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Wes Anderson’s Debt to Stanley Kubrick Revealed in a Side-By-Side Comparison

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

Video Creator: Dante Guerilla “I own nothing in this video, except for editing the stuff together to compare the two directors.”

Kubrick/ Anderson

As written by Colin Marshall in OpenCulture,

“At first glance, it might seem hard to understand what kind of taste could possibly encompass both Kubrick and Anderson. The former made mostly complex and emotionally chilled period pieces, visually grand yet stark, tinged with grim humor, and possessing a dim view of humanity. The latter makes colorful, outwardly high-spirited comedies, sometimes even animated ones, that seem to delight in their own carefully cultivated aesthetics.”

“But both bodies of work reveal directorial minds that take cinema itself very seriously indeed. ‘”Kubrick is one of my favorites,”‘ says Anderson in an interview clip used in the video essay comparing shots from his films to shots from Kubrick’s, just above.

‘”Usually, by the time I’m making the movie, I don’t really know where I’m stealing everything from. By the time it’s a movie, I think it’s my thing, and I forget where I took it all — but I think I’m always pretty influenced by Kubrick.”‘

A Visual Comparison

The video above, in six short minutes, makes a compelling and powerful comparison between Kubrick and Anderson.

“That influence, on a visual level, does come through in this comparison, certainly in all those first-person perspectives and views through portholes, but even more so with the camera moves, especially in the tracking shots and zooms.” (OpenCulture).

Lit and Cinema – Whither The Book?

The side by side comparison in the video above by Dante Guerilla raises an interesting issue: In Literature such a side by side comparison of writings, say by Tolstoy and a “Writer like Tolstoy,” would immediately raise cries and condemnations of plagiarism.

The Visual Arts

In the cinema, as in most of the visual arts, a side by side comparison of similar work of by two different artists is treated as “influenced by.” In the age of the internet where millions (billions) of pages of content, and millions (billions) of images are available for free, the term of “influenced by” seems to be a more realistic concept for the digital age.

Book Publishers and the New Media

Indeed, numerous museums have made high-resolution images of their collections available for download for free. Museums even encourage the use of their images in whole, or in part, for the creation of new art.  Can book publishers find a way to do the same?


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Rodin, the Met, and the New Media

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

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Rodin at the MET  – September 16, 2017 – January 15, 2018


“On the centenary of the death of Auguste Rodin (1840–1917), The Metropolitan Museum of Art celebrates its historic collection of the artist’s work. Nearly 50 marbles, bronzes, plasters, and terracottas by Rodin, representing more than a century of acquisitions and gifts to the Museum, are displayed in the newly installed and refurbished B. Gerald Cantor Sculpture Gallery (gallery 800). The exhibition features iconic sculptures such as The Thinker and The Hand of God, as well as masterpieces such as The Tempest that have not been on view in decades. ” (metmuseum.org)

Rodin/ the Met/New Media

The Met has made use of the tools of the New Media to make the Rodin exhibition accessible to all. For those who can visit the Met in New York, the exhibition is breathtaking. For those, however, unable to make the visit,  the Met has made it possible for everyone to see the complete exhibition. thus fulfilling the mission of making Art available to everyone, everywhere.

The Full Exhibition Online

The Met has made the full exhibition available online. Often, a museum will show only a few of the objects in an exhibition, to give the viewer a brief view, perhaps as a teaser for a visit. In the global world, the Met has realized that everyone is not able to make the visit to New York. Thus, it has chosen to put the entire easily found under the Exhibition Objects tab, and which can be enlarged to virtually bring the viewer into the presence of the work.

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among the videos made available online is one demonstrating how a one of Rodin’s bronze sculpture is cast using the Lost Wax method, produced by The musée Rodin – Paris.

Another video shows how a sculpture is made.


The Met also provides links  to The musée Rodin – Paris. to find additional resources on  (in French and English), and to the worldwide celebration of the artist’s work at Rodin100.org.

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The Met’s Rodin exhibition online has uniquely fulfilled the mission of making Art available to everyone, everywhere.


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Properly Lighting Black Faces – Cinamatographer Ava Berkofsky

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


Ava DuVernay’s ‘Selma’ influenced the look of ‘Insecure.’ Source: Atsushi Nishijima/IMDb

The Problem

“When I was in film school, no one ever talked about lighting nonwhite people.” — Ava Berkofsky

As written by mic.com,  September 8, 2017:  “Any brown person who’s taken a selfie in the club can tell you cameras aren’t made for us. Yet in Insecure’s club scenes, dark-skinned protagonists like Yvonne Orji’s Molly continue to impress. You can thank Ava Berkofsky, the show’s director of photography, for that. Berkofsky was brought on for the show’s second season (currently airing on HBO) to give the show a more movie-like look, which includes making black faces not only legible, but striking.” (All quotes: mic.com)

The Conventional Way – IRE Units

‘“The conventional way of doing things was that if you put the skin tones around 70 IRE, it’s going to look right,”’ Berkofsky said.

“IRE, a unit used in the measurement of composite video signals (named for the initials of the Institute of Radio Engineers), ranges from 0 to 100. “If you’ve got black skin, [dialing it] up to 50 or 70 is just going to make the rest of the image look weird.” The resulting image looks very bright, Berkofsky noted, similar to what you’d see in traditional sitcoms like The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.”

New Media Tools

“When the Arri Alexa came out, it really changed how people were shooting digital and what kind of results we could get.”


“Berkofsky said all of Insecure’s actors take light differently, but rather than putting light directly on them, she uses reflection instead. Similar to Dickerson’s use of moisturizer on the She’s Gotta Have It cast, this adds a bit of shine. ‘“Rather than pound someone’s face with light, [I] have the light reflect off them,”’ she said. ‘“I always use a white or [canvas-like] muslin, so instead of adding more light, the skin can reflect it.”’

bar sceneBar scenes, night and day, are well-lit in ‘Insecure.’ Source: HBO/Medium





“Instead of a simple whiteboard, the Insecure crew makes use of whiteboards with little LED lights inside, called S2 LiteMat 4s. For one shoot “a 1-foot-by-3-foot LiteMat at low intensity was put near [Isa] Rae’s face”‘. According to the cinematographer, “it’s reflecting on her skin rather than ‘lighting’ it.”’

“Berkofsky, in an email to Mic, also discussed the value of a filter, a polarizer: ‘“People use them when shooting glass, or cars, or any surface that intensely reflects light. The filter affects how much reflection a window, or any surface has. The same principal works with skin, and this can be a highly effective way to shape the reflected light on an actors face.”’

For You

The tech Berkofsky uses for …  proper lighting is expensive, but she has a tip dark-skinned folks can use to improve their club selfies using just their phones.

“Stand close to a soft light source and turn three quarters to the light, so that it’s not filling in everything the same way. Kind of like a Rembrandt painting.”

H/T Laura Hauschild




Will the Fine Art Print Book Survive in the New Media?

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  1. Matisse: “Decorative Figure on an Ornamental Background 1925–26; oil on canvas; 1.3 x0.98 m / 4 ft 3 in x 3 ft 3½ in This canvas celebrates the ornamental elements of Arabic culture. Matisse here disrupts a tradition of the human form as the highest subject by elevating still-life, background and decorative arts to the same level.”

    The Book

    Phaidon, a globally noted publisher has recently announced the release of a new Fine Art print book, The Art Museum.  The book is described below.

“Why buy a mere art book when you could have a museum of your own? A colossal tome that, ranging across continents, periods, and artistic approaches” —The Times

“Visit the world’s most comprehensive and compelling museum in a book – from pre-historic times to the present, – over 1,600 artworks created with the expertise of 28 art world curators and historians. “


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The Book and Fine Art in the New Media

Phaidon has thus far chosen not to produce digital versions of their Fine Art publications, taking pride in their craftmanship in producing excellent print publications. Its use of the New Media for The Art Museum is limited to the web page and a free preview download.

Pictured at the top of this post is a sample page from the book on Matisse with curatorial notes. It does not appear that Phaidon has made full use of the tools of the New Media.



 The Enhanced Fine Art E-Book

The publisher, of Great Impressionist and Post-Impressionist PaintingsArtepublishing states, “there is no museum in the world that has a better collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art than the Musée d’Orsay in Paris. The very best of these works are brought together for the first time in an enhanced e-book. The book has been published by Artepublishing solely as an e-book and will not be available in printed form. The book is an outstanding work of scholarship. It is beautifully designed and intuitively interactive.”


There are scalable reproductions of nearly 200 paintings by 26 artists including such favorites as Manet, Monet, Renoir, and Van Gogh; over three hours of original audio information about the artists and their paintings; and more than 500 hyperlinks to some of the best sites on the Internet to learn more about the artists and their work.

The book is an outstanding work of scholarship. It is beautifully designed and intuitively interactive. It is available on iTunes.

The book’s audio commentaries and texts are by Dr. Charles F. Stuckey, one of the world’s foremost scholars on Impressionist art. Dr. Stuckey has held senior curatorial positions at The Minneapolis Institute of Arts; The Art Institute of Chicago; and the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. He has organized major exhibitions on Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists including exhibitions on Monet, Gauguin, and Toulouse-Lautrec, and written monographs on Monet, Gauguin, Morisot, and Toulouse-Lautrec.

The artists in the book begin with the Salon painter, William Bouguereau, then the realists Daumier, Corot, and Millet, followed by Manet (who was an inspiration to the Impressionists though he never exhibited with them). The focus then turns to the Impressionists such as Monet, Renoir, Sisley, Cassatt, Morisot, and others; and Post-Impressionists including Gauguin, Cézanne, Van Gogh, and Seurat.

Each of the artists has least one featured painting. As part of the e-book enhancement, each painting has an audio commentary by Dr. Stuckey lasting approximately five minutes about the artist, the painting, and the context of the painting. There is also text by Dr. Stuckey about each featured painting.

A further and great feature of the enhanced e-book is that there are between 10 and 30 curated links for each artist and featured painting. These include biographies of the artist, articles about the artist, works by the artist in other museums, artist quotes, videos and even free e-books about the artist. Following the featured works are other paintings by the artist in the d’Orsay.


In a prior post, “ARE INTERACTIVE E-BOOKS ,”E+,” A NEW GENRE? we wrote that  “This book  [Great Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Paintings] is an outstanding example of what can be done in the enhanced e-book format, and an excellent example to print publishers by the Museum and Artepublishing of the tremendous power of enhanced e-books in the New Media. The book is beautifully designed, and couples art and scholarship in a way not possible in the static print and e-book methods of publication.”

September 6, 2017. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday by Jack Dziamba.



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End of Summer 2017, Photography, Fine Art

August 30, 2017 by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday.

Summer 2017, Photography, Fine Art

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End of Summer 2017

There are many ways to wind down the summer in art – galleries, museums, collections, auctions, exhibitions, and creating. We think the following is a great way to do it.

Each day in August L’ Oeil de la Photography (The Eye of Photography) publish a curated portfolio of images, under  “Your Holiday Pictures,” which encapsulate summer,  and allows your imagination to run as if you were there. We have chosen a few of our favorites. You may also visit the site here to view the entire Summer 2017 collection.

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Lens Culture – Bold Concept in Book Marketing

August 23, 2017, by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday.

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Whither the Book?

In this digital age, museums have now come to realize that putting their collections online, spurs interest in museums and museum attendance. indeed, it is an effective marketing tool and is a meaningful contribution to wold-wide culture, furthering the mission of making art available to everyone, everywhere “1.8 Million Works of Art, Free, Online, So What?”

Book publishers, however whether print or electronic, have been virtually ignoring this concept, instead clinging to high prices and profits, and excluding those of lesser means. E MUSEUMS LEAVE E BOOKS IN THE DUST: A VIEW FROM TWO DIFFERENT CENTURIES In fact, book publishers were even opposed to free copies of e books available in libraries.

Lens Culture*

Lens Culture, has launched a bold concept in book publishing and marketing – a video of “The Best of LensCulture Book – Vol 1.”

The Future of The Book in the New Media

As the video above shows, a great portion of the book is presented in a very creative video with music, and which also makes a great deal of the book available to everyone everywhere! Well done!!


*LensCulture is a “photography network and online magazine about contemporary photography in art, media, politics, commerce and popular cultures”. worldwide: “a resource to keep up with the latest trends and debates in contemporary photography”.
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Five Van Gogh “Sunflowers” Virtually Live, and in 360

August 16, 2017 by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday.

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“Van Gogh’s paintings of Sunflowers are among his most famous. He did them in Arles, in the south of France, in 1888 and 1889. Vincent painted a total of five large canvases with sunflowers in a vase, with three shades of yellow ‘and nothing else’. In this way, he demonstrated that it was possible to create an image with numerous variations of a single colour, without any loss of eloquence.”

“The sunflower paintings had a special significance for Van Gogh: they communicated ‘gratitude’, he wrote. He hung the first two in the room of his friend, the painter Paul Gauguin, who came to live with him for a while in the Yellow House. Gauguin was impressed by the sunflowers, which he thought were ‘completely Vincent’.” (Van Gogh Museum. )

The Van Gogh Museum – Fine Art in the New Media

The Van Gogh Museum has been in the forefront in its use of New Media. The first two posts when this blog began six years ago were the Van Gogh Museum and The Van Gogh Letters. Now, five versions of a Vincent van Gogh masterpiece are being reunited for the first time in a “virtual exhibition,”


“According to a press release, on Monday August 10, 2017 The National Gallery in London, Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Neue Pinakothek in Munich and the Seiji Togo Memorial Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Museum of Art in Tokyo all linked up for the presentation called Sunflowers 360, which is available to view now on Facebook. ”

“Also launched is a  virtual-reality experience that shows viewers all five “‘Sunflowers'” in one room. Willem van Gogh, great-grandson of Vincent’s brother Theo, narrates the  360° tour. This virtual gallery, as of now, has already had some 3.7 million views.

“Virtual reality technology and computer graphics make it appear as if the paintings are all in one gallery together. Viewers can either use VR headsets to examine the paintings or get a 360-degree view of the gallery on their computer or mobile screens.” ((Jason Daley smithsonian.com)


You can watch the each of the museums’ presentations on livestreams at:
National Gallery: http://vangogh.com/QZDQ30eqhnk
Van Gogh Museum: http://vangogh.com/YuWJ30eqhvx
Die Pinakotheken: http://vangogh.com/CC6g30eqhyE
Philadelphia Museum of Art: http://vangogh.com/ZCHR30eqhBO
Seiji Togo Memorial Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Museum: http://vangogh.com/9XOY30epRLq


Van Gogh Self-Portrait with Straw Hat, Summer 1887  Detroit Institute of Arts








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