LAH honors longtime resident May Davenport’s rich legacy

May Davenport knew something was amiss when her oil paintings – some as large as 4-feet-by-6-feet – began disappearing from her home’s walls. But the 93-year-old Los Altos Hills resident didn’t fully understand the significance of their absence until a dozen smiling faces greeted her within town hall’s lobby May 28.

“Hi, May,” they said softly, a small gallery of Davenport’s artwork behind them. “Hey, May.”

Surveying the room, Davenport’s eyes betrayed a hint of nervousness, but her smile shone big and bright.

With cake, a Hawaiian lei of purple orchids and a proclamation signed by Los Altos Hills Mayor Courtenay C. Corrigan, Davenport’s friends and family members honored her personal accomplishments and contributions to the town, her home since 1969.

“May is 93 years young and continues to promote literacy,” Corrigan said, reading the proclamation aloud.

“They had to put that in?” Davenport said, laughing.

Davenport was born in Hilo, Hawaii, the fifth of nine children. She was just 19 and attending a Honolulu business school when the bombs began falling on Pearl Harbor.

“At that time, not too many high buildings and everything,” Davenport said. “You look up and see little toy planes up there. And the radio went off and said, ‘Get off the street!’ Overnight, we had to darken all the windows.”

Scores of civilians evacuated Hawaii for the mainland following the attack, but Davenport remained in Honolulu and supported the war effort by serving as a typist preparing checks for the government. The work was her first introduction to publishing and printing. She would go on to write and illustrate children’s books and launch a nonprofit publishing company to support literacy.

In 1945, when Davenport made her own exodus for the mainland, she did so to study piano at the Juilliard School of Music. When Juilliard became too intense, she developed into a talented oil painter, eventually graduating from George Washington University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in drawing and painting. She studied at Columbia University, the Arts Students League in New York and the Chelsea School of Art in London.

“Just that beginning seems to inspire me of what type of person my mom was,” said Byron Davenport, her youngest son. “She really was a brave person to go out there on her own to do that, and she (was) determined to be an artist.”

Adolf Hitler’s watercolour paintings auctioned in Germany

Some of the works, which date from 1904 to 1922, are signed “A. Hitler”, the catalogue of Nuremberg-based Weidler auctioneers showed on its website.

Fourteen watercolours and drawings are expected to go under the hammer from June 18 to 20, for between $1,128 and $50,700 each.

The most expensive is a painting of King Ludwig II’s Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria, now a tourist magnet.

In November, a watercolour of the city hall in Munich, painted by a young Hitler in 1914, sold for $190,694 at a sale organised by the same auction house.

The buyer wished to remain anonymous.

As a budding young artist, Hitler applied to the Vienna Academy of Art but was rejected.

He continued to paint, copying images from postcards that he sold to tourists.

Experts consider his work to be of mediocre quality.

Local artist Parr has painting featured in C.R. Museum exhibit

rian Parr of Vinton is one of 60 Iowa artists whose work was selected for a new exhibit at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art.

Brian’s oil painting on canvass called “Morning Glow” will be among dozens featured in the”Midwest Summer: Light & Warmth”display.

Brian’s painting was one of 60 pieces to be displayed out of over 250 entries. Brian and his family attended the Artist’s Reception on Friday, June 5. The Exhibition runs through Sept. 13.

Warrior paintings on kites captivate foreigners

Fifty years ago, Shingo Modegi surprised and delighted French people by flying a hexagonal kite in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

The founder of the Taimeiken restaurant in Tokyo’s Nihonbashi area, Modegi was so obsessed with kites that he opened a museum dedicated to them on the restaurant’s fifth floor in 1977.

Notes containing messages from Modegi are displayed at the museum’s entrance. According to one, he “felt awfully sad” when children showed no interest in a yakko-dako – a traditional Japanese kite – that he was carrying around town.

“I want children to know how fun it is to play with kites,” he said. Modegi died a year after the museum opened, but his passion for kites infuses the facility.

I felt overwhelmed by the many kites on display as I entered the museum. The walls and ceiling were covered with about 300 models that Modegi collected while traveling throughout Japan and abroad. It was exhilarating just to imagine these butterfly and dragon-shaped kites flying in the air.

Chinese-made kites were originally modeled after the shape of a swallow and are typically made of silk. According to 57-year-old museum guide Masami Fukuoka, silk kites were reportedly used in pre-Christian China to gauge the distance to an enemy’s castle.

One of the kites on the ceiling was a bat-like model measuring 60 centimeters high and one meter wide. It is based on the designs of US flight pioneer Samuel Franklin Cody, who gained fame in Britain for engineering a kite that could transport people around 1900.

Cody’s invention was dozens of times larger than the miniature on display at the museum. Amazingly, the real one had a basket hanging from the body to carry passengers.

Foreigners account for about 60 to 70 per cent of the museum’s visitors. One of the most popular attractions is a section exhibiting more than 10 Edo-dako kites by Teizo Hashimoto, who made superlative kites from the Taisho era (1912-1926) to the Showa era (1926-1989). He died in 1991.

“There’s something very Japanese in the patterns of his paintings,” said a 20-year-old Chinese student living in Komae, Tokyo. The powerful warrior painted on the kites is a reminder of the golden era of kite culture in the Edo period (1603-1867).

When I was a child, I wish I could know that there were so many different kinds of kites – I was tempted to run along a nearby riverbed with a kite fluttering in the wind.

Kite Museum

In addition to Modegi’s collection, the Kite Museum displays models donated from abroad. There is also a re-creation of Teizo Hashimoto’s studio, where visitors can experience the atmosphere of his heyday, and materials to make kites with are on sale. Masaaki Modegi, the 75-year-old eldest son of Shingo Modegi and chairman of the Japan Kite Association, is the current director of the Kite Museum.


International Artist Magazine Article

I am the last person in the world to see my own article in International Artist Magazine, so this hardly merits a blog post, except, YAY ME.



Now I don’t know what it is with IAM and Canada.  I think the magazines get sent on donkey back over the Rockies and then upriver with a team of coureurs du bois, and then floated across to Vancouver Island strapped to driftwood raft.  But MAYBE I’m just searching for explanations of why I get this magazine a month later than everyone else.

Emily and Paul’s mum has told me that they will be bringing in their copy of the magazine to school for show and tell.  *blush*

My Uncanny costar Teresa also had an article in the same magazine.  It was almost like a reunion except…oh, sorry Dave.

Philadelphia Painter Reveals Why An Art Career Kills All The Fun

Alex Kanevsky’s paintings don’t depict a moment in time, but the mysterious space before, after and during an event. The Russian-born painter attempts to capture the evasive nature of memory and the poetry of failure. His figurative works provide more questions than answers, from his portrayals of anonymous twins submerged in adjacent tubs or Claude Monet gardening in a psychedelic wash of paint. To find out more, we reached out to Kanevsky.

I don’t know how to describe my style; I don’t think I have a style. In fashion, people have style. They are making a product — pants, for example. These pants enter the field where there are many other people making pants. Fashion designers have a problem: how to stand out in the crowded field where everyone is making more or less the same thing. So they try to come up with a set of recognizable signature traits — style.

Being an artist, I am not really in the business of making a product. Like everyone else, I have my own unique view of the world. As an artist I try to arrive at the extreme clarity of that view and then try to find visual means, capable of expressing this clarity. So, if my work has any recognizable traits, they are mostly a byproduct of always trying to be very clear and concise about my personal view of the world. You know, if you always trying to climb the same mountain, you will eventually be known as a guy who is always climbing that mountain.

Bedridden Artist Explores Sexual Identity Through Warped Religious Idols

Brooklyn-based artist Don Pablo Pedro began creating his work while bedridden, recovering from his inguinal orchiectomy — i.e., the removal of his left testicle. We’re guessing the experience informed his output in some (not so subtle) ways, the mix of physical transformation, sexuality, alchemy, pain and identity all playing into his singular style.


Pedro originally used his hospital bedsheets as canvases, adorning them with watercolor and acrylics. After his hospital stay was completed, he turned to muslin, a cloth most commonly used for clothing mockups, with a similar texture to sheets. These days, Pedro is experimenting with linen as the base for his thangka-style works, like Buddhist scenes on (a rather surreal) spring break.

His colorful artworks depict both masculine and feminine figures — many of which highly resemble the artist himself — caught in an endless string of monstrous, orgiastic positions. Feet spring from eye sockets and burst into mouths, a penis burrows out of a forehead and a woman’s face emerges shyly from a hefty beard. The characters take part in a chaotic spree, positioned inside a nightmarish allegorical painting depicting more of a love decagon than a love triangle.


Pedro weaves relationship narratives into his artworks, addressing both particular successes and failures and the wider theatrics involved in dating. Through his contorted cast of people, Pedro visualizes the contrast between our ugly inner self-loathing and the sunny personas we project at all costs. The images pin one’s exterior masquerade against the demons lurking within, staging an individual battle that’s at once horrifying, titillating and altogether impossible to look away from.

See the obscene smorgasbord in full below and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

This Picasso Painting Is Expected To Fetch $140 Million At Auction

A radiant masterpiece by Pablo Picasso from the 1950s will lead an auction in May where it could top $140 million.

“Women of Algiers (Version O)” will be offered at Christie’s on May 11.

The vibrantly colorful 1955 painting features a scantily attired female in the foreground amid a jumble of smaller female nudes. The central figure is Picasso’s muse Jacqueline Roque, who became his second wife in 1961.

The oil on canvas was part of a 15-work series Picasso created between 1954 and 1955 that was inspired by “Women of Algiers in their Apartment” by Eugene Delacroix, an 1834 work Picasso greatly admired that hangs in the Louvre in Paris.

The hefty pre-sale estimate hovers near the current record for any artwork sold at auction, held by Francis Bacon’s triptych “Three Studies of Lucian Freud.” It sold at Christie’s for $142.4 million in 2013.

Christie’s did not reveal the seller, but said the collector acquired the painting in 1997 for $31.9 million when Christie’s sold the collection of noted New York collectors Victor and Sally Ganz, who at one time owned all 15 works in the series.

“One can arguably say that this is the single most important painting by Picasso to remain in private hands,” said Olivier Camu, Christie’s deputy chairman of impressionist and modern art.

The work has been in several major museum retrospectives in the 1950s and 1960s. More recently it appeared in exhibitions at the National Gallery in London, the Louvre in Paris and the Tate Britain.

“Women of Algiers (Version O)” will be offered with a group of two dozen other blue chip works created between 1902 and the end of the 20th century in a stand-alone sale called “Looking Forward to the Past.”

In May 2010, Christie’s set an auction record for any work by Picasso when it sold his 1932 painting “Nude, Green Leave and Bust” of his mistress Marie-Thérèse Walter for $106.5 million.

Picasso’s ‘Women Of Algiers’ Could Become The Most Expensive Painting Sold At Auction

New York City’s spring art auctions get underway Tuesday with exceptional pieces by Pablo Picasso, Alberto Giacometti, Vincent Van Gogh and others whose work continues to fuel a robust market for impressionist, modern and contemporary art.

Picasso’s “Women of Algiers (Version O),” estimated to bring over $140 million, is poised to become the most expensive artwork sold at auction, while Giacometti’s “Pointing Man” could set an auction record for a sculpture if bidding soars to an expected $130 million.

Experts say the once unimaginable prices are fueled by established and wealthy new buyers and the desire by collectors to own the best works.

“I don’t really see an end to it, unless interest rates drop sharply, which I don’t see happening in the near future,” said Manhattan dealer Richard Feigen. “Buyers will flock in from the Far East, the Gulf and Europe.”

In 2012, Edvard Munch’s “The Scream” fetched nearly $120 million only to be bested a year later when Francis Bacon’s triptych “Three Studies of Lucian Freud” sold for $142.4 million.

Now Picasso’s 1955 “Women of Algiers” could potentially eclipse that stratospheric price tag. The vibrantly colorful work featuring a scantily attired female amid smaller nudes is part of a 15-work series that Picasso created in 1954-1955. It has appeared in several major museum retrospectives of the artist.

Giacometti’s 1947 “Pointing Man,” a life-size bronze of an elongated figure with extended arms, has been in the same private collection for 45 years. Giacometti, who died in 1966, made six casts of the work; four are in museums, the others are in private hands and a foundation collection.

His “Walking Man I” holds the auction record for a sculpture. It sold in 2010 for $104.3 million.

The Picasso and Giacometti are among two dozen blue chip 20th-century works that Christie’s is offering in a stand-alone sale called “Looking Forward to the Past.”

“The pieces for sale this spring are truly outstanding. Many, like Giacometti’s ‘Pointing Man,’ are iconic 20th-century works of art and (are) of museum quality. The Tate and MoMA own editions of ‘Pointing Man,’ for example,” said Sarah Lichtman, professor of design history and curatorial studies at The New School.

She said impressionist and modern artworks continue to corner the market because “they are beautiful, accessible and a proven value … the works epitomize the conservative, moneyed establishment.”

Another piece that could test the market is “Benefits Supervisor Resting” by Lucian Freud, who died in 2011. Considered one of the British artist’s most celebrated works, it depicts the ample figure of a reclining woman, every fold, curve and blemish of her naked form revealed. Christie’s is offering it May 13 with a pre-sale estimate of $30 million to $50 million. Another painting from the series, “Benefits Supervisor Sleeping,” brought $33.6 million at Christie’s in 2008. At the time, it was the most expensive painting by a living artist sold at auction.

The spring auctions begin at Sotheby’s on Tuesday with a sale featuring a late van Gogh. “The Allee of Alyscampsis” is a lush autumnal scene that the artist created in 1888 while working side-by-side for two months with his friend Paul Gauguin in Arles, in the south of France. Sotheby’s predicts it will bring more than $40 million.

“To have a canvas from Arles by that very self-taught artist at the height of his work marks the sale as momentous,” said Clifford Edwards, a van Gogh expert and professor at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Also on Tuesday, Sotheby’s is offering six paintings spanning four decades of Claude Monet’s career for an estimated $78 million. The star is “Water Lilies,” a 1905 version of the artist’s beloved pond and gardens at his home in Giverny, France, that is estimated to fetch $30 million to $45 million. Monet’s 1908 painting of Venice with a view of the Palazzo Ducale on the Grand Canal could bring $15 million to $20 million.

At its contemporary art auction on May 12, Sotheby’s is offering Rothko’s “Untitled (Yellow and Blue)” for an estimated $40 million to $60 million. It hung at the National Gallery in Washington for 10 years while it was owned by the late Rachel “Bunny” Mellon. Another highlight, Roy Lichtenstein’s “The Ring (Engagement),” could bring in about $50 million.

Among the highlights at Christie’s May 13 auction is Andy Warhol’s “Colored Mona Lisa” estimated to bring about $35 million.

“Swamped,” by Peter Doig could surpass the current $18 million record for the British artist when it goes under the hammer at Christie’s May 11 sale. It’s estimated at $20 million.

Lichtman predicted that buyers will continue to seek “these works out as they would a blue chip company that pays reliable dividends for years to come.”

10 Unexpected Philosopher Portraits In The Styles Of Famous Artists

Style and substance come together in the imaginative paintings of Renee Bolinger, a student of both art and philosophy.

In an effort to combine her two passions, Bolinger embarked upon a series of portraits that pair a great thinker with a great creative talent, illuminating unexpected links between them along the way. We never, for example, would have connected Elizabeth Anscombe, a philosopher of action, with Jackson Pollock, the visionary behind action painting, although now it all seems so clear!

Behold, 10 unexpected pairings of art and philosophy. Learn more about the project below.