Saturday, September 29, 2012

Josef Albers-Color Theory's Giant

Josef Albers
"The Man" When It Comes To Color

Red and Brilliant Yellow
     Josef Albers is a name many dedicated artists may know.  For more than twenty-seven years, Albers created thousands of paintings based on images of layered squares of pure color. On the backs of these paintings, he even thoughtfully listed the hues used. He entitled this massive study “Homage To A Square”. 

     These paintings and his study of color revolutionized how people understood color relationships and how teachers taught color theory. Instrumental in this was his 1963 published work Interaction To Color.

      Joseph Albers didn't start his color exploration until the well ripe age of 61. By then, he was already a well-respected artist.  Starting in the Bauhaus, he moved to the United States when the Nazis closed the school. While in the U.S., he was head of the art department of Black Mountain College near Asheville, North Caroline and later head of Yale’s Art Department. If you want to read more about Josef Albers, The Art Story has a very nice synopsis of his life and work.

      He was married to Anni Albers, a well-respected weaver in her own right. Anni Albers will be featured shortly on the Journal.  

Just A Few More Squares

Between Two Scarlets, 1964

Study for Beaming, 1963

From The Soil, 1962

Portrait of Josef Albers
     There is also a wonderful children's book about his life and work: An eye for Color by Natasha Wing. It is available on Amazon.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Poodle Time!-Liz and Poodles

Liz Taylor and Poodles

Liz Taylor's love for animals is renown. I will be the first to admit that her major dog love was "Sugar", a Maltese who passed away in 2005. After "Sugar", she fell for "Daisy", a descendent of Sugar. 

 Liz also had Poodles, especially during her earlier years. Some of these pictures could possibly be studio orchestrated. The studios took advantage of her obvious emotional connection with animals.

Most of these photos were difficult to put a date and place on. The second one in this grouping was the only definite date I found. On others, guesses were made based on clothing and interior design. 

Judging from the coat style, I would put this photo during the late 40's.

Taken in 1950

I don't think Liz ever did her own grooming, but I love the Poodle print shirtwaist dress she is
wearing. The hair and dress says mid 50's to me. 

I think this is a bit strange looking (painting). The little dog looks so unkept. The style and interior colors are very 50's.

Major Diva picture-one of my favorites. I would put this photo around early 60's.
Until next week, and Sophia firmly believes that all Poodles are stars!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Poodle Time!-Poodles In Fashion-Inspired by Fashion Week

Today's Poodle Time is inspired by Fashion Week in New York (going on at this minute). Designers and fashion photographers have understood that Poodles complement good design. Poodles have shown up in fashion since the 19th century. Today's post will have fairly modern overview. Here are a few. 

I am starting out with the most recent. Isaac Mizrahi has again featured a Poodle with his designs. This time around, in promotion of his newest fragrance Fabulous. The campaign was photographed by Terry Richardson.

Ad campaign for Isaac Mizrazi's Fabulous. This was released just this Summer.  Isaac doesn't own a Poodle but seems to use them a lot in his work. 

Model Coco Rocca. Vogue 2008
Model Audrey Marnay in white Dior with a white Poodle. Vogue, 1999
Natalia Semanova, Arthur Elgort, 1999. Vogue UK,  2009

Vogue Brasil
Model Natalia Vodianova.  July Vogue, 2007
So, until next week-Fashionably Yours, Sophia

Saturday, September 8, 2012

"threaded"-Sharing One of My Favorite Blogs

One of my favorite blogs is Smithsonian Institution's Threaded. American's are so lucky to have such a resource as the Smithsonian.

Threaded is a fashion blog, but not the usual fashion blog that you see today. It is based on history and social context. You can read everything from the evolution of the swimsuit, the beginning of nylon stockings, and the influence of the 1969 moon landing  on the fashion industry. 

Here are a few pictures to show just a small variety of what a reader can find on Threaded. My link will take you to the latest installment. The photo captions are the posts that each photo is from. 

From the latest installment, 

New York Fashion Week, Past and Present

Top 10 Chanelisms: Coco’s Wise Words to Mark Her Birthday

Stocking Series, Part 1: Wartime Rationing and Nylon Riots

The Indelible Mister Rogers

What Did Playtex Have to Do With Neil Armstrong?

Well, I just wanted to share. I hope you check out this blog and the Smithsonian website.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Poodle Time!-La Gimblette

Today's post is a bit different than what I usually do. I previously mentioned that I am a newly retired teacher. To be specific, an art teacher.  For many years I had "Art History Wednesday". Today's post feels like those Wednesdays.

One of my earlier research items for my Pinterest Poodle! Board was a painting entitled Young Girl with Poodle (La Gimblette). The painting was created by François Boucher (September 29, 1703 – May 30,1770), one of the foremost painters of the French Rococo period. He is known for his rich and atmospheric works portraying the French upper class. Boucher also painted several portraits of his very famous patroness, Madame de Pompadour.

I thought at the time that I would eventually find a color version of the painting, but research found the sad truth. The Nazis stole La Gimblette for Adolph Hitler during World War II. The work originally belonged to the Jacques Stern Collection in Paris. Hitler, a failed artist himself, had dreams of creating an art museum in his hometown of Litz, Austria. He was going to use his stolen art to do this.

The Nazis looted 20% of the art of Europe. As they plundered, they would photograph and catalogue each item in an album for their Fürer. It is said that about 100 albums of photographs of art were created. Forty-five were recovered at the end of the war by the allies. Occasionally a new album turns up. An album with a photo of La Gimblette was donated to the National Archives in 2007. 

One hundred thousand pieces of original art are still missing from the art pillage during World War II. At this point, La Gimblette is still among the missing. One can only guess what beautiful colors Boucher used because all we have is this small black and white photo.  Maybe someday the beautiful girl and her dancing Poodle will find their way back home.  

In my research last winter, I was able to find a 300 dpi download of this work of art. This time around, I could not locate it, but have it on my computer. It would make a nice print. If anyone wants the larger version, email me and I will send it to you.  

The organization that has been active since World War II in stolen art recovery is the Monuments Men Foundation. Their website has up to the minute information of the efforts being made to recover still missing work.  

Until Next Week--Sophia and Niko