Pieter Bruegel Paints Farts

painter of farts

Is the Flemish Renaissance artist Pieter Bruegel the Elder the only one to paint farts? I would have thought yes, but no, there’s more than a few childish artists out there that have painted farts. Bruegel’s art may not have been as strange as the bizarre worlds created by Hieronymus Bosch but some of his paintings do come close. They don’t get much stranger than his 1562 work The Fall of the Rebel Angels which depicts a scene from that equally nutty piece of literature, the Book of Revelation. Among the farting beasts and fallen angels are all kinds of weird and horrible creatures.Continue Reading

I am Not an Anarchist – Rant

banksy throwing flowers

Since starting up Art News Blog again I have been called an anarchist, irreverent, a misogynist, an ass, various obscenities, and probably a few other names that I just cant recall right now. I used to keep a folder of hate email that I received from all kinds of colorful people but I ended up deleting it as I thought the energy of keeping the emails was attracting more of it.. or it was encouraging me to write more offensive things so I could continue to add to my collection lol. But to be honest, I don’t know where all the hostility comes from! I could be kidding myself, but I thought I was a reasonably nice guy.. admittedly with a low tolerance for bullshit, but generally kind and considerate. Continue Reading

Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel Ceiling Tour Online

sistine chapel by michelangelo

Since I don’t use my passport much anymore, I’m happy to see so much great art being put online. The great museums and art collections of the world should have been online 10 years ago, but it’s better late than never. The Vatican has made themselves useful and decided to share Michelangelo’s great masterpiece with the world online. Their Sistine Chapel ceiling virtual tour makes you feel a little drunk when you first start moving the mouse around but you’ll quickly get used to it. I have never seen the Sistine Chapel in real life but looking at it online makes me think it would be a little underwhelming as the ceiling is so high. Is that the case? Or is it like some of the great mosques that I have seen in Turkey where the ceilings are high but the experience is still mind blowing? Continue Reading

Satanic Baphomet Monument for Oklahoma City

baphomet monument in oklahoma

As far as public monuments go, this is probably no more ridiculous than any other. If we can make ridiculous monuments to more mainstream religions, to political figures, or to glorify senseless wars, than why not to a stupid goat? The New York City-based religious organization the Satanic Temple have been working on a sculpture of Baphomet with plans to have it erected at the Oklahoma state Capitol. In 2012 a monument with the ten commandments was erected so the satan-loving group figured it would be a good idea to have the goat man there too.Continue Reading

The Blake Prize Finalists for 2013

toothed vagina

The finalists for the 62nd Blake Prize in Australia have been announced. It’s supposed to be a prize that explores religious and spiritual ideas in art but it’s probably more about who can be the most shocking and vulgar. Being the shit stirrers that a lot of artists are, it’s a great opportunity to share vaginas with teeth, boys masturbating each other and a whole bunch of other wanking good fun with a wider audience. Continue Reading

Beautiful Death – The Catacomb Saints

skeletons with jewels

How much cooler are these dead saints covered in bling than Damien Hirst’s diamond skull? The 400 year old skeletons were dressed up and decorated by churches and distributed to other churches and monasteries throughout Germany, Austria and Switzerland. They’re each dressed as a particular saint but the skeletons didn’t necessarily belong to anyone of any great religious importance. The jewels, costumes, armor and other bling were meant to represent the heavenly treasures that awaited the faithful in death. I would much prefer my gold in this life ;-) Continue Reading

Crucified Kids of Erik Ravelo

los intocables by eric ravelo

A friend just showed me the “Untouchables” or “Los Intocables” series of images by the Cuban born Fabrica photographer Erik Ravelo. They’re very powerful images and push a lot of hot buttons. They’re a good summary of what a pathetic species we are. Of course there’s so many more reasons why we suck, but this is a good start..Continue Reading

Richard Renaldi’s Touching Strangers

richard renaldi touching strangers

I really like the idea behind these photographs by Richard Renaldi. He places complete strangers together, usually from very different ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds. His first intentions may have been to show a tenderness and unity between the differences, but we’re a very divided animal.Continue Reading

El Greco Painting Record

el greco auction record

A bidding war between a Russian collector and an Indian collector saw the 3 to 5 million pound estimate of El Greco’s “Saint Dominic in Prayer” almost double to reach an auction record for the artist of £9,154,500 or about $14,000,000 USD.

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Writers Need Religion Too

After my Religion and Art rant earlier in the week I have been coming across articles on the topic everywhere I look.

One report in the Time magazine on the controversial writer Salman Rushdie talks about the necessity of religion for writers, even atheist writers. Rushdie said “When I’m writing books, something weird happens; and the result is the books contain a large amount of what you could call supernaturalism. As a writer I find I need that to explain the world I’m writing about. As a person I don’t need it and as person I do. I would agree, that tension is irreconcilable. But it’s just there. It’s just so.”Continue Reading