By Donald Kolberg, Arts Bookmarks Editor
Monthly link highlights to online resources and websites that seem informative and inspiring for artists or art enthusiasts. Most are free. Suggestions are welcomed.
With June here, the arts step up their presence around the world. For many artists the nice weather means opening the doors to studios, while here at WTP we are gearing up this summer to bring you the best from the Web!
The First New Blue Pigment in Over Two Hundred Years Will Become a Crayon
Soon to slide into crayon boxes everywhere: a newcomer that will make widely accessible the first blue pigment created in over 200 years. Known as “YInMn blue,” the pigment was the surprise result of a 2009 chemistry lab experiment at Oregon State University (OSU), and it’s now set to be put into real-world use, thanks to Crayola.
Blue was actually the first man-made pigment: Egyptian blue, as Allison Meier explains on Hyperallergic, which ancient hands created by mixing and heating quartz sand, copper, an alkali, and lime. Since then, scientists over the years have discovered cerulean blue, Prussian blue, and cobalt blue, which, according to NPR, was the last synthesized blue to be commercialized. YInMn is especially marketable because its compounds are highly stable, resistant to oil and water, which makes it versatile for many products, from crayons to paint.
Cristina Iglesias: Installation Artist and Sculptor
I thought I would continue with sharing my collection of vintage digital art catalogs. This one is a rare glimpse into the art of a woman whose contemporary work is beginning to shine in the United States.
Cristina is a Spanish installation artist and sculptor living and working in Torrelodones, Madrid. She works with many materials, including steel, water, glass, bronze, bamboo, and straw. Cristina Iglesias’s work exemplifies the great strength and imagination of Spanish art today. One of an emerging generation of artists from this country, Iglesias creates work that is both innovative and connected to the past. Her archetypal forms and lyrical structures redefine our perceptions of architectural and natural spaces; her intricate surfaces and tactile materials are rooted in the rich aesthetic heritage of her native region. In 2011, Iglesias was the first Spanish woman invited to exhibit her work at the Folkestone Triennial; and on January 20, 2016, she was awarded the Tambor del Oro in San Sebastian. She is the sister of film composer Alberto Iglesias.
When Wrong Goes Right: 30 Creative Museum 404 Error Pages
Whether you go to the Salvator Dali Museum website or the Museum of Modern Art, eventually you will come upon a 404 page.
According to Wikipedia, the HTTP 404, 404 Not Found, and 404 (pronounced “four oh four”) error message is a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) standard response code, in computer network communications, to indicate that the client was able to communicate with a given server, but the server could not find what was requested.
The website-hosting server will typically generate a “404 Not Found” web page when a user attempts to follow a broken or dead link; hence the 404 error being one of the most recognizable errors encountered on the World Wide Web.
But don’t despair. The folks at Hyperallergic have now put together thirty fun, interesting and just playful 404 pages to stem the tide of frustration you might feel when you land on one—especially if it’s for the “New Oops Museum” (New Museum, New York) or the Guggenheim:
StoriesToArt.com is Live!
Launched on May 29, 2017 in Charlottesville, Virginia, StoriesToArt is a new kind of gallery—one with a unique focus on personal stories, one-of-a-kind work of all mediums, and the spirit of collaboration. StoriesToArt enables customers to select or commission exclusive pieces of art, poetry, or music directly inspired by their stories. The result is a powerful and personal work of art—for themselves or as the perfect gift—that allows professional artists to express their own styles based on customers’ creative input.
If that isn’t inspiring enough, StoriesToArt Gives Back—their nonprofit initiative—ensures that five percent of all proceeds from the site go toward supporting arts education by funding grants that allow schools to hire StoriesToArt artists to help them transform their own stories into works of art.
Basquiat purchased for $57.3 million!
A Japanese billionaire and art collector has spent $98m (£68m) in a shopping spree at two auctions of contemporary art in New York. $57.3m was on a Basquiat!
While I am not a fan of Jean-Michel Basquait, I respect Maezawa’s intentions in the purchasing of Basquait’s work: “Regardless of its condition or sales value, I was driven by the responsibility to acknowledge great art and the need to pass on not only the artwork itself, but also the knowledge of the artist’s culture and his way of life to future generations.” And Yusaku Maezawa, who profited in online retailing, bought seven artworks in total at Christies and Sotheby’s. His most expensive purchase was a large piece by Jean-Michel Basquiat for $57.3m, a record for the US artist. Other sales included a 1968 work by Cy Twombly, which sold at Sotheby’s for $36.6m. Maezawa plans to display the art in Tokyo, where he lives.
Here is a list of his other purchases:
- An untitled Christopher Wool painting of the word “Chameleon” for $13.9m
- A painting called “Runaway Nurse” by Richard Prince for $9.7m, a record for the artist
- A sculpture called “Lobster” by Jeff Koons for $6.9m
- A self-portrait as Vincent van Gogh by Adrian Ghenie for $2.6m
- “Sumac 17,” a mobile by sculptor Alexander Calder for $5.8m
- A light sculpture spelling out “Eat War” by Bruce Nauman for $1.69m
Delve into Detail—Learn the Basics of Macro
Macro photography is a genre where you’re photographing a miniature world that’s often not visible to the naked eye. A macro photographer works with levels of magnification in the range from 1:1 to 30:1. Beyond 30:1, that’s not macro, but rather micro photography, which requires much more complicated imaging technology than normal macro photography.
You Don’t Always Need a Macro Lens
If you’re photographing an object at 1:1 zoom, then it will cover your whole sensor, but if you’re shooting at 5:1 zoom, then you’re only photographing a part of your subject, and the object in the viewfinder will be five times larger than in reality. For photographing objects at a magnification above 1:1, you need a specialized lens. At the moment only Canon offers it in its product line. This is the legendary Canon MP-E 65 mm f/2.8, and it allows for magnification up to 5:1. If you have a different brand of DSLR at home, then you can achieve the necessary zoom level with extension tubes, placed between the camera’s lens and its body.
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