Saturday, January 3, 2009

No way seriously

I went to see the Degas exhibition the other day while on hols in Canberra.

I'm quite partial to a spot of Degas, all those ballerinas and horses and tall-hatted gentlemen. Quite noice, really, and when I win lotto I might even buy one, or else pay a top-rate burglar to steal one for me.

What I'm not so partial to is the unexpected and unwanted advent of the anti-sketch police at the exhibition.

Along with the usual 'don't take photos/don't touch the exhibits/don't throw jaffas at the guards' warnings there was a direction not to sketch.

But why, you might ask? What harm can a few arty, sketchy types fiddling around with a few pencils and some delightful egg-coloured 180g paper come to?

Perhaps they might leap up in a fit of sketching passion and stab their pens or pencils into the painting they're sketching, you know, because when people love a painting very much they like to attack it virgorously with sharp, pointy objects?

Surprisingly no. Sketching is banned at the exhibition because of the "internet". That's right, as explained to our ruffian, art-loving party, if we were allowed to sketch the paintings we might scan them and sell them on the internet... passing them off as the the real thing and thus fraudulently making a fortune!

Two things: firstly, that's insane; and secondly, does anyone else think there's something fishy about the no-sketching rule when read in light of the first line of the exhibition's explanatory text: "In the early part in his career, DEGAS MADE CAREFUL COPIES OF THE WORK OF THE MASTERS."

So denied the possibility of sketching in front of the painting, I've had a go at one from memory. I think you'll agree the similarity is striking; the only thing left to figure out is what to set my reserve price at. Do I hear $3 million?


Alpha Whale said...

I'm sure you could rake in an excess of that three mill no problem. After all, any painting done by a kettle should be worth tons period. Thanks for the birthday wishies friend.

cc said...

I too have been to see the Degas exhibition, and having observed several people being asked to put away their pens, etc, asked what the "rules" were. I had no pen on my person and desperately needed to jot down an inspirational thought.
The security guard actually went off and BROUGHT ME A PENCIL!!
It seems pencils are OK, pens are not; writing is allowed, sketching is out!
Personally, I think you could do a lot of damage with a sharp, 3 inch pencil!
As to your own attempt at forgery, I think if you added "Hilaire Germain Edgar, aged 4" in French of course, and written in his moter's hand, you probably could sell it for millions!

squib said...

I love Degas

I remember equally petty rules regarding the Eyptian antiquities exhibition when it came to Perth

Someone flogged a sketch of a spider with 7 legs on ebay so you might get something for that

The Dangerous Kettle said...

Whale and cc, thanks for the fabo ideas re: attribution. I reckon a painting by a kettle or a small French child would sell excellently well, and perhaps I'll make as much as Sao, the 35 year-old female Asian elephant who paints with her trunk. I'm starting to see a way out of this economic crisis!

And squib, thanks for the encouragement re: the seven legged spider. I reckon my ballerina is my new retirement savings plan.