Thursday, December 18, 2014

Taliban Besiege Pakistan School, Leaving 145 Dead

By Declan Walsh

PAKISTAN---First the Pakistani Taliban bombed or burned over 1,000 schools. Then they shot Malala Yousafzai, the teenage advocate for girls’ rights. But on Tuesday, the Taliban took their war on education to a ruthless new low with an assault on a crowded school in Peshawar that killed 145 people — 132 of them uniformed schoolchildren — in the deadliest single attack in the group’s history. During an eight-hour rampage at the Army Public School and Degree College, a team of nine Taliban gunmen stormed through the corridors and assembly hall, firing at random and throwing grenades. [link]

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Chitra Ganesh's 60-foot Mural of Hindu Goddess Celebrates Femininity

By Trupti Rami
Hand of goddess: Artist Chitra Ganesh with her mural “Eyes of Time” at the Brooklyn Museum. Photo by Cate Dingley
NEW YORK---“Eyes of Time,” the latest exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum’s Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art is a 60-foot wall mural featuring Kali, the Hindu goddess of destruction and rebirth, who has six arms, three legs, and three breasts. “Kali represents as certain kind of femininity that we don’t often see represented,” said Chitra Ganesh, who was born and raised in Brooklyn and has lived in Ditmas Park for the past 10 years. [link]

Porcelain "Forbidden Fruit" by Chris Antemann at the Portland Art Museum

Chris Antemann in collaboration with Meissen®, Tempted to Taste (detail), 2013. © Chris Antemann and Meissen Couture®.
OREGON---The Portland Art Museum’s exhibition ‘Forbidden Fruit: Chris Antemann at Meissen’ is a grand installation that reinvents and invigorates the great porcelain figurative tradition. Using the Garden of Eden as her metaphor, the artist has created a contemporary celebration of the 18th-century banqueting craze. Inspired by Meissen’s great historical model of Johann Joachim K√§ndler’s monumental Love Temple (1750), Antemann created her own 5-foot version. It is an irreverent look at history and the decorative arts tradition in this brilliant porcelain sculpture. The exhibition ends February 8, 2015.

El Greco's 'The Holy Family With Saint Mary Magdalen' on View at the Portland Art Museum

El Greco [Domenikos Theotokopoulos] (Spanish, born Greece, 1541-1614), The Holy Family with Saint Mary Magdalen, 1590-1595, oil on canvas, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Gift of Friends of the Cleveland Museum of Art in memory of J.H. Wade.
OREGON---The fifth installment of the Portland Art Museum’s ongoing series Masterworks | Portland commemorates the fourth centenary of the death of El Greco (1541-1614), the brilliant, multicultural genius whose highly personal, conceptual style gave form to the intense spirituality of Spain’s Golden Age. Coinciding with the celebrations of Christmas and Easter, this special installation features the artist’s greatest devotional painting, the magisterial Holy Family with Saint Mary Magdalen, a rarely loaned treasure of the Cleveland Museum of Art. [link]

Portland Art Museum: "Masterworks | Portland: El Greco" (Ends April 5, 2015); 1219 SW Park Avenue, Portland, OR; (503) 226-2811;

"Sainte Sebastienne" by Louise Bourgeois at Artnet Auctions

 "Sainte Sebastienne" (1992) by Louise Bourgeois (American/French, 1911–2010) 
The late artist Louise Bourgeois said that her art is a reworking, or working through, of a wonderful yet fraught childhood. This seems to be the source of Bourgeois's fraught and sexualized imagery, as in the present work "Sainte Sebastienne". As such, Bourgeois recast the classical subject of Saint Sebastian, famously martyred by arrows, as a woman. The work is available for auction on artnew auctions through Thursday, December 18, 2014. [Bid]

Artist Richard Lewer Wins $25,000 Blake Prize for Religious Art as Future of Award in Doubt

By Antonette Collins
2014 Blake Prize Winner, Melbourne-based artist Richard Lewer with an image from his digital work, Worse luck I am still here, a video animation of delicate black and white drawings that tells the tragic love story of a Perth pensioner who survived a failed assisted-suicide pact with his chronically ill wife, on Saturday December 13 2014.
AUSTRALIA---Melbourne-based artist Richard Lewer has won the $25,000 Blake Prize for religious art in what could be the last year it is awarded. The often controversial prize is in jeopardy after being unable to secure a major sponsor. Blake Prize chairman Dr Rod Pattenden spoke at the opening ceremony for the 63rd year of the award at the University of New South Wales Galleries. "This a diverse, challenging and deeply moving exhibition of words and images that helps us see what matters most to those who carry the imagination of our culture," he said. "It is sad to note that due to lack of sponsorship it may be the last Blake."[link]

El Greco Anniversary Celebrated at National Gallery of Art With Rare Loans From Washington Area

El Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos) Saint Francis Receiving the Stigmata, 1585-1590. Oil on canvas. Overall: 102.08 x 97 cm (40 3/16 x 38 3/16 in.) The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore, Maryland, 37.424.
WASHINGTON, DC.---The 400th anniversary of El Greco's death is being remembered at the National Gallery of Art with an exhibition of 11 paintings from the Gallery, Dumbarton Oaks, and the Phillips Collection in Washington, DC, and from the Walters Art Museum, in Baltimore. On view in the West Building, gallery M-28 from November 2, 2014 through February 16, 2015, "El Greco in the National Gallery of Art and Washington-Area Collections: A 400th Anniversary Celebration"  includes some of the artist's most beloved paintings, renowned for compositions of bold colors and subjects with dramatic expression. [link]