February 23, 2018
Art, politics, angels, demons . . . and righteous dogs.

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

Did you see this piece in the Times last week? In their art review of the Lower East Side scene a show was mentioned by an artist named Barb Choit. This show is based on prints by Nagel that are exposed to light so that they fade. And then she prints them again. The critic Ken Johnson remarks that she “presents reproductions of kitschy, ’80s-era posters by Patrick Nagel representing beautiful women in sexy lingerie. Ms. Choit buys the posters online and then partly fades them, using a tanning bed, lamps and other skin-darkening products. Then she translates them into ink-jet prints and attaches them to clear plastic panels, creating tension between the risible imagery and slick format and her own sly conceptualism.” I wonder if he knew he was making “risible” art? What the hell, he’s dead. Now his art has new life and achieving a Downtown success he couldn’t have dreamed of.

I see this as valuable info for illustrators. Here’s our chance at last at the big time. Why wait for someone who may not have even seen a pencil turn your art by slightly damaging it into a work of heartbreaking genius. Beat them to it, I say. I’m not wasting a moment. I’ve taken a comprehensive survey of my work and put it down as a pad for Shoshana, my incontinent, cushinoid 13 year-old Shepherd. In no time at all my watercolors will take on the patina of success . . . and not to mention the smell of money. Mary Boone, break out that wine and cheese.


  1. iorek says:

    Hey Steve, they picked up on your post at the Illustrationart blog.

  2. Steve says:

    Nice to hear. Thanks.