Saturday, October 31, 2009

Rip Taylor and CissyThe best art is meaningless
Art doesn't have to be about anything to be good. In fact, the easier it is to say what a work is about, the less interesting that work becomes. The greatest art takes a lifetime to understand; the slightest takes a moment. And if it really is reducible to an explicit message, is it actually art at all? The most deadening influence on art in our time is the belief that content matters more than style. If you look back, the artists most often mentioned in the media these days, what they have in common is a message. Once you've understood them, what's left to say? Real art doesn't have a message, doesn't necessarily say anything. It is an arrangement of shapes, a pattern of words. -Jonathan Jones
Anthony Sowell is back in custody after four years of freedom, arrested Saturday on new rape charges and after police discovered six decomposing bodies at his home on the east side of Cleveland. The first two bodies were found Thursday night when police went to Sowell's home to arrest him on charges of felonious assault and rape. Detectives with a search warrant found the bodies on the third floor of a duplex and began checking a fresh grave dug in the basement. Their advanced state of decomposition suggested the bodies had been in the home a long time. By Saturday, six bodies were counted. Two bodies were identified by county Coroner Frank Miller as black females and one had died of a violent death ruled a homicide. No race or gender was determined for the others. Police Chief Michael McGrath tried to reassure parents that it was safe for their children to go trick-or-treating in the neighborhood if they followed standard precautions like avoiding strangers and staying in a group. -THOMAS J. SHEERAN Associated PressHappy Halloween!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Sacred Monsters: Carl Plansky's Divas

Joan Mitchell, 1990. Oil on linen, 24 x 18 inches. Carl Plansky
Grace Hartigan as Eleanor Steber,1997. Oil on linen, 84 x 66 inches. Carl Plansky
Self-Portrait as Montserrat Caballe - Green Dress, 1995. Oil on linen, 84 x 72 inches. Carl Plansky
Diva in Red: Self-Portrait as Anita Cerquetti. oil on canvas. 72” x 84”. Carl Plansky"Callas" (2008) Oil on linen, 84 x 72 in. Carl Plansky
Self-Portrait as Montserrat Caballe, 1995. Oil on linen, 84 x 72 inches. Carl Plansky
Callas Paints Her Self-Portrait, 2008. Oil on linen, 84 x 72 inches. Carl Plansky
Dennis Hopper Has Prostate Cancer

Sad news out of Hollywood: Dennis Hopper has prostate cancer, according to his manager, and is canceling his travel plans. The Easy Rider star canceled an exhibition of his artwork and photography at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne. Hopper, 73, is being treated through a "special program" at the University of Southern California, and his manager would not discuss his prognosis except to say "we're hoping for the best." -DBeast/Associated Press
PLEASE TRY TO FORGIVE ALEXIS NEIRES AND TESS TAYLORParis Hilton has strong feelings for the teen bandits who stole her clothes and jewelry -- "I hate them!" The celebutard (right), who'd left her front door in LA unlocked, spewed her anger as she left Mr. Chow restaurant Wednesday, according to TMZ. PAGE SIX, NY Post

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Michael Jackson Impersonators

Anderson Cooper has been consoling himself over falling ratings by living it up in Jaipur, India, at one of the world's most opulent hotels. The CNN star was spotted Tuesday with his muscular friend, Benjamin Maisani, an owner of East Village bar Eastern Bloc, at the Rambagh Palace, named the best hotel in the world by Conde Nast Traveler. Cooper's $3,200-a-night room features a four-poster mahogany bed and views of the gardens of the former Maharaja palace. Our source said, "Anderson's room has a large round bathtub. On the first night it was filled with bubbles and sprinkled with red rose petals." CNN declined to comment. -PAGE SIX NY Post
Fox News Channel and the Obama administration are talking.
The network confirmed a Politico report that Fox news executive Michael Clemente met at the White House on Wednesday with Robert Gibbs, President Barack Obama's press secretary. There were no details given about the meeting. Fox has been battling with the administration, which contends the network operates more like a wing of the Republican Party than a news organization. If the White House wants to talk about bias in the media, officials "should elevate the conversation and talk about bias on the right and on the left," CNN's prime-time host Campbell Brown said. She interviewed Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett and asked whether the White House considered left-leaning MSNBC biased as well. Jarrett wouldn't speak about the network. "When you just target one side, you reveal your own bias _ that you are only critical of those who are critical of you." -DAVID BAUDER
Men stand in front of a building after a bomb explosion in Peshawar in Pakistan, October 28, 2009. A car bomb ripped through a crowded market killing 87 people in Peshawar on Wednesday, just hours after Washington's top diplomat arrived pledging a fresh start in sometimes strained relations. REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Should We Be Doing More To Reduce The Graphic Violence In Our Dreams?David Bowie Used Witchcraft To Get Over Coke Paranoia. A new book about David Bowie claims the rocker used a New York-based white witch named Walli Elmlark to help him get over cocaine paranoia. Bowie, according to Spin magazine writer Marc Spitz's (How Soon Is Never) Bowie: A Biography, used to stay up for hours with a "pile" of cocaine on top of his coffee table and a sketchpad and books handy while he was writing 1976's Station To Station. "Psychic Self Defense was his favourite," Spitz writes, according to a Contact Music article. "Its author describes the book as a 'safeguard for protecting yourself against paranormal malevolence. "Using this and more arcane books on witchcraft, white magic and its malevolent counterpart, black magic, as rough guides to his own rapidly fragmenting psyche, Bowie began drawing protective pentagrams on every surface." Due to his cocaine use, Bowie lost hours and hours of sleep and became "convinced there were witches after his semen," Spitz writes. These witches were apparently determined to use it to make a baby they could sacrifice to the devil. Basically, Spitz writes that Bowie was hallucinating the plot to Rosemary's Baby. That, or he predicted the groupies of the Metal Sludge gossip boards 30 years before they came to prominence. "I'd stay up for weeks," Bowie told Spitz. "Even people like Keith Richards were floored by it. And there were pieces of me all over the floor. I paid with the worst manic depression of my life. My psyche went through the roof, it just fractured into pieces. I was hallucinating 24 hours a day." To get over his sleep deprivation and beat the evil spirits, Bowie met with and consulted Elmlark, who exorcised the rocker. "Angie [Bowie, the rocker's ex-wife], who was living there at the time, noted that it started to bubble and smoke, and that it only rained outside David's window while the rest of the L.A. sky was clear. Elmlark wrote a series of spells and incantations out for Bowie as he continued to wrestle with the forces of darkness." -Kate Harper (CHARTattack)
Jane Friedman

Lot: #330 MICHAEL JACKSON NEVERLAND THANK YOU CARD Thank you card with a black and white artist rendering of Michael Jackson reading a story book to children while fairies look on, on off-white paper with blue border. Interior of card reads, "Thank You/Michael Jackson" in the same blue ink with a watermark image of the child in the moon Neverland Ranch logo. 4 by 5 1/2 inches, folded

Lot: # 323 MICHAEL JACKSON SIGNED PILLOWCASE Pillow case signed by Michael Jackson in black marker, inscription reads, "I love you love Michael Jackson." This item was thrown from his hotel room window in 1996 while Jackson was visiting Disneyland Paris and staying at the Disneyland hotel Paris with his wife at the time, Lisa Marie Presley. 16 1/2 by 30 1/2 inches Minimum Next Bid: 300.00

Lot: #322 MICHAEL JACKSON & LISA MARIE WEDDING SOUVENIR CHOCOLATE BAR Milk chocolate candy bar molded to read, "Lisa Marie and Michael" with a heart and musical note. Wrapped in gold foil and contained in a plastic box. These bars were given as souvenirs to wedding guests at the marriage of Michael Jackson to Lisa Marie Presley. The couple married in 1994 and divorced in 1996. Box, 2 by 4 inches Minimum Next Bid: 100.00 USD
Lot: #294 MICHAEL JACKSON SKETCH OF A MAN Pen on drawing paper sketch of a man, drawn by Michael Jackson. The drawing displays a understanding of proportion, shading and texture unique to an unschooled artist. Jackson successfully taught himself to sing, dance and act. It is not surprising to see that he also educated himself and succeeded in his visual art endeavors. 6 by 4 inches Minimum Next Bid: 300.00 USD
Lot: #295 MICHAEL JACKSON HAND DRAWN SKETCH Pen on drawing paper stylized sketch of a face drawn by Michael Jackson. Jackson created this sketch while working on "The Wiz" (Universal Pictures, 1978). The sketch includes some feline and makeup elements that may have been inspired by the costumes in the film. 6 by 4 inches Minimum Next Bid: 325.00 USD

Lot: #296 MICHAEL JACKSON DRAWING Pencil on paper signed in lower corner. This drawing of a child in overalls was created when Michael was only 9 years-old and given to Jackson's aunt. As with his musical talents Jackson appears to have had a natural artistic ability and is not known to have received any formal art training. 16 1/2 by 8 inches Minimum Next Bid: 1000.00 USD

Lot: #281 JACKSON 5 ORIGINAL OIL PAINTING BY M. WERLIN Oil on Canvas, M. Werlin, 1970, signed LRC. Original oil painting commissioned in 1970 for the album cover of an upcoming Jackson 5 record. Motown said at the time that the commissioned painting cost more than commissioned presidential portraits. Michael Jackson was 12 years old at the time of the portrait sitting. The Jackson family at this time was riding high on the success of ?Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5? and had just moved to California. The artwork was ultimately not used by Motown and became the possession of Bob Jones, Motown Publicist and Publicity Chief. After 17 years with Motown Jones left to become Vice President of Communications for MJJ Productions. The painting is accompanied by two newspaper articles that show Werlin working on this painting in his studio with the Jackson 5. 50 1/2 by 50 inches, framed Minimum Next Bid: 4000.00 USD
House Democrats reached agreement Wednesday on key elements of a health care bill that would vastly alter America's medical landscape, requiring virtually universal sign-ups and offering a new government-run insurance option for millions. The final product in the House, reflecting many of President Barack Obama's priorities, includes new requirements for employers to offer insurance to their workers or face penalties, fines on Americans who don't purchase coverage and subsidies to help lower-income people do so. Insurance companies would face new prohibitions against charging much more to older people or denying coverage to people with health conditions. -ERICA WERNER Associated Press Lot: #272 BO DIDDLEY SCREEN ACTORS GUILD HEALTH INSURANCE CARD Screen Actors Guild Producers Health and Welfare Plan - Surgical and Major Medical Benefits card. Signed, Ellas McDaniel and Bo Diddley, with Diddley's social security number. 2 1/8 by 3 5/8 inches Minimum Next Bid: 300.00USD
Description: John Lennon signed copy of Yoko Ono?s book ?Grapefruit.? This soft-cover edition was printed in 1971and published by Sphere. The book is signed by Lennon on the first page in blue pen. Lennon wrote the introduction to the book which read simply, "Hi! My name is John Lennon I'd like you to meet Yoko Ono." 5 1/4 by 5 1/8 inches Minimum Next Bid: 525.00 USD
Lot: #116 MADONNA SIGNED CHECK A check dated July 10, 1988 from the Entertainment Industries Division of the Mercantile National Bank in Los Angeles, written in the amount of $165.00 and signed in black marker, "Madonna Ciccone". The check is written out to Lydia Han for "man, ped, wax". By 1988 Madonna was already a huge superstar and had achieved a remarkable 17 consecutive Top Ten hits. 2 3/4 by 6 inches Minimum Next Bid: 250.00 USD

Lot: #103 RAMONES SIGNED PAINTING Acrylic on canvas painting in red white and blue reading "Gabba Gabba Hey" signed in black Sharpie, "To Mitch The Best Marky Ramone, Johnny Ramone, To My Meetch 'Ropdie Supreme' Joey Ramone 1996, CJ Ramone 1 2 3 4?!" The band's lineup from 1989 through 1996. 38 by 52 1/2 inches 400.00 - 600.00 USD

Lot: #91 SLASH ORIGINAL ARTWORK A single sheet with signed and dated drawing in blue sharpie marker by guitarist, Slash. The drawing depicts a skull and crossbones wearing Slash's signature top hat over a banner reading "R & Fuckin R". The drawing is signed in lower right "Slash 95'". 11 1/2 by 8 1/4 inches 100.00 - 150.00 USD