Monday, November 08, 2010

More on Dora

Do you know the famous painting by Gussy Courbet of the woman's vagina? Titled, roughly, L'Origine du Monde. I'd show it here but I'm too repressed.

You can, however, see the wikipedia entry here. Do NOT open this page at work.

Anyway, when they had the big Courbet show at either the Met or MoMA a couple of years ago, the curators decided to erect a free-standing wall in one of the galleries, put up a sign saying something like "No teen-aged boys allowed in here" and then hung L'Origine du Monde on the other side of it.

Quick aside: This is a painting I did a couple of years ago, after visiting the show, done in collaboration with my friend Richard Kessler (with some background work done by one of the most annoying people in the world--long story). It's called either "Wounded Man (1967)" or "Giving Gussy Courbet the Cheese".

This second title is a joke relating to the phonetic similarity of homage and fromage. For which I apologize. Anyway, this is Wounded Man (1967):

None of which is particularly important other than as part of our discussion of the censorship of Courbet's painting and, now, my very own Meredith Whitney portrait.

The point being this: Usually when Dealbreaker features one of my paintings it puts the painting up on its site. This time around, they put up a teaser paragraph (the stand-in for the Met's floating wall) and make you click through to the actual product.

Likewise, and even more amusing to this viewer at least, is Reuters TV's coverage of the thing. I love the way they move the camera around to avoid rendering too completely any of the nasty bits. See here.
No, you see here, my good man.
No you.
No you.
With the Reuters piece, you can save yourself a bit of time by clicking on the progress bar to the 4th little white dot, which is where my piece starts.

Anyway, its fun to be on television. My only beef? That neither the Dealbreaker story nor the Reuters story mentioned that it was a study for a larger piece, thus the abbreviated (by one zero) asking price.

The Dealbreaker piece did include a lively comments section, including one wag who offered something like:
Selling a painting featuring bestiality for 3,500 is the new killing it.
Had I been inclined, I might have commented back that the whole bestiality thing was Picasso's idea, not mine. I just repainted his stuff with a timely annotation.

But hey, it's good to be alive. As Keith would say.

Check out this recording from 1965 of Marianne Faithfull singing "As Tears Go By." She was maybe 19 and she and Mick were quite an item. He and Keith just gave this song to her to record and she became a bit of a star.

Not much of a stage presence, but hey, it's good to be alive. I wanted to get the clip from Rock and Roll Circus (the best second-tier Stones movie ever) but I can't seem to find it. I think I've commented about it here before, so try plugging Rock and Roll Circus in the search bar and see if you get anything (I'm purposefully not doing so, to add to the drama).

And of course there's this:

I don't even know what the hell this video is--there's a ton of bizarre, mash-up stuff on u-tube--but check out the shot of Keith at about the 4 minute mark.

Writing credits, just fyi: Jagger/Faithfull/Richards. Don't see that everyday.

Some thought that this was about Faithfull, but at the time Keith's girlfriend Anita Pallenberg was the real smack-head. Marianne didn't start hitting the sauce til the early 70s.

Me? My preference is for the studio version, just to hear Keith Richards explain heroin addiction with his guitar. It's the Call of the Wild; the Song of the Wind in the Pines; L'Origine du Monde. It's the devil talking to Robert Johnson. It's Roy Buchanan in that jail cell in Fairfax, Virginia with his shirt wrapped round his neck, talking back. It's a red guitar, three chords and the truth. It's everything you want from a guitar solo, minus one string. 'Cause at the time, Keith was only playing with five. He'd gotten rid of the fat one for Beggar's Banquet.

If that last part's not too much.


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