Friday, December 31, 2010

Public Property

Is this not an arresting image? It is from the portfolio of a person who goes by the moniker An Untrained Eye, who gives his first name as Tom. He offers no last name. From his notes on the photograph, he revels in how often this photo has been grabbed and reproduced on other people's sites, bent to other people's purposes. He's really kind of subversive. For him, art is public property. This was taken at the New York Public Library behind Bryant Park in New York City.  The woman on the bench, a Japanese tourist, did not know at the time that she was being photographed. I don't yet know what this image says to me, but it demanded to be put up here. The colors.


  1. For me, it is a matter of which looks most "real". The painting or the girl? I am not sure. But yes, it captures the eye. It makes you stop and inhale and think. I like it.

  2. Mark, our youngest daughter and I watched a movie yesterday called "Exit Through the Gift Shop". It was a "documentary" about street artists and what constitutes art. Interesting that you posted this here today, Angella, as I have been thinking about the movie over the past 24 or so hours. And in reading the reviews of the movie, I discovered even more about the "What is art?" discussion. If you get a chance to watch the movie, I think you might enjoy it. Just hold off on reading any reviews until afterwards. We pulled the movie up on Netflix. It came out last year.

    And yes, the colors...

    Sleep well.

  3. Ms. Moon, you're so right! Your eye doesn't know where to go, there is such a counterpoint between the roiling activity of the painting and the stillness and introspective posture of the girl. And the bench she is sitting on and the marble walls look more of a piece with the painting, so she too seems out of time, modern in her dress yet of another era. I love your observation. It opened the image up for me even more.

    Debra W, the artist here actually bills himself as a street artist (he gives his first name as Tom, which is why I assume a male gender). Somehow you picked up on that. I'll look for the movie. It sounds fascinating.

  4. I absolutely love it.
    The colours, yes,
    and the contrast between the full figures in the painting and the woman's lean legs.
    The weight of the marble and the architecture , the mood of the painting and her elegance.

    Thank you for posting this.

    And I'm glad to hear you made some progress re the taxes .
    We've had a challenging year with three at post secondary school, and my decision to no longer work in my gardening business.

  5. How fascinating. I'm going to go find Exit Through the Gift Shop. Thanks for sharing this, Angella.

  6. deb, i love your responses to the painting, the artwork within the artwork and how the painted figures and the woman play off one another. I can imagine the challenges of post-secondary tuition as I share them. You are certainly a renaissance woman, writing, poetry, cooking, photography, and a gardening business too. you are gifted all around. i hope we all can exhale a little this year.

    ellen, my husband works in a large museum, and every new exhibit there funnels visitors through the gift shop before they can exit, so i find the title of this documentary immediately fascinating. i'd love to hear what you think of it when you watch it.