3/11/2006

Hernan Bas

223 comments:

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Anonymous said...

Sloppy sloppy but always tight enough to seem like product. Like a Bob Ross impressionist painting.

Anonymous said...

nail
head

Anonymous said...

lovely

Anonymous said...

I love the colour. Especially the reflection in the water. I can't explain exactly why... I just do. The painting style really isn't my thing. It looks... kind of cobbled together I guess.

Anonymous said...

Like El Greco's conservative, tradition-bound student

Anonymous said...

" Anonymous said...

Like El Greco's conservative, tradition-bound student "

Nothing new, nothing exciting eh?

Anonymous said...

Well, it's a matter of public record that there are a lot of americans who find "conservative" and "tradition-bound" REALLY exciting adjectives.

But not this one.

Anonymous said...

Conservative? I don't know... a man in a dress riding another man...

Anonymous said...

The style not the subject.

Log-cabin expressionism.

Anonymous said...

suck+gay content still = suck

Qloo said...

my eye went to the reflection part of the painting as well

Mitch said...

I think his paintings are lovely.
This mythological boy-narrative is strangely compelling. There’s also something very touching about the slightly clumsy paint handling. Sort of a “Luncheon on the Grass” for gay teenage boys.

Anonymous said...

I am so sick of the "I-can't-make-a-painting-look-good-and-therefore-my-touch-has-pathos" trend.

Anonymous said...

I think there is a lot more going on here. There is the echo of a Gainsborough landscape with the tension of subtle Dufresne like figures softly inserted. An intriging juxtuposition of form and styles carried off with real originality. This is fresh and draws you into the scene very gently. I like it and I have never seen this painter before.

Anonymous said...

I love the narrative in his work as well. I also think they are refreshingly gentle.

Anonymous said...

the colors remind me of tupperware from the 70's

i just can't figure out why the ground under the front legs is glowing

BeeBe said...

Someone who likes your work saying it "Pulls you into the scene very gently" is the most powerful condemnation I can imagine.

Anonymous said...

shouldn't this be on black velvet? like really gay half man half horse black velvet by a finger painting monkey. or maybe not. no, actually probably. my poo has a better sense of tonality, why did this person even bother to wake up that day.

ex-photographer said...

the glowing under the front legs is probably due to the same light source causing the left half of the tree to be in shadow.

in fact, it seems likely that Bas or his assistant used photos of posed models with a strong light source as a reference

Anonymous said...

Ok, I don't like it either but the whole "my poo...wake up that day"--fuck that

Anonymous said...

Could someone please post a little biographical information about this artist? I'm curious about Bas' prior work because I like this piece a lot...

Anonymous said...

HB might actually want to do a Black Velvet painting--it could be a whole semi-ironic-tasteless-bathetic -glam thing that gay neo-expressionists are so often into.

For some reason...

Anonymous said...

http://snitzer.com/artistrepresented/bas.html

Anonymous said...

1978 Born in Miami, USA

1995 New World School of Arts, Miami, FL

Currently lives and works in Miami, Florida

Big surprise there.

Anonymous said...

"This mythological boy-narrative is strangely compelling."

yes, i agree, and i there are obviously classical allusions to be explored as well. the resemblance of the figure in purple to "bathing aphrodite" really highlights the prominence of the reflection in the water, don't you think?

Anonymous said...

I thought this blog was for NY Painters?

Anonymous said...

So...it alludes to things that don't bite...yet it still bites...fascinating

Anonymous said...

Well he shows enoguh in NY. Whatever, he's here now, we might as well talk about his alluding-expressioning, seduction-narrative-implying ass.

Anonymous said...

to anonymous 9:01-

Why is the "Miami thing" a big surprise? I get that you're being sarcastic and that you don't like HB's work, but you should clarify what that means w/r/t this particular painting...

Anonymous said...

He also has a place in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and is part of the NY scene. He has a show up right now in NYC.

Anonymous said...

I feel like the Miami thing was some sort of vaguely homophobic remark

Anonymous said...

seriously. it's a guy in a purple dress riding a man-horse....

Anonymous said...

You have to admit though that the horse-man has a great expression on his face - kind of bored? disaffected? - centers the composition

Anonymous said...

no, i think that the real anchor, expression-wise, is the figure behind him, the painting is clearly about the purple-dress guy

he's the one who looks like he has something on his mind

Anonymous said...

I AM SEEING LEOPARDS IN THE TREE!

No - peacocks! I kind of dig how the trunks look like swinging tails.

Anonymous said...

Why is the "Miami thing" a big surprise? I get that you're being sarcastic and that you don't like HB's work, but you should clarify what that means w/r/t this particular painting...



it's a purple dressed man on a man-horse...with strangely perfect haircuts

hhmmm said...

I also sense homophobia which is surprising and disappointing. There's a lot of hate on this blog.

Anonymous said...

the color scheme makes my skin crawl - so chintzy

the whole thing seems so imbalanced

Anonymous said...

Yeah we dont need to go into homophobia here. what can be discussed about the painting itself without going into attacks and heresay

Anonymous said...

the man-horse looks like stephen malkmus and the other guy looks like eminem

coincidence? i think not

Anonymous said...

i'm not scared of the man-horse, i just think it's dated and silly and a visually shallow expression,
what does scare me is the thought that people view this in a gallery and while drinking wine find some deeper meaning that really doesn't seem to be there

Anonymous said...

I like the very woodsy aspect of this picture. It has qualities ( kind of magical) that fit in with the concept of forest as Other,the place where thingshappen outside the realm of normal daily life.

Anonymous said...

this painting is GAY

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:27
They probably served beer at this opening.

Anonymous said...

why is the man-horse a "visually shallow expression"?

just because Bas paints symbolism you don't care enough to take the time to understand doesn't make him "shallow"

Anonymous said...

tension. it is all about the sense of tension, unease, anxiety and anticipation very softly done with nice historical references incorporated. clever and well done I say if you are not botherd by the light on the leg.

Anonymous said...

anon 9:32
yeah, shitty beer :)

Anonymous said...

to anon 9:34-
what are the historical references you're getting? i agree with your comment about the tension
very nice, subtle

Anonymous said...

I'm wondering - what is the signficance of the waterfall in the background? Is this a symbolic thing?

I seem to remember something about waterfalls from Jung...

Anonymous said...

um, what is the big deal here? this picture is sooooo boring.

Anonymous said...

please, tell me about the depth in the man-horse symbolism

Anonymous said...

it's not that it's boring
it's that it sucks

Anonymous said...

why is he wearing a wreath? is it like a crown or something?

Anonymous said...

i went to school with this guy...total poser...no talent...makes me sad that people are spending so much time trying to figure out something that isn't there

Anonymous said...

i'm still waiting to hear about man-horse symbolism

Anonymous said...

Okay- I know everybody is making a big deal about the homoerotic stuff, whatever. But look at the figure in purple - what, anatomically, tells you that this is a man?

Sure, the upper arm is kind of developed, but the painting as a whole is far from precise, so I don't think that's necessarily indicative of gender.

The only thing is the haircut.

Anonymous said...

he's just playing weird games with normal cards

Anonymous said...

lame-ass hipsters in lame-ass hipster costumes

Kritikal said...

Interesting commentary on Man's bestial nature - but to what end?

I feel like the scenery is superfluous.

Anonymous said...

BORED BORED BORED BORED

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:44 -
The man-horse symbolism is centered around the idea of Pegasus. It represents pure intellect, the unblemished, innocence, life and light, and is ridden by heroes.

Anonymous said...

okay, but is the rider supposed to be "heroic" then?

Oscar Wilde said...

No, I think that the point is to blur the line between heroism and dandyism

Anonymous said...

I want to go back to the idea that the rider is intentionally androgynous

Anonymous said...

the tree looks like a fucking explosion

what a mess

Anonymous said...

anon 942-
Wreaths
circular - everlasting life, circle of family, God's unending love
on the door - Welcome
evergreen - Eternal life in Christ

saatchi bio said...

Hernan Bas’s paintings explore the codes of dandyism and its subculture as a means to define sexual attraction. Bas’s paintings are small, frail and sensuously delightful; through their unassuming intimacy, they personify epic romance. Influence by historical painting, Hernan Bas’s images contemporaneity, their staginess and immediate familiarity suggest the melodramatic narratives of classic film. In Posing with Antlers, Hernan Bas paints a waif-like boy, flirtatiously hamming it up for snap shot laughs. Placing the viewer in the position of an unseen photographer, Bas sets a scene of predatory seduction.

Anonymous said...

"immediate familiarity"? WTF?

Anonymous said...

typical gallery bullshit

Anonymous said...

10:01- his HAIR looks like a fucking explosion

Anonymous said...

The man-horse symbolism is centered around the idea of Pegasus. It represents pure intellect, the unblemished, innocence, life and light, and is ridden by heroes.

=shallow
why not just paint a beautiful naked boy reflecting those traits if that's what he's after, oh yeah, talent

saatchi bio said...

Heavily influenced by The Decadence period of literature, Hernan Bas’s paintings are inspired by well-worn pages of Wilde and Huysmans. “Why does homosexuality seem to make you pre-disposed to liking these things?” Bas questions. “As a result this work is tainted with Saint Sebastian martyr types, dying dandies and peacock feathers, all the materials that dictate a certain queer vocabulary." Hernan Bas’s style of painting emulates linguistic flourish. Impassioned brushwork and pastel hues bloom with poetic description; environments are set with the divine ambience of transience. Confined by fanciful etiquette, Hernan Bas’s figures allude to darker sentiments. Their posed innocence is but a thin veil of gentlemanly decorum.

saatchi bio said...

In The Hero Centaur, Hernan Bas composes his painting with acute sensitivity. His rich palette flames with dreamy brushstrokes, forms swell and recede with controlled eroticism. Mythology bridges the gap between children’s fantasy and adult sophistication, adventure stories enmeshed in wanton intrigue and violent plots. Hernan Bas situates his characters amidst the turbulence of adolescence. Their sexuality has an aura of naiveté, an awkward expedition into the enchanted and unknown. Hernan Bas’s paintings are never explicit. Rather his romanticised scenes exist as metaphors for emotional flux. Wavering between virginal trepidation and gushy infatuation, they capture precise moments of seasonal youth.

Anonymous said...

this is one of my favorites right now, people rail against it becaues they're jealous of someone with real talent

Anonymous said...

why can't you people just admit that it's enough for a painting ot look good

Anonymous said...

Wow! Saatchi you can write!

Anonymous said...

where is his show in NYC?

Anonymous said...

that only works if the painting looks good

Anonymous said...

sophisticated content, adolescent technique

Anonymous said...

Why have I not heard anything about Hernan Bas before this?

Anonymous said...

10:15-
SOPHISTICATED MY ASS

Anonymous said...

this is way too contrasty

Anonymous said...

Hernan Bas is overhyped - just look at this, it's shit

Anonymous said...

I think you need to see his work in person to appreciate it

Anonymous said...

no thanks

Anonymous said...

BIG FUCKING DEAL you got a book about archetypes or whatever

doesn't make you a thoughtful critic

just copy and paste

Anonymous said...

this is just sad, all of it

ck said...

This painting is amazing! Tense and creepy delivered with flourish and wit. The paint is handled in a pretty natural way, yet without any hints of being naive. It's like a laid-back mannerism tweaks the narrative with a bit of humor.

Anonymous said...

anon, I love it when you say "this is way too contrasty , it's so pithy.

Anonymous said...

ck, best critque yet. right on

Anonymous said...

Saatchi,"flames with dreamy brushstrokes"? Can a flame dream? Can you take arms against a sea of troubles and by opposing end them?

exu said...

all the substances ,except the bodies,seem to have the same weight and density-he likes bodies-why does he bother with trees?

zipthwung said...

Might I ad that the pagan god Hern is the god of merchants, whos smell is sea salt, who's voice is that of clinking coins, whos mind is crowded like the marketplace.

A formal critique of this painting is beside the point.

Anonymous said...

ecu, I think the trees are for romance although you are right this would be interesting with the figures against a flat color surface a la alex katz.

Anonymous said...

but then it would be your painting annon 12:44 and not Bas's

exu said...

It just looks like everything is made out of sheets of noisy black plastic,a la Fellinis "casanova" sea-if he tightens things up it could be a little more palatable,tress and all

Anonymous said...

"the woods are lovely,dark and deep."

breezy said...

I like it. I like the palette, very original. The theatricality is not really my thing - the figures (all fashion model-y) look pasted into a phony scene. But the saatchi bio actually makes sense in terms of what he is trying to say about "gayness". Kind of opposite of Picasso whose work is all about "straightness" (t&a, bullfights etc.) Which is why Bas' work is made stubbornly un-Modern. Does that approach initally shut out a lot of straight people? Maybe. But if they hang in there and try to understand where he's coming from, it might be somewhat rewarding. It's good to discuss this work in relation to Karen Heagle's too - a gay woman painter who just had a show at I-20.

hhmmm said...

Although it's naively executed the painting still exudes skill somehow, but not in the brushwork. It's so haphazard. I would have to see his work in person to comment further.

Anonymous said...

now this discussion seems to be going somewhere. this is a great blog sometimes but never in the morning. This painting is like what they used to say about Wagner's music. Better than it looks.

Anonymous said...

this painting.. in fact, most contemporary figurative painting, is really conservative. bound by tradition. unlike the truly groundbreaking paintings of today's neo-expressionists... free from all of history, except expressionism. those figures are way too drawn. less drawing and more painting. it's absurd that he would be looking at the ancients like goya and watteau. this makes the work old-fashioned and boring. if you are going to do something new.. you need to be copying revolutionary artists like immendorf, baseliz, dekooning, david park, and clemente. clearly, he is looking at the wrong books. this work has some nice mark making and paint smearing though. you can almost see his heart in this work.. if it did't have those stupid peoplecreatures standing there. and as i learned from my 70 year old professor, all great paintings look good upside-down. i am certain this would look horrible upside-down. it is way too bottom heavy. it just seems like he cares too much.. he's being too tentative. trying to appeal the market no doubt. real bohemian artists should give the finger to the market.. with painterly formalism. long live the strokes and the university of idaho painting department.

Anonymous said...

idaho, that is where i went finally getting recognized

Anonymous said...

WHAT?
Did you read any of the previous comments, anonymous?

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Anon, let's rehash the 80's we can truly call ourselves bohemian revolutionaries. Whatever.

Anonymous said...

I'm thinking....Brokeback Mountain!

ck said...

Formally, this work is very self-referential. The subject matter begets the style/handling/color begets the subject matter. Why fuss it towards a more standard treatment? This is self-contained ...the language is individual, original, and fluent. I wish I were verbalising this better, because it is so important to meaningful expression....expression....expression....such a dirty little art term.

ck said...

Formally, this work is very self-referential. The subject matter begets the style/handling/color begets the subject matter. Why fuss it towards a more standard treatment? This is self-contained ...the language is individual, original, and fluent. I wish I were verbalising this better, because it is so important to meaningful expression....expression....expression....such a dirty little art term.

ck said...

Formally, this work is very self-referential. The subject matter begets the style/handling/color begets the subject matter. Why fuss it towards a more standard treatment? This is self-contained ...the language is individual, original, and fluent. I wish I were verbalising this better, because it is so important to meaningful expression....expression....expression....such a dirty little art term.

ck said...

I do apologize for the triplicate.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure I see the Karen Heagle connection--her work is observational post-Bay area stuff while Bas is more in a post-neo-expressionist version of a supple young-lad fashion fairyland.

I think Pasolini made much more of his passion for forbidden fairychild flesh and also made it so that it was accessible to anyone willing to think, rather than just to other people with the same proclivities.

Anonymous said...

Yeah! like Brokeback Mountain!

Anonymous said...

annon 3:56 " free from all history post expresionism" would quickly beome very confining and conservative as you describe it. History is important to reinterpret and re-express and not simply ignore. There is no validity to a post-human history concept until there is no more human history. Until then history is is a vital part of humanity.

Anonymous said...

And clearly this guy is NOT "free from history" but simply uncritically taking what history gave him. the way kids who grow up hating who their parents hate aren't free from the past--they're slaves to it.

Anonymous said...

Exactly, I "hate" everything my parents "hated" just like you. I live only to "hate" the things my parents "hated" just like you.It is a lot of fun. And explains why I like this painter. Right!

Anonymous said...

my parents hated neo-expersionist also. it made it hard growing up. but now i just do what i want.

Anonymous said...

so, in full possession of your existential choice-palette, what do you think of this guy?

Anonymous said...

I like him. Figurines, forest and all.

Anonymous said...

Aren't we all just slaves to our parents hates. Damn parents. Damn history. Damn figurative artist that went Idaho to study painting.

Anonymous said...

i wonder what bas' work will look like in tenyears--will he actually change or will he, despitew a decades experience, still be "charmingly underskilled"

Anonymous said...

or will he find some charmingly underskilled assistants?

Anonymous said...

This is a talented artist. Getting better. Buy now and hold!

Anonymous said...

hb is just eliz peyton gay-man-style plus daniel-reich-slacker-style plus cant-really-paint-so-uses-popular-idea-of-"illustration"

Anonymous said...

hey painter, there are a lot of good shows up now: judith eisler, kelley walker, wade guyton, charline von heyl, can we talk about those?

Anonymous said...

some people like elizabeth peyton


i'm not sure who they are, or why, but they do...

Anonymous said...

isn't wade v a sculptuor?

Anonymous said...

wade's show is paintings.
i'm confounded by elizabeth peyton's appeal. no: i looked through her coffee table book, and realized that i really understood it for the first time -- it's about lust for fame. she cant draw or paint worth shit but the subjects do have glamor.

Anonymous said...

is that supposed to be a defense of her?

Anonymous said...

on the subject of hernan bas:

These are--maybe--allegorical paintings.

Dave Hickey said once that pastoral allegory was often a vehicle for deeply unpopular political ideas.

Is homosexuality--in the context of the art world and the collectors of art--anything other than a deeply POPULAR political idea?

passeo said...

Bohemian Anonymous, there is no way in hell a painting can be 'free from history' unless you either burn them or stop making them. Let's dispense with the grandiose hyperboles. And immendorff? 'Bad painting' wihout the anti-seduction overtheorized agenda of the then-critical intellectual fuckalls -- is now, just bad painting. Parks I can see (though Parks is SOOOOO conventional. But in a good way! He's formally seductive in his paint handling.

I personally think he might want to look at George Bellows. Man could that guy paint wet naked boys... And for a straight, family man, no less.

I admit to never having seen a Bas in person. But his paint seems seductive, and that seems to be the driving force in HB's language. So seductive, that it hides the fact that he can't draw. Like bellows, who was a crappy draftsman,and who could lay down painterly passages like no one's business. And he could paint boys pretty well.

But Bas's drawing skills definately relate to Peyton. They both can't draw. Theyre all about seduction by other means. And maybe that's a conceptual point.


Seduction in painting is an interesting topic. The dumb-as-a-painter seductive quality of paint as it relates to lust, fame, hidden shallowness, truthfullness, dumb pleasure. For me, it works here, with HB, but didn't work in Mehretu's case. I agreee with Bohemian Anonymous that you can almost 'see his heart' in these pictures -- even thru reproduction, in my case. And that he 'cares too much'...

..Awwww. Let's not burn them just yet.

BTW, bohemian -- The first time a stood in front of a Luc Tuymans painting, I mistook it for early Parks (it was a painting of a chair) having never heard of Tuymans. I was so convinced, it was almost embarassing -- the fact that I thought I was looking at a conventional, historical piece (and a very good seductive one!), while in fact I was viewing a contemporary. I've come to the conclusion that it doesn't fucking matter who did it and when -- the canvas was GOOD! I think that styles can come and go, but good painting can remain good regardless of how tied it is to history.

Anonymous said...

sewductive?

velasquez's surface is seductive, wangechi mutu's surface is seductive, but people who find hb seductive--i mean, do they also find piles of autumn mud seductive?

passeo said...

Autumn mud IS seductive. Juicyness is seductive. And more-so when it's frozen in the film paint. A nice piece of ass is seductive. Seductiveness is a (subjective) quality, not a value. Velasquez is seductive, but Hals' mark is more seductive than DV -- yet I still value Velasquez over Hals. Mutu is seductive to a fault.

Anonymous said...

you can't be seductive to a fault. franz hals was the world's first dime-store billboard painter and i'm stunned that anyone likes his surface.

but there you go i guess--people who like mud like hb

passeo said...

There's our differnce and we can leave it at that. I don't mind saying that some dime-store billboard painters are can sometimes be brilliant. In fact I often marvel at them. Kippenberger's billboard painters -- I just wish they could have done the paintings without Kippenberger. But then there's the 'value' thing....

Anonymous said...

ok, so then from here:

if you like billboard painting do you like kehinde w?

and if you like mud do you like baselitz kiefer schnabel?

passeo said...

Sorry I'm unfamiliar with "kehinde w" but I do appreciate baselitz kiefer schnabel. I'm easy to please, so don't get all huffy. Remember I can't really comment accurately on Hernan Bas's paintings, cuz I've never really been in front of them. I'm just disussing an issue that I find interesting... seduction in painting.

Anonymous said...

i really didn't mean to be huffy, i was just honestly wondering about the connection of one kind of taste to another

Anonymous said...

Do you folks really think Bas and Peyton "can't draw"? Have you ever applied paint to a canvas yourself? Maybe, perhaps, these 'painters' tend to let their technique of painting direct how the final outcome of the figure is represented...
They're not just trying to fill in the picture as neatly or as accurately as possible! These things are INTENTIONAL. I guess that's what people mean by 'expressionism' in painting. It's a personal expression within paint handling that determines how the thing represented is interpreted. I wouldn't think that needed to be explained...

passeo said...

Well, tastes, i think, are, or should be, up to the viewer. That is I believe everyone should have a right to their own tastes. If I want to eat mud one day, and a filet mignon another day, so be it. What interests me is not taste, so much as the manipulation of taste. Mechanisms -- whether painterly, philisophical, market-driven or theoretical -- that shape taste -- they kind of interest me. And I just wanted to bring to fore this mechanism of seduction, which I get when seeing an HB image. Perhaps you don't see it in HB, so ok. Perhaps i'm wrong in seeing this as an issue when it comes to HB... But I have nothing to contribute in terms of a discussion of taste, really. And I think Hals succeeded because of the seductive quality of his strokes.... He needed to. He was a drunk, who used seduction as a short-cut to get some quick money.

passeo said...

You're right Anon. I for one, should qualify my statement.
It's not that Bas and Peyton can't draw. It's that they can draw form very well. Whether that fact means anything to you -- is up to you.

passeo said...

Oh and anon, yes, I'm a figurative painter.

So, I've applied paint to canvas.

Anonymous said...

i contend thatElizabeth P can't draw--my evidence is that her drawings look EXACTLY like the drawings of people in every drawing 101 class since the mid-60s.

Anonymous said...

and even if that is onpurpose, it does make one wonder why anyone thinks they're unique--perhap just because collectors don;t now about 18year old artists

passeo said...

Yeah, and for me, it was never a value thing. Peyton can't draw form, but neither could most 12th graders who are interested in stargazing. And I value Peyton, for sure, because of the honest way she articulates the feeling of teenage stargazing, and beginning from the point of teenager drawings... from the heart... awwww... Sure she can't draw, but for her, it works.

And her paintings are seductive. (But not as seductive as Brian Calvin's ...heees soo kool....)

passeo said...

or should i say kewl....

Anonymous said...

So--honest question--why not just look at actual 12th grader drawings?--they're cheaper, more various, and more plentiful.

passeo said...

oh and I know Peyton isn't a teenager. I don't even know if she's really a stargazer.

passeo said...

Anonymous, she's making a comment on the consumption of pop culture, supposedly. And she has friends. That adds value.

Anonymous said...

but, for you, i mean, not for the market--do you like them?

passeo said...

I'm easy to please, but yes I like them, but I like Calvin more. And I have to get off of this blog and get some work done... But I like them as statements, I don't love them as paintings.

Anonymous said...

paintings should work as paintings

passeo said...

but paintings don't always work as art.
and vice versa. :) gotta go.

Anonymous said...

...and what is the point of 'learning to draw' better than a really talented 12th grader? Really? It doesn't make you a better artist. Just an artist that can replicate more realistically than certain other artists. I think if this was the goal of most artists, we would have a lot of finely tuned academic drawers as in Paris pre-salon des refuses, which would be just as boring as the art world now. I'm not a huge fan of what Peyton does, but she makes art the way she wants and a lot of people agree that they like it. Maybe about half like it for the wrong reasons, but about half actually really like her art. Same with Bas. You can say you don't like the work because you don't like painting or drawing that doesn't have realistic modeling. That's fair enough. But the argument that the work is 'bad' because the artist 'can't draw' is pretty 19th century.

Anonymous said...

anon 11:01 pm, YES peyton really CANT draw! this isnt about technical matters, i am not talking about drawing like ingres. she's just a bad draw-er in a modernist mode. the color, the lines, the composition, all indifferent, no risk taken, the actual seduction is entirely in the glamor of the subject matter. she uses drawing materials like they were make-up: prissy, the same every time, no risk whatsoever. just look at the way she draws people: they all look essentially alike. no character there. really weak work.
what i am beginning to see in hernan bas, and why i'm talking about this here. the work is beginning to look generic, the figures all containing the same kind of charge everytime, i.e. they're starting to look logo-ish, all the same cute thin boys, all the same form of homoeroticism, a formula. he started out really interesting, inventive and juicy and full of wierd narrative. he's going downhill. it's getting glam. but not better. it's emptying out.

Anonymous said...

oh and my comment go double for anon 8:35 who i didnt see while i was writing this.
this is not about the 19th century. it's about fresh vital drawing from now. and she isnt doing it. and neither is he. they're both sadly turning into mere fashion. sad because they're both really interesting. but as they get more famous and as noone asks for better work from them, and they are surrounded by admirers, the work is just weakening. look at the kippenberger drawings that were shown last year to see the opposite of this. those drawings, also by a famous artist, but not one who was just fashion, were genuinely sad, tragic, interesting. and not fussy. and not 19th c.

RINGO TO RUSSIA said...

I just can't believe you don't think EP can draw. The stargazing comments are worth something and yes it is a big coffee table book, but she can draw! Drawing is a pivotal part of her work.She makes scetches of her subjects that are quite good. As for Bas there are moments, but not so much in this one.

Anonymous said...

No one ever said where you can see Hernan Bas in the City. Does he have a show up? Does he have a gallery other than Saatchi? I would like to see his firery dreamlike strokes live with Passeo.

Anonymous said...

his show is at daniel reich on 23rd

Anonymous said...

The comment that, although they allegedly can draw, EP and HB are failing to improve and keep making the same work points EXACTLY to the problem. If they could, in any real sense, draw, then each work would be a re-invention and a re-definition rewagrdless of issues of realism.

But they can't, and so each work is just a list of personality traits.

Anonymous said...

precisely!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I read this entire post. good conversation about this artist. i enjoyed it. even some of the not so smart comments about ending history or ignoring it enirely.interesting blog i just found it this morning. good discussion of drawing and painting and art and this painter. thanks for puting this up. as a new ny painter, 3 months, it is helpful.

Anonymous said...

And what do you think of Hernan Bas, new guy?

Anonymous said...

who cares if the figures 'look the same every time'. That means you're a 'bad' artist? What about Henry Darger? These types of qualifiers make no sense in terms of good and bad...
and there's no timetable for reinvention. noone can really tell what fame and the temptation or money can do to an artist maybe unless you personally know them. Noone's really reinventing the wheel right now, so calm down.
I thought Peyton's work in the '04 biennial looked really strong. Bas' work is shakier sometimes, but he's REALLY young. In like his mid-20's I think. Did you see any of Pollock's work from when he was 26? People grow up, get better, more consistent. I don't think Bas went backward in his current show...
Why are some of you bloggers so quick to condemn? You're allowed to dislike something, but go see a lot of it, give it a chance. Or don't.

Anonymous said...

I think it matters if art looks the same over and over quite a bit. If you're going to see osmething you've seen before then there's no need to get out of bed and go see a showw-and that's what it's all about--Will it be worth it to get up and go look at these new things?

Anonymous said...

Well I want to go see some his painting live. It is not my style but I like the effect if not the technique. I think this was a very interesting discussion of his skill level and I want to see some of his earlier work and see what kind of progression i can detect and what all the criticism is about here.

danielpayavis said...

Someone mentioned that the tree looks like an explosion. Someone else told me once that he thought trees were very, very slow explosions. I am sort of interested in this work as one of many examples of a contemporary Romantic or Symbolist approach. It is analogous to me with some of the work of Daniel Richter and Peter Doig, but really only on an immediate level. Some of the elements like the waterfall and the large tree on the right look like they could be just as happy anywhere in the composition.

Anonymous said...

I think Henry Darger's repetition makes it less interesting. He was in his own world (a very commendable place to be), but being schooled makes it different. I prefer it when artist's try to expand and learn with their work. I'm not criticizing this artist's work, I'm just talking in general. Darger was maybe making just one large artwork anyway. I want there to be intellectual engagement in artwork. Response to the world outside of the studio.

xuxa said...

kids,this has been exhausting,but so thoughtful(really)i give you all an a for this reasonably civilised and interesting discussion-vai numas,turma

Anonymous said...

The trees have a celtic, drid feel to them. the pre-roman celts of gaul had avery elaborate tree worship religion which Julis caesar destroyed.

queer as folk said...

there are many ways to make art, all valid. go to school, don't go to school. change your style, don't change your style. I'm glad there's a range to look at and discuss.
This artist makes me think of Belle & Sebastian... fey and mannered, like high school drama club. I think the painting technique is very much his own, he owns it, whether you like it or not...

Anonymous said...

if he owns it it's only because it was willed to him by about a hundred '80s expressionists

Anonymous said...

Yes! History trumps neo-expresionist nihilism.

Anonymous said...

according to this thread, then, the Amazon.com solicitation for Hernan Bas' monograph would read:

"Hernan Bas:Recommended if you like mud and Belle and Sebastian."

Anonymous said...

Nihilism's way more fun than a high-school drama club.

Log Cabin Expressionist said...

I love the fall, I love mud and I love Belle and Sebastian and I love these paintings.

Anonymous said...

This Centuar would not be allowed to march in the NYC St Patrick's Day parade for you Celtic tree worshiping Durids. That is for sure.

Anonymous said...

about the drawing in this painting...is draftsmanship really more important than making a compelling painting? i think drawing is just a skill that can be used to make a painting, and it can either be used or not. a lot of contemporary art i've seen does away with drawing on purpose. being a good draftsman and being a good artist (painter) are two different things.

Anonymous said...

there does not have to be much drawing underneath a painting-- but if there's drawing in it, it should be"good"--whatever that means--
there is drawing in this painting and it is not good

zipthwung said...

Belle and Sebastian? Druids listen to Slayer, or at least I hope they do. I keep my bible in a pool of blood so none of its lies can affect me. Or is that effect.

Customers who like this will also want to purchase the Dead Poets society CD, featuring Adagio in D Minor on Glass Harmonica. Oh captain my captain.

The green man cometh. GO Narnia!

Anonymous said...

yeah...anyway...

Anonymous said...

i'd be able to take this picture much more seriously if it wern't so fussy--by expressionist standards--i mean, it doesn't stumble and search for it's subject--it was obviously all sketched out in advance and then filled in "roughly"

zipthwung said...

A separate Peace?
Young Tourless?

Terebithia!

Where's Terabithia, and why do you need a bridge to get there?

What do Jess and Leslie have in common? What traits of their friendship do you admire and try to have in your own relationships?
By the title alone, we know that Bridge to Terabithia will involve some type of bridge. But in this book the bridge isn't just physical. The bridge that Jesse Aarons and Leslie Burke (the main characters) need to cross isn't only about geography.

They also take an emotional journey together. In this way, they cross a bridge from one place in their lives to another. Through their friendship and the bond they share, each character learns and grows.

Symbolic Bridges
Relating this emotional growth to a bridge is called symbolism. Jesse and Leslie use their special friendship and their imaginations to cross the obstacle of being different.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for that zip. That was special.

Anonymous said...

critics who write about this guy seem to think there's something "sinister" about the poiunt of view in this work--but nobody on the blog seems to think so--including me.

Anonymous said...

if this is from the 'dandies pansies and prudes show' there was something sinister about the work and the crowd at the opening. the card is awesome and the size and dimensions of a page in artforum who made a point of signing the book huge.

b&s said...

if you're feeling sinister.
go off and see a minister.

Anonymous said...

so the work attracts sinister people?

zipthwung said...

Book Description
"Musil belongs in the company of Joyce, Proust, and Kafka." (The New Republic)

Like his contemporary and rival Sigmund Freud, Robert Musil boldly explored the dark, irrational undercurrents of humanity. The Confusions of Young Törless, published in 1906 while he was a student, uncovers the bullying, snobbery, and vicious homoerotic violence at an elite boys academy. Unsparingly honest in its depiction of the author's tangled feelings about his mother, other women, and male bonding, it also vividly illustrates the crisis of a whole society, where the breakdown of traditional values and the cult of pitiless masculine strength were soon to lead to the cataclysm of the First World War and the rise of fascism. A century later, Musil's first novel still retains its shocking, prophetic power.

About the Author
Robert Musil (1880-1942) was born in Austria and served in the Austrian army during World War I, after which he worked as a civil servant as well as a writer and journalist. He is best known for his monumental unfinished novel, The Man Without Qualities.

Quinacridone Violet said...

After going to galleries this week and seeing a number of paintings recently discussed on the blog--Essenheigh, Charlotta Westergren, Alison Fox, Miko, Nozkowski, etc, my original impressions from the jpgs did not necessarily hold true. Inka I didn't think was that interesting when discussed but thought the show was badass in person, for example. Miko was more interesting but Nozkowski dissappointed. Fox and Westergren were as snoozy as I had thought. Has anyone else had a similar experience?

Anonymous said...

like sharks to the prey.

"let's rehash the 80's we can truly call ourselves bohemian revolutionaries."

thats hot. it is all a matter of taste.

queer art veteran said...

I think there is something sinister about these paintings and it's connected to some of the other issues discussed so far--the lack of drawing, the hasty painting, the fussiness, etc--for me, the sinister quality comes from the feeling that the entire allegory was slapped together in painting form as a sort of ruse whose main purpose was just to get across these two naked little boys. like one of those bodegas that's actually a drug front. it seems like the artist is almost intentionally making a comment on how the veil of high culture is used--in this case with intentionally ridiculously academic references--to convey pictures of cute boys to aging homosexual collectors.

Anonymous said...

miko in person was an entirely different animal than miko in jpeg--it was like comparing a trip to a jungle to a jpeg of a lion.

but i;ve seen bas in person and it looks exactly the way you'd expect it to look from the jpeg

Arturo said...

Whatever you want to say about the technique, the bird-chested emo-boy as centaur is an interesting image. His indifference to the boy in the flowing (unfurling?) mauve sarong takes this beyond the scope of just another pomo queer stunt. His one visible hand even appears to be groping for a pocket to slip into.

Anonymous said...

http://www.artnet.com/Magazine/people/smith/Images/smith11-17-18s.jpg

self portrait for a closeted artworld?

Anonymous said...

directing peoples' attention to one of those roaming-art-opening-photographer photos of the artist is the cheapest shot imaginable. nobody deserves that.

i think one of the most pomo things about this picture is that, unlike historical centaur pictures, these kids actually seem to be aware of the presence of a photographer off screen. old portraits had the subject aware of the viewer, but never mythological ones.

Anonymous said...

fine any picture. i don't see that as a 'cheap shot' did you put it next to the 'guy' lets just call him (Hernan Bas for now) in the front of that painting? there are distinct similarities.

zipthwung said...

Next on SECRETS....

I've got a secret. I get stoned. I'm watching what lies beneath and it put me in a confessional mood. I ate spaghetti from the pot - one pot cooking, its a total rush. There, I've said it.

These remind me of glass plate animation where you sort of smear the pigment around frame by frame.

Hernan you there? Do it. Or don't. Maybe I will. It will be straight het porn though.


What were these painted on lame?

I love that.

Anonymous said...

ERNEST
But what are the two supreme and highest arts?
GILBERT
Life and Literature, life and the perfect expression of life. The principles of the former, as laid down by the Greeks, we may not realise in an age so marred by false ideals as our own. The principles of the latter, as they laid them down, are, in many cases, so subtle that we can hardly understand them. Recognising that the most perfect art is that which most fully mirror

Anonymous said...

Truth and Beauty are the true objects of art, and of human history and destiny. They are the same thing and the sigular quest of human intelect and existance and therefore art which is after all only individual expression of our experience and aspriration. When we find truth we find beauty.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Queer art, What if Bas is trying to explain or explore rather than exploit. Could you tell the difference?

Anonymous said...

The trees. The trees are closing in. I just realized the trees are lurking and closing in. The figures are looking out, when the tres are closing in.

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