I Can Feel the Dance in her Soul

Artist: Degas | Little Dancer, age 14 | National Gallery

Artist: Degas | Little Dancer, age 14 | National Gallery

“The Dancer premiered in 1881 at the Sixth Impressionist Exhibition in Paris, where it spurred condemnation for its “low” realism that many commentors considered vulgar. She stood as an indecently naturalistic portrayal of a working-class dancer, linked to nebulous ideas of vice, degeneracy, and corruption.”

She originally came to be known as the “Unloved Dancer.”

The world was appalled by her realism. It was the first modern attempt at a realistic sculpture. But the original unloved, wigged, and slippered Dancer no longer exists. The 1881 version was made entirely out of wax, which began to darken. It was later replaced with a simplified revised version also made of wax (as no one wanted to buy the original) Today, there are 30 of these bronze cast dancers around the world that were some what born out of Degas’ original. Plaster mould’s were made after Degas’ death in 1921 of a less detailed version of the unsellable original that Degas had later created. Degas’ revised wax rendition currently resides in the National Gallery in Washington, DC.

Now cloned, and idealized, the new version has been whole heartedly accepted by the masses, yet I still have a longing to be witness to the original. It just goes to show you how uninterested we as humans are in having realism find its way into our art, and how uncomfortable it is when it does, as it interferes with our ability to escape reality. -tM

A Reminder to be Playful

Photography: Alexis Armanet | Giorgio Armani’s Milanese Palace

Photography: Alexis Armanet | Giorgio Armani’s Milanese Palace

A reminder to be playful in life and design, that is what this image implores of me.

The unexpected placement of these two bronze panthers circa 1930, in the middle of the hallway, stand in contrast to there surroundings. They require you to stop, look, engage, and acknowledge there beauty and position. Playing with the rules, in life and in design is good for the soul. -tM

Sculptural Shadow Art

Tim Noble & Sue Webster are a London-based artist duo that create shadow art installations using carefully arranged objects. Using everything from trash to metal cans shot with BB pellets, they arrange these found objects in such a way as to cast shadows of people and skylines on the wall when a light is shined from a certain direction.

Photgraphy: Tim Noble & Sue Webster

Neoclassical Beauty

Photography: Jerome Galland | Villa Astor | Italy, Amalfi Coast

Photography: Jerome Galland | Villa Astor | Italy, Amalfi Coast

Bound to beauty in all of its infinite forms, this 17th Century statue standing in the garden of a villa; solitary, lost in the trees, cypresses, and pines makes me long for a secret affair. -tM

Miss Liberty

While she was being built there were parts of her gracing specific locations from Paris to the United States. 

This kind of process display would never happen today. I think her fragmented tour was an interesting way to at the very least make space in the workshop while the rest of her was being shipped off piece to piece to her final resting place. It also gave people the appreciation of her exact proportions, which were to say at the very least, quite intimidating. -tM

Photography: Photo No. 1: Edgar L. Owen, the rest are Unknown, 1800's

1. Paris Fair, 2. Philadelphia, 3. New York, New York

La Fontaine Stravinsky

Whimsical sculptures in the Beaubourg district near the Centre Pompidou pay homage to the classical works of composer Igor Stravinsky. 

One cannot help but stop and smile at the circus like display of these lively statues.

It is a reminder not to take ourselves or life too seriously, as the shapes and sculptures tend to be at odds with the refinement of classical music itself. 

Life, like that mermaid sculpture squirting water out of her breasts, can be just as fascinating and peculiar, and what better way to honour its eccentricity then by celebrating its unpredictability.  -tM

Artists: Niki de Saint Phalle, Jean Tinguely

 

Perfectly Imperfect

Inspired by classical art and mythological convictions, Massimilano Pelletti uses unorthodox materials to impress upon us the antique state of his sculptures.

Lost and found at sea or excavated from ruins, these modern day creations and their idealized beauty are interpretations of what Pelletti imagines them to be.

A sublime example of how perfectly imperfect beauty in art and life will always inspire exploration. -tM

Crystal Venus; Impossible Love; Atlantas (Venus); Broken Blue

 

From Sea to Land

Artist: Marc Quinn | Spiral Galaxy Conch Shell

There is nothing more beautiful then when art graces the streets, offering inspiration or at the very least conversations to be had for passerby's that stop to notice; and for those who don't, the beauty of our environment leaves a subconscious and psychological imprint whether one realizes or not. 

The glorification of the conch and juxtaposition of it finding its new home on urban streets as opposed to the ocean is an interesting one. From sea to land, infused with the noise of the streets and our voices as opposed to familiar ones of the ocean. If we listen carefully, I wonder what secrets this sculptural marvel would reveal. -tM