This N' That: Keep In The Know With Photography News

This N' That: Keep In The Know With Photography News

Petrina Ryan-Kleid, Parsing Bill (2012). Image via the New York Academy of Art.

Petrina Ryan-Kleid, Parsing Bill (2012). Image via the New York Academy of Art.

By Kala Herh

Wait, You Don't Have a Portrait of Bill Clinton in a Blue Dress? 

A bizarre painting of Bill Clinton has surfaced in Jeffrey Epstein's Home. 

Amid the chaotic media attention swirling around Jeffrey Epstein, there comes this. A picture of the former President, clad in a blue dress and red heels. Strangely enough, the painting isn't even the weirdest item in the Epstein home that includes a female mannequin hanging from the chandelier, loose prosthetic eyeballs, and naked chessboard pieces. 

The New York Post, picking up the story from the Daily Mail, quoted another anonymous source saying that the painting, "was hanging up there prominently—as soon as you walked in—in a room to the right. Everybody who saw it laughed and smirked."

The history of the painting was later originated to New York-based Australian artist Petrina Ryan-Kleid and produced independently of Epstein. The picture is among Ryan Kleid's student work that satirized political figures; in another work, a painting of George W. Bush called War Games shows the President playing with a paper airplane and two fallen Jenga towers (referencing the attacks of 9/11). After graduating from the New York Academy of Art, the painting was sold and Ryan-Kleid had no idea who the buyer was at the time. 

Photo by Vincent Thian.

Photo by Vincent Thian.

Ai Weiwei: Fears for Hong Kong 

The Chinese dissident-artist fears that Beijing will crackdown on pro-democracy protestors in Hong Kong. 

"I don't think any prediction is too big," the 61-year-old told AFP in an interview in his Berlin studio. In the interview, he warned that there might be a repeat of the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown in Beijing. Known as one of the best contemporary artists around the world, Ai is no stranger to the country's wrath as he has been displaced multiple times -- including once being detailed for 81 days -- for being an outspoken government critic.

The warning came after two months of protests that have gotten increasingly violent in Hong Kong. Recently, Beijing has gathered security forces nearby in a show of force. "At the beginning of this demonstration, two months ago, I already warned that the Chinese government eventually, if they cannot make this demonstration disappear, will use violence," he said. "There is no other way; they can't talk about the situation or negotiate. That's not a skill they have. All they have is the military and the police." 

Photo by Lee Hadwin.

Photo by Lee Hadwin.

Becoming an Artist (in his sleep) 

Lee Hadwin has been making complex works of art while sleepwalking, yet doesn't remember any of them. 

It all started when he was four years old. Being a frequent sleepwalker, he would get from bed and pull crayons from his school bag and scribble on his bedroom walls. After he'd created his masterpieces, he would go back to sleep. His art became more and more complex -- and good too. When he was 15, he made three pencil drawings of Marilyn Monroe that looks like drawings done by someone who had training -- or in the least awake at the time. 

Since then he has begun to prepare for occasions by sleeping with art materials nearby. He admits that he prefers what is produced by moments of spontaneity. What's incredibly interesting is that these works of art come the way dreams come: a mix of lived experience and imagination. 

"I had never wanted to be an artist," Hadwin says. "I was never into art, into school. My highest grade was a D." He says he's only started calling himself an artist in the past four years when he began selling his art (for anywhere between $1,500 to $10,000). 

Photo by National Gallery, London.

Photo by National Gallery, London.

What Lies Beneath da Vinci's The Virgin of the Rocks 

The National Gallery of London recently released images that show underdrawings of one of Leonardo's masterpieces. 

The new images show preliminary underdrawings beneath the surface of the work that depicts an entirely different composition. Since 2005, the museum has known that Leonardo has reworked the oil-on-panel painting having examined it using infrared reflectography. 

The released images show that there are two distinct changes made: one, does not show baby Jesus in profile; and the second, depicts the Virgin Mary kneeling as the angel looks over Jesus's shoulder. 

Leonardo: Experience a Masterpiece which opens in November, "will allow visitors to explore the fascinating layers of this iconic masterwork in an immersive way," Richard Slaney, the managing director of 59 Productions, the company hired to produce the exhibition, said in a statement. Slaney also described the show as the National Gallery's "first digital-led experience."

Photo by Pace Gallery

Photo by Pace Gallery

A Look into the Future of Tech-Based Art...

Pace launches an initiative to merge the industries of technology and art. 

Last Tuesday, the Pace Gallery launched PaceX -- a push to explore the boundaries of contemporary art and technology. Christy MacLear told ARTnews that the projects of PaceX would be, "Bold ones. Projects which match the issues like climate change or social justice that drive artists to new tools and canvases, such as cities or immersive spaces."

The founders also described its ability to connect an audience communally, hopefully in a way that would lead to the democratization of art. Technological initiatives are baked into more and more gallery's DNA. PaceX comes as the gallery plans to open its new flagship space in Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood, bringing artists from Jo Baer to Sam Gilliam.

Issue 22: Interview with Vanessa Kotovich

Issue 22: Interview with Vanessa Kotovich

This N' That: Keep In The Know With Photography News

This N' That: Keep In The Know With Photography News