Friday, August 31, 2007

Pre-Raphaelites and Illustration

"The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood had a very important impact on book illustration from the middle of the 19th Century. This was not because of the number of illustrations that they produced, which was not large, but because they raised the craft of illustration to high art, and gave an inspiration to generations of future illustrators, some of whom continued to draw in the Pre-Raphaelite style long after painting had moved in other directions."(quote)
Look at these gorgeous illustrations from the late 1800's. How inspiring! Pre-Raphaelite paintings are incredibly beautiful. These engravings are simply enchanting:

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Ray Caesar Show to open next week in the U.K.

"Ages Study"copyright 2005 Ray Caesar
One of my favorite "painters",
Ray Caesar is having a big show of 50 images that opens next week at the Richard Goodall Gallery .
Here's a
preview. I hope my friends in the U.K. will make it to this one! Ray has a book coming out, too. More info on the gallery website. (This is Leonard Cohen's Gallery, too, and you know I LOVE him.)

The Art of Amy Crehore

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Revolving Monkeys by Amy Crehore

Mark Frauenfelder's Blue-eyed Devil Girl

"Hot Stuff" copyright 2007 Mark Frauenfelder
I could not resist posting this painting called "Hot Stuff" by Mark Frauenfelder of Boingboing. I love the freckles and the eyes on this alluring blue creature. Mark is in a devil-themed group show at CoproNason Gallery in September.

One week left- Literartistry Lolitas

"Story of Lolita, Part One" copyright 2007 Amy Crehore
"Story of Lolita, Part Two" copyright 2007 Amy Crehore
Only one week left to go and see my Lolita paintings in person if you live near Culver City, CA (inspired by the book by Vladimir Nabokov). The Literartistry Show will be up until September 5, 2007. Contact Corey Helford Gallery for times and location. This is an excellent show with many fine artists. Check out the L.A. Weekly Slideshow of the exhibit. Wallpaper also has a slide show on it's website. My next showing in L.A. will be in November 2007.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Vintage Beer Trays

I have this colorful Mexican Beer Tray (the one in the middle photo) hanging on my kitchen wall. I love that gal. It's a repro. The other two are images of antique trays that I found surfing the auction sites.

"Roaming Tomcat Rag" Print

"Roaming Tomcat Rag" painting copyright 2006 by Amy Crehore
I expect to issue some new prints in the near future - all very limited edition, signed giclees. The image above, "Roaming Tomcat Rag", will hopefully be available in September, so watch for that. This was the very the first in my series of "Blues Gals" paintings and it was exhibited in the 2nd Blab Show and featured on boingboing. I call it "my girl with the red guitar". The yellow-green grass is sort of a trademark for me now. I will also be in a show in November that has nature as a theme, so I'm excited about that. See more of my art here:
P.S. Boingboing blog has a new design and here is Mark's new painting.
They opened their comments section, so I decided to try it as well.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Hay in Art

Yes, it's a whole website devoted to HAY!!! Piles of hay! Paintings, photos, books about hay, poetry for hay-lovers, a database for hard-core hay scholars. Your horse will love it and so will you. There are actually many, many masterworks depicting haystacks. Hay is amazing. Hay is beautiful. Hay is Art.

The Beguiling

Original Art for sale by Kim Deitch - frontpiece from "Boulevard of Broken Dreams"
Poster by Seth ...only $5!
Take a tour through The Beguiling 's online Art Store. It's a Toronto comic shop that offers original comic artwork by some GREAT artists. Here are two of my favorites. The prints and poster section is an added bonus. Wish I could go there and check out the real life store. They not only have vintage comics that date back to the 1930's, but they have unusual art books as well.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

De Chirico's Slide into Mediocrity

De Chirico After 1918
De Chirico before 1918
Who said that artists only get better with age? Giorgio De Chirico (1888-1978) is an example of someone who created his most poetic, alluring and convincing art before the age of 30. In the 60 years after 1918, he struggled with a classical switch in style and subject matter that never quite made it. (He even ended up "forging" some of his own early metaphysical works in the 1940'-60's when he needed extra money.) He wanted to paint like Titian, but it was his early, more modern style that caught on. It was a unique language that easily lent itself to mystery, metaphor and moody depictions of surreal objects/buildings in stark landscapes. The classical style that he later adopted, with it's mythical bent, did not. He lost his way for the rest of his life, but stubbornly held onto the notion that his work was only getting better. I can understand his desire to really learn how to paint more academically...using more than just the flat, colorful symbols with heavy black outlines that became his trademark early on. However, he had to start over and he never quite got to where he wanted to go. The later works simply don't work. They never became "classic". But, his early works are classic and the drawing is much stronger and so is his imagination. Life is full of irony.

John Kelly was Special

"Maleana" by John Kelly
"Banana Girl" by John Kelly Menu by John Kelly
John Melville Kelly (1878-1962), a shy Irishman, arrived in Hawaii in 1923 from San Francisco.
From the 30's through the 50's he painted and made prints of the Hawaiian people. His etchings and aquatints remind me of Mary Cassatt's famous series of prints. Hers were inspired by Japanese prints and both of these artists have the same sense of elegance, fine lines and reverence toward women in subject matter.
(more here )

Friday, August 24, 2007


I found this striking image called "Europe Supported by Africa and America" on
the BibliOdyssey Blog. It's a beautiful place to wander...full of hand-colored engravings and illustrated pages from old books- "Books~~Illustrations~~Science~~History~~Visual Materia Obscura~~Eclectic Bookart"

Very Unusual Tarot Card Deck 1945

"The University of Minnesota Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies has scanned and published a full set of tarot cards created in 1945 by an inmate at the Dachau subcamp known as Allach. They are the size of normal playing cards.
Boris Kobe (1905 - 1981) – Slovenian architect and painter was a political prisoner at the concentration camp of Allach, a sub-camp of Dachau. (...) As a whole, this work of art represents a visual summary of life in a concentration camp, the main vehicle of which consists of Kobe's tragic and humiliating sequences spiced with acrid humor. At the same time, this tiny exhibit is a miniature chronicle of the twilight of humanity brought about by Nazism, which regarded a human being, and therefore the artist himself, as a mere number."
Link. (Thanks, Yaffa)
Thanks Xeni Jardin, boingboing


"Ophelia" by Millais
"Ophelia" Copyright 2004 Amy Crehore ,"Little Pierrot Series"
One of my earlier paintings in my "Little Pierrot" Series is called "Ophelia" and it takes it's cue from Sir John Everett Millais' famous and unforgettable painting of "Ophelia", 1851. Read about the Ophelia character in Hamlet. Surely Hamlet drove her mad with his skitso behavior, although the reason for her death is debated.

Vintage Circus Posters 1930's

Click to Enlarge Images
I always loved old circus posters with lots of half-naked figures tumbling and contorting themselves. Check out the "Famous Nelson Family" on the top poster - they were "Miracles of Action and Infallible Calculations". You can buy or look at many different kinds of wonderful authentic antique posters here:
P.S. If you like this blog, click on "Vote For Me"

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Vintage Side Show Banners

Here are some choice Vintage Sideshow Banners including a Tattooed Girl with 1037 designs!
Eeka is quite the animal, reminds me of some erotic pop art I've seen.
Everyone loves sideshow banners.
Follow link for artists' names and more work:
Carl Hammer Gallery
The Art of Amy Crehore

Roman Funerary Portraits

Roman Era Funerary Portaits. A whole page full of them. They are fascinating and beautiful. I love the eyes on these.
Thanks to Adam at Drawn! for finding this link:

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema

"In the Tepidarium", 1881
"A Favorite Custom" 1909
Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1836-1912) was a Dutch/English Painter of Victorian Neo-classicism. CLICK TO ENLARGE IMAGES. A Tepidarium is a warm bath in a Roman bath complex, by the way. More images and info:

Demons in Color

Did you know that "demons" are the creatures that the devil sends to earth to do his dirty work? My earlier post on demons was so popular that I thought I'd look around for more and I found this amazing website:

Amazing Ukulele Exhibit in California

Photos courtesy of Tatiana Sizonenko, Museum of Music Making
I want to tell you about this fabulous new exhibit that just opened at the Museum of Music Making in Carlsbad, CA (located at 5790 Armada Drive). It's called
Rick Turner sent me these pictures via Tatiana Sizonenko, curator of the museum. On the far left, top of the bottom picture is a new Rick Turner Ukulele painted by Mary Fleener. Rick Turner, who helped set up the show, invited me to participate, but I was a bit too slow with my "Tickler" . This historic and amazing exhibit will be up until the end of January!
Don't miss it.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Teenar Has Something to Tell You

Photo by Lou Reimuller, creator of Teenar, Girl Guitar 1986
Teenar knows she's popular because zillions of guys have been "hitting" on her. So, she wants to tell you that she has a new outfit and she will model it soon. She is also supposed to be featured in Japan's Men's Fashion Magazine,
in the September issue in an article about her creator, Lou.
The Art of Amy Crehore

"The Charmer" Lure

"The Charmer" 1910 by The Charmer Minnow Company
"The Charmer" 2005 by Amy Crehore
I did a painting in 2005 called "The Charmer". Coincidentally, there is an antique fishing lure called "The Charmer" as well. I had not even heard of this lure when I named my painting.
I will soon be participating in a very unusual and exciting art show of hand-painted fishing lures. I will tell you more about this show in the near future!
The antique lure in the photo was "made by The Charmer Minnow Co., Springfield Missouri. Circa 1910. Commonly referred to as the Barber Pole Bait, the Charmer minnow is a classic old and antique fishing lure. The lure was created by F. W. Breder and J. H. Loyd. The Charmer Minnow has been found in 3 sizes, with or without eyes, and a assortment of colors."- read about lures and see a lot of fascinating antique fish lures here:

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Mini-Monkeys by Amy Crehore

Mini-monkey paintings 1-4 by Amy Crehore copyright 2006
I like how Ozoux blog pasted all four of my mini-monkey paintings together in his art review. of last year's Blab Show (this was exactly how I pictured them layed out on a possible page): "My favorite paintings in the exhibition were the work of Amy Crehore, with her Douanier Rousseau-inspired island babes and frisky monkey" -
Check out Ozoux
And see all of my art here:
P.S. Don't look for me in the 2007 Blab show. I have moved on to other projects now.
Be sure to check out the "Literartistry" Show for my latest work in Culver City, CA.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Keane Eyes Gallery

Here is something that I never knew: Margaret Keane, creator of the Famous Big-Eyed paintings (that are so influential to certain current lowbrow painters) had to go to court to prove that she painted them and not her ex-husband.
"You see, for many years she was married to a man who claimed credit for what she painted. To prove she was in fact the artist and not her former husband, she painted in court before a Federal Judge and jury, an original oil on canvas painting. When her ex-husband was asked to paint by the judge, his reply was: "I can't today, because I have a sore shoulder." Needless to say Margaret won the case and she continues to paint those Big Eyes we have come to love so dearly. " I remember friends in San Francisco picking these paintings up at flea markets for a song twenty years ago. It looks like vintage originals are going for quite a bit now. I like the ones with cats and a few of the others. Read and see more here about Margaret Keane, painter of big eyes. The website says she accepts commissions: