7% of GDP – and directly employed 1.4 million people. Inbound tourism is a vital export earner for the UK economy, worth £16.3 billion to the UK economy in 2008. (Source Why the arts matter).

I’m not really going to get into the politics, economics, and such, but the world is moving from a consumer society to one that needs a more sustainable economic model, which arts and culture can help to provide.