22 March 2013

A young dancer


Tasteless painting fetches nearly £1m

The original  painting of the Chinese Girl, thought to be the most reproduced print in the world, was sold for nearly £1 million yesterday. The work by Russian-born artist Vladimir Tretchikoff raised £982,050 - nearly double its expected price - as part of a sale of South African art at Bonhams auction house.

Millions of reproductions of the picture, also known as the Green Lady because of the unusual blue-green skin tone of the subject, have been sold since it was painted in the 1950s.

A Bonhams spokesman said: "It's very exciting. Suddenly the market has decided they like what they can see with Tretchikoff."

The Bonhams spokesman added: "It's almost triple the £380,000 we sold his painting Lenka for last year. It shows he's beginning to close in on the other major figures on the South African art landscape, Irma Stern - whose picture Arab Priest we previously sold for £3 million - and Pierneef."

The identity of the Chinese Girl buyer was not known, but the painting will remain within Europe, the spokesman said.

No accounting for taste I suppose

21 March 2013

Ahmadinejad and the discharged shotgun...

The Atlantic has a short item, an extract from a forthcoming book, the consequences of which I shudder to think

One morning in September 2006, during the United Nations General Assembly, President George W. Bush’s daily intelligence brief contained a particularly chilling item. It was three sentences long, and it scared the hell out of the dozen or so White House officials cleared to read it. According to one official, it began, “A U.S. Secret Service agent, in an apparent accident, discharged his shotgun as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was loading his motorcade at the InterContinental Hotel yesterday.”

At the time, the Bush administration was weighing how to deal with the Iranian nuclear-weapons program. And here a Secret Service agent had just given Iran a potentially devastating public-relations coup. Ahmadinejad was certain to reveal the accident in some grand form before the whole of the United Nations. He might allege that the United States had tried to assassinate him, and thus upend the entire conference. “When I read that, I remember closing my eyes,” recalls the official.
The agent was adjusting the side-mounted shotgun on one of the motorcade’s armored follow-up Suburbans when it discharged. “Everyone just stopped. The Iranians looked at us and we looked at the Iranians. The agent began to apologize. Ahmadinejad just turned his head and got into his car.” And that was it.

The Iranians told no one. Their silence led several White House aides to begin to see Ahmadinejad in a new light. Here was evidence that maybe Iran was acting strategically, and therefore cautiously.

—Adapted from Deep State: Inside the Government Secrecy Industry, by Marc Ambinder and D. B. Grady (to be published this month by Wiley)

An accident for sure rather than some hare brained plan to off Ahmadinejad (not that I would be sorry to see him out of the picture). I shudder to think of the consequences of him eing shot or even illed in such an accident....

And why the V&A is concerned!

Napalm Death Cancel a concert at the Victoria and Albert

The Independent reports that leading death metal band have been forced to cancel a one-off performance at the Victoria and Albert Museum amid concerns for the historic fabric of the building.

Napalm Death, who formed in Birmingham in 1981 and count songs such as “Scum”, “Greed Killing” and “Mentally Murdered” among their musical repertoire, were due to play a ground-breaking concert in collaboration with the V&A’s resident ceramicist, Keith Harrison.

Mr Harrison had planned to construct a speaker system that was filled with liquid clay, which would have cracked and fragmented as the sound reverberated inside it, creating a unique live installation.
Napalm Death were chosen to play the special set as it was hoped their deep bass sound would have created the perfect frequency to shatter the tiles and create the artwork.

The one-off gig was due to take place this Friday in a disused gallery currently undergoing renovation.

But the museum announced today that it had been forced to cancel the event after a safety inspection raised concerns over the potentially damaging effect such loud music could have on the both building and artwork, the organisers reluctantly cancelled the concert.

Concern about the preservation and safety of the Victorian structure has been heightened in recent years with the advent of the ‘FuturePlan’, a multi-million pound modernisation scheme designed to bring the museum into the 21st century whilst retaining its original splendour.

Now Napalm Death are not my cup of tea but I never thought to hear the and mentioned in the same sentence as the Victoria and Alert Museum!

09 March 2013


I keep on saying it but right now I just a not in the mod to blog.I will try to visit my favourite blogs but Black Dog is visiting