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Blog Posts by Subject: Painting

Mary Beth Edelson - artist extraordinaire and Radical Woman Artist

Mary Beth EdelsonI'm looking forward to Tuesday.  Wouldn't you like to meet an artist who draws herself with bunny ears?

I've been reading about Mary Beth Edelson.  In the early 1970s she gave up on painting, after 18 years, and began working with others—22 others exactly.  She invited them to suggest what she should create, and based on those suggestions out came an exhibition/installation/earthwork 

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São Paulo: A Street Artist’s Paradise @ Grand Central Library

Come now through December to see an Exhibit at Teen Central in the Grand Central Library of Photos, Stickers and Zines from the streets of São Paulo.

In this pulsating, polluted metropolis of 18 million people – many of whom barely survive – exists a flourishing array of subcultures.  An extraordinary range of vibrant public art thrives amid broken buildings, garbage-strewn 

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Heist Society: A Review

Katarina Bishop grew up all over Europe, but she isn’t an heiress. She has a Faberge egg, but she isn’t a Romanov. Kat is used to looking at a room and seeing all the angles, but that was before she stole a whole other life at the Colgan School only to walk away from it months later without a trace.

That was before everything went sideways.

While Kat was busy trying to steal a new, legit, life the family business prospered. When a powerful mobster’s priceless art collection goes missing it isn’t all that surprising that 

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Pic Pick: I Ain't Gonna Paint No More

Tell me more: What is happening in this painting?

Recently, a reader asked me how to find out what the painting Lotus Lilies by Charles Courtney Curran was all about. All the reader knew was that the Terra Foundation for American Art owned this painting, as well as several others by Curran.  This type of query is popular for art works located in New York City museums. When an artist 

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POP! goes the Picture Collection: Warhol at NYPL

Self-Portrait, 1967.(1)He came from my hometown. As a teenager, he collected photographs of movie stars. A few years later, I clipped fan zines featuring Hayley Mills and the Beatles and the Rolling Stones and the Dave Clark 5 and

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New Dorp Library 2010 Teen Art Gallery

Here is my coworker Jen's report on the 2010 Teen Art Gallery.

Saturday August 28th was New Dorp Library’s second Art Gallery that I’ve been allowed to host in the branch… Each year has been a wonderful ball full of stress and excitement! I was constantly worried about having enough finished pieces to fill the room with color and give people a chance to see inside each artist's mind.

Each month we had 3 dates for teens to join us for our

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Artist ELBOW-TOE: A Conversation with Brian Adam Douglas on Wed, Sept 1 @ 6:30, at the Mid Manhattan Library

“How do you begin?” I asked. "Well, I usually start with the head, the face, the eyes. Once I get the eyes I can move on.  The process becomes easier for me. It is at though there is a conservation going on between me and the piece and it is all because of the eyes. You know Lucian Freud always started with the nose, from there he would work his way out, letting the piece unfold naturally. I start 

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A Natalie Chanin-Inspired Booklist.

If you were one of the seventy lovely people who attended our last Handmade Crafternoon (in May—eegads, so long ago!), then you know already what a wonderful time it was.  Natalie Chanin encouraged us all to take up needle and thread and make sustainable fashions entirely by hand from the humblest scraps of soft cotton jersey.  She filled the afternoon with stories, practical advice, and enthusiasm, and Maura and I couldn't have imagined a better way to wind up our spring series.  And of 

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Art in the Stacks: Part One

Collis P Huntington mansion, interior, Central Hall with painted lunette murals by H. Siddons Mowbray, c. 1894. Altered photograph courtesy Yale University Art Gallery.Those who use the resources of the Art & Architecture Collection come in splendid variety: old and young, sophisticated and naive, happily curious and relentlessly searching. We love it, for where else could you be asked "just what is that building in back of that Madonna" followed by a search for more of Grandmama's old Limoge 

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Where Is St. Marks? Investigating Place Names in the East Village

It is 8th Street, but from Third Avenue to Avenue A it is called St. Marks Place and is named for St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery, which is not even on 8th Street, or St. Marks Place, but at the intersection of 10th Street, Second Avenue, and Stuyvesant Street. The land there has been a site of Christian worship since 1660. The history of St. Marks Place doesn’t go back that far, but a surprising amount of history has happened on these four 

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Paris and Provence at Hudson Park

Hudson Park is hosting "Paris and Provence," art by West Village painter Elliott Gilbert, in its Reference Room Gallery through the end of February.

Abbaye de Sénanque

The work includes 15 canvases of Provence and some lesser-known areas of Paris, including Parc Monceau, a favorite place of Monet. One more view after the break.

Come by the library to see the full exhibit. For more information about Elliott Gilbert, go to   Arches of Montfort... Read More ›

Help with a Mystery: Adela Lintelmann's Portraits

Who are these people? The work of Adela Smith Lintelmann (1902 - 1996) is currently on display in the Hudson Park Reference Room Gallery.

Adela Smith Lintelmann's art career spanned nearly seventy years and she was a role model for both artists and feminists. In her native British Columbia, she established herself as a mathematician and then, on attending a lecture by an established Canadian artist, she was inspired to paint. With her characteristic adventurous spirit and armed with only her degree, a teaching certificate and a course in typing, she left Vancouver for New York 

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What's Your Inspiration? Design by the Book Flickr Group!

Did you enjoy following the adventures of our Design by the Book artists as they found inspiration at NYPL? Do you want to dig in to the Library's collections too, to find materials to fuel your own creativity? If so, then check out my User's Guide to NYPL for DIY Designers and Artisans--it will get you up to speed on the treasures and the quirks of the entire Library system. And with it in hand you can start your own hunt for inspiring stuff.


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Art Deco's Couturier Patrons, Part 1

The first World War was truly traumatic for France, and its great designers were among the first to attempt to rally the nation’s arts in the war’s aftermath. The luxury goods trade had all but disappeared during these years. One of these designers, Madeleine Vionnet (1876-1975), closed her couture house at the onset of the war in 1914 and went to Rome for the duration.

Upon her return, she pressed forward with the revolutionary, often avant-garde direction of her clothes-making. She had apprenticed with lingerie makers, spurring a life-long fascination with the 

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Pantsuits and Femininity

Dawdling away at the reference desk the other day, I put the word “pantsuit” into the Library Catalog, wondering what would come up. Well guess what? One item showed up and it was on Hillary Clinton!

Yet over the course of an online perusal of Clinton’s unsuccessful campaign for Democratic Party presidential nominee, I found the word “pantsuit” over and over again, often in a negative context. This brought me back to wondering about the original reception of feminine trousers, especially when 

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One of Calvin Tompkins' Bachelors has shuffled off stage left. As the New York Times obituary makes clear, Rauschenberg's impact on the Visual and Performing Arts is pretty much incalculable.

I can't remember when I didn't know of Rauschenberg's work, having probably been exposed to a few pieces in my teens on a weekend getaway to the Art Institute of Chicago, but one of my favorite experiences that encompasses Rauschenberg and his cadre of New 

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Takashi Murakami @ the Brooklyn Museum

If you like Japanese anime and manga you should see the new © Murakami exhibition (April 5-July 13, 2008) at the Brooklyn Museum. This is the first major retrospective on the works of Japanese artist/designer Takashi Murakami, who is known as the Warhol of Japan. It focuses on his work from 1991-2000, “when the artist began exploring his own reality through an investigation of branding and identity." From "© MURAKAMI: Brooklyn Museum Photo Gallery”

The colors are vibrant 

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Turning A Corner in the 1930s

Francis Bacon had a studio showroom in South Kensington that was reproduced in a 1930 issue of The Studio. He was one of three designers profiled for “The 1930 Look in British Decoration,” and his interior is sparsely geometric and modern, not the lavish French Art Deco style, but much more Breuerv and Bauhaus. I asked Mark Stevens for some clarification about the motives behind Bacon’s visual leanings. 

PAB: Does it make sense to you that he artistically gravitated toward the more austere 

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Francis Bacon As A Young Designer

Bacon (1909-1992) is known for being a self-taught “force” in modern figurative painting. His subjects often provoke unease in viewers for their gritty, fleshy looks at the human figure laid bare psychologically. Therefore, I was greatly intrigued when I learned that Bacon could be counted among those fine artists (like Raoul Dufy) who had early stints as designers during the Art Deco years. 

I turned to Cullman Center scholar Mark Stevens, who is currently at work, with Annalyn Swan, on a definitive Bacon biography, to give me some 

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