Saturday, March 05, 2011

Things ... and x's.

"Fine Art" as ethnic propaganda.


I purchased a pile of prints to get just one. There are about sixty prints varying in quality from lovely things done on quality paper to magazine clippings. Some are lithographs, some etchings. (I think I know the difference.) The one I wanted relates to our new history book. The whole pile was for sale on an auction site, and I was the only bidder. So I didn’t invest much, something under ten dollars.

What I wasn’t prepared for is the overall quality of some of these things. In the sales photo they looked like a pile of magazine clippings and such. A few of them are. They’ll go down to the art teacher. She collects things like that for her class.

Some of these things are Russian. There is beauty in the Russian prints. I wish I could read the name. One of them, obviously by the same artist, has a signature in Latin characters, but all I can read of it is “Boris.” Boris was a pervert I think, but Boris was an artist.

I can only post a small portion of the picture. (I don’t do xxx posts. R rated sometimes, but not xxx.) Enlarging this portion has degraded the fine line definition, but it gives you an idea of his ability.

There is series of five by an anonymous artist. I’m not sure of the nationality of this artist. There is nothing to indicate the source of the prints, though they seem to have come from a book. I’ve posted a smallish bit. Again, the fine line definition is degraded, but I think you get an idea of the quality. These are propaganda prints, portraying Russian ethnic minorities as brutal, inhuman creatures. As with most effective propaganda, there is an element of historical truth in the pictures.

A huge amount of these are lithographic reproductions of famous paintings. I’ll sell those to an antique dealer who specializes in old prints. She’ll love this stuff. Some of these things are tattered and ugly. I’ll just trash those. The one I wanted is oversized, but I’ll get a great image off of it for our new book.

1 comment:

  1. I like Boris's work. No, not because of the subject. Look at his use of line, light and shading. Although we cannot see the full context of this print, you can see that he has composed his subject dynamically. These two are lovers. They are focused on one another and nothing else.

    The other print, although obviously a picture of forced sex, shows that this artist has a classical understanding of the human form. Look at the girl's shoulders and neck. Beautifully shaded.

    This picture is definitely propaganda. The man is a filthy beast. The girl is clean, virtuous, and suffering at the hands of the czarist regime. Yet she suffers with her head held high.