Leave a comment

What Will Be The Art of the 21st Century?

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 8.01.32 PM

       Photo Credit:  PBS: ART21

Art in the 21st Century

The 21st Century is yet to take hold.  Indeed, many believe that the 20th century didn’t take hold until about 1920, after World War I, and the decline of the old order. “Some of most influential modern and contemporary art movements and developments of the century include Fauvism, Cubism, Futurism, Dada, Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Minimalism, Conceptual Art, Photorealism, and Neo-Expressionism.”(Artsy)

While it is still “early days” Oxford Art Online cites “the surge of bio art in response to scientific research in the life sciences, and the critical theory known as relational aesthetics that developed in response to an increase in art that invites viewers’ participation and interaction. Other art forms that were developed in the late 20th century remain vital for the analysis of 21st-century art and visual culture, including semiotics, post-modernism, and feminism.”(Artsy)

PBS premiered Season 8: Art in the Twenty-First Century on September 16, 2016, and has online the “Art21 Library, an index of every film produced by Art21 since its first broadcast in 2001. The library contains full episodes from each of Art21’s television and digital series.”

Google Images has pages devoted to 21st century art. Below is just a small sample.

Screen Shot 2018-01-16 at 8.33.55 PM

Below is a video of Cy Twombly: Bloomimg at the Gagosian Gallery.


And, our favorite, the video art of Robert Wilson:

Art in the 21st Century – Conclusion

“While the 21st century, thus far, has been in the death throes of the 20th century, in every aspect of life, the new century is emerging to develop into something of its own, and, as yet, unknown. The art of Robert Wilson may well come to identify not only the point where the 21st century began, but hopefully what will be a major art movement of the new century.” (whitherthebook)

More: 14 Incredible Works That Have Redefined Art in the 21st Century  “For a crash course in the contemporary art scene, we gathered one work for every year between 2000-2014. Looking towards the recent past of modern art, these are the pieces you should know. Starting with 2000, here’s the year-by-year retrospective” (mic.com)

January 17, 2018 by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday.




Leave a comment

Does Virtual Reality Have a Place in Art Museums?

VR 1

Banz & Bowinkel, installation of Mercury (2016)
January 10, 2018 by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday

Fine Art in the New Media

Virtual Reality (VR) is all the rage now. This post will examine the place of VR in Art Museums in two ways: first, as a medium for the artist, and second, as a media for the viewer. and second This post will be deliberately visual, rather than an “essay” about the use of VR by Museums. Of course, references will be provided for the reader.

VR a New Medium for Artists

This is an exciting area for the use of VR by which artists use VR to create actual art. Here by way of example, is a video, ‘”The Kiss” by Gustav Klimt Painted in Virtual Reality!”



vr 2

VR in Art Museums

VR has also been used by Art Museums as a “You are there” tool to make the you feel  as if you are really at the museum, where ever you may be. The video link below is of the Louvre, which lets you visit both the inside (Winged Victory) and the outside ((The Courtyard) of the Museum, is a fine example.

Both ways have been used with various degrees of success in a yet developing field.  Here is another example by the British Museum, “British Museum uses virtual reality to transport visitors to the bronze age.” VR has also been used to create virtual museums, “A New Museum Exists Solely in VR. What Does that Mean for the Future?” 

The Test(s)

The real test will be whether art created in VR will be shown in museums as a new art form. For museums,  the test is whether VR is seen as a technology gimmick, or accepted as a new way to view at art.

For an in-depth discussion of this topic, see : “A proposal for a virtual reality museum for virtual reality art,” by Michael Fischer, of Stanford University.




Leave a comment

Islamic Art – “Mirror of the Invisible World”

January 3, 2018 by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday

A New Series – Islamic Art

Islamic Art is a vast as the areas where it originated. This post is the first in an occasional series in 2018. The series will explore a number of aspects of Islamic Art including architecture, calligraphy, painting,  glass, pottery, textiles, and, of course,  Islamic architecture. This first post is an introduction to Islamic Art.

What is Islamic Art?

“Islamic art has been produced over 14 centuries from the shores of the Atlantic to the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea, from the steppes of Central Asia to the savannas of Africa, in lands where people spoke a myriad of languages but shared a common belief in the tenets of Islam and a common—if sometimes limited—knowledge of Arabic, the language of the Qur’an. The resources available to the artists, and the pre-existing cultural traditions, all differed so widely from one part of this vast region to another that no single style or technique or medium prevailed.” (islamic-arts.org)

An introduction:  The Film, “Islamic Art: Mirror of an Invisible World”

The trailer for the film “Islamic Art: Mirror of an Invisible World” is the video above.  “The film takes audiences on an epic journey across nine countries and over 1,400 years of history. It explores themes such as the Word, Space, Ornament, Color and Water and presents the stories behind many great masterworks of Islamic Art and Architecture.”

“The film explores the richness of Islamic art in objects big and small, from great ornamented palaces and the play of light in monumental mosques to the exquisite beauty of ceramics, carved boxes, paintings and metal work. It revels in the use of color and finds commonalities in a shared artistic heritage with the West and East. The film also examines the unique ways in which Islamic art turns calligraphy and the written word into masterpieces and develops water into an expressive, useful art form.” (islamic-arts.org)

Some Examples of Islamic Art:

Islamic Art Antique Malyer Persian Carpet (Detail)

Antique Malyer Persian Carpet (Detail)
Islamic Art Alahambra (Detail)Alhambra (Detail) Photo: By Yves Remedios – Flickr, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1615130

Islamic Art Khamseh_Nizami

 Scene from the  Khamsa of Nizami, Persian, 1539–43
Leave a comment

Illuminating a Medieval Manuscript

December 27, 2017 by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday.

Screen Shot 2017-12-26 at 6.47.00 PM

Silver and Gold: Illuminated Manuscripts in the Middle Ages

In 2003, the Getty had an exhibition dedicated to the “The Making of a Medieval Book,” which took the visitor through the various stages of the making of a Medieval book. One of the most fascinating showed how manuscripts, copied out by scribes, were then “Illuminated, to create a shiny surface, which sparkles as the pages are turned.”

The Getty exhibition stated that “‘Illumination'”, from the Latin illuminare, “to light up or illuminate,” describes the glow created by the colors, especially gold and silver, used to embellish manuscripts.” (The Getty) In the video below the Getty shows how this process was carried out.

“The artist first made an outline drawing with leadpoint or quill and ink. Next, he or she painted the areas to receive gold leaf with a sticky substance such as bole (a refined red clay) or gum ammoniac (sap). The gold leaf was then laid down and burnished, or rubbed, to create a shiny surface, which sparkles as the pages are turned.” (the Getty)

Screen Shot 2017-12-26 at 6.43.49 PM


Leave a comment

Deco Christmas 2017

Dec. 20, 2017. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday by Jack Dziamba

.Deco Christmas 2017

Leave a comment

Is There a Connection Between Science and Art?

December 13, 2017, by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday.

ucla-2The painting above is from the National Gallery’s collection.  It depicts an Egyptian noblewoman and is a Fayum portrait, a type of painting that was attached to mummies of that time and believed to depict the image of a real person.

Science and Art – Fine Art in the New Media

There is an intriguing connection between science and art, which seem to be in contradiction with each other. In one instance the two subjects are seen to be radically different, with a firm line drawn between the two.  Science and art are often seen as in opposite, with no connection between the two. Oftentimes, the connection may not be readily apparent. This post describes a newly developed scientific technique used to great advantage in identifying the elements of the ancient painting depicted above.

“Scientists from UCLA and the National Gallery of Art have used a combination of three advanced imaging techniques to produce a highly detailed analysis of a second century Egyptian painting.”

The Process

“The approach, which is described in a paper published in Scientific Reports, integrates three existing techniques — hyperspectral diffuse reflectance, luminescence and X-ray fluorescence — to examine the painting.”

“By combining data from the three modalities, the researchers were able to map the signatures of molecules and elements across the surface of the painting for each pixel of the image. The findings revealed important details on the painting’s composition and structure.”

The Project

Ioanna Kakoulli, professor of materials science and engineering at the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science describes the project,

“’Without even taking a minute sample from the painting, we mapped out detailed information that tells us exactly what materials were used, and how they were prepared,’” she said. “We were also able to link their production technology to other ancient ‘industries’ and practices, such as mining, metallurgy, pottery, dyeing, pharmacopeia and alchemy.”’

The Findings

“By combining data from the three modalities, the researchers were able to map the signatures of molecules and elements across the surface of the painting for each pixel of the image. The findings revealed important details on the painting’s composition and structure.”

“The analysis revealed the molecular and elemental composition of the paint and the medium used to bind the paint: The scientists discovered that the painting was made using encaustic — a technique that uses a mixture of pigment and melted beeswax that is “burned in” on a wooden base. The research also offers insights into fashions and artistic methods popular at the time.”

The Connection Between Science and Art

‘“The decoration of [the subject’s] garment is an excellent example of craftsmanship in real life being reflected within the painting,” said Roxanne Radpour, a UCLA graduate student and a co-author of the study. “Madder dye extracted from roots was often used to color textiles and leather in ancient Egypt, and we see from the chemical mapping of the portrait that the artist chose to paint the noblewoman’s dress with madder lake pigment, thus imitating contemporary practices.”’

The Future

“The results, when interpreted by experts of artist material from this time period, show a complete picture of how the object fabricated emerges. We hope such multimodal imaging methods become the basis for futures studies of such early polychrome objects.”

The scientists said “the new approach could potentially be used in other disciplines such as environmental, geological, biological and forensic sciences.” (All quotes, Art Daily).

Prior Post:

Leave a comment

Gender Equality in the Art World. When?

“Men have always Dominated the Western Art World.”

“In 1989, the Guerilla Girls counted the number of women represented in The Met’s modern art sections,” notes Artists for Gender Equality. “Less than 5 percent of the artists were women and 85 percent of the nudes were female.” If you think Hollywood’s the only creative industry suffering gender discrimination and bias, check out the new short film series on the art world. (Mashable)

“Although women artists have seen greater exposure in recent years, the reality is that they continue to lag behind men across every metric—including the prices their works command at auctions, their representation in gallery rosters, and their presence in museum collections.”

The Film Series

   On November 29, 2017, Artsy published the third installment in its film series titled “Artists for Gender Equality in Art.” The series is in three parts, ” I. Past,”  “II. Present,”  and “III. Future.” This post will concentrate on Part III.  “The Future”

The “Change” in the Art World Today

“As artist and Gucci muse Petra Collins observes, the change we see in the art world today often amounts to mere tokenism—the inclusion of just a handful of women or people of color in a group show to give the appearance of diversity, for instance.” (Artsy)

“Ghettoizing” vs. Equality
“As performance artist Narcissister notes, is the “ghettoizing” practice of dividing artists into groups based on their race or gender. What would true gender equality in the art world look like?” (Artsy)
III. Future
“In the final chapter of the series, Collins, Narcissister, artist Genevieve Gaignard, and curator and gallerist Anthony Spinello look toward a world where all artists have equal opportunity—one in which there are truly inclusive museums and galleries that embrace multiple narratives, and where women and men are ready to address the biases that run deep within the art world. Featuring (in order of appearance) Genevieve Gaignard, Narcissister, Anthony Spinello, Petra Collins, Joan Semmel, Marilyn Minter, and Faith Ringgold.” (Artsy)

Listen to These Artists’ Words in the Video Above.
 Screen Shot 2017-12-06 at 8.15.10 AM

Click Here


%d bloggers like this: