Arts History Update for early September 2013

30 Aug

Arts History Update for early September 2013 by David Cummins


Comanchero Canyons Museum will open in 2014 in Quitaque Texas. A former Church of Christ building is being converted into the museum space. Fundraisers have been and will continue to be held in Briscoe, Hall, Motley, Swisher and Floyd counties, possibly elsewhere. The Valley Tribune: Voice of the Rolling Plains is a weekly newspaper in Quitaque serving the first three named counties Additional information through Quitaque Chamber of Commerce


Quitaque is the home of George Calvert metal artist and here are eight images of his pieces.


There are bed & breakfast lodging options including Feathered Nest, Sportsman Lodge, Pole Canyon Ranch Guest House, and Mama Stockton’s each with a website and images of the accommodation. Others are in nearby Silverton and Turkey including Hotel Turkey built in 1927, National Register of Historic Places in 1991, phone 806-423-1151 operated by Cody Bell. Two story 14 room hotel with breakfast lunch and occasional dinner downstairs. Turkey is the hometown of Bob Wills, legendary Texas Swing musician. There is an annual Bob Wills Day in Turkey with many musicians playing.


Caprock Canyons State Park & Trailway is adjacent a 14,000 acre area with numerous hiking trails. About 1,000 acres is free pasture for the Official Texas Bison Herd so bison can be viewed in nature. Watch a six minute video on saving the Texas bison. The trailway is converted railroad bed  of the Denver Fort Worth and South Plains Railway including Clarity Tunnel open to hikers bicyclers and horse riders. A stables in Quitaque can provide rented horses


2013 Bison Festival is Saturday September 28 beginning 10:00 a.m. Concert with multiple bands begins at 2:00 p.m. $25 held at the Cotton Gin on FM 1065 a quarter mile south of Quitaque.


Quitaque is 97 miles northeast of Lubbock about one hour 45 minutes driving time on the most direct route US Highway 82 east to Ralls, north on US Highway 62 to Floydada, north on Texas Highway 207, northeast on FM 97 to leave the Caprock and FM 1065 into Quitaque.




Charles Hope, The Art of the Phony, The New York Review of Books, August 15, 2013 is an essay about forging of art, its dynamics, and its consequences, using three current books as discussion points.


Sands Point New York art dealer Glafira Rosales was arraigned this week in federal court for selling $80 million in counterfeit modernist art through New York galleries.


Scientific methods are available to make a costly determination of the age and constituents of materials on a specific painting. Sometimes one can say for sure it wasn’t done by a specific well-known artist.


B.A. Shapiro, The Art Forger: A Novel (Algonquin Books 2012) highlights some of the suspicions one may have, and why. Establishing provenance is often difficult, incomplete and uncertain, forcing both seller and buyer to deal in the dark.


Alec Wilkinson, The Giveaway: Who was the mysterious man donating all the valuable art?, The New Yorker Magazine, August 26, 2013 at pages 24-29 is an article about Mark Landis of Laurel Mississippi who copied famous art and donated the copies to galleries and museums as if they were originals by the famous artist. Since no money changed hands prosecutors declined to prosecute. Mr. Landis wanted to be treated as an art collector and philanthropist and that treatment was compensation enough. Eventually the network of museums tumbled to the fake art and declined gift offers and returned unsolicited fake art.


Landis adopted disguises such as a Catholic priest and other identities in order to be permitted into the donation process, but that became known to potential donees.


Sadly, Landis painted some pieces and exhibited under his own name. He’s a fair artist. Why that wasn’t enough for him is a psychological question.




Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer 2000 – present resigns. An employee since 1980 he owns 4% of Microsoft stock worth about $11 billion.


What Microsoft learned is that its unique software for operating desktop and laptop computers is behind the curve for software operating mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets. Objectively, it was never possible for it to maintain the cutting edge software that established its early dominance.


Its current stance is to transform into a “devices and services company”. One can predict that its devices thrust will be back in the pack with competitors, so its future is to lead by making software adaptations in granting specific capabilities to users who have the moxie to know what it is they want to do that is not to their minds available to them from anyone else. Just saying this makes me think their market for what they do really well is becoming thinner and thinner. Even if they are near the top of their new market they will never again be a dominant technology company. Still, it is a large well-run excellent company doing much that we all need and want. For those institutional users like Texas Tech Microsoft will continue to provide computer services that are outstanding and easily usable by faculty staff and students.




Random attack by teens kills aged World War II veteran sitting in his car outside an Eagles Lodge in Spokane Washington


This is the subject of a recent novel Herman Koch, The Dinner (transl. Sam Garrett, Hogarth 2013, initially 2009 in Dutch and a bestseller in Europe). The focus of the novel is on the parents of teenagers when they discover their children first tormented a supine female homeless person in an ATM kiosk and then put an empty gas can near her and lit a match. The fire and explosion ended her life. How the two sets of parents deal with themselves and their children and how far they are willing to go to conceal from police what they know, is the topic of the book.


Throughout the book there are instances when the narrator adult parent is brought to a level of irritation and then resorts to personal violence or threatened violence against the irritating person. What occurs in that adult’s history, is now what is occurring in the teenagers’ lives.


Many people have been disturbed by the heightened levels of violence in film, television, and videos, particularly in uncontrolled technologically attuned environments that are beyond control by parents or authority figures. Does seeing so much violence reduce the teenage person’s aversion of of it in real life? Does it entice the teenager to engage in violence? Even if it did, why would teenagers torment or beat an aged vulnerable defenseless person? This is an entirely different question from the Good Samaritan syndrome where many will pass on by aged vulnerable defenseless people who are clearly in need of assistance.


I finished reading The Dinner and not three days later broadcast news reports this Spokane incident. Delbert Belton was age 88 and was both robbed and beaten. Two African-American 16 year old persons have been arrested. One is named Kenan Adams-Kinard. A report says that an eyewitness saw some of the incident which was caught on the building’s surveillance camera.


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