Art History

The End Of The World Is Coming. Lets Study Some Art.

In a world where everything seems to be going to hell in a hand basket, and science is predicting the end of life in the next great mass extinction, it’s nice to know that there is art in the world. The world might be coming to an end at some point in the future, but you still have a chance to educate yourself about art thanks to the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum loading 205 free art history books to the Internet Archive, all of which are available as PDF’s or ePub books.  Yes now as you contemplate the end of the world and hone your apocalypse survival skills you can bone up on the finer things and learn about Max Ernst, The Italian Metamorphosis, French Art in the 1970’s, Joseph Cornell, Francis Bacon, Pop Art in the 60’s and so much more.

Yes now as you contemplate the end of the world and hone your apocalypse survival skills you can bone up on the finer things and learn about Max Ernst, The Italian Metamorphosis, French Art in the 1970’s, Joseph Cornell, Francis Bacon, Pop Art in the 60’s and so much more.  Just be sure and pick up a solar powered charger for your phone or tablet so you can keep reading them after the power grid fails.

For the last 5 years, theGuggenheim has been digitizing its exhibition catalogs and art books, placing the results online. So if you want to study some art history this is the right place.  The collection also includes catalogs of retrospective exhibitions on masters like Paul Klee, Robert Rauschenberg, and Mark Rothko. Or you can explore older art with Chinese art in the 20th centurycraftsmen of ancient Perusculpture and works on paper or  Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Collection: From Picasso to Pollock. What better way to spend your time when you aren’t trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world.

Remember it is the arts and culture that separate us from the animals. Well that and opposable thumbs, larger brain capacity, the ability to create advanced tools, and a few other things.

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Turning Impressionism into Hyperrealism.

Y&R Paris has created a really clever ad campaign for KelOptic entitled “Impressionism 2”. The ads feature famous impressionist paintings that are brought into sharp focus by the crystal clear lenses KelOptic provides. It’s nice play on the art, and a nice tongue in cheek jab at impressionist art. I love the tag line “Turning Impressionism into Hyperrealism.” Obviously the copywriter was paying attention in art history class.

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An Animated History of Art and Design.

When I was in art school, there was a mandatory amount of art history classes you had to take in order to get your degree. I think I was required to take one class a semester for each year. In the end I ended up taking many more than I was required to. Some were great, and some simply sucked. The suckage was partly due to the instructor, partly to the materials, and I’m sure partly due to my lack of engagement.

All of this brings me to a great series of animated shorts from The Open University. There are six in all and they cover some of the most important sections in art and design moving from Gothic Revival to Post Modernism. The animations are short, feature a nice illustrative style, a modernist take on typography, and a great section of color pallets. All six are below.