The spring art auctions: money amok

It’s the time of the season when we turn our beer-soaked attentions towards the modern art world and gaze, in dumbfounded disbelief, at what hedge fund princes, Russian oligarchs and Sheiks of Araby spend on what they are assured by gallery owners and auction houses to be Beautiful and Important objects d’art.

This spring’s Impressionist and Modern Art auctions at Christie’s and Sotheby’s were fairly staid affairs. There were no earth-quaking pieces that set me all aquiver. That’s happened, you know! I’ve turned corners and have been confronted with canvases that looked alive to me. That didn’t happen this time.

I’m going to start with the piece that’s likely to insult the most number of people. There was a WARNING posted outside the small gallery where this was displayed that some people might find the content upsetting.

A dark room with a spotlight trained on a small sculpture of a kneeling man/boy. What could possibly be so offensive about that, you might wonder?

him1

A visitor knelled beside him for perspective.

him2

Walk around to the front of the sculpture and all is revealed.

Maurizio Cattelan
Him
wax, human hair, suit, polyester resin and pigment
Estimate: $10,000,000 – $15,000,000
Sold for $17,189,000

him3

Oh. That guy. You can see how this might meet with some disfavor. There was a guard posted and only a few people were allowed in at a time. Part of the reason it sold for above the high estimate is that Maurizio Cattelan is The Hot Shit right now. He’s about to install a working 18-karat, solid-gold toilet in the bathroom of the Guggenheim. I’m going to poop in it. I am!

This following piece is more playful and easier to digest. I’ve seen these before and actually think I could put one in the corner of my living room and enjoy it. It’s suspended in sodium chloride reagent and distilled water.

Jeff Koons
One Ball Total Equilibrium Tank (Spalding Dr. J Silver Series)
Estimate on Request
Sold for $15,285,000

koons ball1

I didn’t like Jeff Koons for a long while but I became so exhausted with hating stuff that I decided to give in and enjoy it. Plus, it does this cool refraction trick when you look at it from an angle.

koons ball2

Look at this lovely Monet. If you’re familiar with his work, you might be wondering about its unusual dimensions. You’re not going to believe what I’m about to tell you.

Claude Monet
Le bassin aux nymphéas
Estimate: $25,000,000 – $35,000,000
Sold for $27,045,000

monet

This is only half the painting. An unscrupulous dealer divided the canvas sometime before 1944 because, you know, two painting sell for more than one. This is the right half. The left half is in the Tel Aviv Museum of Art. I think they should’ve bought it and hung it next to its missing half.

If the Tel Aviv Museum of art couldn’t come up with $27M for the other half of their Monet, perhaps they could’ve coughed-up $2M for this gigantic stick of butter:

Robert Gober
Untitled
Estimate: $1,500,000 – $2,500,000
Sold for $2,285,000

butter

I can’t stand Robert Gober. What a fake What a charlatan. It’s crap like this that turns contemporary art into a punchline.

This might prove to be divisive but I like Francis Bacon. Art is so subjective (although not subjective enough to qualify a giant stick of butter legitimate art). These are self-portrait studies. Wouldn’t it be awesome if you met him and his face was all smeared like that?

Francis Bacon
Two Studies for a Self-Portrait
Estimate: $22,000,000 – $30,000,000
Sold for: $34,970,000

bacon

I usually save my harshest barbs for Jean-Michel Basquiat. He passed his scribbles and half-baked canvases off as finished work. They’re lazy affairs. And aside from that, his dreams came true and he threw it away on drugs. What a stupid ass. But I finally, after all these years, found a piece of his to admire in this gigantic canvas. He rarely worked this big. You’ve got to grudgingly hand it to him on this one. I intentionally waited until that lady walked in the frame for perspective.

Jean-Michel Basquiat
Untitled
Estimate on Request
Sold for $57,285,000

basquiat

There was a shocking dearth of Rothkos offered for sale. These auctions typically feature a few juicy pieces. This season, we only had this one and another smaller piece to choose from. This is another painting I think I could live with, although I’d have to buy a much bigger house to accommodate it.

Mark Rothko
No. 17
Estimate: $30,000,000 – $40,000,000
Sold for $32,645,000

rothko

I took this group shot and realized that, individually, they’re interesting enough but if you bought ALL THREE and displayed them just as you see here, you’d really have something to drive the neighbors insane with envy.

Roy Lichtenstein
Sunrise
Estimate: $300,000 – $400,000
Sold for $418,000

Andy Warhol
Campbell’s Tomato Juice Box
Estimate: $300,000 – $400,000
Did Not Sell

Keith Harring
Untitled
Estimate: $450,000 – $650,000
Sold for $745,000

roth_andy_keith

When I walked into the gallery I was instantly drawn to the pile of white objects on the floor. From a distance, you really couldn’t tell what they were.

Christian Marclay
Boneyard
Estimate: $600,000 – $800,000
Sold for $550,000

boneyard1

In memoriam:

[Brrring] the phone rang and she said
“Whoever’s calling can’t be as cute as you”
Right then and there I knew I was through

“The Ballad of Dorothy Parker”
Prince

boneyard2

Damien Hirst is another guy who raises a lot of rankles but I find some of it clever enough. People seem particularly bothered by the raw cruelty of raising butterflies in order to use their wings for paintings, but they’re quite beautiful. If you saw this in person you might have a change of heart.

Damien Hirst
Psalm 46: Deus noster refugium
Butterflies and household gloss on canvas
Estimate: $80,000 – $120,000
Sold for $161,000

hurst

I’ve got more that’ll make you grind your molars to dust and question the direction contemporary art, not to mention all of humanity, is taking but I’m pushing 1,000 words and I don’t want to break my own Cardinal Rule of Blogging so I’ll leave you with these; one I like and one that deserves scorn heaped upon it. I leave it to you to decide which is which.

Jeff Koons
Smooth Egg with Bow (Magenta/Violet)
Estimate: $7,000,000 – $10,000,000
Sold for $7,445,000

koons

Cady Noland
Chicken in a Basket
Twenty-seven elements, wire basket, rubber chicken, boxes, bottle, flags, baster, bungee and beer cans
Estimate: $350,000 – $450,000
Sold for $305,000

chicken

112 thoughts on “The spring art auctions: money amok

      • That would not surprise me.
        What the hell has art come to?????
        Ugh…I find nothing In Those pos piles.
        Seems like the uglier and demented they get, the more they sell for. REALLY????
        Sigh…..
        I cannot believe they cut a Monet in half. Damn.
        Why did they do that? That is insane.
        And the picture with a line blended horizontally. Wow..such a thought provoking piece. I cold stand ther for hours wondering what the artist was thinking while he was producing this fine art piece. Does it start on the right or the left? Or…from topt to bottom. No..I thing It was right to left….( sarcasm very much intended. )
        I could have done that one when I was a year old.
        What ever happened to the elephants who painted with their tails? Did they quit, get fired, sue the owner or go on strike? Seriously.
        That is art?
        So many paintings sell for such ridiculous prices. I guess they get what they deserved. Not much.
        Sorry…it..is…crap in my opinion. But then, everyone has a opinion.
        Standing and looking at these pieces would make my head start to hurt and get a headache.
        Modern art eh? Right.
        I guess I am a realist. I like the interesting things. Not something you drag out of a trashcan, slap it on the wall ( or floor ) and call that art.
        Some people just do NOT know how to spend their money.
        Sorry, I can go off on a long speel of things.
        I did kind of like the butterflies…repetition is kind of…mehhh…
        But the egg thing.. It was kind of interesting…
        At least it was more of a real sculpture…more than the rubber chicken.
        I bet those ” artists ” throw shit together and say, ” I bet the Idiots will love this pos I just threw together.
        And laugh all the way to the exhibit.
        Really.
        And the prices they pay for crap….well…they deserve crap.
        Crap is not art. Crap is crap. And dont even mention THAT piece. ..of crap. Because it is and was…just..shit.
        Wow, this just blows me away.
        Thank you for reminding me NOT to go look at a art exhibit up there. Or most any place now.
        I usually like others art rather than mine. But In this case, I could make an exception and like mine.
        But then…I am my own worst critic.

        I wonder how much They can get most art junk insured for?
        Art….who would have ” thunk” it…?
        Quick, get me the duct tape before my brain blows out of my skull.

      • Sorry I do have a spellchecker. But I was writing this too fast on my phone.
        And then, I have to teach my dam spellchecker.
        Gimme the duct tape….I feel a sculpture coming on….

      • Wow! What a fantastic tirade! That was highly entertaining. Thank you and welcome. You know darn well why they halved that Monet. Here’s a hint: $$$$. It’s a hell of a motivator. Especially for someone who’s in it for the money (dealers) and not the spirit (creators). And don’t you worry about your sarcasm. You don’t need to label it. It comes through loud and clear. All opinions are welcome here, particularly dissenting ones. That’s the fun of it. Excellent commentary. Thanks, again.

  1. Yes, I was guessing that you weren’t fond of the basket!!
    The Hitler is seriously interesting though…. I like the way the artist has made him small and on his knees.
    Sx

      • I like the Hitler too, pretty cool. Lovely array here, thanks for sharing — the thousand word mark, I get you on that. I have an internal bell that seems to go off around 700. Considerably less than that with comment boxes.

      • Yes, but, $17 million?! Think about that for a moment. Let it soak in.

        Blogs are my light reading. If I have the time and am in the mood to delve, I’m picking up a book with some gravitas.

    • I found the hitler one revolting. He deserves NO PLACE in art whatsoever.
      What did the boy mean? Pedofile right? Or was it hitler dreaming when he was a little boy….
      Did you know hitler was rejected from a art school?
      That’s what probably kicked it all off.
      They pissed him off.
      Some can handle it, some just can’t.

  2. I still think you have to try very hard not to be outdone by Rothko. I’ve got a blind spot about Monet — it makes me think of aunties in flowery dresses slurping sweet tea. What an absolutely crime to cut it in two though. Surely that’s overdue to be reunited (although who’s going to pay for that, I wonder.)

    I like the second Jeff Koons very much, whilst disliking myself for being seduced by something so obviously kitsch and shiny. But that’s the point I suppose.

    Hey ho, in the meantime I’ve been told that I’m due a tax refund. Of £9.

    • I saw a play about Rothko named RED. A young, relatively unknown Eddie Redmayne played his assistant. I’d like Rothko’s work well enough up to that point but the play put his work over the top for me. A little history and information goes a long way. I feel about Renoir the same way you do about Monet. Renoir paintings are perfect for cheap greeting card reproductions. Don’t feel bad for liking the Koons piece. Humans are like parrots. We like shiny objects.

      • Ha ha… good name for that artist.

        I’ve just found out that Cady Noland, of the basket (do you have the phrase “basket case” over there?) is Kenneth Noland’s daughter. Well, I hope that his daughter’s work here isn’t representative of her work as a whole, because otherwise that would indicate how a great artist can beget a poor one.

      • Yes, you don’t want to be a basket case over here, either. I think Green Day has a hit called ‘Basket Case.’

        I have no idea who Cady Nolan is and had every intention of looking into her work to see if this nonsense is typically what she churns out.

  3. I always enjoy these posts. The artwork boggles my mind, both in its ‘artiness’ and its prices. As for that gold toilet, if you eat that giant stick of butter, you’re going to need it.

    • Hi, Carrie. It’s a whole different world, innit? The stick of butter was fashioned with beeswax, so you can’t eat it. Ha. Besides, if I got down and started licking it, I’d be tossed out of Christie’s ear and told not to come back.

  4. Fascinating stuff Mark both the idiotic and the beautiful. Thank you so very much for bringing this to us – I would not otherwise ever get to see it.

  5. Wasn’t Monet’s Water lilies cut in three and you showed us the three parts together a while back? Or was the water lilies done in three parts rather than being cut?

    Sorry, but I like the chicken in a basket more than the egg. Maybe I’d feel different if I saw them in real, but to me the egg looks like something you’d see in a mall at Easter time outside a chocolate shop. The chicken in a basket has some humour, I feel there’s a story there. I don’t feel a story with the egg. Ooh, they go together, chicken and egg!

    • The latter. Monet painted three separate panels that were meant to be shown together. A triptych. This painting was literally cut in half. Shame on that guy!

      I love that you prefer the rubber chicken. The last thing I want is a bunch of sycophants telling me I’m right all the time. How dull with that be? Ah! I didn’t see the chicken and egg connection! 10 points for Gryffindor.

      • Hi, there. Found my way over here from Elyse’s neck of the woods. Have a weird sort of curiosity and appreciation for various forms of art, and especially enjoy exploring what is art to one person while the same piece can be total bunk to another – depending on which set of eyes and which brain is processing the visual representation in question.

        I must say I was disappointed to learn that you didn’t intentionally put the Koons shiny egg with the Noland chicken basket intentionally, as yet another sideways wink at the insanity that can be described as art. You know … which came first. The shiny egg, or the rubber chicken? Like a bad haiku on LSD.

        The Monet that was deliberately halved to score more dollars? Criminal. Shameful. Horrendous. The kneeling Hitler makes me incredibly uncomfortable. Don’t care for it at all. Every monster was a child once, but any form of acknowledgment of his existence pretty much makes me want to spit. Even though I find spitting to be incredibly crass and disgusting. But the worst of the lot (notwithstanding the stupid chicken) is that ridiculous stick of butter. Those just tend to annoy me so much that smoke starts spewing out of my ears. Figuratively, of course. The fact that someone pays for such ridiculousness is just a blatant reminder that humans can be fools. Like we had any chance of forgetting that little factoid. No chance at all.

        Thanks for sharing a very eclectic and interesting journey. Look forward to exploring your blog a bit more as time permits. My own blog has been pretty quiet lately. I’ve been in one of those “Why talk, when you could be listening?” moods lately. Which isn’t to say that I won’t splatter and dribble more words on any given day. Just not in my own backyard, at least, not today.

        Rothko, Monet, and Hirst. Not necessarily in that order. Okay, in exactly that order. Mostly. Unless it’s Monet, Rothko, and then Hirst. Undecided. If we’re asking which would I prefer to have living in my own space? Then definitely Rothko. But if the question is which would I spend more time examining very closely? Probably Monet first, and Rothko second. Or Hirst. Hmmm.

    • Does “because I say so” count as a rational reason? I didn’t think so. Truthfully, I most certainly don’t feel a stupid basketball floating in a fish tank is worth that kind of scratch. But it’s prettier to look at than a giant stick of butter. Fascinating is right.

      • Stuff like this always makes me itch to say “That ain’t ART!” but then I hear that Dire Straits song playing in my head and shut up for fear of being thought clue-less.

        And the Emperor’s tailor keeps getting richer

      • A very persuasive argument can be made thst someone calling a giant stick of butter made from beeswax ‘art’ is the clueless one. Hold fast to your convictions. They’re as valid is anyone else’s.

  6. I know artists don’t think they should have to talk about their work but I’d be interested to know the thinking behind Adolf’s pose. Is he supplicating and if so to whom?

  7. I love art… I enjoy looking at it and pondering what the artist is thinking when they create a piece. One of my closest friends is a professional artist and she paints the most beautiful pieces. She has taught me a few things too. But, sometimes I think people who spend this kind of money on this kind of art do so just because they can! It is showing off their wealth and “Look how much money I have… bullshit” They are spending stupid money on something NOT because they really enjoy what they have bought but simply because they “can” :-/

    • I’m with you, sister. There’s a Broadway show out here right now called Hamilton. Getting tickets is a feeding frenzy. The people most dying to see it are the ones who don’t give a damn about the theater. They want to be able to say to their friends, “I saw Hamilton. DID YOU see Hamilton? NO!? Oh it’s AH-MAZE-ING.” Same with these over-priced pieces. These purchases are all about vanity and ego. Art has very little to do with it. Do not show your friend this post. It’ll give her an aneurysm.

  8. I love these posts.

    I can see going with the basketball tank in the corner. Since it wouldn’t die you’d have saved a fortune on exotic fish.

      • Giving us a dose at a time is just right. But they are fun. And they inspire me to greatness. I will go home tonight and rename the pile of my son’s debris I want him to go through “Childhood remains.” Would you accept a 20% commission to call Christie’s for me?

  9. I think all the pieces are entertaining and thought provoking, if only to make me think that Marcel Duchamp and the urinal that he signed R. Mutt is the grandfather of the solid gold toilet. Somewhere in that gold toilet is a statement about the excess of the times we live in when so few have so much that they can easily afford to drop eight figures on art while everyone else is just trying to get by. As for Chicken in a Basket, that contributes heavily to the perception that so much modern art is nonsense, it makes me want to bitch slap the artist, but she collected $305k for that mockery. Clearly she’s got a lot more going on that this common wage slave. I wonder if whomever dropped that small fortune on it is called R. Bullshit?

    It is a travesty that “Hamilton” is stratospherically priced and it’s the fat cats clueless about theater that are the ones that can afford tickets. Milton and I will always be grateful that we got to see it for $50 in Row G seats 5 and 6 (I think that was the 7th row) shortly after it opened at the Public in February 2015. Membership truly had its privilege then. I think it’s highly unlikely that we’ll see it on Broadway.

    • I love doing these 2x/year auction posts because they’re so provocative. I could go base and highlight all the crap–there’s more than enough material–but I like to throw in a pretty picture or two for juxtaposition. Still…NONE of these are worth the selling price. I understand it’s their money and who am I to tell them how to spend it, but I’m allowed to point my finger and laugh and invite you all along to laugh as well. Yes, Chicken in a Basket and ANYTHING by Gober introduces mockery. It’s the worst part of art.

      Well, I saw Hamilton about a week ago and you’re right. It’s spectacular. I’d been listening to the cast recording for months and knew the lyrics and book before the show, which helped enormously. We got a pair of house seats through a charity and while we didn’t play an inflated rate–we paid face value–they were still quite expensive for someone in my income bracket. My 14-year old is obsessed with the cast recording and it’s KILLING me that I can’t take her to see it. There should be some means testing and people who don’t give a damn about theater should pay more than people who attend on a regular basis.

      Speaking of…Cal in Camo tonight at The Rattlestick and Daphne’s Dive on Friday at the Signature. I took my 9-year old to Something Rotten yesterday. Brian D’arcy James is leaving in two weeks and Christian Borel is leaving in July and I wanted her to see it with those guys.

      Do you have tix to Fly by Night, the pigeon light installation at the Brooklyn Navy Pier?

      • It’s a bummer that Public doesn’t offer a deal on Hamilton tickets to members, but that would only result in a stampede on memberships solely for that one show. It’s such a cash cow for them. It pulls in half a mil a week.

      • Seriously…in all your (our) years of theater-going, have you ever seen anything like the madness surrounding the Hamilton tickets? The Producers and Book of Mormon weren’t like this. And what’s going to happen after the Tonys!?

      • I mean, it’s good, but…CHRIST already! As I mentioned, my 14-year old is obsessed with the cast recording. So are all her friends. These are white suburban girls. Now, THAT’S crossover. Do you have it? It’s really good.

      • No, I don’t have the cast recording, but I thought it was terrific. I have very few records or downloads. When I moved, I donated almost all my vinyl and cds to Housing Works.

      • Sorry, hit reply too soon! Milton and I are seeing Daphne’s Dive on Thursday. Big Boss Man is taking my boss to Something Rotten. She’s having a major milestone birthday this month. I pointed out to him that they’ve never seen a Broadway show together in the 34 years they’ve been a couple and she’d be shocked if he took her to one. Due to both those guys being in the show and it being a comedy, I thought that might be one he won’t hate. He said, “Make it happen.” I got them sixth row aisle orchestra seats.

      • I saw Daphne’s Dive last night. Where do I begin? It was good but I’ve got issues that made it fall far short of great. Some of the dialogue was a bit too melodramatic for my taste. And, I thought the performances by K.K. Moggie and Samira Wiley screamed, “Look at us, everyone! We’re ACTING!” I didn’t buy into either of those characters. The rest of the cast was superb. It probably didn’t help that I was in the front row and it’s an obstructed view.

  10. Well you must have liked the shiny egg – it’s looks like something a normal man would want to stroke with his finger. Others may prefer to sit on it.

    So Damian Hirst has produced something beautiful and it only fetched $161,000. Is it only the weird shit that sells for millions?

    • I do like the shiny egg! Much more so than than the rubber chicken. If we’re going to price these things based on the effort that went into the work, ‘Chicken in a Basket’ should cost about $15 bucks.

      Only $161,000 but the HIGH ESTIMATE was $120,000. So he still did quite well with this lot. Some weird shit doesn’t sell at all. Scroll up and see Warhol’s tomato juice box. You can’t fool the pros. They’re not going to fall for that nonsense.

  11. I don’t understand much about art these days. I kind of think that if I could do it, it’s not art. I guess it might be argued that even if I could do it, I didn’t do it, or didn’t think of doing it, or wouldn’t think of it, and all of those things are true, but I still don’t see how that makes it art. I think art is something that requires creativity, originality, a desire to communicate, and a mastery of skill that takes years to perfect. I don’t see that in a stick of butter, or a bunch of phones on the floor. Maybe I’m not seeing the right things, or don’t know what art is. Now, the Hitler thing did not offend me. But the Piss Christ… now there is a piece of something that I thought was about as offensive as you can get.

    • You remember Piss Christ? Art to incite. I don’t believe in that. I don’t believe in political art, either. If there’s a hint of politics, it’s not art. It’s political.

      No talent but a good gallery rep will trump loads of talent with no representation every time. That’s the case with many here.

    • I have been doing art most of my life. I do it just because I can. Most times, not to communicate. And to some people, it does not require a lifetime of “knowledge” but rather how you want it to be done. There are many self taught artists that are so much better than the ones that paid out the ass for lifetime lessons. Then pay your dues…
      I work in most ALL forms of art. Not just one medium.
      Working with one would be boring to me. But that’s just how I feel.
      I also love woodcarving. One end of the scale to the other. Is that art too? Yes. But is it ever in exhibits anymore?
      Maybe I mightpost some of mine. I also turn six foot working lighthouses on a lathe. Some are abstract.
      With exotic wood and some with stained glass.. Can’t buy those. Not too many can turn 6 feet of fast rotating wood.
      That is another art medium I work with. Something I think no one has saw. 😉 And then of course, the origional to scale lighthouses that were made by the real maker. I am a decendent of them. Those who built NYC’s old city hall, the library ( the one Edgar Allen Poe used to haunt ), built the origional federal style house, owned most of Manhattan and NY itself and the list goes on.
      Now…that is history. And art.

  12. I wasn’t surprised to see Hitler there, down on his knees. He’s everywhere. I could make some comments about He-Whose-Father-Was-An-Orangutan, but enough already. (Is he really going to get elected??? Can’t help myself.)

    And do you like the giant bow-encrusted cistern (or whatever it is)? I skipped reading comments so I could guess. I like it a lot better than the rubber chicken, but maybe that’s just because I prefer shiny baubles.

    • Well, *I* was sure surprised! I didn’t see that one coming at all. As bad as Trump is, I can’t imagine he would ever turn into Hitler. There’s no WAY something like that could ever happen again. Right? It’s no matter. He’s unelectable.

      It’s a giant egg and, yes, that’s the one I prefer. Much prefer. Some work went into that. Even a little imagination. Virtually no effort at all was put into Chicken in a Basket. Gross.

  13. You know here in Pittsburgh we have this thing called First Fridays where along Penn Ave. in my old hood all the galleries open up and offer free booze and food (the homeless guys love it) and all the hipster kids show up in their Alpine mountain gear and fancy ‘taches and tattoos, it’s a good night out and i’d wager to say you could find some pieces equally as good (it’s all subjective now innit?) without the obscene amounts of money involved, when you think about all the money spent on these pieces and all the things that money could have done for the human race but instead was spent on “art” it just goes to show we are a species of pretentious knuckledraggers, not that i don’t enjoy some of that up their but really when you think about it the amount spent it’s disgusting… i still think those crazy wood mannequins you saw at the shore trump (oh no that word) them all…

    • I knew nothing of First Fridays. I have a friend back in Clevo who goes to Pittsburgh on a semi-regular basis to vacation because he loves that place. Fuck Pittsburgh. I’m still angry. You know why.

      The bums–oh, excuse me, homeless–here in NYC all know when and where the gallery openings are and they descend on them for the free booze and food. There’s nothing the galleries can do about it. It’s been going on for years and is an accepted part of the scene.

      Nice that you put “art” in quotes. That’s appropriate.

      As an epilogue, I sent that blog post to the guy who did the word carvings and he invited me to his studio in Asbury Park for a preview of his new stuff. I might just take him up on his invite.

  14. I think I told you I was in a production of Rumors. The set was mostly monochrome and included some monochrome faux-Rothkos. I thought that was a nice touch.
    Always enjoy strolling the gallery with you.

      • Over a few weeks ago. It went well. We were a pretty tight crew, as it turned out. Fun times. That’s it for me this season. Next up: book launch, DIY-style. Not until September but lining things up to do it right with the resources I have.

  15. Hello, Mark! Sorry I’m late getting to your post. I’m wondering if people were kneeling next to that Hitler. That creeps me out. At least the basket sold for undervalue. I guess! My basket would be loads better! Is it too late to be an artist? Why butter? Why not a big slab of bacon? Hey, I’m going to work on that one. Good to see you. Thanks for the stimulating post.

    • Late? What’s late?! There’s not timetable. Good heavens, don’t put that kind of pressure on blogging. It’ll quickly turn into a chore.

      That guy kneeling next to Hitler walked into the gallery with a friend. His friend asked him to kneel next to it for perspective (because, otherwise, you really couldn’t tell how small the stature was) and I jumped in and took advantage of the moment.

      I like your bacon idea. I’d buy big bacon before I bought big butter. I think most of us would.

      • Reading your posts are never a chore, Mark! There’s just limited time in a day. But you’re right. There’s no such thing as late. Glad you think so.

  16. Once again, thank you for these pictures and descriptions. Please show the rest of them in the future.
    I don’t want to be a sycophant, if you seen one Rothko painting, you seen them all, just a different shade of color. 32.645 million, Puhleeze.
    I understand Jeff Koons’ designs are not an original thought, but I always enjoy looking at what he does when it comes to these colossal images of a common figure. I would like to see how he creates his works of Art,
    Regarding the Robert Gober, this should of been a three parter. Add one stick of Oleo and one stick of Margarine.
    You got me good on the Hitler. I looked and looked then tried to guess, not even close.
    The Chicken in the Basket is what it is, Trash.

    • Hi, Tom. Nice to see you. I’ll dribble a few more pics out in the weeks to come. Some admirable. Some abominable. But you decide.

      I totally get your Rothko comment. There *IS* a sameness to them. It’s like he painted one painting over and over. But it’s a good painting. That’s like the Rolling Stones. They did that same song over and over. But it’s a pretty decent tune.

      I’ve got a Robert Gober piece that’ll make your toes curl.

      Trash, yes. But $305,000 trash. Can you imagine?

  17. The chicken in the basket thing should be titled,
    ” My day at the dollar store.”
    Geeze..
    Well, did they glue all the pieces together or are they removable? ??
    Oh never mind. They would probably arrest you for touching fine art. Haha.

  18. Hmm..maybe the two artists should come together and put the rubber chicken coming out of the egg..
    Then one could ponder…which one really did come first? The chicken OR the egg. ( or, what the hell were they thinking??? ) And split the cost. I’m sure that could sell… Ha. 😉

  19. Seeing “art” like this frustrates me. I am a portrait artist myself. By no means do I think I am the best. I think I’m doing well if I sell a sketch for a few hundred. These “artists” put a basketball in a fishtank and it sells for millions? I don’t get it.

    • First and foremost, thanks for reading and commenting. That took time and I appreciate the attention. Sure it frustrates you! It frustrates me, too. That’s why I do these art commentary posts. They’re provactive. They say art is subjective but I think we can all agree that a lot of this is crap-ola.

      • Agreed. It is visually interesting but it is hard for me to call it art. I try to be open minded and think about what the artist may be trying to express. Then I look at the Monet, true art, and just don’t understand. Maybe that’s the intent, to leave viewers bewildered and asking why?

  20. Everyone’s eye is different and completely different. Even in the midst of the same gene pool the viewpoint is limitless. Thank you for sharing an abstract viewpoint. A tree, as strange as it may seem is know by the fruit it bears.

  21. Pingback: You See, I DO Appreciate Art and Shit! 💩 | FiftyFourandAHalf

  22. Shiny egg. Makes me want to touch it, or lick it. Depending on how much i’ve had to drink, most likely…. Just saying “hi”. Catching up, although it’s bedtime. More catch up tomorrow… and dare i say it, time for my quarterly report soon. i’m still fat, i’m not dead. i suppose i could do it in six words this time…

  23. I will be the first to say that I don’t understand most modern art, I just like what I like. But in all sincerity,how does one display Hitler kneeling or a stick of butter or a shopping basket with a dead chicken?

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