Tag Archives: art

Francesca Pastine: Totem

My friend Francesca Pastine is a talented artist whose creativity never fails to amaze me.  Whether she is working in a conventional medium like oil paint, or less conventional media, she manages to produce work that is both beautiful and meaningful. For several years she has been working on a series called the Artforum Excavations.  In these works she cuts and folds Artforum magazines and transforms them into art objects.

Her earliest works in this series remind me of topographic maps, with hills and valleys carved from the pages of the magazine. read more

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Antiquing in England: Saltaire

Saltaire
Unusual hinged paste brooch
Saltaire
Deco silver and marcasite double-clipo brooch

Two years ago, on a buying trip to England, I attended the Saltaire Vintage Home and Fashion Fair.  Held in the town of Saltaire, on the outskirts of Bradford in West Yorkshire, this vintage show is held several times a year.  A medium-sized show with approximately 40 booths, I found several great pieces of jewelry including a wonderful dangling hinged paste brooch, an Art Deco double-clip brooch, a modernist ring, and a Ming’s brooch.

Saltaire
Ming’s Peony brooch

The Ming’s brooch was an unusual find for England as it was made in Hawaii in the 1950’s.  When I asked the dealer about it it turned out that she had bought it in California, near where I live; I, in turn, sold it to a collector in Hawaii.  This brooch had travelled the world for over 50 years and finally returned home! read more

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Notes from around the Web: Artist Hubert Duprat

Duprat “Sculpture”

Straddling the line between conceptual art, sculpture, natural science, and jewelry the end result of Hubert Duprat’s work with insects are objects of great beauty.

Leonardo, an online magazine, has an article about the artist Duprat that begins:

“Since the early 1980s, artist Hubert Duprat has been utilizing insects to construct some of his “sculptures.” By removing caddis fly larvae from their natural habitat and providing them with precious materials, he prompts them to manufacture cases that resemble jewelers’ creations… This article is based on a conversation between the artist and art critic Christian Besson.”
read more

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@Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz

An important exhibit by Chinese artist Ai Weiwei recently opened on Alcatraz.  Called @Large:  Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz the exhibit is installed throughout the prison; the artworks address themes of freedom and imprisonment using different media and methods of interacting with the viewers.

Ai Weiwei is an internationally renowned artist known for provocative work that often has political themes.  He achieved worldwide fame beyond the art world as part of the design team for the Beijing National Stadium, known popularly as the “Birds Nest”, for the 2008 Summer Olympics.  In 2011 he was arrested and held for 81 days for being a prominent and outspoken critic of the Chinese government.   As of this writing in October 2014, the Chinese government has retained his passport, keeping him from leaving China. read more

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