Monday, October 24, 2011

GREAT WAVE


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I'm always delighted to find a garment that depicts an actual artwork, because it embodies the relationship between art and clothing. The print on this vintage dress takes as its subject one of the most well-known Japanese prints, The Great Wave Off Kanagawa.

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The work is part of the collection of prints entitled Thirty Six Views of Mount Fuji (Fugaku Sanjuroku-kei), by Katsushika Hokusai.

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Hokusai was a Japanese painter and printmaker of the Edo Period.

From Tokyo (then known as Edo), he used works like Thirty-Six Views reflect the importance of domestic travel within an isolated country as well as his own personal infatuation with the majestic Mount Fuji.


Hokusai was known by over 30 different names during his lifetime, many of which he changed to relate to a new departure in his work or artistic period in his life.



Before Hokusai, ukiyo-e (Japanese woodblock) prints focused on portraiture and depictions of courtesans and actors, but Hokusai established nature and landscape as viable subjects.



Due to Japan's policy of isolation, Hokusai did not achieve overseas fame until after his death, but eventually influenced Art Nouveau and Impressionism.

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I'm wearing a vintage 1970s dress from Bygones, L.A.M.B. shoes, a vintage leather clutch, and necklace from my Aunt.

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[Hokusai images from blog.shopkoshka.com and wikipaintings.org.]

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

ART TO WEAR: Orange Hat.

Alex Katz, Orange Hat, 1990


I've recently been on the lookout for the perfect orange hat after coming across this stunning Alex Katz screenprint. I think this is it! Like Katz, I would pair it with bright contrasting cobalt blue.


[Katz image from artbrokerage.com.]

Thursday, October 6, 2011

MORRIS LOUIS

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When I came across this dress earlier this season, I immediately recognized its affinity to Color Field painting.
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Morris Louis (1912-1962) was the key proponent of the Washington Color School movement, a branch of mid-century Abstract Expressionism.

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After experiencing the work of Helen Frankenthaler in New York, Louis embarked on his own exploration of color field painting in Washington, DC.

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Louis, along with Kenneth Noland and others, established a school of painting which championed the broad expanse of color achieved by pouring thinned paint onto an unprimed canvas. [View my Noland post here.]

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Louis worked with Magna paint, an oil-based acrylic, which was specially developed for him by paintmaker colleagues.

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The work of the Washington Color School is characterized by all-over composition, and broad fields of transparent, dripped, organically-spreading paint.
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The group of works shown here cover all or most of the canvas, in contrast with his well-known Unfurleds, which simplified what it meant for a painting to be complete.


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The color veils of Louis's work speak to the underlying spirituality of painting as a process, and remove the hand of the painter from act of painting.

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I'm wearing a silk dress by Presley Skye, vintage leather boots, and self-made earrings.

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[Louis images from picasaweb.google.com, abstract-art.com, kimmco.typepad.com, and nycmagnet.wordpress.com, respectively.]


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

ART TO WEAR: John Baldessari.


I've long been a fan of Ruthie Davis's outrageous shoe designs (I'm wearing them in this post), and I've repeatedly noticed their similarities to the grapic work of contemporary artist John Baldessari.

Visit the Ruthie Davis website to view other styles.

[Baldessari image from synapticstimuli.com, and Davis image from fashion-hole.blogspot.com.]