Art education pays off

A couple of days ago, my husband found an online art quiz, Can You Guess the Famous Artist from a Tiny Part of Their Painting?  We scored 96%, missing only two of fifty questions; I had never heard of one artist.

The first two questions were “gimmes”—Van Gough’s Starry Night and Picasso’s cubist painting of a seated woman.

Excerpt from Van Gogh's Starry Night
Excerpt from Van Gogh’s Starry Night


Excerpt from Picasso's Seated Woman
Excerpt from Picasso’s Seated Woman

It looks like years of going to art museums as a child, plus my time in the Art & Design program—including my crash course in Art Appreciation—has paid off! I really appreciate the different styles and can recognize the characteristics of many artists. I would never confuse the works of Jackson Pollock, say, for those of Georgia O’Keeffe! However, if shown a portion of a Picasso cubist work vs. a Bracques work, I might have more difficulty in identifying the artist.

Texas Contemporary Art Fair has a few surprises

The Texas Contemporary Art Fair was at Houston’s George R. Brown Convention Center the first weekend in October. This was my first time visiting the event.



One exhibitor had framed Damien Hirst dot paintings for sale. They were only $5100 each, framed.

Damien Hirst Dots painting

Damien Hirst Dots paintingOne painting deviated from Hirst’s normal “pure grid” layout, where each dot is “x” units wide, and space between is also “x” units wide. One column of dots was cut in half vertically and moved down half a row.

Damien Hirst Dots painting
Damien Hirst Dots painting


We enjoy Miró’s work and have two block-signed lithographs in our home, “The Sun” and “The Moon.” We were surprised to see that one exhibitor had several pencil-signed Joan Miró serigraphs and lithographs. The work below is interesting because the red, black and blue shapes have more defined, Calderesque, edges. Miro’s shapes often have irregular brushstroked edges.

Joán Miro painting at Texas Contemporary Art Fair
Joán Miro


We were drawn to the work of a Nigerian artist, Victor Ekpuk. His work uses a lot of symbols and characters.

Three Victor Ekpuk paintings
Three Victor Ekpuk paintings