About My Art: Visionary Experience

Part 1 – How I Became a Painter

I gained insight into the nature of my painting by going back to what I wanted to be when I grew up.

I saw Star Wars in 1977 when I was 7 years old, quite possibly the perfect age to have seen that movie. I spent my whole youth wanting to be a film maker. And 10 years later, in 1987, that’s what I went off to college to try to be. I had to enroll in a freshman arts foundation curriculum, which exposed students to a whole gamut of creative disciplines, like drawing, sculpture, interior design, and commercial art.

It was in these classes I discovered painting. From the first moment I tackled a big surface as a student project I was hooked, although it took a long while and several changes of majors to understand this. But now I’ve been painting seriously since 1991, and it remains as fascinating as ever. I’ve never stopped working at it in all those years.

I’ve found the way to show my vision and tell my stories without needing the resources of a film studio. As I’ve gained comprehension of my art, I’ve been clearer about what it is I do.

I’m showing you stills from the movies in my mind. The possibilities are endless.

Richard Bledsoe “Gentlemen Astronomers” acrylic on canvas 24″ x 30″

Part 2 – Where Do I Get My Ideas

I am an intuitive artist, working not from observation but from visions that arise in my mind. The potential subject matter is limited only by the freedom of imagination, my capacity to comprehend what is presented to me, and the skill I have to render it visible.

I am not after a naturalistic recreation of the world. Painting is a dream world, and requires its own particular forms of creation. Its beauty transcends realism.

Other artists might work in the great traditions of landscape, still life, portraiture, or figurative painting. The visions I present are a blend of all these different explorations into a single unified image.

I’m sort of a mutant form of a history painter, the genre once considered the highest form in the hierarchy of Western art, but much neglected in the modern and contemporary art worlds.

The difference is story telling. Rather than make a detached work of art for art sake’s, emphasizing merely formal concerns, history painting depicts a moment of drama. It shows action arrested for contemplation, rich in implications of past, present, and future activity. It injects the element of time, suggests consequences and resolutions are pending, and extends the liveliness of the art beyond the edges of the canvas.

In my book Remodern America, I described how the images come to me:

I can sum up my art with one simple statement: The Good Lord told me to show you this.

I have visions. They come at the most random times. I could be washing the dishes, or driving to work, and suddenly the picture is there. It usually arrives now with a title, dimensions and suggestions for technique.

These visions tend to come in waves, or clusters. I’ll receive multiple suggestions over a few days or weeks, then experience a lull which can last weeks or months.

I maintain a notebook where I jot down the ideas so I don’t lose them; usually the title and a one line description is enough to recall the intact image to my mind. The book has hundreds of entries already. I will never live long enough to paint out all the pictures that have been presented to me, and new visions keep arriving all the time. I have to prioritize…

Like in a dream, the imagery is full of symbolism. The specific details shown are significant, though like in a dream it’s not always obvious, and not clear cut. There are nuances and connotations and above all, the final wordless mystery.

As I work on the paintings, I come to interpret them. Patrons will often share insights with me on my works as well, telling me meanings that I didn’t even realize, but which become clear once indicated.

Such is the seductive beauty of symbolic expression; even when manifesting universal archetypes, a symbol caresses the spectator in an intimate manner. While symbols can communicate concepts shared in common, each person experiences the thrill of recognition in a unique way, different as fingerprints.

Symbols give hints. They gesture. If you follow their indications, you find yourself gazing upon the unknowable complexity and profundity of existence.

I no longer work from preparatory drawings or grids. I create the images by painting them directly out on the canvases. While working on the paintings, the most effective results happen when I’ve become so absorbed in the process that I’m aware of nothing else. In fact, it’s like I’m aware of nothing at all.

 I vanish while my paintings get applied to the canvas. I have the continuous experience of stepping back from the work to see it, and it’s like I’m stepping out of a trance. I’m constantly surprised by what I see has appeared on the painting, because I have no memory of doing it. Turning myself over to this receptive state allows something beyond my own capacities to take over. My best achievements are works done through me, rather than by me.

-Richard Bledsoe

From Remodern America: How the Renewal of the Arts Will Change the Course of Western Civilization (2018)

Richard Bledsoe “Mothman” acrylic on canvas 24″ x 30″

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

DAILY ART FIX: The Art Spirit – Beloved Painter and Philosopher Robert Henri on How Art Binds Us Together

Art world links which caught my eye...

“Through art mysterious bonds of understanding and of knowledge are established among men.”

-Robert Henri

An informative piece on the influential artist and educator Robert Henri, the author of the classic work The Art Spirit. Henri articulates how empires follow art, and not vice versa.

“The work of the Brotherhood does not deal with surface events. Institutions on the world surface can rise and become powerful and they can destroy each other. Statesmen can put patch upon patch to make things continue to stand still. No matter what may happen on the surface the Brotherhood goes steadily on. It is the evolution of man. Let the surface destroy itself, the Brotherhood will start it again. For in all cases, no matter how strong the surface institutions become, no matter what laws may be laid down, what patches may be made, all change that is real is due to the Brotherhood.”

See the full article here: BRAIN PICKINGS – Beloved Painter and Philosopher Robert Henri on How Art Binds Us Together

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

April 10 is Slow Art Day. Establishment Art Can’t Stand Up to Such Scrutiny.

Norman Rockwell “Art Connoisseur”

It’s an often quoted statistic that the average museum goer only spends 30 seconds looking at each artwork they encounter. 

The sad truth is, regarding much of modern and contemporary art, that’s about 27 seconds longer than needed.

The visual arts are in a crisis of relevance, largely due to dire mismanagement by our cultural institutions. Instead of being encouraged as a communion for all, for over a century many art administrators have favored art as a divider, an opportunity to flaunt elitist attitudes. Officially sanctioned art often emphasizes theoretical formal matters and sociological notions designed to exclude, rather than engage, the general public.

The same gurus that managed to marginalize a potent and universal human tradition which is older than agriculture are concerned over their waning influence in the culture. They’ve come up with a great solution: spend MORE time looking at the crappy, off-putting junk they’ve chosen to clutter our museums up with.

This need to reengage is made more urgent than ever due to the massive financial impacts of the Overblown Outbreak, the Woo Hoo Flu. Of course, museum administrators are status seeking and striving players in the New Aristocracy of the Well Connected. They were strident and vocal advocates for fear, shutdowns, and hysteria. Now, after leading the charge for the destruction of society, our cultural institutions are concerned about their fiscal futures. Actions and consequences, how do they work?

So the same places that chased away the populace by presenting pretentious artifice instead of art, and then demanded we all cower under house arrest indefinitely, now want people to turn out, and linger. Globalist mouthpiece the Washington Post reports on the dilemma in their article:

THE WASHINTON POST: The ‘Slow Art’ Movement isn’t Just About Staring Endlessly at Paintings. It’s Also About Accessibility.

“This year’s Slow Art Day — April 10 — comes at a time when museums find themselves in vastly different circumstances. Some are just reopening. Others have been closed for more than a year. Many are facing unprecedented layoffs or embroiled in controversies over diversity. But across the board, they are grappling with questions about who feels welcome in their spaces….

“At Slow Art Day events, museums generally ask visitors to look at five objects for 10 minutes each — enough time, often, to keep them looking a little longer.”

There is evidence abstract art’s 20th century dominance was a part of a CIA psy op, initially meant to increase America’s international prestige in the fight against international communism.  Now that communists are running the Agency, abstract art is yesterday’s news, but it is still revered as a pinnacle of highbrow taste.

Check out the blather of the would-be thought leader who wrote the Post article, waxing poetic about the fine embroidery on the Emperor’s New Clothes:

“After an hour spent in the cosmic, yellow world of Mildred Thompson’s “Magnetic Fields,” I noticed the alarmingly bright canvas subside into alternating tones of restraint and exclamation…”

Mildred Thompson “Magnetic Fields

Would You Willingly Stare at This for an Hour?

It’s just like Nietzsche said: when you stare into the vapid void, the vapid void stares into you. As I described in my 2018 book, Remodern America: How the Renewal of the Arts Will Change the Course of Western Civilization:

Nonrepresentational abstract art is a safe space, a compromise for those who wish to appear cultured, while still remaining in compliance with the establishment status quo.

Abstraction underwent a process of gentrification. Once it was the rough slum of the art world. It was considered evidence of the breakdown of the social order captured in random paint. No matter that artists claimed they were seeking to purify their art by removing references to the surrounding world. There was a generalized suspicion abstract artists were covering up a lack of actual artistic skill.

But the elitists seized on the broad dismissal of abstraction as a way to differentiate themselves from the general public they despised. Abstraction furthered their goal of changing art into a rarified status symbol. Removing the demand for recognizable talent from the equation, abstract art enabled an elitist crony system. Art world insiders got to pick and choose which people they acknowledged as “artists”. Abstract art was also in sync with the materialistic Modernist mindset. The rich and powerful moved on abstraction in a big way, renovating the neighborhood, as it were. Savvy upper middle class social climbers followed their lead.

As Modernism died and the high elite moved on to the anti-art of Postmodernism, abstraction remained as a stolid bourgeois default. This is possible because abstract art can succeed in one facet of what art does. It can be used for decoration.

All too often, abstract art fulfills a role much like a throw pillow: merely an accent, just another piece of the décor. Abstract art can be pretty, and even give a nice imitation of intensity, while remaining tame and non-committal.

Abstract art serves as a simulation of art for those who want to create the appearance of having art, without actually partaking in any of its most significant substance. Try to be tasteful, wind up bland.

Real art is many things, but it is not timid.

…Abstraction falls short in art’s most essential function: communication. Abstract artists may claim to pour intensity into undefined colors and shapes, but it’s hard to recognize. One paint smear looks much like another. It’s difficult to discern the intention behind them. It’s challenging and rewarding to convey a sense of the actual into art, however stylized it may be. More importantly, by representing reality, artists tap into the infinitely rich world of symbolism.

A symbol is when something is shown that expands into greater significance which is not literally shown. A symbol demonstrates that life is more than only what appears on the surface. A symbol gives clues towards the underlying mystery of existence…

Humans understand life through stories: patterns of events that illustrate ideas, incarnated by people taking action in a tangible environment. Abstract art misses out on these basic intrigues. Artists and patrons who don’t partake in representational art are losing the most powerful and worthwhile aspects of art. They fail to experience meaning.

There is nothing wrong with enjoying an uncomplicated, pleasant aesthetic experience. But art is capable of delivering so much more. Looking at abstract art, I want to ask: “Is that all you’ve got?” I’d expect a higher standard of performance from human beings, with all of our ingenuity and dexterity.

But the folly of trying to wring significance out of museum-cloistered smears and spatters may soon be a much rarer opportunity. The establishment has new version of empty not-art to virtue signal with: racialist propaganda.

As an example, the Syracuse Everson Museum of Art sold off a notable 1946 work by the notorious king of the abstract expressionists, Jackson Pollock, so they could bankroll diversity impulse buys. I bet the museum’s wiser board members are pissed, but are too afraid to say anything. Everson got $14 million to invest in treasures like these:

Sharif Bey “Protest Shield #2” 2020

Ellen Blalock “Bang Bang You Dead” 2018

These works stick obvious Cultural Marxist tropes where the nuanced and rewarding experience of art should be. They are visual one-liners. Patronizing maneuvers like these will do nothing to address the crisis of relevance in the visual arts. Swapping poorly executed icons of snobbery and obscurity for poorly executed icons of affirmative action and activism is just a new flavor for the same old failures and alienation our cultural institutions have been serving up for decades.

What we are seeing is the death throes of Postmodernism, the exhausted system of manipulation and deceit the elites have been using to rule over us for decades. The great critic Robert Hughes summed up the art experience Postmodernism does not provide in his landmark 1980 series, The Shock of the New. As he purred in his patrician Australian accent:

“In the 45 years I’ve been writing about art, there has been a tragic depreciation in the traditional skills of painting and drawing, the nuts and bolts of the profession…Painting and drawing bring us into a different, a deeper, and more fully realized, relation to the object. We have had a gutful of fast art and fast food. What we need more of is slow art, art that holds time as a vase holds water. Art that grows out of modes of perception and making whose skill and doggedness make you think and feel. Art that isn’t merely sensational, that doesn’t get its message across in ten seconds, that isn’t falsely iconic, that hooks onto something deep running in our natures. In a word, art that is the opposite of mass media.”

As Postmodernism is devoured by its own doublethink and frustration, the replacement philosophy of Remodernism is simmering and growing among the people, looking for new ways to manifest itself. This Invisible War is not over.

By all means, spend time with some real art. You will know the art that resonates with your taste when you see it, and no one can tell you that what you like is wrong. Better than just visiting for ten minutes, fill your home, and your life, with it. My wife and I are both painters, and the walls of our house are covered in original works. It’s like living inside a treasure chest.

Who knows, some probably genuinely love the abstraction and agitprop favored by the self-aggrandizing gentry class. However, probably most people “like” it because they believe it’s what is expected of the social status they aspire to.

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

UPDATE: Welcome Instapundit readers! Please visit other posts for more discussion about the culture.

DAILY ART FIX: New Painting “Thought Bubble”

Art world links which caught my eye…

Richard Bledsoe “Thought Bubble” acrylic on canvas 16″ x 12″

One of my recently completed paintings. I have been inspired to create a series of invented portraits, letting the painting process reveal characters to me. Once suggested, it becomes my role to realize the vision I was shown.

I no longer work from preparatory drawings or grids. I create the
images by painting them directly out on the canvases. While working
on the paintings, the most effective results happen when I’ve become
so absorbed in the process that I’m aware of nothing else. In fact, it’s
like I’m aware of nothing at all.

-Richard Bledsoe, Remodern America: How the Renewal of the Arts Will Change the Course of Western Civilization

Previous Works:

Man of Bronze

Listening

Overlook

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Nah, It’ll Be Fine: Entertainment Vlogger The Critical Drinker Hammers Cultural Corruption

The Critical Drinker, Conducting Some Vital Analysis

“Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.”

 – Oscar Wilde

Living as we do now, encroached upon by creeping tyranny behind the Silicon Curtain, there are many topics we are not supposed to be allowed to publicly speak about. Election fraud; virus statistical manipulations and outright deceptions; government corruption and hypocrisy; incompetence and betrayals perpetrated by the political caste; all these subjects, and more, are verboten. Our credentialed classes act like they have the mutant ability to wish truth into the cornfield, so that our only choice will be to obey the whims of their cartoonish nightmare substitutes for reality.

Outside this network of the New Aristocracy of the Well Connected, we are expected to ignore the staggering evil unfolding in plain sight. Much of the populace seems to accept this. They lapse into the Brave New World soma option, which is really just a variation on a strategy as old as Roman bread and circuses. Sedate the masses. Use distractions to keep them docile.

The state of the art version of this is the onslaught of the establishment entertainment industries, pumping out endless shiny objects to the hordes of media addicts who are hungering for their next fix. Consuming show business commodities is their drug of choice. Who knows how many channels and services exist now, spewing series, sequels, prequels, reboots, rehashes, cinematic universes and universal sinning madness around the clock.

But there is a discordant note throughout the relentless entrancing broadcasting. The products being produced, which are intended to lull us into mindless passivity, incorporate misplaced content which breaks their siren song spell.

The Postmodern authorities who design mass media are greedy, and have totalitarian intentions. Everything is politics to these freaks; they won’t leave their ideology out of their efforts to beguile us. We’re supposed to be persuaded into collectivist submission by the addition of social engineering to the entertainment they offer up. However, grafting Cultural Marxist themes into art exposes how weak and off putting the ideas actually are.

Someone who excels in calling out when leftist activism ruins good story telling, common sense, and fun is the vlogger The Critical Drinker. His reviews are more entertaining than the lackluster blockbusters he ruthless analyzes.

The Critical Drinker is the alter ego of Scottish novelist Will Jordan, author of the Ryan Drake series of espionage thrillers. Right from the start on his Youtube channel, his commentaries on movies and television were very precise, verbalized in a sardonic yet straightforward style.

But with time, as Jordan continued to articulate pointed critiques against the philosophical corruption behind the poor quality of show biz these days, The Drinker became more of a persona. He mixes self-depreciating hyperbolic quips about his life as a debased sot into his reviews, now delivered in a slurred brogue as thick as the sarcasm.

The Drinker uses quick cutaways to a litany of film clips as punctuation to his comments. Snippets like Leeloo laughing, Tyrion puking, or Sam Neill bellowing are used as a shorthand reaction to the contemptible Hollywood handiwork which the Drinker, and the rest of us, are forced to endure. It’s crude and rude and becomes funny as hell as a running gag.

Perhaps the Drinker shifted gears as a strategy. Speaking out against the utter failures of the progressive status quo, he would be a prime target for cancel culture. But like Shakespeare’s Fool in Lear, the comic act grants license to speak the uncomfortable truth. The Critical Drinker sees the suicidal pattern of cultural deconstruction we’re being force-fed; the popcorn movie takedowns and fart jokes are camouflage for well-reasoned observations about the destructive failures of establishment culture.

The Critical Drinker’s philosophy is well presented in his video “How NOT to Critique Films.” He often receives comments about how his movie reviews overlook the redeeming power of politically correct themes, a major criteria in most criticism these days. He responds, “…things really start to fall apart when people decide what they’re going to see before they even see it, and then try to reinterpret the movie to suit their ideas…if you’re willing to stretch your imagination far enough, you can bend the plot of a film around just about any theme your twisted mind can come up with, and if every interpretation is equally valid, every interpretation is equally shit…themes aren’t a magical shield to protect a shitty film from criticism.”

The Critical Drinker explains how he looks at art as art, not in terms of activism. “…I want to be clear about how I go about reviewing an artistic work, and because I wanted to take a giant shit on anyone who doesn’t share this view. I’ve talked before about the problem of movies sacrificing narrative quality, character integrity, and simple dignity, in favor of politics and ideology…there’s been a real trend of people with lots of enthusiasm, but not much common sense, trying to deflect genuine criticism and make excuses for bad movies by pointing to stuff that has no bearing on their artistic merit…So what’s the endgame here? Are we expected to enjoy movies based on some theoretical idea of what they might represent, instead of how they actually function?”

The Postmodern establishment tells us the answer is yes. They are wrong.

Watch the whole thing, it’s worth it.

In another recent post, he dared to question China proxy Disney’s latest coming distraction, Cruella. “Now the year is 2021, and because apparently no one can come up with anything new anymore, we’re being treated to this piece of garbage,” the Drinker surls, as he dissects the sick corporation behind this pending flop. They’re stuck in a rut of unneeded, inferior live action remakes of classic animated features.

The Disney corporation, as vassels of an enemy state, demonstrate they are obsessed with undermining the past, trying to make villainy look cool, and preaching Wokeness. The Critical Drinker demonstrates there’s no entertainment to be found there.

Auteurs often claim critics are just bitter, driven by jealousy. The reasoning goes critics are themselves incapable of inspiration, so they seek to undermine the accomplishments of others. While that assertion is valid when applied to your typical SJW culture canceller, the Drinker demonstrates he is a real thinker who could outperform the hacks he harangues. His channel features a series called “The Drinker Fixes,” in which he describes major plot and character fumbles committed by the studios, and presents much more logical, character consistent, and compelling alternatives which could have been developed. It’s truly eye opening to imagine what might have been, if our creative class had any creativity, or integrity.

Andrew Breitbart was right when he stated politics is downstream from culture. We need more like the Critical Drinker who able to articulate what the scam is, and how wrong it is. We are being lied into oblivion. The controlled entertainment world is all in on their role as pure propaganda, an important means to enforce the totalitarian mindset. They have sacrificed actually producing art or entertainment in favor of just being another way to deliver Groupthink.

This is the natural conclusion of the parasitic Postmodern mentality. However, one of the ways to best challenge the elitist monopoly is through independent art. What the establishment puts out is so unappealing and false, it’s an area of vulnerability for them. Remodernism is the set of ideas and ideals taking on Postmodern corruption.

As I state in my 2018 book, Remodern America: How the Renewal of the Arts Will Change the Course of Western Civilization:

“The Modern age was the greatest liberation of humanity in history. As we became more efficient in providing the necessities of existence, we had more freedom to determine what kind of lives we wanted to live.

“As Modernism rose to highlight the potentials of individual initiative, leftist political movements counterattacked. Their goal was to squash humanity back into undifferentiated, subservient masses.

“The elitists understood to maintain power, they had to undermine resistance. That’s why the top down cultural forces have made Postmodernism so prevalent. Using mass media to communicate their sickening message, the establishment made dispiriting Postmodernism the terrain we all must navigate, the atmosphere we all must breathe, the environment we all must adapt to.

“But this effort at control loses its presumptive prestige once its mechanics and motivations are exposed. How can the spell of Postmodernism best be broken? You can’t beat something with nothing, even if the something is as stupid and unfulfilling as Postmodernism. A credible alternative must be established.

“Remodernism is the recognition that Western civilization is still mighty. Remodernism knows we can still use our talents to create unprecedented growth. Remodernism is understanding our best days are still ahead of us, if we make the right choices, and do the needed work.”

Indoctrination does not satisfy the human need for art. We have to call out the difference, now more ever.

That’s awl ah goat fur toady.

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

Learn more About My Art: Visionary Experience

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

Update: Welcome Instapundit readers!

DAILY ART FIX: UNEXPECTED GIFTS AND THE ART OF RESURRECTING BEES

Art world links which caught my eye…

Reblogged from Michele Bledsoe’s blog The Secret Kingdom

I gave my wife something strange which I knew she would enjoy.

My husband gave me a wondrous gift the other day..

a dead carpenter bee he found in the yard.

He knows me so well.

This beautiful

black-velvety little creature

and his single coppery wing..

will live again

in my paintings.

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

DAILY ART FIX: When Paul Gauguin painted his roommate, Vincent Van Gogh

Art world links which caught my eye…

The Painter of Sunflowers, 1888 by Paul Gauguin

Paul Gauguin and Vincent Van Gogh were odd couple roommates for a brief but significant period of their lives.

Key quote from the article:

“It was not long after this was painted that Vincent had one of his spells of madness, and the two parted ways never to see each other again. When van Gogh saw the painting, he wrote ‘My face has lit up after all a lot since, but it was indeed me, extremely tired and charged with electricity as I was then.'”

Read the full article here: Gauguin.org – The Painter of Sunflowers, 1888 by Paul Gauguin

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

DAILY ART FIX: A Wild Note of Longing: Albert Pinkham Ryder and a Century of American Art

Art world links which caught my eye…

The mystical Albert Pinkham Ryder was one of the artists I discovered at the beginning of my life of a painter. He’s haunted me ever since. I wrote a tribute to him here: ARTISTS: Albert Pinkham Ryder

See the full article on a 2020 Ryder art exhibit here: ARTFIXDAILY – A Wild Note of Longing: Albert Pinkham Ryder and a Century of American Art

Albert_Pinkham_Ryder_004

Albert Pinkham Ryder “Siegfried and the Rhine Maidens”  

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

DAILY ART FIX: How Louise Bourgeois Used Drawing to Alleviate Anxiety

Art world links which caught my eye…

Louise Bourgeois Drawings Hauser and Wirth

Art is therapeutic, and so much more as well. Modern artist Louise Bourgeois understood this,

Key quote from the article:

“When the late artist Louise Bourgeois felt a wave of worry, she would draw. ‘I know that when I finish a drawing, my anxiety level decreases,’ she once said. ‘When I draw it means that something bothers me, but I don’t know what it is. So it is the treatment of anxiety.’”

Read the full article here: AnOther Magazine – How Louise Bourgeois Used Drawing to Alleviate Anxiety

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I don’t fundraise off of my blog. I don’t ask for Patreon or Paypal donations. If you’d like to support the Remodern mission, buy a book. Or a painting

My wife Michele Bledsoe has written her own inspirational book, Painting, Passion and the Art of Life.

Remodernism Video: BEFORE THERE WAS FAKE NEWS, THERE WAS FAKE ART

Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

Please send any inquiries to info@remodernamerica.com. Thank you!

COVID, THE ARTS, AND OUR SKIN SUIT WEARING ESTABLISHMENT

Image result for covid fine art

Governing Class Manipulations are the Worst Pandemic of All

I was never a big Twitter user. So once they started in with the Stalinist censorship, it was easy for me to boycott them, as every freedom-loving person should.

I assume the pithy humorist Iowahawk is no longer on the platform. I may be wrong, but I won’t give them a single click to try and verify. Iowahawk’s little stilettos of wit were Wrongthink incarnate; whether he got kicked off or joined the stampede away from @Jack’s totalitarian tactics, I couldn’t say.

Over the years, one of Iowahawk’s greatest hits became a recurring meme on the blog Instapundit. Our Cultural Marxist dominated culture gave plenty of opportunities to apply it.

Back When Twitter Still Mattered: IOWAHAWK Nailed It

After the kamikaze elitist coup against reality that was 2020, it looks like our entire establishment is now attired in the flayed husks Iowahawk described. They’re strutting around like so many lamb silencing Buffalo Bills, decked out in, um, recycled finery, the rotting remains of what were once our enduring cultural assumptions. We peasants are supposed to look up from the pit they’ve thrown our society into, and tell them how pretty they look. It’s a grotesque display. 

I was reminded of the catastrophic lies we are expected to accept when I read a recent article about the Overblown Outbreak and the arts:

USA TODAY: Why We Need the Arts and Humanities to Get Us Through the COVID-19 Pandemic

“In addressing these issues, among others, society needs the work of scientists and health professionals to be informed by, and infused with, a wide range of human insight, experience and values,” the authors, Dr David Skorton and Dr Lisa Howley,  opine. “We need not just science but also the arts and humanities — and a union between them.”

Sounds reasonable, right? It ought to be, but you have to understand the bait and switch lurking in their sentiment. These doctors are wearing many layers of skin suits. They assume they can deceive us because we will still honor the institutional memories of the norms leftists have massacred and mutilated in their pursuit of unaccountable power.

First, they invoke Science. We are supposed to rely on it as our only hope:  “For 2021 to be brighter than last year, science and scientists must continue to play their indispensable roles, and must be taken seriously,” they intone.

But what is on offer is not science like it used to be, with careful collection and measurement of data, facts and evidence, tested and verified, peer reviewed and documented, to produce a reasonable, repeatable result. That is the skin we are supposed to see.

The truth behind the mask, and the masking, is “Obey me, because Science.” What we’re actually getting is Establishment Science, which is arbitrary, factless, incoherent, and nonsensical. We had to shut down the world for a virus with a 99.98% survival rate. The infection counts are based off unreliable tests which have found that samples of Coca Cola and papayas have Covid. The death counts are wildly inflated by claiming anyone “with” Covid died “of” Covid, which is not the same thing at all – let alone all the cases of flu, pneumonia, cancer, and even accidents, fed into the cooked Covid stats.

The demands of the Science they wield make no sense. We can go to Walmart, but not to church. Can’t go to school, but go ahead and join in with mass protests and riots. Even with a so-called “vaccine,” we are to remain masked and distanced forever. Why?

Consider the contradictory gyrations over time of a certain Dr. Fauci. He said at first no masks were necessary. Then he said that was lie he told the public (great ethics there Doc!) because medical professionals needed the masks and he didn’t want to run out – even though at the same time he said any old piece of cloth would do as a face covering. As if a bandanna could stop a virus. More recently he said two masks good, then recanted, then reversed again. Why anyone with a memory would believe anything this erratic bureaucratic hack says at this point is beyond me, but he is held up as the Voice of their specious Science, and we are all supposed to follow his deranged proclamations.

The authors treat the arts and humanities with the same misdirected appeal to long squandered creditability. They segue from science to the arts with a quote from a revered figure: “As no less a mathematician than Albert Einstein put it: ‘All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree’ because all serve the same larger purpose — to uplift the lives of human beings.” But then they go on to define what they mean when they say art: “imagination and curiosity, communication and empathy, critical thinking and social advocacy (emphasis mine.)”

The first five descriptors are the skin suit we are to recognize; traditional ideas of what art can do. It’s what art used to provide. However, if these deceptive doctors were honest about the current state of our cultural institutions, they would eliminate everything except the last item on that list, “social advocacy,” which corrupt totalitarians want to tack on to every facet of human existence these days. When these characters say the arts and humanities, what they really mean is “poorly camouflaged leftist activism.”

In Establishment art, social justice warrioring holds dominion over all. Instead of unifying us during this time of Corona, they want us to bask in the uplifting experiences like those available from the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art: “The pandemic of racism, the pandemic of lack of food access, those pandemics have been going on for many, many, many years.”

And from gallerists like the fellows at Passage Arts: “Their conversation spanned inequity, racism, the mis- and underrepresentation of indigenous voices, and the unequal power dynamic between galleries, artists, and collectors.”

Artist Charles Gaines offers up, “There’s another part to this, which is that I wanted to undermine universal notions. That came out of my lived experience as a Black person. If you’re Black, or if you look Black, there is a different set of rules than if you’re white. Being white has been [considered] a universal expression of humanity, and racism played into that by marginalizing people who are not white.”

Funny, it seems to me art is universal, and encompasses all times and all cultures. Art is as human as the opposable thumb, and just as prevalent. It’s older than agriculture. The arts and humanities could be a force bringing us all into harmony. But some cultivate fragmentation and factionalism in the arts, and in society in general, thinking it will bring them personal advantages they would otherwise not achieve.

It’s telling how Gaines describes the evolution of his own art: “… because my work of that period was not political. [Politics] really entered my work a decade later. To the world, it just looked like my use of grids and numbers was a continuation of the conceptual enterprise—and it took me a little while to understand the politics of that. My work just couldn’t get past a certain level of interest…But I reached a ceiling where I couldn’t get writers to write about me and curators weren’t interested in putting me in shows. The way I look at it, if I had got a bigger public profile, then I think Dia would have been interested.”

Paint by Numbers? Detail of artwork by Charles Gaines

The fast track these days is to cynically exploit progressive virtue signaling as a means of career advancement. Being a proclaimed activist artist allows mediocrities to garner attention while producing dull, dead end rehashes of ideas better explored by other artists.

The contemporary art world Establishment solicits proclaimed victimhood as a means of advancement, and it has devoured the industry. There’s no uplift to be had in preaching grievance, displaying covetousness, and trashing the mighty achievements accomplished by our forefathers. All this posturing is just another form of Cultural Marxist social engineering, which they accomplish through the manipulation of language, or to put it another way, lies.

The suffering and decline we are undergoing is meant to bring us to heel. What we are witnesses to is the practitioners of the toxic philosophy of Postmodernism making their big move to enslave humanity forever. As I state in my 2018 book, Remodern America: How the Renewal of the Arts Will Change the Course of Western Civilization:

A quick way to summarize Postmodernism is to describe it as a kind of magical thinking among the intelligentsia. They have convinced themselves and each other that language shapes the world, and by controlling the social narrative, they can force the universe into obedience.

The Modern era questioned truth and the nature of reality. Postmodernists flatly declare there is no such thing as truth, and “reality” is determined by the preferences of the powerful. Since they have maneuvered themselves to be in charge, the elitists behave as if reality had to conform to their theories, not the other way around.

Our would-be masters wove a make-believe world where their particular skill sets dominate. Because of the strategic way the establishment infiltrated their ridiculous conceits into society, they made great progress in remaking our civilization in their own corrupted image. For too long we’ve been enmeshed in their Matrix-like web of relentless misdirection, distraction, and subversion.

 Since the past is full of examples that contradict their assertions, Postmodernists attempt to deny, destroy, and redefine it. Since freethinking individuals might not agree with their stances, Postmodernists attempt to divide everyone into collective groups which can be manipulated into divisive conflicts.

Postmodernism is a cynical, despotic fantasy. It’s like a mafia made up of spoiled children. Because a lot of influential people have embraced it, we have the current ongoing disasters in our society. They are deadly serious about trying to make us all submit to their sense of entitlement, which is exactly the reason they need to be thwarted.

It’s a good thing these elitists are so profoundly ignorant of anything outside their ideological biases. They don’t understand actual history, only their pretend revisionist versions of it. They are so convinced of their own invulnerability, they overlook the inevitable fate of tyrants grown rigid.

The two doctors finish their pious piece with “The arts can not only help heal our bodies during these difficult times, they can help heal our souls.” While only God can heal our souls, art could be there for those seeking the solace of beauty, order, and inspiration. Unfortunately the current state of the institutional art offers only propaganda and proselyting. They don’t want to comfort, they want to convert.

Under Postmodernism’s tyranny, the arts and humanities don’t offer concord – they are meant to be a means for conquest.

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