Virtual vs. Tactile – Plastic Bubbles and the Art of Experiencing Art

In 2011, internet search giant Google announced the Google Art Project, which allows anyone with an internet connection to access images of artworks housed in museums around the world. The initial roster of institutions was 17, with another 151 institutions added in 2012. Google recently added 20 more institutions. Museum collections in over 40 countries are now represented – available to be experienced in 20 different languages.

In terms of delivering visual images of artworks to home computers, tablets, and smartphones, today’s internet is a dream come true conduit for museums, galleries, artists, art collectors, art aficionados, and private dealers such as ourselves. The internet serves up a broad and seemingly endless supply of visual art, from masterworks such as Van Gogh’s Starry Night to the less sublime yet still compelling thrift store classic Velvet Elvis, all in real-time. There’s no need to travel, buy admission tickets, or even change out of your favorite pajama’s in order to virtually visit a lifetime supply of art via the internet. You don’t even have to whisper or leave your food and drinks outside. It doesn’t get any better than that. Or does it?

Garofalo's Annunciation at Musei Capitolini

Coming now to a screen of your choosing.

We’re in an age where our collective attention spans are shortening while simultaneously being conditioned to absorb ever-increasing amounts of information that gets delivered to us in smaller sized scraps of sounds and sights. It is a testament to the power and mysteries of the human brain that more of us don’t go cross-eyed just trying to keep up.

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Deep Woods, Deep Snow, Deep Thoughts. Canvas, Paintbrushes, and…Skis?

It’s hard to describe the magic of skiing and snow to those who huddle in their caves all Winter anxiously awaiting signs that Spring’s thaws have gained the upper hand. Since some of my earliest memories are snow based, and sliding on snow (and ice) are in the family DNA, I’m never sad if Spring is forced to wait patiently just a bit longer for Old Man Winter to have his say.

Sledding Fun (c.1937)

Sledding Fun (c.1937). Our intrepid founder (r) and his Big Sis ride their rockets…

My big Sis and I embrace the legendary Blizzard of '66...

My Big Sis and I embrace the legendary Blizzard of ’66.

This past week saw a series of late Winter storms blanket the beautiful Green Mountains of Vermont with deep snow. In a moment of keen and decisive decision-making as the storms were rolling in, I decided that playing hooky was in order and therefore moved our office operations (and my body) to my “home away from home” in Vermont’s beautiful Mad River Valley – home to Mad River Glen and Sugarbush. Today’s modern business owner is both blessed and cursed with technology that enables us as never before, yet hounds us as never before. We’re never more than our smart phone away from the pull of the office, yet we can efficiently operate from almost anywhere. Continue reading

Back to the Future – 2012 Reviewed, 2013 Launched…

Where to begin?

Presidential elections, fiscal cliffs, End of Days, Olympics, Sandy Hook. The world seems larger…yet feels smaller. Meaner…yet more hopeful. More logical…yet less clear.

As modern humans we’re supposed to interface, naturally and like good little soldiers, to the ever more complicated and invasive technology of information overload. It swirls and envelops us at every turn. We somehow need to make sure we keep our sanity and humanity intact. Where do I find a playbook? Do we lose our humanity by filtering out the world sitting behind our computers or staring at our smart phones? Should we utilize these devices to enhance what’s really real – our flesh and bone connections to ourselves, our friends, and our loved ones? It’s a complicated question to which is no simple answer, especially for those of us who uses a computer for much of each work day.

Robert Natkin's painting entitled Interior

Robert Natkin’s 1961 work Interior

The balance for us as a private art dealers, is that our product – art – is about humanity. Continue reading

Beantown Art Fair Redux…A Review from the Booth

A few weeks ago with the recent Presidential election just completed, fiscal cliffs impending, and a forecast for some great late fall weather, we packed up 22 works of art, and pointed our van toward Boston. This was our 7th year exhibiting in the Boston International Fine Art Show. We were excited to get back to Beantown the weekend before Thanksgiving. As we drove into the city we passed Copley Square and the great man himself – John Singleton Copley (1738-1815). Well, we passed a bronze replica of Copley. An extraordinary artist, and one heck of a spiffy dresser!

John Singleton Copley

John Singleton Copley, a great man wearing some great shoes!

Arriving at the Cyclorama at the Boston Center for the Arts we were confronted with the empty booth that became our home for the next 5 days. It was time to scratch our chins and think about making the art shine. Continue reading

How Minor Is Too Minor?

Beatrice Levy

Beatrice Levy’s Trees (c.1930) brought out today for some fresh air.

How minor is too minor with regards to art? Who determines what gets to be major? Continue reading

Show Visit: NYC’s ADAA Show and The Armory Show (Pier92)

Being an exhibitor in an art fair has it’s own special demands and pressures, as well as excitement and possibilities as mentioned earlier. Visiting an art fair can be quite the treat – none of the grind of being a trade show vendor, yet all of the compressed cornucopia of visual delights to dazzle the senses.  It’s also a super time to interface with our colleagues and friendly competitors, and to check out what comparable works to our own inventory might be being offered.

There are signs of life in the art market, as the red dots sprinkled throughout the shows verified.  I was pleased to see several works related to our inventory that I felt we compared favorably with.  All in all a satisfying day of viewing in NYC!

The Armory Show

"Room with a view - Art inside, Hudson River outside."

 

Art Fairs: The Good and the Bad

Our “home away from home” BIFAS 2011

Trade shows or “Art Fairs” as they are known in our business, are exciting to participate in as exhibitors. Regardless of what you call them, they offer exceptional client networking, buying, and selling opportunities. They are also somewhat royal pains in the verso in terms of the extensive prep, set up, and aftermath required. We just returned from the Boston International Fine Arts Show, and now that the dust has settled,  have a few observations to share. Continue reading