Category Archives: Art

Thomas Kinkade: Painter of Crap

Man, I’ve wanted to use that headline for years.

The couple who ran that ill-fated Thomas Kinkade gallery on the Downtown Mall have won $860,000 in their lawsuit against Kinkade, with the court having agreed that they, along with many other gallery owners, were defrauded, Kate Andrews reports in today’s Progress. That sum may well rise to $3.5M. There are 21 other dealers that have filed similar suits across the nation, all charging that Kinkade forced dealers to buy prints (“paintings”) at vastly inflated rates, undercut them at area discount stores, and then refused to let the dealers lower their prices.

These things run nearly a grand apiece, but Tuesday Morning might sell them for under a hundred bucks, leaving nobody to buy the stuff at the downtown gallery. The couple have now realized that the “I’m just a humble Christian businessman” schtick of Kinkade’s is B.S. Here’s hoping they’ve realized that his work is garbage, too.

03/05 Update: The L.A. Times has a big-big story about this. Turns out Kinkade is a drunk, fondles women, and engages in public urination as “ritual territory marking,” as he calls it.

Woman Paints Greenspan Portraits

Twenty-four year-old Erin Crowe has gained national fame in the past couple of days as word has spread about her oil paintings of Alan Greenspan. Cable news networks and major newspapers have been profiling the UVa grad and the surprising popularity of the works, which she created for a local art show a couple of years ago. She told the Post “He has a great face for portraiture. Each painting I did, I wanted to do more…. It’s fascinating, his hands, the wrinkles in his face, his forehead, his combover.” CNN’s got the skinny, or you could just turn on your TV.

Council May Put Art in Place Back in Budget

City Manager Gary O’Connell’s budget recommended ending the Percent for Art fund, but that’s not keeping Council from continuing to fund the Art in Place program. Several members of Council want to provide the $5,000 annual allocation by way of their $85,000 reserve fund, rather than going through the traditional funding process, John Yellig reports in the Progress. There are no shortage of folks in this town who are seriously opposed to Art in Place getting either public funding or public space, though there are also many people (myself included) who believe that public art is important in a “world class” city. (We’ve had debates about Art in Place before.)

Rob Schilling is, of course, opposed to this allocation, but he’s refusing to say whether or not he supports Art in Place. In fact, he’s generally opposed to the use of the reserve fund, telling the Progress: “It became very clear to me that this is something the city manager sets aside so the council can pay off their friends. It was like handing out candy on Halloween.”

The Commuter Home in Nantucket

Remember the offbeat sculpture that used to stand in Fashion Square Mall — the bronze, life-sized sculpture of the commuting, suit-wearing businessman, traveling via pogo stick? The smile-inducing piece always seemed more suited for the Downtown Mall than the sterile environs of Fashion Square, and when Simon Properties started on the remodeling of the mall a few years ago, they apparently agreed, and got rid of it. Friday afternoon, Bud Hambleton’s “The Commuter” will be unveiled at its new, old home — the Nantucket waterfront, where it stood in front of a gallery in the late 70s. Nantucket’s Inquirer and Mirror has the story.

“Place in Art” Appears on Rt. 250

fdr writes: Driving along on Rt. 250 this morning, near the fire station between Meadowbrook and Hydraulic, I saw the sun glinting off a scupture. It wasn’t the Art in Place lions, a quarter mile further down the road — it was a piece, apparently built as commentary on the “Art in Place” art, made from (as best I could tell at 50 mph) shiny pieces of trash. Anyone else see it? Bets on how long it will remain up, if it hasn’t already been removed?