Archives for posts with tag: Art

Artist Yayoi Kusama's “The Obileration Room” is on display through March 12 at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia. Photo Credit

This “domestic installation” would have caused me so much anxiety as a child – WHERE DO I PUT THE STICKER!? (is what I would have been thinking as I frantically looked for a place to stick my colorful, circle stickers. WHERE!?!?) Stickers are just so permanent…

Luckily, Australian children didn’t have as much trouble as I would have. Artist Yayoi Kusama let a bunch of kids in Brisbane at the Gallery of Modern Art do an extreme home makeover on her entirely white space. Kids were given colorful circle stickers and allowed to run wild.

The space is called “The Obileration Room” and is on display through March 12. at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia.

I love the way this space looks. Would it be weird to re-create this look in my own kitchen???

Artist Yayoi Kusama's “The Obileration Room” is on display through March 12 at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia. Photo Credit

Artist Yayoi Kusama's “The Obileration Room” is on display through March 12 at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia. Photo Credit

– Ann Erling Gofus


Mona Lisa at Madrid's Museo del Prado. Photo Credit Javier Soriano/Getty Images

Leonardo da Vinci’s The Mona Lisa might be one of the most copied pieces of art in history, and certainly one of the best known. But recently, curators at  Madrid’s Museo del Prado are claiming to a certified, genuine copy of Mona – a copy that had Leonardo’s seal of approval.

While comparing these two paintings (using infrared technology), one can see that various layers and steps the artists completed – both paintings have almost identical layers and both artists appear to have made the exact same changes at the same time.

“The changes mirrored the changes which Leonardo made on the original,” Martin Bailey, correspondent with The Art Newspaper in London, tells NPR’s Melissa Block. “[Conservators] concluded that the two pictures had been done side by side in the studio, and it was probably on easels which were two or three yards away from each other.”

Bailey went on to suggest that the artist who painted Mona Lisa‘s twin is likely to have been one of Leonardo’s main assistants: Melzi or Salai (who was rumored to have been da Vinci’s lover). Scandalous!!

The Original Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci at the Musee du Louvre in Paris. Image Credit Jean-Pierre Muller/Getty Images

While the two paintings are very similar, the newly discovered copy is noticeably brighter and much more colorful. Layers of varnish that has darkened and cracked over the decades, obscures the face of the original Mona Lisa. The copy brings a whole new life to Mona, and more vibrant detail to a world famous painting.

What do you think of the copy?

Do you think it’ll ever be as popular at The Louvre’s original copy of The Mona Lisa?

– Ann Erling Gofus

Photo Credit Jason de Caires Taylor/

It’s a magical thing when doing something you love can make such a large impact on the environment – all while also being stunningly beautiful (although a little eerie).

Coral reefs are huge, beautiful and very fragile underwater eco-systems, as well as popular destinations for tourism diving. But, unfortunately, the more attention we pay coral reefs, the more damage is done.

This is where Jason deCaires Taylor comes in. Taylor created statues out of pH-neutral cement designed to host host sponges, tunicates and underwater life – some statues even have holes for lobsters.

Photo Credit Jason de Caires Taylor/

The idea was two fold:

1. Anchor the statues to the ocean floor near a natural coral reef in the hopes of drawing the diving crowds away from the fragile reef and toward the underwater statue garden.


2. Create a NEW coral reef. The ocean is teeming with microscopic organisms just looking for a solid places to latch on. Only 10 or 15 percent of the ocean floor is solid enough for reefs to form naturally. Therefore, these statues are a great place for coral reefs to get a head start.

Jason deCaires Taylor’s art is breathtaking. So eerie, so awesome and so eco-friendly.

La Evolucion Silencia by Jason de Caires Taylor. Photo Credit Jason de Caires Taylor/

A majority of the photos I have posted here are from Taylor’s Granada installment. But Taylor also recently anchored a crowd of 400 statues to the ocean floor off the coast of Mexico. Check out his website for more incredible photos.

I LOVE snorkeling. So, excuse me as I go and try to convince my husband to vacation at one of these diving spots. SO AMAZING!!

– Ann Erling Gofus

It’s not often that you see books that look like this:

Next to the 'poetree' sat a paper egg lined with gold and a scatter of words which, when put together, make "A Trace of Wings" by Edwin Morgan. Photo Credit

Someone has been leaving beautifully intricate sculptures at Edinburgh, Scotland libraries and museums. The first popped up at the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh, and since then The National Library of Scotland, and so on and so on, until most recently The Writer’s Museum found their own little sculpture.

The tag on this reads: To @edbookfest 'A gift' This is for you in support of libraries, books, words, ideas...... & festivals xx. Photo Credit

All are crafted from books – depicting everything from a tree to a bird to a dinosaur. Cards left with the sculptures refer to the pieces or art as “gift” to “In support of libraries, books, words, ideas and those places that house our treasures……” And no one has yet to come forward to claim the art as their own.

The pieces are mysterious and very clever.

The sculpture left at the National Library of Scotland depicted a gramophone seated above a coffin – it was all carved into a copy of Ian Rankin’s “Exit Music”. Get it? Get it?

A gramophone and a coffin, sculpted from a copy of Ian Rankin's Exit Music, and again deposited anonymously. The tag in this case read: For @natlibscot - A gift in support of libraries, books, words, ideas..... (& against their exit). Photo Credit

In a note, the artist reveals that she’s a woman, that after ten sculptures she’s completed this project, and that the pieces are gifts to “special places”. I’m curious if the libraries and museums lucky enough to get a book sculpture will keep theirs on display or auction them off.

These pieces are BEAUTIFUL – I’d love to own one. And this mystery project combines so many things I adore:

1. creativity
2. supporting wonderful institutions
3. beautiful art
4. books!

Check out to see some really amazing photos of the pieces.

Looking for that perfect for the:

1) history buff
2) art lover
3) academic
4) culture snob
5) eclectic

… in your life?

Look no further! We here at Musely have compiled a short list of Top Ten gift suggestions for this holiday season.
Yes, you’re welcome.

1. Jackie Kennedy inspired jewelry – The Smithsonian Institution shop offers around a dozen Jackie Kennedy inspired pieces, including jewelry, a cardigan, handbags and those iconic sunglasses. Personally, I’m a fan of the legendary three-strand pearls, the copy of the bangle that JFK gave to Jackie as an engagement gift, and the replica of the Cartier Tank watch that Jackie wore in mourning for JFK.

This reproduction of Jackie Kennedy's legendary faux-pearl necklace carries 158 handpainted, European glass pearls on hand-knotted silken cords. Photo Credit Smithsonian Institution

ps. Jackie O’s three-strand pearls were fake and were auctioned off in 2010 for $211,000. So, I mean, really, this replica isn’t too far off.

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Whole Foods was playing Christmas music last Sunday. This is a warning: the holiday season is upon us. And that means shopping (and, of course, all the other reasons for the season).

Looking for an ideal gift for the art lover/dreamer/world traveler in your life? Well, I have the perfect idea, and it only weighs 18 pounds.
No, it’s not a dog. No, it’s not a baby.
It’s a book. Yes, a book that weighs 18 pounds, measures 16 1/2 by 12 5/8 inches and runs nearly 1000 pages. But it’s gotta be that big to fit all the world’s greatest works of art in one tome.

Phaidon Press has created The Art Museum – the largest imaginary art museum in the world. It houses over 2,700 of the greatest works by artists across the globe and through time.

Two pages from The Art Museum

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I think the Freer Sackler Gallery is one of the most under-appreciated museums on the National Mall.
It’s quiet, and has this incredibly intimate feel. Almost like you’re walking through someone’s very, very nice house. It’s an art gallery in DC I highly recommend.

In this video you can see behind the scenes goings-on at the Freer Gallery. I especially LOVED watching conservationists treat a Chinese hanging scroll. I will admit that my mind was slightly blown when the conservationists dumped a whole lotta water on the paper scroll.

Freer Sackler Gallery

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Vintage posters have long been hip wall art. You often see them in cool cafes, hanging on loft walls, being sold for hundreds at flea markets. But what about a vintage poster that warns against the dangers of venereal disease? Or, would you hang a historical ad for Andrew’s “Inner Cleanliness” on your living room wall?

Title: Easy to Get... Syphilis and Gonorrhea by Charles Casa, U.S. Navy; U.S. Office of War Information, Date: 1943, Cushing/Whitney Medical Library. Historical Library. Yale University

And, most importantly, does a poster about eating fruits and veggies in an effort to defeat Hitler earn me street cred on my lifelong journey towards ultimate Hipster-status?

Title: EAT to beat the devil, 1942, Cushing/Whitney Medical Library. Historical Library. Yale University

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I love technology (that is, when it’s not freezing or dying or becoming obsolete). Thanks to technology we have the internet (and this blog!), GPS navigation, and the power to explore pieces of art at the Louvre without even leaving our desks (sacre bleu!).

The Louvre offers incredible, in-depth “tours” of paintings in its collection. The “Closer Look” feature allows the viewer to see details of the artwork magnified and explained through audio commentary and animation. Closer Look discusses the historical background of the artwork, and the artistic and symbolic features of each piece.

The portrait of the Marquise de Pompadour by Maurice-Quentin Delatour, photo credit Musée du Louvre/M. Beck-Coppola

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I’m a big fan of Netflix Instant Stream. Sure, it takes a little digging to find great content, but it’s there. I promise. AND I’ll make your search a little easier:

Introducing… Netflix Instant Stream Recommendations – Musely Edition – where we’ll be recommending films about art, history, & culture.

My Netflix Instant Stream Recommendation of the week is Herb & Dorothy. An absolutely delightful documentary about a couple who amassed one of the largest private modern art collections in the US. Sure, you might be thinking, rich Americans collecting art for fun, who cares? Well, Herb & Dorothy are not your average bored rich couple – Dorothy was a librarian and Herb was a postal worker.

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