Art

Swinging on the Bad Side

Swinging with the Finkels - The Chesterfield sofa of my dreams

Swinging with the Finkels - The Chesterfield sofa of my dreams

Before I watched the film Swinging with the Finkels, I checked Rotten Tomatoes, only to find it was given a 0%.  I decided, what the hell, and watched it anyway.  This was the right choice because I am the target audience for wooden, corporate-looking, rom-coms.  I found this movie "watchable".  

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In the Finkel's beautiful open plan living room, they break up the space with black Middle Easter screens draped with rich warm fabric.  It's fabulous.

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And they have giant wall art of themselves so they can conveniently get into fights in front of it.  You see this a fair amount in sets, but 90% of the time, the art is Andy Warhol-esque (example below).

Kroll Show: Season 1, Episode 3 - The home of Rich Dicks.

Kroll Show: Season 1, Episode 3 - The home of Rich Dicks.

Although honorable mention to the Keith Haring-y wall mural of Robin Williams in The Crazy Ones advertising office:

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UPDATE: Target Art

Only days ago I wrote a post about using shooting targets as art, and then, low and behold, the exact same target popped up in the show Elementary. 

I am well aware that in this case, and the Brooklyn Nine-Nine example from the previous post, the art is in a law enforcement setting.  But I promise that it looks just as good on a civilian wall.  

 

Elementary: Season 2, Episode 18 - Sherlock Holmes's Living room.  Watson has framed a shooting target as a gift for a colleague who overcame an injury to his shooting hand.  

Elementary: Season 2, Episode 18 - Sherlock Holmes's Living room.  Watson has framed a shooting target as a gift for a colleague who overcame an injury to his shooting hand.  

Wes Anderson gets what he wants

Ages ago, I wrote a post about the art in the show Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries.  The gist of the post is that I am always amazed when I see recognizable paintings used in sets.  

The art that you see in sets needs to be "cleared".  Often this means one of two things:

1. The art was created for the set, so it is original.  No one owns it.  Sometimes this art is in the style of a more recognizable artist, but the art was imagined by an employee or contractor of the film.  

2. The artist and/or person who owns the art formally gives the project permission to use the image in the set.  Getting the rights to use a piece is a hassle and a half, so option 2 is only on the table if it seems "do-able".

That's why I was amazed to see Gustav Klimt's Birch Forest in Wes Anderson's "The Grand Budapest Hotel".

Anderson also prominently places an Egon Schiele painting in his set, but I could not find the exact painting used, so maybe they went with the in-the-style-of option.  

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Egon Schiele - Wally Neuzil in Black stockings 1912

Egon Schiele - Wally Neuzil in Black stockings 1912

I guess I had art on the brain because right after watching Grand Budapest, I noticed a similar art situation in How I Met Your Mother.  

How I Met Your Mother: Season 9, Episode 20 - The Farhampton home of a rich captain who loves boats.

How I Met Your Mother: Season 9, Episode 20 - The Farhampton home of a rich captain who loves boats.

Rene Magritte - Time Transfixed

Rene Magritte - Time Transfixed

Hanging Art

People ask me me help them hang art all the time.  When I look at the piece and the space, I normally just know what to do.  It's instinct.  

However, when people ask me how to hang art, I don't have anything cohesive to tell them.......until now.  Home Design Find has the most wonderful how-to article on hanging art.  

For example, it says to "Keep your art centered at eye level".

I'm not just going to copy and paste the article, so I strongly encourage you to go to their site and read it.  

A magical realm on the other side of the wall

Scarface (1983)

Scarface (1983)

When I think of a wall covered in a large photograph, my mind immediately goes to Scarface...but is that such a bad thing?  Yes, it was meant to be over the top and tacky, but it is still freakin' awesome.  

There is just something magical about being able to walk over base moldings into a forest, onto a beach, or into a piece of art.

The company Wallpapered let's you select or design your wall art, put in the dimensions of your wall, and receive your art in the mail.  Or there is Pixers, which does the same thing.  I am sure a google will turn up many more options.

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The picture to the left led me to Steve's Wallpaper and Blinds.  The site looks budget to the max, so it makes sense they would have some really affordable wall murals for sale.  There are a bunch that are less than $100.

That's not ND!

I mentioned last week that I started watching a show called Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries, set in 1920's Melbourne.  It's a gas!

Miss Fisher's boudoir is supposed to reflect her hyper-fashionably avant garde character, but the art choices are...curious.  Her walls are covered in miniaturized versions of fine art.

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For example, I circled the tiny version of Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignion. Picasso painted this piece of art in 1907, exhibited it in 1916, and then rolled it up an stored it until 1924, when he sold it to a private collector.  At which time I assume Miss Fisher had a mini made.  

There must be a similar back story to her Modigliani nude.  Modigliani painted this series in 1917 (and died in 1920 of tubercular meningitis + poverty + overwork + alcoholism + drug addiction = perfect storm).  Luckily Miss Fisher is so plugged in that she had a copy made...or is it an undocumented original?

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Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries: Season 1, Episode 5

Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries: Season 1, Episode 5

And yes, she has a Klimt too.

Klimt "Hope II" 1907-1098

Klimt "Hope II" 1907-1098

When you do design work for tv/movies/etc, as I do, you are completely fixated on finding art that is ND (nondescript).  You would never-ever-in-a-million-years put art on a wall that is recognizable.  You wouldn't even use art that you found in a garage sale, or art that you bought at Bed Bath & Beyond.  There are prop houses that will rent you art, but even they won't confirm in writing that the art is completely copyright-free.  Everyone is so afraid of getting sued that many designers just make the art themselves so they know exactly where it comes from.  

Mistresses: Season 1, Episode 1

Mistresses: Season 1, Episode 1

A work around that you see quite a lot is the mass-produced metal art.  Yes, it's still sculptural, but somehow you can get away with it.  

I can't get enough of Susanin's

A while back I wrote about my favorite auction house, Susanin's, in Chicago.  They have fantastic things in each sale and they are really reasonably priced.......but not if you include shipping to LA.  I should probably resist perusing their auction catalogs, but I can't!  Here are my top picks in the current sale: 

$50/$100 - PAIR OF GESSO AND GILTWOOD WING FORM SCONCES. With plug or wire mounting application 36" x 13"   The lamp I will see again, but that lamp shade is one in a million.     

$50/$100 - PAIR OF GESSO AND GILTWOOD WING FORM SCONCES. With plug or wire mounting application 36" x 13"

The lamp I will see again, but that lamp shade is one in a million. 

 

 $200/$300 - PAIR OF GESSO AND GILTWOOD WING FORM SCONCES. With plug or wire mounting application 36" x 13"    ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!  THESE ARE BANANAS!  THEY ARE MUST HAVES!   

 $200/$300 - PAIR OF GESSO AND GILTWOOD WING FORM SCONCES. With plug or wire mounting application 36" x 13"

ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!  THESE ARE BANANAS!  THEY ARE MUST HAVES! 

 $200/$300 - KILIM CARPET. 17'3" x 9"10"    If only I had a room that could fit this beast.   

 $200/$300 - KILIM CARPET. 17'3" x 9"10"

If only I had a room that could fit this beast. 

$200/$300 - EARLY 19TH CENURY PAINTED MINIATURE PORTRAIT. In an oval gilt frame. Together with two framed painted photographs (frame: 10.5" x 12.5") Frame: 3.5" x 2.75"    When it co   mes to art, I'm normally in the "bigger is better camp", but something about these really grabs me.

$200/$300 - EARLY 19TH CENURY PAINTED MINIATURE PORTRAIT. In an oval gilt frame. Together with two framed painted photographs (frame: 10.5" x 12.5") Frame: 3.5" x 2.75"

When it comes to art, I'm normally in the "bigger is better camp", but something about these really grabs me.

 $100/$200 - ARTIST UNKNOWN (20TH CENTURY) INTERIOR SCENE. Oil on canvas. Unsigned. Frame: 44" x 36". Stretcher bars inscribed 'Koch' Canvas: 36" x 29"       This one was pretty much painted for me.....maybe I should just buy it.  NO!

 $100/$200 - ARTIST UNKNOWN (20TH CENTURY) INTERIOR SCENE. Oil on canvas. Unsigned. Frame: 44" x 36". Stretcher bars inscribed 'Koch' Canvas: 36" x 29"

  This one was pretty much painted for me.....maybe I should just buy it.  NO!

Faux Beaux-Art

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This past weekend I visited the Belvedere Palace Art Museum in Vienna, Austria.  

When I visit museums, I keep myself entertained by writing down all my favorite piece.  Then I go home and scour the internet for for JEPGs.  

When I was searching for a JPEG of  Freidrich von Amerling's Rudolf von Arthaber with his Children, I uncovered an image of the below living room.  This image took me to FineArt-China, a site where you can buy faux paintings (and even get yourself painted into them).

My gut instinct is to resist all things faux, but then I started looking at that living room and thinking about how I will never-ever-no-way-in-hell own an authentic old master panting, and my resolve started slipping.  Maybe it's okay to go faux if it is over the top.   

 

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I started poking around the site, and stumbled upon Louis XIV, and then I was SOLD!!!!!

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This is a the "place holder" poster I have had in my home for eight years.  It's time for an upgrade!

This is a the "place holder" poster I have had in my home for eight years.  It's time for an upgrade!

I kept messing about in the Old Masters section, and found many other works I would consider owner.  Here are just a few: 

Turner - Burning the House of Parliaments  

Turner - Burning the House of Parliaments  

Cabanel - The Birth of Venus

Cabanel - The Birth of Venus

John Singer Sargent - Madame X

John Singer Sargent - Madame X

Renoir - La Loge

Renoir - La Loge

Caravaggio - Bacchus

Caravaggio - Bacchus

Jacques-Louis David - Napoleon Crossing Saint Bernard

Jacques-Louis David - Napoleon Crossing Saint Bernard

Ingres

Ingres

Dega

Dega

Paris Photo

I went to Paris Photo this past weekend, and it was just lovely.  It is a massive photography show and sale which takes place all over the world.  

This was the first year Los Angeles hosted a sale and it couldn't have been more pleasant.  The sale took place on the Paramount Studio Lot, and utilized sounds stages as well as the little faux store fronts in fake New York.  They brought in food trucks, and had cute aqua signs all over the place.  And there were celebs to spot, so what more could you want.  My best sighting was Jane Seymour.  What a babe.

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As for the art...I found it surprisingly meh.  I know I can be picky, but I also know how to covet, and there just wasn't very much I yearned for. 

Matthew Brandt - From the series "Dust" - "Last Stand of the Melrose Hotel

Matthew Brandt - From the series "Dust" - "Last Stand of the Melrose Hotel

There were only a few pieces I saw and liked, and they were pretty much in my wheelhouse - large and have architecture or interior design in them.

Sold by the Hamiltons Gallery  - London.  I didn't track down the artist info

Sold by the Hamiltons Gallery  - London.  I didn't track down the artist info

Filip Dujardin.  These are photos of fantasy places.  Not sure what the artist's process is. 

Filip Dujardin.  These are photos of fantasy places.  Not sure what the artist's process is. 

And then the piece de resistance:

Paola Pivi  - "I'm a bear, so what?" 2012

Paola Pivi  - "I'm a bear, so what?" 2012