The Oldest Known Illustration of Circumcision (2400 B.C.E.)

≡ Category: Art, History |10 Comments

What do we have here? Just the oldest known illustration of circumcision being performed. Actually, it’s a colorful re-creation of a bas-relief (see original here) found in an Egyptian tomb built for Ankhmabor in Sakkara, Egypt. It dates back to around 2400 B.C.E.
The origins of circumcision remain unclear.

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Ultra Violet — Artist and Friend of Salvador Dalí and Andy Warhol — Dies at 78

≡ Category: Art |1 Comment

“When I got off the boat from France years ago, the first person I met was Salvador Dalí, and I realized I was born surrealist,” said Isabelle Collin Dufresne, better known by her artistic nom-de-plume Ultra Violet. Dufresne died Saturday in New York City after years of battling cancer.

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Samuel Beckett Draws Doodles of Charlie Chaplin, James Joyce & Hats

≡ Category: Art, Literature |Leave a Comment

Samuel Beckett was a playwright, a novelist, a Nobel Prize winner and the chauffeur for a school-aged André the Giant. He was also, apparently, a compulsive doodler. The original manuscripts of his first and second novels, Murphy and Watt respectively, are covered in marginalia.

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Salvador Dalí & Walt Disney’s Destino: See the Collaborative Film, Original Storyboards & Ink Drawings

≡ Category: Animation, Art, Film |1 Comment

Unlikely collaborations in pop music abound: Run DMC and Aerosmith? It works! U2 and Luciano Pavarotti? Why not? Robert Plant and Alison Krauss? Sure! Anyone and Kermit the Frog? Yes. They don’t always work out, but the attempts, whether kismet or trainwreck, tend to reveal a great deal about the partners’ strengths and weaknesses.

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John Lennon Illustrates Two of His Books with Playful Drawings (1964-1965)

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Upon his tragic early death at 40, John Lennon left behind a body of work few popular artists could hope to equal. And that’s only the published stuff.

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Botticelli’s 92 Illustrations of Dante’s Divine Comedy

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Every true Renaissance man needed a wealthy patron, and many Italian artist-inventor-scholar-poets found theirs in Lorenzo de’Medici, scion of a Florentine dynasty and himself a scholar and poet. Lorenzo either sponsored directly or helped secure commissions for such 15th century art stars as Michelangelo Buonaroti and Leonardo da Vinci.

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Illustrations of The Lord of the Rings in Russian Iconography Style (1993)

≡ Category: Art, Books, Literature |Leave a Comment

Given the detail with which J.R.R. Tolkien describes his fantastical yet earthily grounded characters and landscapes, you’d think illustrators would have an easy time putting pictures to the words. You might even assume that any artist who tried his or her hand at the job would produce more or less the same visual interpretation.

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Free: Download 30,000 Images from The Museum of New Zealand (All in High Resolution)

≡ Category: Art, Museums |Leave a Comment

Last month, The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced something we all welcomed. They made more than 400,000 images of art in the Museum’s collection free to download. Before that, we also witnessed other major art museums launching their own open art initiatives: 87,000 images from the Getty in L.A.

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Patti Smith Presents Top Webby Award to Banksy; He Accepts with Self-Mocking Video

≡ Category: Art, Life, Music |Leave a Comment

Presenting at the 18th annual Webby Awards last week, Godmother of Punk Patti Smith managed to Adele Dazeem street art provocateur Banksy not once, but twice. Banksky? Ban-ski? It’s a measure of the lady’s august standing that emcee Patton Oswalt passed on the comic opportunities of this giant blunder.

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19th Century Caricatures of Charles Darwin, Mark Twain, H.M. Stanley & Other Famous Victorians (1873)

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Students and lovers of Victoriana, we have a treat for you. The 1873 book above, Cartoon Portraits and Biographical Sketches of Men of the Day, offers caricatures of forty-nine prominent men, and one woman, of the 19th century, some of them less-than-famous now and some still veritable giants of their respective fields.

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