The Italian Art Supply Shop That Keeps Renaissance Painting Techniques Alive

Dante called it “the cursed and unlucky ditch.” Half a millennium later, Tuscany’s Arno river would more than live up to that title. Just before dawn on November 4, 1966, the rain-swollen river abruptly broke its banks; its waters surged through Florence at speeds of 45 miles per hour and flooded the city with 18 billion gallons of mud and grime. Yet for all the destruction the natural disaster unleashed, it would also provide a major turning point for one of the city’s most beloved art-supply shops.

– Artsy

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This college student gave painting a try. Nine months later, he has his own exhibit

“Last minute, I decided to give this art thing a good shot.”

“This art thing,” for University of Miami student Matthew Hanzman, turned out to be an exhibit of over 70 pieces at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden. He created all the pieces in about nine months.

Hanzman is the inaugural painter in the Emerging Artists Showcase. Not bad for a 21-year-old rising senior studying political science.

Continue @ Miami Herald

Courtney Finch tells epic stories with her fantasy watercolour illustrations

“I see myself as a narrative illustrator,” says Courtney Finch, another great discovery during our recent visit to this year’s D&AD New Blood. “I work largely in watercolours and coloured pencil and have recently started gold leafing my illustrations.”

Based in Manchester, the recent University of Central Lancashire graduate and illustrator enjoys spending time researching and scrawling thumbnails down of ideas and inspirations she sees, almost like an idea diary. “I prefer to know about my subject before I start creating paintings, especially on cultural concepts which deserve respect and thoughtfulness. I always aim to have visually interesting paintings, that when the viewer reads the backstory they can take a second look and see a whole new perspective within the illustration.”

Continue @ Creative Boom (blog)

Photograph or Painting? These Landscapes Are Both

AS A STUDENT at the School of Fine Arts in Caen, France, Guillaume Hebert studied painting. He later transitioned into photography, but rather than leave his first love behind he developed a novel way to combine it with his new passion.

In his 2017 series Rocks of Ludao, Hebert seamlessly combined photographs of the Taiwanese shoreline with classical landscape paintings he found on Google Images, creating hybrid photograph-paintings convincing enough to fool the casual viewer. The experiment proved so successful that Hebert reprised it in another series, Updated Landscape, in which he juxtaposed photographs of banal urban scenery with the lush Baroque and Romantic landscapes of artists like Jean-Honoré Fragonard, Eugène Delacroix, and William Turner.

Continue @ WIRED

How the quest for the ‘perfect blue’ changed art forever

Used for storing and burning incense, this bronze altar set is inscribed with a stylized form of Arabic developed by Chinese Muslims.

The color blue has had a remarkable impact on the history of world trade. Rarely occurring in the natural world, blue pigments were, for centuries, highly sought-after by craftsmen and merchants.

This quest for the perfect blue has also transformed artistic traditions, from modern painting and jewelry to Turkish tilework, Persian glassware and Ming dynasty pottery.

Read @ CNN

Fine art finger painter Iris Scott talks about being “gifted”

iris scott urban paintings

When Brooklyn-based artist Iris Scott begins a new piece, she doesn’t get out paintbrushes. Instead, she simply puts on gloves when she starts on an oil painting. Scott is a fine art finger painter.

This 10-minute long mini documentary on her from a couple of years ago shares how she got started and what she thinks of her “gift.” She’s quick to point out that it’s not a natural talent, that it’s the result of a lot of time and practice:

Read @ Boing Boing

New hope for lost Frida Kahlo painting

Bernard Silberstein photographed the artist with La Mesa Herida in 1941, a year after she finished the work

The hunt for Frida Kahlo’s long-lost painting La Mesa Herida (the wounded table, 1940) has been revived in Mexico, where a researcher says he expects to track it down within five years. The work, a holy grail for Kahlo scholars, went missing after the artist donated it to the former Soviet Union. Last seen in an exhibition in Warsaw in 1955, it disappeared on its way to Moscow.

Read @ Art Newspaper