And our remakes
As most of you will know, the British singer, David Bowie died at the beginning of 2016. His great musical talent will be remembered all around the globe, but the British singer was also keen on art. As some of you will know, David Bowies art collection was going up for auction at the incredibley famous, Sotheby’s auction house in England. The musician was an avid art collector and used to go to auctions, before he started buying more discreetly.
He also served on the editorial board of the magazine Modern Painters during the 1990s.
Bowies collection included some very strange, some interesting, and other downright ridiculous artwork, some, I believe, should not even be called art at all….
The most notable pieces are from the richest living artist, Damien Hirst, who won the acclaimed Turner award in 1995. The pieces Bowie publicly admired were Hirsts Sphincter paintings(?!?). The most notably of the two was called:
‘Beautiful, shattering,slashing,violet,pinky sphincter painting’
In an interview with the New York Times, Bowie said:
“He’s different. I think his work is extremely emotional, subjective, very tied up with his own personal fears-his fear of death is very strong-and I find his pieces moving and not at all flippant”
Hirst was also responsibly for his joint cooperation with Bowie on the second, ‘swirl’ painting, which was called:
‘Beautiful, Hallo, Spaceboy painting’
Bowie said to the New York Times that “I felt like a three year old again” with that in mind when one looks at these paintings it is apparent that, indeed, a three year old could probably do them!
Another one of Bowies strange and fascinating pieces of artwork going for auction at Sotheby’s was “Witness” by Peter Lanyon. Apparently, Lanyon, a Cornish artist found a new hobby and took to the sky’s over Cornwall in a glider. This new activity let him see the Cornish landscape from a completely different angle, and inspired him to create three inventive pieces.
The artwork that Bowie subsequently owned by Lanyon, ” Witness” was loaned to the Tate, in St Ives.
Some other strange pieces included “Air Power” by an artist called Basquiat, ( which actually turned out to be the highest-selling item in the auction. ) The piece is a graffiti-inspired canvas which actually achieved 7 .9 million pounds at Sotheby’s auction house well over the anticipated three million!
Another interesting piece was the felt tip drawing by World War Two veteran, Johann Fischer. Fischer, was committed to the Klosterneuburg psychiatric hospital near Vienna, Austria, in 1961. After 21 years at the hospital, Fischer began drawing these…. Um……creative and out of the ordinary drawings.
The reason Bowie found about this man were because he went and watched Fischer draw(?!?). It’s said, Bowie was fascinated by this ‘ art outsiders’-“raw creativity and brilliance.”
Also in David Bowies collection was Kenneth Armitage’s sculpture “Figure lying on its side”, Version 3. It was exhibited at the 1952 Venice Biennale, and Bowie bought it some years later. The strange, bronze model is one example of Bowies favored post war British sculptures.
David Bombergs piece, “Moorish Rhonda, Andalucia” was painted in 1935, and is a particularly expressive and dynamic example of art, for that time. Bowie had a strong eye for Bombergs artwork, and he found this an exceptionality wonderful and vibrant piece of post war art.
Damien Hurst’s ‘Beautiful, shattering,slashing,violet,pinky sphincter painting’ -estimated to go for £350,000
David Bomberg ‘Moorish Rhonda’ estimated to go for £150,000-£250,000
Peter Layton ‘Witness’ estimated to go for £250,000-£350,000
Johane Fischer estimated to go for 200,000-£300,000
Jean-Michel Basquiat ‘Air power’estimated to go for £2.5-£3.5 million
Achieved price-£7.09 million
So the real reason for this blog entry is that Mum had decided that I wasn’t being creative enough and should produce more artwork, learn how to use different mediums. Then she found this article on Bowies art collection in the Telegraph, and the rest- as they say- is history.
Because a lot of his collection seemed so naive and simple we thought it would be easy enough to reproduce some of the paintings and sculptures. So we did! With Bowies ” Space Oddity” at full blast I discovered my inner “Hirst”, my hidden “Boomberg”. If nothing else, it was good fun, and if those realized prices up there are indicative of what this sort of artwork is selling for, then I’m on the right track to becoming a millionaire before I’m fourteen! Brilliant!!!