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Tiki Central Forums » » Beyond Tiki » » Art: Why and what do you buy?
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Art: Why and what do you buy?
foamy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 15, 2004
Posts: 590
From: The Land of Pleasant Living
Posted: 2006-03-04 10:24 am   Permalink

If and when, I buy a piece of art, it has to work for me. Just like music or drugs (the drug thing is just by way of reference), it has to do something for me. Stir some emotion, make me feel good, or at the very least, feel something at any rate. It doesn't have to be an original (that would be real nice though), it just has to work. I have not yet bought anything to add to the decor, total abstraction, color for color's sake, that sort of thing doesn't work for me. Who the artist is, is neither here nor there if thier work doesn't do it for me. I wouldn't get something just because everyone else thinks it's great or worth a lot of money. Again, it has to work for me.

There are several John Singer Sargent's that move me. Some Edward Hopper's, some Winslow Homer's. A few Shag's and of course, Ben Davis. Could you imagine an original Gil Elvgrin? Not that I can afford any of that, but I will purchase a good print if I see one or an original by some unknown if I can afford it.

All that is not to say that there isn't a ton of contemporary pieces out there that I would like to see everyday. I just can't remember all the names.

So, what motivates you to buy a piece of art? What do you get out of it? What do you like?

And just as an after thought: What's in your top 5 of artwork?






Not nessesarily my top five, but they are very nice, I'd take any one of them any time.





[ This Message was edited by: foamy 2006-03-04 11:34 ]


 
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mbonga
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 04, 2005
Posts: 556
From: La Mesa, California
Posted: 2006-03-04 3:29 pm   Permalink

I've done a lot of self-analysis and other-analysis of this topic. You can't assume that there is only one reason people buy art, namely emotion. Some people buy art only for investment purposes, others because they are trying to make themselves appear sophisticated (ego, status), others because their friends or the general public like a certain artist so it's trendy, others just to fit something to an interior or exterior architecture, and endless other reasons, including those in combination. But I think those reasons I listed cover about 95% of the reasons.

I had a number of discussions about this in other forums, such as art and philosophy forums. The answer you're seeking can actually be mathematically determined by Principle Components Analysis, although it would require a large number of statistical samples to get an accurate answer.
http://www.cord.edu/dept/computing/news/blog/2005/09/pandora-music-exploration.html
As I mentioned in another thread, I predict the science of mapping attributes to personal tastes and emotions will be one of the major upcoming sciences as humanity matures and stops wasting its time on power struggles.
http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=18536&forum=1

But to get back to your original and more specific question, I'd say my 4 top favorite painters in descending order are: Adolphe-William Bouguereau, Winslow Homer, Odilon Redon, and John William Waterhouse. Trailing close behind would be a wide variety like Kandinksy, Mondrian, Klee, Shag, Balthus, Fragonard, Gerome, Alma-Tadema, Hopper, and Watteau. Obviously my top favorites are slightly non-mainstream, romantic, sentimental, realistic styles with appealing subject matter, which some would say show a bourgeois taste, but I can defend my tastes logically. I'll try to attach some samples here later.

What do I get out of them? Various things, depending on the painter and genre. To me Bouguereau is about idealism. Homer is about nature and escapism, Redon is a feast of color, Waterhouse is about romance and nature. Some eroticism is also present in some Bouguereau and Waterhouse paintings. Some modern artists like Mondrian, Shag, and Kandinsky I like because they are very midcentury in associations, some artists like Balthus I admire just because they're outrageous, and the renaissance types like Fragonard are about nature, idealism, and some eroticism. To generalize, the most common reason I like most of the paintings I do is because they are inspiring in some way, and add beauty and ideals to a mundane world full of PC screens, office desks, and petty, wearying people.

That's a nice Shag picture you posted I haven't seen before.


Bouguereau, "La Vague"


Winslow Homer, "The Shell Heap"



Odilon Redon: "La Coquille"


John William Waterhouse, "The Siren"


Hopper, "The Long Leg"


Kandinsky, "Flood Improvisation"

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mbonga
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 04, 2005
Posts: 556
From: La Mesa, California
Posted: 2006-03-06 7:10 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2006-03-04 10:24, foamy wrote:
Could you imagine an original Gil Elvgrin?



I was unfamiliar with him until I looked him up just now in response to your post. It looks like more people online spell his last name "Elvgren." Yep, pretty nice, very midcentury, much like all those old advertisments at the front of National Geographic magazines from the '50s and '60s. Or maybe the cheesecake version of Norman Rockwell.




 
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Satan's Sin
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 13, 2004
Posts: 729
From: Imperial Beach, CA
Posted: 2006-03-06 10:18 pm   Permalink

I buy whatever strikes my fancy, and I have no idea why.

Salesmen have a useful expression: "People buy on emotion, and back up with fact."

Surely art is the same way. You see a picture or read a book or watch a play and you either like it or dislike it and then you start thinking of the reasons why. I don't think you can be "taught" to appreciate art. I think that once you like something (which comes from the depths of our reptilian brain) you can over time become much more familiar with a particular type of art and then take a keener joy in the nuances of that art. But this doesn't come from the same part of the brain that, say, an ancient Greek used to accurately figure out the distance from the earth to the sun by analyzing the length of the noonday's shadow cast by his walking staff. No, I think love of a particular piece of art comes from the same part of the brain that makes you want to rip off a beautiful woman's clothes. Or makes you tell the car salesman you don't care how much it costs, you want that goddamned aqua-colored Thunderbird with the V-8.

For example, I have always liked ballet. It's beautiful and heart-wrenching, and that love comes from the depths of my reptilian brain. But from many, many afternoons watching my daughters take ballet classes I now have a much keener sense of what a right move and a wrong move is, and my appreciation for a great performance has increased by a hundredfold.

For example, I have always liked tiki. But thanks to The Book of Tiki and especially this forum, my sighting of a crumbling old tiki motel in Los Angeles is infinitely more keen and sweet and satisfying.

And so in gratitude for the delicious pictures by Homer and Sergeant may I present to you an American artist (born in 1920 and he doesn't have much more time to go, folks) by the name of George Tooker who I think is very underappreciated and also very very yummy:



Landscape With Figures



Lanterns



Bird Watchers



The Waiting Room



Government Bureau


 
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hewey
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 14, 2004
Posts: 4284
From: Sydney, Australia
Posted: 2006-03-07 6:50 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2006-03-06 22:18, Satan's Sin wrote:
No, I think love of a particular piece of art comes from the same part of the brain that makes you want to rip off a beautiful woman's clothes. Or makes you tell the car salesman you don't care how much it costs, you want that goddamned aqua-colored Thunderbird with the V-8.



I hear that! Art is about a connection to who we are. Sometimes we don't know why, but sometimes we just dig something.
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Cool Manchu
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 03, 2003
Posts: 563
From: PDX
Posted: 2006-03-07 10:49 pm   Permalink

Here are some that I really dig...
..

..



 
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stuff-o-rama
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 20, 2003
Posts: 752
From: Central Coast of California
Posted: 2006-03-10 2:28 pm   Permalink

Here's a few of my art purchases



Yin Yang #2 --John T. Jones

The photo doesn't do this piece justice, there are four words: chaos, order, truth, lies



SHAG! natch'! I think I have 8 different prints now... must stop... try harder...


There's nothin' sexier than Tijuana black velvet!


and no home is without at least one Bosko!




My top 5 if I was a gazillionaire would be:


Nymphs and Satyr --
William Bouguereau


Young Gypsies --William Bouguereau


Elvis --Andy Warhol


Heart in Hand --Miles Thompson
I had the opportunity to buy this, but I didn't have the ole' credit card handy. Some one else got it... bastards!


Hazels Field --Tim Biskup


[ This Message was edited by: stuff-o-rama 2006-03-11 15:48 ]


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ikitnrev
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 27, 2002
Posts: 1323
From: D.C. / Virginia
Posted: 2006-03-10 6:35 pm   Permalink

What is interesting is how one's taste in art changes over the years - due to changing tastes, increased knowledge, and perhaps a bigger available budget to obtain artwork.

As a college student in the dorms, one's taste and choice of artwork might come from the poster section of the nearby mall Spencers or local music store, which is then thumbtacked to the wall. I can remember various Robert Crumb posters - my first dorm roomate had this on his wall.



while I can remember a large B&W poster photo of Bridgit Bardot in some leather mini-skirt standing in front of a motorcycle.

Then one will get your first apartment, and you decide that promotional beer posters no longer make the cut. Yet, you might not have much of a budget, but dislike the look of your bare walls. So one day you take your checkbook, and go to the local shopping mall or Ikea-like store with a mission - to purchase one of the pre-framed prints in stock. You flick through the many options, avoiding the too multiple Thomas Kinkade-like prints there, and eventually you find something that appeals to you, that you think will look good above the couch or fireplace, and you are proud of yourself for a job well done.

A few years later you might visit an art museum, and purchase a reproduction of a favorite painting you saw earlier in the day - that print might appeal to you both for its artwork, and serve as a souvenir memory of your trip, or other memories. In my bedroom I have one of these prints - J.D. Waterhouse's 'Lady of Shalott' Every time I look at it I am reminded of a dear friend who told me a story of being moved to tears by this print - and partly in honor of this friend, and partly because I like the painting, and partly because the tale of longing behind the painting isso moving ... that combination and connections makes me feel good, and more human



( For the story, and Tennyson's poem of the Lady of Shalott, visit
http://www.pathguy.com/shalott.htm )

Waterhouse's 'Hylas and the Nymphs' reminds me a bit of both the earlier Waterhouse painting and Bonguereu's 'Nymphs and the Satyr' found earlier in this thread, all have a definite timeless seductive quality to them .... and perhaps a more adult version of a Bridgit Bardot poster hanging in a dorm room



I generally like Waterhouse and the other pre-Raphaelite paintings, and own several books of this style. It does have a nostalgic, medieval-age, innocence to it, although there is an element of 'you need to know the story behind the legend' to truly fully appreciate the painting.

But as much as I like the pre-Raphaelites, that art style doesn't generally agree with my fondness for late 50's/early 60's retro design and culture - and that is where Shag comes in. This was a new area for me - a current artist, whose work appealed to me so much, that fit in well with my tiki bar room, and I soon found myself with multiple copies. I didn't want to overdose on Shag though, and I soon later added prints by our own Miles Thompson (the Tiki Ti print), Esqui, and original paintings by Jared Davis and Congatiki. Through this board, I also discovered and really appreciate the art of Miguel Covarrubias, who did the world map on the inside cover of 'The Book of Tiki.'

I can see myself soon obtaining a print by Richard Fahey - his style fits in well with my retro preferences, and I guess is a continuation of the Bridgit Bardot/nymphs theme, this time with a more modern twist -- I guess I just can't escape my fondness for certain seductive qualities.



I really like this print of 'Elvis in Hell', done by Charles Burns. Perhaps this reflects some Catholic guilt over the temptations of the above paintings? For some reason, this print hangs in the same room as the above 'Lady of Shalott' painting.



Through the years I have also been buying various kitschy art (paint by numbers, string art, original paintings, big-eyed art), most of this purchased in thrift stores, and have been surprised by how some of these pieces have grown on me. Overall though, most of the appeal is from the grand spectacle of seeing much of this thriftstore art accumulated on one wall - just as one is often overwhelmed by the accumulated clutter feel of so many tiki bars.



I've been known to browse through the art books in used bookstores, looking for works that appeal to me. One obscure artist I really enjoy is a Taiwanese artist named Shiy De Jinn, and although the booklet I found by him that day has only twelve color prints, those portraits from the early 60's are simply wonderful. There isn't much of his work on the web - just this small-scale portrait



As I grow older, I find myself buying more original art - some from local artist friends. I often find myself in a situation where lack of available wall space is the biggest reason for not buying a painting.

Recently I took a new step - discovering an artist who painted in a style I admired, contacting the artist and commissioning a painting. My wallet can not afford to do this too often, but it is fun to interact with an artist in this way, knowing that you will have a one-of-a-kind piece. I will post more details on this in a few weeks - the painting has a tiki theme, so I think most of you will like it.

Vern





[ This Message was edited by: ikitnrev 2006-03-10 18:38 ]


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virani
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 17, 2003
Posts: 1438
From: Volcanic area of France
Posted: 2006-03-11 01:39 am   Permalink

That's a great thread.

I love lots of different art. I of course collect lots of tiki art, I love all the Oceanic arts and try to collect that. I have marquesan tapa painting, all kind of tikis, clubs. I think tiki mugs is art as well....but also some modern tiki art (miles thomson, foamy, Griffin, gecko...), and I love modern art like Biskup, Gary Baseman, Mark Ryden, shag and also Chris Ware, Crumb...I only have prints by those considering the prices.
I love Black Velvet painting, and think that's the kind of art that goes the best with oceanic arts.
I also have the chance to have great museum here, so I really like going to all the different periods at the Louvre (especially the 14th, 15th century to the Renaissance), and one of the greatest modern art museum : Centre George Pompidou.



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Satan's Sin
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 13, 2004
Posts: 729
From: Imperial Beach, CA
Posted: 2006-03-11 09:15 am   Permalink

Great post, ikitnrev. Thanks for turning me on to Richard Fahey.

 
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teaKEY
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 09, 2004
Posts: 3683
From: The thumb !
Posted: 2006-03-15 11:03 am   Permalink

Drawing as a child, I would draw something that I could not own and then the picture would satisfy me. I always wanted to make the object more lifelike. When I see an artist that can paint a object that is above my talent and is close to realism, I have to respect it.

Jeff Soto's who is just a little older then I am, painted objects that don't exist but they look very real.. He has a handful of objects that he likes to use that portray a lot of meaning. On his newest painting he takes those objects and expands on them and twists them to new places. He created his wheel and then improved on it.

This on shown below, I see, life and rebirth.


[ This Message was edited by: teaKEY 2006-03-15 11:04 ]


 
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Sneakytiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 31, 2003
Posts: 1795
From: Boise, Idaho
Posted: 2006-04-03 5:11 pm   Permalink

Okay. Keep in mind NOT cheesy southwest plaster and nylon stuff. I have a collection of pretty authentic native american pots, breastplates, clubs, elk skin shirt etc. made by myself and friends, fiancee and native artists. I have 2 Shag prints, the Juxtapoz open edition is one of them, money is definitely an issue for me. Other than paintings by myself and the fiancee I have a Van Hoople midcentury piece(painting). We have a painting from Pat Fennel, who is a friend of the fiancee. Most of my "art" is made by us and the other stuff we have is sadly mostly mass produced like the tiki objects and midcentury stuff we have. Our small collection of African art falls into the category of mass produced items too I'm sure. I'm lucky to have artistic friends and family becuz otherwise our art collection would be very small. If I had a zillion bux I'd definitely buy Miles Thompson's art, it's incredible! I'd also buy Picasso, Braque, Pollock, Kahlo and the list goes on... I love alot of different periods just like others here, but we bought this house becuz it was a custom 1959 show home called the Futurama and it had the right architecture for our modern and tiki collections. Most of my native Am. stuff is in storage now with a few outstanding pieces left out. We are trying to have a coherent midcentury style with modern feel and a few Indigenous African, Oceanic and N.Amer. pieces thrown in for warmth. I know decorating this way is a cliche but I truly do like it, and believe me, it is NOT popular here in Idaho, I was able to get this house and things like a Saarinen chair (2bux) for a steal becuz of that, so thank God. Of course the tiki room is a clutter room so it is exempt from the clean modern look. It has a nice piece from new Arnhemland in tropical N. Australia and a chainsaw art piece (a seal) from R.L. Blair (found it thrifting), one of the worlds top chainsaw artists. He created critter country and the country bear jamboree at disneyland, also the big buffalo sculpture that disney has.There is a "tiki" from Bora bora in the tiki lounge a pelauan story board and a Hawaiian Ku that are hand carved originals, other than that it's all mass produced excepting anything made by us. There are some Kitschy homemade works around that I have bought from thrifts too.

Taking alot of Indigenous and Western world art history has really shown me alot of art and has helped shape my tastes, tiki central has definitely turned me on to Shag and Miles and many more artists as well.

Thank u all for your creative impact on my life and work.

Sincerely
ST


 
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foamy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 15, 2004
Posts: 590
From: The Land of Pleasant Living
Posted: 2006-04-07 02:15 am   Permalink

You folks have some real good taste in art. I'm diggin' all the art that's been posted. SS, check out the Smithsonian Galleries, they have repros of Tooker's "lanterns" for sale. Later today, I'll look up the link and post it if I can. Great post (as they all were). mbonga, as much Elvgren (spelled with an (e), you're right) as I've seen, I had never seen that one—it's great! Cool Manchu, I've never seeen that particular Vargas and it's kill'in me! It's my new Vargas favorite. Stuff-O-Rama, William Bouguereau, thanks for turning me on to him. I'd seen his work before, but didn't know the name. You can buy art for me anytime. Virani, take some pics—let's see. Ikitnrev, can't wait to see your collection.

Again, what great work you folks have posted. Keep it coming!

Sneaky, mid-century is what got me into tiki, I'd like to see a thread with some pics of your home and furniture and we could check out other folks mid-century collections and homes as well. Love that stuff.

Here's the link to the Tooker repro's:
http://www.omnifineart.com/Prod/index.asp?fuseaction=viewdetail&sku=233&frameType=none&rotateframe=1
There are three other Tooker's there as well.

And here is another work that I've alway's really liked

Charles Demuth, The Figure 5 in Gold

[ This Message was edited by: foamy 2006-04-07 05:10 ]


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Sneakytiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 31, 2003
Posts: 1795
From: Boise, Idaho
Posted: 2006-04-07 11:58 am   Permalink

Foamy, here's a picture of part of our living room window wall, I shot and developed the picture by hand, it was a cloudy dark day so the light effect is subtle.

.

[ This Message was edited by: Sneakytiki 2006-04-07 11:59 ]


 
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foamy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 15, 2004
Posts: 590
From: The Land of Pleasant Living
Posted: 2006-04-10 10:18 am   Permalink

Sneaky, that's way nice. Just the style I like. You too evidently.

 
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