Monday, October 30, 2017

Why all the naked women in art?


     
What's with all the naked women?
     See, that's why people hate the media. Here Howard Tullman, investor, patron of contemporary art, the dynamo behind the 1871 high-tech incubator at the Merchandise Mart, a force on the Chicago scene, invites me into his home, his sprawling 5,000-square-foot River West residence crammed with hundreds of arresting artworks and what do I notice? The vibrant colors? The large scale? The dramatic chiaroscuro?
     No. I fixate on that most images are buck nekkid women, pouty, chesty, except for the naked girls who aren't. What's the story here, Howard?
     Tullman just laughs.          You can see them for yourself, on the Leslie Hindman Auctioneers website, "Property from the Collection of Howard and Judith Tullman." The sale starts at noon Monday.
     I've known Tullman since he ran Tribeca Flashpoint, a digital media arts college. He's a flashy personality himself, who rubs some people the wrong way — heck, sometimes he rubs me the wrong way.
     But we both are able to get past that. Tullman because he likes publicity, and me because I like talking to a guy who regularly lets drop fascinating bits of information, such as when Rahm Emanuel couldn't get back into his home in 2010, he camped out in Tullman's harem.
     "He lived in my home surrounded by a million naked women," Tullman said.

     Tullman is stepping down from 1871 and selling off about an eighth of his collection for a variety of reasons, like raising money for his arts foundation.

To continue reading, click here.


12 comments:

  1. Some years ago I lived overseas and my wife and I befriended a local artist. Interesting guy, fascinating conversationalist. He invited us to his place for a meal. It turned out he lived in the loft of a four hundred year old building, open and filled with light. Dozens, maybe hundreds of paintings covered walls, counters, leaned against the walls. Each and every one showing remarkable artisanship - and each and every one was of a attractive nude man with an erection. It got your attention.
    A few years later we went to the house of a gay couple we had become friends with, was invited to their house, went to the basement to see their private art collection and - you guessed it - dozens of artworks of attractive young men with erections. I will make no judgments, I'm just reporting.

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  2. Too bad Neil couldn't print the nekkid ladies' photos in the paper. They're certainly not pornographic. Interesting that the percentage of such photos in the collection being sold is so much smaller than guessed. Probably if only 5% were such, it would still seem like 90%, because of the biology of the thing as mentioned. For better or worse, bare breasts stick out.

    john

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  3. Don't really buy the notion that artistic rendering of female nudes over the centuries is just another example of men 'objectifying' women. Or that rich boys being boys who want to look at female flesh are the ones who have through the ages been art buyers. Thinking about a famous collection of public art, that adorning the Piazza della Signori in Florence, the only female I recollect is a Sabine lady struggling in the arms of her Roman rapist. All the other figures are men: David guarding the door of the Palazzo Vecchio, Cellini's Persius waving the head of Medusa; Neptune and his helpers, etc. Also most of the figures in the Bargello, the sculpture museum, are male.

    I'm more inclined to the view that renderings of the human form are more challenging for the artist than bowls of fruit or landscapes, although it would be futile to dismiss entirely the notion of sexual motivation. One thinks of the carnal manner in which a famous artist was said to gain inspiration.

    "As Titian was mixing rose madder,
    His model was up on a ladder.
    He thought her position suggested coition,
    So he climbed up the ladder and had her."

    Tom

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    1. Reminds me of a trip to Lincoln Park Zoo several years ago: we were throwing bits of candy to a group of apes. Noticing that one or two apes managed to get all the candy, we threw a piece to one of those not in the main group. She gobbled her candy, but then offered her butt to the bigger male from the main group who rushed over and mounted her. His coition lasted all of ten seconds, so I'm thinking it was less sex than power that required satisfaction, just like his supposedly more evolved relatives.

      john

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  4. We should guard against becoming too prudish in this tumultuous year. Sometimes a nude is just a nude.

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    1. And women are sometimes coy, but as Donald Trump might say, "If you play it safe, you'll never get laid."

      Wish I knew how to access the emoticons, so I could take all the bite out of the above remarks.

      john

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    2. Write on your smart phone instead of your computer. The emoji key is to the left of the space bar.

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  5. Tony, when I used that emoji key, the smiley faces morphed into weird-looking question marks. Go figure...

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  6. I’ll try; πŸ€—πŸŽƒπŸ‘»πŸ™€

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