Chuck Close is known as much for his detailed representation of the human face as he is for his subsequent deconstruction of it. Close uses head-on portraits as his templates, exploring portraiture and his subjects through a variety of drawing and painterly techniques, as well as through printmaking, tapestry and photography. John (1971–72) one of Close’s earliest paintings, is described as photo-realist. Indeed, Close refers to photographs to create his artworks, employing their inconsistencies perspective as much as their verisimilitude.
Here, the sharp detail of the rim of the subject’s glasses contrasts with the blurred soft focus of his shoulders and the back of his hair, as it likely did in the original photograph. But instead of using mechanical means to transfer his images onto canvas, Close works entirely from sight to achieve the intensely animate detail, sectioning off the reference photographs into grids and transferring each piece by hand onto is monumental canvases,
Hard Sweetness (1971) is one of Joan Snyder’s Stroke paintings, a series in which abstract imagery and mark-making register personal and political struggles and decisions. Snyder began making art in the late 1960s, a time when men dominated the art world. Her sensibility and style were inspired by feminism, music, Expressionism, and her own life experience, as well as dislike of the distilled macho aesthetics of Minimalism.
Hard Sweetness uses strokes of paint in soft stains, loose washes, and thicker scumbling ( applying a very thin coat of opaque paint to give a softer or duller effect) to create rhythmic, almost musical passages of color across the canvas. As the title of this work suggests, Snyder blurs the distinction between the senses of sight, taste and perhaps even sound and smell. Like her contemporary Eva Hesse, she balances a feminine palette with a muscular formal complexity.
Elvis Presley, who had a passion for both cars and guns, shot this Pantera with his personal firearm during a temperamental outburst, losing patience when the car would not start. The two bullet holes on the steering wheel rim and one in the floor pan were never repaired and today serve as reminders of his occasional fits of rage.
Elvis bought this Pantera on the used car market for $2,400 in 1974 for his then-girlfriend, actress Linda Thompson. Although its mid-engine configuration qualified it for exotic car status, the De Tomaso Pantera cost far less that a comparable Ferrari or Lamborghini because of its relatively inexpensive, but no less potent, Ford engine.
Photographed at the Amazing Automobiles Exhibit at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.
Original, Banned Cover With Alice’s Thumb Emulating a Penis
Photographer and renowned antique dealer, Roger Prigent, who snapped the infamous cover of 1971’s Love it to Death, the breakthrough third album by the band Alice Cooper, has passed away on December 15th, 2012, at the age of 89.
Primarily known for his fashion photography, Prigent became a prominent Manhattan antiques dealer when his eyesight began to fail three decades ago. Prigent died in New York City on Saturday, December 15th, 2012 after suffering a recent stroke that left him in a coma. Read more about Roger Prigent’s life and career at This Link.
On This Date, November 1st in in 1971: The Band called Alice Cooper released their fourth album, Killer, which went on to reach number 21 on the Billboard 200 album chart and sold one million copies in the US, initially. By now, the album has gone Platinum. Killer was the first Alice Cooper band album to not have a photo of the group on its cover. The snake featured on the cover of Killer is Kachina, a boa constrictor owned by drummer Neal Smith.
On This Date in 1971: Jim Morrison, legendary singer and lyricist for The Doors was found dead in the bathtub of his apartment in Paris, apparently of heart failure. He was 27 years old. Even though Morrison has been dead for over 40 years, his name is still the number one most-searched phrase on my website stats page. Dead Sexy!
On This Date, July 3rd, in 1971: Jim Morrison, legendary singer and lyricist for The Doors – and enduring sex symbol – was found dead in the bathtub of his apartment in Paris, apparently of heart failure. He was 27 years old. Also on this date in 1969,Brian Jones, former guitarist for and founding member of The Rolling Stones was found dead in his swimming pool in Hartfield, England, at the age of 27 years. For decades Jones’ death was ruled to be an accidental drowning, but the 2005 biopic, Stoned (which features great performances and excessive nudity – two thumbs up) shows an alternate version of his demise, based on the deathbed confession of his (alleged) killer. I don’t want to spoil it for you, so be sure to add Stoned to your Netflix Queue or pick it up on Amazon.com for mere pennies.