What's your favorite piece of art?

I was never an art guy growing up. I used to think that people would call anything a masterpiece, even if it seemed to be something made in a pre-k crafts class (think dots on the wall).

After taking a gen-ed class back in community college, I started to understand why people respected and appreciated art. Art wasn't as superficial as I thought it seemed to be. Most pieces evoke thought, as well as tell a history of people's failures and triumphs.

Art is the story of the human condition. In this spirit, I wanted to share some of my favorite "stories". I'm always looking to add more to my list, so please share yours! These are some I can think off the top of my head:

  • Wanderer above the Sea of Fog by Caspar David Friedrich
  • Mandolin and Guitar by Pablo Picasso
  • Las Meninas by Diego Velazquez
  • The Treachery of Images (This is Not A Pipe) by Rene Magritte

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Comments (123)

Nov 13, 2016

Maria Lassnig's "Ungeteilte Form (Undivided Form)", (Oil on Jute, 1952 - 53)

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Nov 13, 2016

Las Meninas is one of my favorites.

Anything from John Martin and Evgeny Lushpin is great.

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Nov 13, 2016

Vladimir Kush not your thing?

Nov 17, 2016

Reminds me of a scene from the movie The Iron Giant (1999).

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Nov 14, 2016

What's the name of this work?

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Nov 17, 2016

Behind the Trees by Vladimir Kush

More here

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Jan 4, 2018

Yes, I agree with that. Really nice.

Simple person with an artistic mind!

Nov 13, 2016

Kush is good, too. I'm mad though that the Lushpin paintings were taken out of Kush's art store in Las Vegas.

Nov 17, 2016

Ah. Is Kush's store worth checking out? I'm headed to Vegas soon.

Nov 13, 2016

Yes it is.

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Nov 17, 2016

I wasn't familiar with those two before.

After a Google search, all I can say is wow!

Nov 14, 2016

Anything by J.M.W. Turner but this in particular Slave Ship
![SS][SS]

I love the way he plays with colors, and this is my favorite example of his work. Prefer his oil paintings but he is famous for his watercolors.

Jan 4, 2018

armando pena

http://www.penagallery.com/
all are western and indian focused... he was also a professor briefly at U of Texas

Jan 4, 2018

alex fried of mine from high school

http://donkeeboy.com/?page_id=86&album=1&gallery=7

Jan 4, 2018

Have an original coastal painting by John Menzies. Nothing special but it's nice to see after a long day at work. Here are some of his other works:

http://www.artnet.com/artist/578934/john-menzies.html

Jan 4, 2018

My favorite piece of art currently is a pastel painted of my family by a friend of mine who died in the past year. What made it really special is that he painted it from the first photo taken of my wife and I with our two adopted sons in their orphanage, and we had no idea he was doing it. He was a really accomplished artist, and he presented it to us framed beautifully.

I used to own an obscure painting entitled, "The Art Collector" which was both beautiful and sinister at the same time. I bought it from a gallery about to go under, so at $2,000 I got it for pennies on the dollar. Unfortunately, I agreed to let my second wife have it in our divorce in order for me to take a 1982 Dom Perignon Rose that held a great deal of "fuck you" value for me. I ended up enjoying the bottle at Friday lunch at Galatoire's (my NOLA readers will know what I'm talking about) with my current wife while we were dating, and no less than 25 of our fellow patrons (as well as every waiter) came up to the table to say hello, and pulled the bottle out of the bucket just to see the label. On balance, probably the better art investment.

I also happen to own one of Dan Mackin's rarer pieces (Dolphin Trio), but it's in storage so I can't enjoy it here in Paris.

Jan 4, 2018

Since the cash is not coming in yet I repainted Jackson Pollocks Number 23.

It didnt turn out to be exact like the original but is a rather a personal intepretation of it. It still looks great and I take it whenever I move and its the first thing I put on the walls.

By the way it is an awesome conversation starters with the ladies when they visit my pad.

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Jan 4, 2018

I have 5 Franklin Saye original oil paintings my grandmother gave me before she moved. He's a really good regional artist and most of his work is sold word of mouth rather than in a gallery...not worth as much as some of the aforementioned but still great in that the prints have sold very well.

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

Jan 4, 2018

Delete Please

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

Jan 4, 2018

I have this print in my room:

http://join2day.com/abc/S/stubbs/stubbs8.JPG
Absolutely love it. Painted by George Stubbs.

I'm talking about liquid. Rich enough to have your own jet. Rich enough not to waste time. Fifty, a hundred million dollars, buddy. A player. Or nothing.

Jan 4, 2018

I don't own any pieces of art other than some prints & such yet, but I hope to soon enough. However at my father's house is my favourite painting of all. It is a Canaletto which depicts a busy river scene in C18th London.

Possibly the most scary moment of my life was when I was a kid kicking a soccer ball around the house and accidentally slammed it against the frame of this very painting!!!

Jan 4, 2018

lol what is so good about art ?

Jan 4, 2018
blastoise:

lol what is so good about art ?

do you pay attention to the art market at all?

if not, check it out @artinfodotcom, @artnetdotcom, and @theartmarket on twitter

Jan 4, 2018

Short, whats that power piece go for if you don't mind me asking? Is it one of a kind?

Jan 4, 2018

I'm only a poor college student, and so my "collection" consists of only a print of Scuola di Atene. Though it of course has to be my favorite because I only have the one, in fairness, I bought the print because it was my favorite (I love the Renaissance and its impact on art, science, etc.).

@ Eddy-- You, sir, are a boss.

"Despite a voluminous and often fervent literature on 'income distribution', the cold fact is that most income is not distributed: it is earned."
-Thomas Sowell

Jan 4, 2018

Full size, canvas print of El Greco's masterpiece. The Burial of Count Orgaz.

Jan 4, 2018

I have some prints from Chris Cox

http://chriscoxphotographer.com/#Separate-Bodies

Nov 14, 2016

I don't know anything about art or art history, but my favorite painting has always been The Starry Night by Vincent van Gogh. I also really like No. 5 by Jackson Pollock. Not sure that I'd pay $140MM for it, though....

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Nov 17, 2016

Starry Night is a good one, so is Cafe Terrace, Place Du Forum.

And ha! I had a hard time understanding the meaning in Pollock's work. Stuff like No,5 made me question if anything could be art, seeing how he I thought he just splat the paint on a canvas.

Nov 14, 2016

Again, I am no art expert, but from the (minimal) research that I have done, I think that Pollock's work is renown because he was a leader in the abstract expressionist movement, with No. 5 being his most famous painting. I think that famous works of art become famous not necessarily for how "good" they are, but for what they represent (a movement, a change in style, etc.).

Nov 17, 2016

That's what I've been reading as well:

A toddler could not, in fact, do this.

The technique required is tremendous. Pollock varied texture and width of individual lines and loops by raising himself to different heights over the canvas.

That alone required hours of backbreaking physical labor.

Then consider the consistency of individual lines of paint. That is some fine motor control.

Next, when children mix paint together like this, it tends to become a mess of grey or brown. There's an understanding of color theory here that keeps contrast in play.

Finally, you must understand the historical context of what Pollock did. Consider the wars and horrors of the world at the time, and how artists of the time were depicting them, and you'll understand that Pollock was looking for a new way to express pure emotion - an abstract idea.

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Nov 14, 2016

I have fully decided I will not understand art or the appeal of anything but realistic or surreal (Dali/Escher) type paintings.

I visited the guggenheim recently and their main exhibit was agnes martin, who I'm sure is a renowned artist. her paintings to me looked like giant sheets of college ruled paper, nothing more than squares and lines. I'm sure there's something there, I just don't get it

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Nov 14, 2016

BRO I AM SO READY TO DROP A CPLE MIL ON THAT MASTERPIECE!

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Nov 14, 2016

imagine stuff like this taking up 5 floors at the Guggenheim...

Nov 17, 2016
thebrofessor:

imagine stuff like this taking up 5 floors at the Guggenheim...

Jesus, I can see what you mean. Haha I've only been to the Guggenheim in Bilbao, so my mind was spared from the confusion!

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Jan 3, 2018
dchd9:
thebrofessor:

imagine stuff like this taking up 5 floors at the Guggenheim...

yeah I visited there in Bilbao too / cool area , went surfing not too far from there in Hossegor, France after

Jesus, I can see what you mean. Haha I've only been to the Guggenheim in Bilbao, so my mind was spared from the confusion!

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Nov 15, 2016

Sells for 50 million dollars

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Nov 17, 2016

Agreed. I was just there this weekend as well.

Nov 14, 2016

Famous quote by Picasso: "It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child". Only when you forget about technique, bias, etc. can you paint with unrestrained creativeness and emotion

Or something like that ...

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Jan 3, 2018
Punchey:

Famous quote by Picasso: "It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child". Only when you forget about technique, bias, etc. can you paint with unrestrained creativeness and emotion

Or something like that ...

Yes, I have avoided most formal instruction to preserve the unencumbered release of emotion through abstract oil on canvas as well as in tryptichs.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Nov 17, 2016

Starry Night ftw! I like both versions to be honest - the bridge and the village versions.
My thesis prof was a huge fan of Van Gogh. A starry night coffee mug gift to him, in exchange for a less difficult life for me. I also love Munch, Rembrandt, David and Dali.

My favourite painting though, would be the painting depicting all the nations marching in line as they were predicted to have revolutionary movements for freedom. Never remembered the name of the painting or the painter, but the concept was beautiful and so relevant for its time.

GoldenCinderblock: "I keep spending all my money on exotic fish so my armor sucks. Is it possible to romance multiple females? I got with the blue chick so far but I am also interested in the electronic chick and the face mask chick."

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Nov 14, 2016

Tom and Jerry

Best Response
Nov 14, 2016

can't believe I'm the first to post this

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Nov 14, 2016

lol barf

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Nov 14, 2016

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a8/Nighthawks_by_Edward_Hopper_1942.jpg

Edward Hopper Nighthawks

Some days you feel like the server, some days the lover, some days the lonely man at the counter.

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Nov 15, 2016

+1 Hopper Masterpiece

Nov 14, 2016

love this

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Nov 14, 2016

Anything Monet

Nov 14, 2016

http://www.galleryone.com/Merchant5/graphics/00000001/wysocki-wysfo1.jpg

Charles Wysocki
I've always liked Americana, and I loved seeing this one as a kid because the Fox was so smart to trick the Hunters.

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Nov 14, 2016

Americana? that looks like a British countryside estate.... fox hunting is also mostly a British thing..

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Nov 14, 2016

Look at the flag, homes. This guy is a relatively well-known artist famous for his depictions of American culture. This might not be the most quintessential piece of Americana in his works, but I just liked the subject matter.

As for you trying to school me on art genre and classification, get a life dude.

Nov 14, 2016

Lol chill your tits I don't know shit about art I just made a comment. Sorry if I hurt your feelings.

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Nov 14, 2016

you're correct it looks like it, this was very much a 17th/early 18th century style of Americana, my family has a couple of these (reprints).

though hard to see, the number of stars in the American flag makes me question just how old of a time they were depicting.

either way, love this kinda stuff

Nov 14, 2016

This looks like a puzzle box

Nov 14, 2016

good topic, never seen this on wso (that's rare). i'm biased to my mom's work obviously but i've always been a fan of this one by Monet, there are plenty more

vanilla sky

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Nov 14, 2016

Classic MacGruber drawing

MacGruber

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Nov 14, 2016

Anything from Rousseau, Pippin, and Dali. This is probably my favorite painting, one I always stop and look at.

http://www.philamuseum.org/collections/permanent/1...

Nov 14, 2016

I don't know much about art, but I like all the major surrealists...Dali, Magritte, Ernst, Tanguy, Miro, etc. More psychedelic the better. Their paintings remind me of Pink Floyd album covers

Nov 17, 2016

Playing in the Dark by Dali (1929)

Playing in the Dark (1929)

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Nov 14, 2016

Not sure who the artist is, but it's a real masterpiece- whenever I look in the mirror the portrait staring back at me.. Just seems to capture what I'm feeling, ya know?

Nov 14, 2016

dante and virgil in hell

If the glove don't fit, you must acquit!

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Nov 14, 2016

death of socrates

If the glove don't fit, you must acquit!

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Nov 17, 2016

Reminds me of this, another one of his works:

Oath of the Horatii by Jacques-Louis David (1784)

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Nov 14, 2016

love his work, that's talent

If the glove don't fit, you must acquit!

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Nov 14, 2016

The Calling of St. MatthewThe Third of May, 1808

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Nov 14, 2016

lacoon

If the glove don't fit, you must acquit!

Nov 15, 2016

That's incredibly beautiful. Anyone know where to find a higher-rez photo of it? Google is turning up 1024 x 1024 max which is bumming me out.

"A modest man, with much to be modest about"

Nov 14, 2016

google laocoon and his sons. best torsion in my opinion, the struggle, agony, desperation - that's art.

https://www.google.com/search?q=laocoon+and+his+so...

If the glove don't fit, you must acquit!

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Nov 15, 2016

You linked to >2 MP pre-selected under "Search tools". My dude...I appreciate that. :)

"A modest man, with much to be modest about"

Nov 14, 2016

I'm surprised that we've gotten this far and nobody's said "Your mom's pussy." I'm disappointed in all of you.

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Nov 14, 2016

Really like Kandinsky's work when he was at the Bauhaus. If you stare at the pieces long enough you start to see cool things.
Albrecht Durer's self-portrait is pretty amazing too.

Gimme the loot

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Nov 17, 2016
Gratisfaction:

Really like Kandinsky's work when he was at the Bauhaus. If you stare at the pieces long enough you start to see cool things.Albrecht Durer's self-portrait is pretty amazing too.

Trippy...

Nov 15, 2016

Picasso's blue period in general, specifically El Viejo Guitarrista

Also, dogs playing poker...

Nov 15, 2016

Yalta Conference

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Nov 15, 2016

Big fan of Alberto Giacometti's 'Chariot'.

Chariot

Nov 15, 2016

Tangential: Wikipedia has a list of the most expensive paintings. A lot of them have high-resolution scans available online.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_most_expensi...
Has anybody ever considered Google Image Searching these (big shoutout to the image search Chrome extension), downloading the highest-resolution pngs one could find, take those nice big files to a Kinkos, print them, frame them, and hang them up on apartment walls to impress friends and girls like one isn't a total incorrigible plebeian?

...Or is that just my dumb, posturing, sex-and-friendship-craving ass?

"A modest man, with much to be modest about"

Nov 14, 2016

Jesus Christ $300 million: and we wonder why people hate rich dudes. Ken Griffin spent half a billion dollars on two paintings, ridiculous.

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Nov 15, 2016

Just the very concept of multibillionaires is a helluva thing.

"A modest man, with much to be modest about"

Nov 14, 2016

yes, but you have to realize a lot of art is actually counterfeit, and many 'invest' in art to launder money.

If the glove don't fit, you must acquit!

    • 1
Nov 17, 2016
WalMartShopper:

yes, but you have to realize a lot of art is actually counterfeit, and many 'invest' in art to launder money.

THIS

GoldenCinderblock: "I keep spending all my money on exotic fish so my armor sucks. Is it possible to romance multiple females? I got with the blue chick so far but I am also interested in the electronic chick and the face mask chick."

    • 1
Nov 21, 2016

Well this comment just sent me down a very interesting rabbit hole. I had no idea this was a thing but it makes so much sense.

Nov 15, 2016

Saw the thread title, came to post The Treachery of Images myself. There isn't a single painting in the world I think about more than that one.

On another note, I personally think non-paintings are underrated as a frameable medium of art. I find images that people don't even think of as "art" to be powerful. Take this for example:

Higgs-Boson
That's an image of the discovery of the Higgs-Boson. To me, it's simulatenously humbling and a profound reminder of human accomplishment and the unimaginable scope of what's currently unknown about our universe. That's awesome. I'd frame that if I had the time & free space on my wall.

"A modest man, with much to be modest about"

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Nov 15, 2016

Atlantic Civilization

Went to the Tate on a recent visit to London, found this... Love Cold War history, and this really caught my eye for a while

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Nov 15, 2016
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Nov 15, 2016

I don't know if I have a favorite piece of art but I own two Cleon Peterson's. He's an artist based out of L.A. who's battled homelessness and drug abuse and makes some pretty sweet art based off those experiences. His art deals with violence, cruelty, greed and all that cool stuff. Not sure if it's up everyone's alley but he's quite talented and has work featured all over the world and has the first and only mural ever painted under the Eiffel Tower.

His artwork isn't that expensive (around $150 for a numbered, limited print) but can be hard to get. He posts all of his pieces on Instagram as soon as he puts them up for sale and I have it set up so I get a notification when he posts them. They're normally sold out in a few minutes so I have to make a pretty quick assumption of whether or not I want to own that specific piece of his art.

Here's the one I recently bought:

http://images.bigcartel.com/product_images/188454788/Burning-the-Dead-Print-Gold.jpg?auto=format&fit=max&h=1000&w=1000
Cool looking piece if you ask me but some people find it a little scary... But I guess that's the point of art, to make you look at and realize ideas bigger than yourself.

Quote from the artist on his work: "I want to present things that are cognitively dissonant, ideas that make the viewer have to think critically about the ethical, moral, and historical roles we all play in the world. "

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Nov 15, 2016

dogs playing poker is an obvious choice...

Nov 13, 2016

Also, a lot more contemporary, but I enjoy street art, so anything Banksy has done should be on the list.

Nov 13, 2016

By the way, while talking of art, how many of you have been to the MoMA PS1 warm ups?

Nov 15, 2016

Thomas Eakin's The Gross Clinic
Hieronymus Bosch's Triptychs
Rembrandt van Rijn's Storm on the Sea of Galilee, The Night Watch and The Anatomy Lesson of Dr Nicolaes Tulp

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Nov 15, 2016

Big fan of those first two.

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Jan 1, 2018

shuttle

Tilt shift is also nice, especially when it's of something large scale like a city or an birds eye view of impressive nature.

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Nov 17, 2016

I love tilt shift photography. That said, I'd be more likely to display a photo than a different artistic medium.

Nov 16, 2016

My favorite was a painting I saw in one of the big art galleries in DC when I was in high school. It was a portrayal of King David leading an army out the gates and down the hills of Jerusalem. I was astounded by the detail that went in to each of the hundreds of soldiers. Still haven't been able to find the name or picture of the painting.

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Nov 17, 2016

Pieta by Michelangelo
Marine by Gustave Courbet
Les Demoiselles d'Avignon by Picasso

Would post pics but I can't help but fuck up the code

mbavsmfin:

I don't wear watches bro. Because it's always MBA BALLER time!

Nov 17, 2016

anything by Yves Klein

Nov 13, 2016

Jesus, looks like there are a lot of Art connoisseurs on WSO. Art Basel Miami anyone?

Nov 17, 2016

Franz Marc's Dog Lying in the Snow

.
Beyond this, I have a preference for French impressionists (Monet, Cezanne, Degas, etc.), expressionists (Weber in particular), Seurat, Italian futurists (Sironi), surrealists (Magritte especially), and modern abstract (Mondrian).

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Nov 17, 2016

Any sculpture fans here?

My personal favourite is Remington's Cheyenne
Cheyenne-Remington

GoldenCinderblock: "I keep spending all my money on exotic fish so my armor sucks. Is it possible to romance multiple females? I got with the blue chick so far but I am also interested in the electronic chick and the face mask chick."

    • 1
Nov 17, 2016

Recently saw this music video and thought it was pretty cool. Features lots of art:

Jane Zhang: Dust My Shoulders Off: https://youtu.be/ZgnClGC8-WQ

Nov 17, 2016

how is this not here yet

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9a/Ducreux1.jpg

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Nov 15, 2016

That was one my favorite memes back in the day.

"A modest man, with much to be modest about"

Nov 18, 2016

Seeing The Veiled Christ in real life was pretty mind blowing, it looks like a real life Gif, to carve this out of marble it truly a great accomplishment and I think someone else touched on it so much art I had previously seen was 'I could do that'.

veil

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Nov 18, 2016

I was never an art person growing up but while I was in Bilbao I got to see the Jean-Michel Basquiat exhibition I got to experience how you could decode art a little bit and understand it much better. Even in that short period getting to know who he was and how he was obsessed with certain things like Ancient Eqypt and also the book Gray's Anatomy and how that played out in his work you went from this seemingly undecipherable output (the art) but once you had the context or input you could see why.

bas

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Nov 17, 2016
wilder:

I was never an art person growing up but while I was in Bilbao I got to see the Jean-Michel Basquiat exhibition I got to experience how you could decode art a little bit and understand it much better. Even in that short period getting to know who he was and how he was obsessed with certain things like Ancient Eqypt and also the book Gray's Anatomy and how that played out in his work you went from this seemingly undecipherable output (the art) but once you had the context or input you could see why.

bas

Ah. All those different complexities. I've been to Bilbao too, what did you do out there?

Nov 18, 2016

I just did a road trip with a couple buddies, eating and surfing up to Biarritz, loved Basque Country.

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Nov 18, 2016

Le genie du mal. Personally prefer this version from a purely aesthetic perspective to L'ange du mal, but the story behind L'ange being "too sublime" that it was removed from the its original place at the Belgian pulpit is pretty damn cool haha.

Nov 19, 2016

http://media.tumblr.com/5fe9bea196f52decfa78ce16af7d4ccf/tumblr_inline_mk86nchfQM1qz4rgp.png

Nike of Samothrace.

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Nov 22, 2016

wot is art?

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Nov 17, 2016
pere797:

wot is art?

Ali G - Art and Theatre

Haha I never seen this before! Thanks for sharing.

Nov 27, 2016

I don't know its name and can't find a picture of it online to identify it. Unfortunately it was in a no photography section, which prevents me from using google reverse image search- nothing matches.
It was a series of ink on paper drawing by a french artist from back in the day.

Eastern Asian art is also nice.

How is my grammar? Drop me a note with any errors you see!

Nov 17, 2016
The_Regulator:

I don't know its name and can't find a picture of it online to identify it. Unfortunately it was in a no photography section, which prevents me from using google reverse image search- nothing matches.It was a series of ink on paper drawing by a french artist from back in the day.

Eastern Asian art is also nice.

What a bummer. What examples of Eastern Asian art did you have in mind?

Not too familiar with it, would like to know more.

Jan 1, 2018

Since this got bumped up... John Atkinson Grimshaw's stuff is amazing. Have a few framed prints of his works in my house.

Jan 3, 2018

I have a 5ft x 7ft oil on canvas that is my favorite.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

Jan 3, 2018

Herbert Leupin PKZ Ad 1942 - He did a lot of great poster ads.

Everything from Rolex to Vermouth

Herbert Leupin PKZ 1942

Just got my hands on an original one of these.

I also qualify designer furniture as art.

Here are some of my favorites:
Womb Chair by Eero Saarinen:
Womb Chair

Eames Lounge Chair by Charles and Ray Eames for Herman Miller:

Eames

Artichoke Lamp by Poul Henningsen for Louis Poulsen Lighting:
Artichoke

Also Harry Bertoia furniture and Bauhaus architecture.

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Funniest
Jan 3, 2018

I had this commissioned several years ago. It hangs facing my toilet

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

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Jan 3, 2018
Jan 3, 2018
"Work ethic, work ethic" - Vince Vaughn
Jan 4, 2018
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Nov 19, 2018
Nov 19, 2018
Nov 19, 2018
Jan 3, 2018

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

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