Sunday, May 25, 2008

25th May 2008 - Who's made a mark this week?

Artists creating Street Art on the walls of Tate Modern
copyright Katherine Tyrrell

This week street artists from a number of countries made huge marks on the side of Tate Modern for the Street Art exhibition which opened on Friday. Above are some of the photographs which I took on Monday afternoon while walking across the Millenium Bridge to visit the Annual Exhibition of the Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers. It was a bit of a surprise to see so many articulated cranes complete with crane operator, artist, artist's assistant and artist's photographer!

In the first commission to use the building's iconic river façade, and the first major public museum display of street art in London, Tate Modern presents the work of six internationally acclaimed artists whose work is intricately linked to the urban environment:

Blu from Bologna, Italy; the artist collective Faile from New York, USA; JR from Paris, France; Nunca and Os Gêmeos, both from Sao Paulo, Brazil and Sixeart from Barcelona, Spain.
Tate Modern - About Street Art (my hyperlinks to the artist's pages on the Tate Modern site)

You can see photographs of the completed artwork on the Tate Modern exhibition site. There were an awful lot of cameras taking time lapse photography of this installation. I guess I've added a few more to the record of this fairly momentous event in the history of art exhibitions in London. Channel 4's Big Art Mob site aims to put Public Street Art on the Big Art Map of the UK via the public downloading or uploading their photos of street onto the site and the map. I'll be adding mine later today! It's worth investigating - an awful lot of it is sculpture at the moment but I guess the ever-increasing phenomenon of Street Art will make itself felt in due course.

This weekend is The Long Weekend at Tate Modern with another two days of events and liver performances in The Turbine Hall and around the galleries. We've got heavy rain forecast for the next two days (falling outside my window as I write) so that provides an 'indoors' destination for yet another wet bank holiday weekend!

Art Blogs
  • Rose Welty (Rose's Art Lines) provides details about the next virtual sketch date in June in Virtual Sketch Date #3 in June. Rose is thinking about creating a separate blog specifically for the Virtual Sketch Date each month.
  • For those who saw Gerry Baptist's work on my blog this week - you may well be interested in Tradigital Printmaking blog created by Aine Scannell, who is a professional contemporary fine artist from Ireland currently living in Edinburgh. Aine has two other blogs her Artist Printmaker Online blog (which is her 'front room' and in which she also talks about other printmakers) and her Print Workshop blog - where she has recently been explaining her etching techniques. Go and say 'Hi' here - she's currently blogging from hospital!
  • Nicole Caulfield (Nicole Caulfield's Art Journal) has done an unusual self-portrait - Self-Portrait with Still-Life. Not so unusual you may think - until I tell you that the pencil shavings are part of the artwork!
  • Completely not on the plot is Maggie Stiefvater's explanation of why she's not doing so much art at the moment - as listed in Monday Morning Cup of Tea. Stay tuned - the explanations get even better - I promise!
  • Maggie may not be posting as much art these days - but she's doing a pretty good job of writing about other artists this month in her May Artist Project.
  • One of her artists last week was Wendy Sutherland. I was very impressed with the work on her website and loved the mix of media. Even nicer was the fact that when you plug in her domain name it gives you the options for the 'flash' and html versions. Big tick to Wendy for giving us a choice and getting herself funding for her website (look at 'touched') - a slideshow format for the flash version would make it even better.
  • Hemlata Pradhan is a botanical artist who lives in Kalimpong in Darjeeling in India. She has a Diploma in Botanical Illustration with distinction from the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, got a Master’s Degree in Natural History Illustration and Ecological Studies from the Royal College of Art, and has won gold medals from the RHS for her paintings of Indian Jewel Orchids and the Indian Wild Orchids in habitat. A very impressive lady! Check out her sketchbooks as well as her paintings.
Bryan Poole RE - contemporary botanical aquatint etchings
copyright Katherine Tyrrell
  • You can see two other contemporary botanical artists Ann Swan SBA, who works in coloured pencil and Bryan Poole RE who creates aquatint etchings in The Art of the Garden which is my post about my visit to the Chelsea Flower Show this week. You can see Bryan with his two latest etchings on the right.
  • I don't when this was first posted but I recently came across this link to Paula Rego's studio
  • Various papers carried obituaries for Robert Rauschenberg who died on May 12th. This is the Guardian Obituary.
  • There have been a number of articles in the papers about Sue Tilley - who is the woman in Benefits Supervisor Sleeping painting by Lucian Freud which recently sold for £17.2 million recently - making it the highest price ever paid for a work by a living artist.
Art Business and Marketing
As long as too many people who know too little about art have too much money, more than they know what to do with, the applecart is OK. They buy and buy and buy and buy, bulking their "portfolios," inflating prices, buckling the demand curve, all the while hyping themselves into oblivion (with periodic assistance from their fine art providers) about the escalating values of their creative hedge. They call themselves collectors, but secretly, or perhaps not so secretly, they're really in it for the money. And all is well as long as nobody tries to sell anything................The sad truth is that the degree of decline in value of any commodity is directly proportional to the extent of speculation in that commodity once speculation stops-- and art has been heavily speculated on for too many years now-- particularly with respect to the contemporary sector. You have people who love art and you have people who love money. The people who love money will exit the art market the moment it goes south.
Alan Bamberger Art Market Trends - Art in a Weak Economy: Artists - take the Next Step
    • However Barney Davey (Art Print Issues) suggests that It's Not the Economy Stupid. He recommends that artists wanting to sell work should be savvy about marketing. This means being aware that changing consumer habits are a very real threat (eg CDs being replaced by downloads) to income streams and that artists need to make sure that new or alternative ways of getting a product to market are found or created.
  • I used a Barney Davey post as a springboard for my post on Wednesday Lessons from American Idol about creating and marketing art - written before we knew the result! Interestingly I gather that not everybody in the USA is aware that 'American Idol' is almost entirely a British production.
  • Here's something I've not seen before in relation to an online gallery displaying art for sale. Susan Romaine (Studio Romaine website) is an artist who is exhibiting and selling her sketches at the same time as the paintings that she created from them at The Peterson Gallery
  • A Book Inside E-zine - How To Write And Publish A Book does what is says - it tells you how to go about writing and publishing a book - including A Quick Guide to ISBNs for Self-Publishers
  • I received an e-mail from Ben Crawford, the Chief Marketing officer of which aims to provide a news service about art - and to charge its members although it appears to have a very small audience ( metrics). I also didn't like some of the aspects of the very small terms and conditions. I do not recommend this site - if for no other reason than that there are far too many other well-established sites providing art news for free!
  • Note to all those other commercial art sites which would like me to review them: Be aware that I do look at site metrics, I do read the small print, I do review whois entries, I never provide free links to spammers - and not all the sites I identify in these weekly posts receive compliments!
Art competitions
Art exhibitions
Art supplies
Turning the Page
4 x 4 Monotype,
Watercolor & Colored Pencil
copyright Belinda del Pesco
  • If you haven't already read it, Belinda del Pesco (Belinda del Pesco Fine Art) provided an excellent response to a question about printing presses - which I then reproduced as an interview blog post Printing press choices - an interview with Belinda del Pesco as promised last week. It's already one of the most popular posts on this blog!
  • Betsy Holster, the CPSA Product Research Director, is looking for suggestions from CPSA members about a wide variety of the UV protectant materials that colored pencil artists sometimes use over their colored pencil artwork to enhance the lightfastness.
Art - Tips and Techniques
  • Two blogs recently told us how to make our own charcoal. Marion Boddy Evans ( painting) started it with this post How Do I Make My Own Art Charcoal? But I can't find the link to the second post - which was on the blog of somebody I read - if it was you would care to comment - with a link?
Gayle Mason Portfolio page - "Out of Sight"
  • Gayle Mason (Fur in the Paint) has been creating step by step pages for her art portfolio - which you can see in Creating a Portfolio (in which she describes how she did it) and here. Gayle has also now got a video camera and has started to practice so hopefully we'll be seeing videos of the Mason technique very soon.
    • all about how she keeps sketchbooks and how they contribute to her working process in her weekly podcast - some of you may be very surprised by the techniques she uses. Click Here to Listen and click here to see her sketches StudioWaves, Drawing and Sketching
    • Tina then also explained About glazing that she employs in her maritime paintings.
Websites and Blogging
and finally.......

Vivien Blackburn
(Paintings, Prints and Stuff) introduced me this week to Paintmap - Painting the World - which is a geolocation-oriented painting sharing website. I'm going to investigate today or tomorrow and review it this week.

I'd also be interested to know what other people think. If you hurry, you can catch Vivien's paintings of Mawgan Porth in Cornwall on their splash page - matched to the locations where they started life or you can see them here


  1. Thanks for including me Katherine, I enjoyed sharing two technique oriented posts this week.

    And I'm sitting surrounded by watercolour pencil big drawings (A2), small pastel studies, and photo collages... so a drawing day! :)

    Oh, and love that guy drinking tea on the Tate! Will have to stop in and see it this week.

  2. Thanks a lot for your comment in our blog and your interest.

    The Paintmap team will be very pleased to have your contributions, suggestions and criticisms to help improving the site in the future.

    The paintmap team.


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