Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Frantisek Drtikol, Photography History

There was a Czech photographer named Frantisek Drtikol . He lived 1883-1961.

Here is a sample of his elegant exquisite work. I love the form and shadows.

I will also include the brief wikipedia entry.

I have recently added the History of Photography to my cultural obsession.

I learned of Drtikol from seeing two photos at the DAM's collection. I may have seen him in LA too.

He is one of the latest I have learned about in my studies. Along with Francesca Woodman, Julia Margaret Cameron, Barbara Kruger.

Gerry Winograd. Saw those same prints in LA well you can't do that with a painting.

So that is a question for Eric Paddock. haha

How does that affect the value. But it is also giving the piece prestige, I would imagine, because it is like the curators are saying "this is an important piece of photographic arts."
Same with the Diane Arbu twins photo, is at the DAM and LA.

From 1907 to 1910 he had his own studio, until 1935 he operated an important portrait photostudio in Prague on the fourth floor of one of Prague's remarkable buildings, a Baroque corner house at 9 Vodičkova, now demolished. Drtikol made many portraits of very important people and nudes which show development from pictorialism and symbolism to modern composite pictures of the nude body with geometric decorations and thrown shadows, where it is possible to find a number of parallels with the avant-garde works of the period. These are reminiscent of Cubism, and at the same time his nudes suggest the kind of movement that was characteristic of the futurism aesthetic.
He began using paper cut-outs in a period he called "photopurism". These photographs resembled silhouettes of the human form. Later he gave up photography and concentrated on painting. After the studio was sold Drtikol focused mainly on painting, Buddhist religious and philosophical systems. In the final stage of his photographic work Drtikol created compositions of little carved figures, with elongated shapes, symbolically expressing various themes from Buddhism. In the 1920s and 1930s, he received significant awards at international photo salons. Drtikol has published:
"Le nus de Drtikol" (1929)
Žena ve světle (Woman in the Light)

Some his photos look very Art Deco to me. Wikipedia doesn't mention that.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Serendipity? Unseen Franz Kafka Writings Inch closer to the Light

I have it in me to be sublime talk show host, and interviewer. A really good intellectual, funny, campy, don't give a fuck, cuts to the chase, doesn't mince words, cuts through the bullshit in a George Carlin way Joyce Behar type talk show host.

I hadn't of thought of Franz Kafka in years, (Kafka esquese is now an entry word in the dictionary. So anyway, somehow I thought of Barbara Kruger used a quote twice in the new coffee table book about her, that quote is seen twice, one of the time an artwork on the side of a bus. so the quote "The point of life is that it stops," is in that genre of being a selection of words that cuts through the bullshit, is precise, exact,True with a capital T. The phrase made an impact, an impression on me as being showing the ability to sum of with a few words a profuned multi-layered Truth. How you say?

So this is why I began to think of Kafka, googled him, bought The Trial two days ago

Just getting into a pop-culture, slightly deeper than surface knowledge/ web search education about Kafka. ( It is proving hard to read his book The Trial. Not quite as ploddingly through as Pride and Prejudice but I have this mental laziness with all classic literature)

Tues. night I first googled him I read a story of some missing correspondence letters written by Kafka and left after his death at age 40, into in the hands of his last lover. I got the impression the location of the letters was uncertain.

About ten minutes after reading that website, I went back to the search page and noticed a NYT story released 5 hours ago that very afternoon. Guess what the topic of that story was?
The missing correspondence was in safety deposit boxes about to be released to the public after legal battles. Now what are the chances of that? But my life is filled with things like that when I get into one of my "historical" characters, cult figure tangents.

OK, simple, strange, odd things amuse and fascinate me.....

Story below.

Unseen Franz Kafka Writings Inch a Bit Closer to the Light
Published: July 22, 2010

A list of manuscripts, letters and journals written by Franz Kafka, below, that languished in safe-deposit boxes in Tel Aviv and Zurich for decades will soon be released, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported. The documents have been the subject of a legal battle between the National Library in Israel and Eva Hoffe, who inherited the documents. Ms. Hoffe’s mother, Esther, was the secretary to Max Brod, a close friend of Kafka who served as executor of his estate after he died in 1924. Although Kafka requested that all his personal papers be burned, Brod, who immigrated to Israel in 1939, never complied. The District Family Court judge in Tel Aviv who heard the case ordered attorneys to prepare a detailed list of the contents of four boxes that had been stored in a Zurich bank and opened on Monday. Haaretz reported that a handwritten short story by Kafka, never before seen, is among the papers. Several more safe-deposit boxes with Kafka’s documents are also expected to be opened by the Tel Aviv court. The library contends that the Kafka papers are “cultural assets belonging to the Jewish people,” David Bloomberg, chairman of the National Library, said.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Dennis Hopper's estate for sale.

Dennis Hopper's compound for sale
The actor's art collection isn't included, but the $6.24 million estate in Venice, Calif., offers plenty of room for your own exhibit.
Posted by Mai Ling at MSN Real Estate on Friday, July 23, 2010 8:46 AM
The late Dennis Hopper may be best known for some of his unique acting roles, such as in "Blue Velvet," "Apocalypse Now" and "Easy Rider."

But Hopper also was an artist and photographer, as well as an art collector who displayed works from such masters as Andy Warhol at his estate in Venice, Calif.

On May 29, Hopper died in that same home after a years-long battle with prostate cancer. And now everything is on display, starting with an exhibit of Hopper's own work at the Los Angeles MOCA. In addition, his estate is up for grabs for $6.24 million, and Reuters reports that his art collection is set to hit the auction block at Christie's this fall.

I was just in Venice and had no idea that is where he lived. I wonder which house it is--I must have seen them all!