Δευτέρα, 30 Ιανουαρίου 2012

Lam Qua's medical portraits

Lam Qua (1801–1860) was a Chinese painter who specialized in Western-style portraits intended largely for Western clients. Lam Qua was the first Chinese portrait painter to be exhibited in the West. He is known for his medical portraiture. From 1836 to 1855, Lam Qua produced a series of medical portraits of patients under treatment with physician Peter Parker, a medical missionary from the United States. Parker commissioned Lam Qua to paint pre-operative portraits of patients who had large tumors or other major deformities. Some of the paintings are now part of a collection of Lam Qua's work held by the Yale University in the Peter Parker Collection at the Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library; others are in the Gordon Museum, Guy's Hospital, London.

Πέμπτη, 26 Ιανουαρίου 2012

Edvard Munch's dark and macabre works

Kiss of Death

Edvard Munch (1863–1944) was a Norwegian Symbolist painter, printmaker and an important forerunner of expressionist art. His works express deep emotions, of love, fear, anxiety, death. Munch was an expressive painter and was not primarily interested in literal renderings of what he had seen.

The Scream
In a page in his diary, Munch described his inspiration for the image thus:
I was walking along a path with two friends – the sun was setting – suddenly the sky turned blood red – I paused, feeling exhausted, and leaned on the fence – there was blood and tongues of fire above the blue-black fjord and the city – my friends walked on, and I stood there trembling with anxiety – and I sensed an infinite scream passing through nature.

It has been suggested that the proximity of both a slaughterhouse and a madhouse to the site depicted in the painting may have offered some inspiration of the red background. At the time of painting the work, Munch's manic depressive sister Laura Catherine was interned in the mental hospital at the foot of Ekeberg. In 1978, the Munch scholar Robert Rosenblum suggested that the strange, sexless creature in the foreground of the painting was probably inspired by a Peruvian mummy, which Munch could have seen at the 1889 Exposition Universelle in Paris. This mummy, which was crouching in a fetal position with its hands alongside its face, also struck the imagination of Munch's friend Paul Gauguin: it stood model for the central figure in some of his paintings. Recently, an Italian anthropologist speculated that Munch might have seen a mummy in Florence's Museum of Natural History which bears an even more striking resemblance to the painting. The environment of The Scream is often compared to that which an individual suffering from depersonalization disorder experiences, such a feeling of distortion of the environment and one's self. Indeed, the deranged person feels all the world trembling, in contrast to the people behind who enjoy cool and serene the view and the sunset

Although it is a highly unusual representation, nevertheless, this painting is of Mary, the mother of Jesus. Until the 20th century Mary was usually represented in high art as a chaste, mature woman. True to the Norwegian cultural beliefs and way of life, the painting is a strong dose of conceivable realism. Sigrun Rafter, an art historian at the Oslo National Gallery suggests that Munch intended to represent Mary in the life-making act of intercourse, with the sanctity and sensuality of the union captured by Munch. The usual golden halo of Mary has been replaced with a red halo symbolizing the love and pain duality. The viewer's viewpoint is that of the man who is making love with her. Even in this unusual pose, she embodies some of the key elements of canonical representations of the Virgin: she has a quietness and a calm confidence about her. Her eyes are closed, expressing modesty, but she is simultaneously lit from above; her body is seen, in fact, twisting toward the light so as to catch more of it, even while she does not face it with her eyes. These elements suggest aspects of conventional representations of the Annunciation.

"Vampire" or "Love and pain"?
The above painting is famous because of a misinterpretation by an art critic who thought that woman don't consoling her mourning lover, relieving his pain, but is a female vampire that sucks blood from her male victim. Then this painting became more famous with the wrong title “Vampire” than the original by the painter “Love and Pain”. But knowing about an artist’s unsuccessful romance with a woman, this painting can hold both interpretations, Love and Pain coexist in a relation and from Munch’s perspective this woman dominated his life, either as a lover or as a painful partner.

The Harpy



Adam and Eve commiting the Sin

The Murder of Marat

By the Deathbed

Study of a Model
but it can be interpreted as
Woman and Death

Death and the Maiden

Σάββατο, 21 Ιανουαρίου 2012

Heir Apparent, album: Graceful Inheritance (1986)

An old and forgotten power metal diamond. Only two albums this band has released, but this piece is enough to worth remembering again for today's Metal Youth. More in Metal Archives

Τρίτη, 17 Ιανουαρίου 2012

Michael Hutter

Michael Hutter is a contemporary surealist artist of erotic, macabre, grotesque and horror themes. As he said: I developed some techniques which consists of my way to deal with literature, art, music, philosopy, science, religion and pseudo-science afar from mainstream culture. I dont care for reality or the probability that something is true, only for its potential to stimulate my thought. In my opinion truth is somehow an illusion anyway. I mix that with my obsession, passions, desires and fears and choke what happens in the abyss of my personality back on the surface.

Πέμπτη, 12 Ιανουαρίου 2012

Andres Serrano "The Morgue"

Could corpses at various macabre, decaying and gory conditions become subjects of artistic significance? Of course Death and macabre issues always produce a strange attractive-repelling feeling, so they have formed one of the most important theme in art beside Portraits, Beauty, Eros, Nature and Landscapes. By seeing such disturbing works from various contemporary photographers, like Andres Serrano, Sally Mann and Tsurisaki Kiyotaka, you find yourself in such a bipolar and confusing feeling at its stongest.

The series of photographs by the notorious Andres Serrano “The Morgue” (1991) , based on details of dead bodies, with info about the cause of death (murder, illness, burning, suicide, poisoning, etc), is related to the fascination of death present in the romanticism of the 19th century , particularly the works of Theodore Gericault, whose series inspired him. As Serrano said: “I use photography as a painter uses his canvas”.

Τετάρτη, 4 Ιανουαρίου 2012

Chet Zar

Chet Zar (1967-) is an American artist notable for his dark visual art, make-up effects, and digital animation. He is most widely known for his work with Tool's music and live videos. He is the stepson of American fantasy artist James Zar. Zar's works vary according to the medium he is using. His interest in art and horror movies led to a career in the motion-picture industry. His contributions to the industry were in the form of sculpture and make-up effects. Zar designed and created prosthetic effects for such movies as The Ring, Planet of the Apes, and Darkman.
His canvassed works are generally oil-based portraits. He considers his works to be extensions of his doodles, and describes the figures in his art as "very ugly and freakish on the surface" while still retaining "innocence about them". In addition to creating digital animations for Tool's live shows, Zar has created his own DVD of digital loops, entitled Disturb the Normal. His 'animated paintings' are made using Lightwave 3d and Adobe After Effects. On December 18, 2007, Tool released a DVD for their single "Vicarious", which contains a documentary with an appearance by Zar as a key member of the "Vicarious" video team.