Monday, November 27, 2017

The robot-proof job men aren't taking

Monday, November 20, 2017

Thoughts On the Exhibit "Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer" at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Part 1)

by Gregg Chadwick

Intimately viewing the drawings of Michelangelo helps pull the veil of fame off of this towering figure. In spite of the title of the exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, to give humanity back to artistic gods is no easy feat. The Met has done it twice in fourteen years. First was the 2003 exhibition of Leonardo da Vinci's drawings and now those of Michelangelo in 2017. Both exhibits have given a sense of hope and human possibility back to viewers in times of struggle and uncertainty.

In its exhibition, Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer the Metropolitan Museum has created a temporary museum dedicated to the life, times, and art of Michelangelo. It includes 133 drawings and poems created by Michelangelo that link the artworks to ongoing projects by the artist and his workshop. One of Michelangelo's earliest paintings is included and a small group of his sculptures in marble fill out the show. Also included are drawings by Michelangelo's mentors and artworks by his students and mentees. In a central gallery, a reproduction of the Sistine Chapel ceiling hangs as a canopy above the gallery.

Process and practice 

Like his older contemporary Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo was able to create astonishing works of art out of the simplest means of chalk, ink and paper. In Renaissance era Florence, both Leonardo and Michelangelo learned from established artists. Leonardo was apprenticed to Verrocchio, and Michelangelo was attached to Ghirlandaio's artistic workshop. Complex painting projects such as the Tornabuoni chapel, that Ghirlandaio's workshop was engaged in from 1485-1490 while Michelangelo was there, began with quick idea sketches on paper that were then fleshed out with more involved studies. Apprentices would often pose for these studies. Perhaps the young Michelangelo inspired a figure somewhere on the walls of this chapel? Copying the master's work was also part of the training for young artists. Process and practice were the keys to the growth of a young artist in Renaissance Florence.

The Met's exhibition opens with a group of drawings by Ghirlandaio and then moves on to examples of Michelangelo's studies based on earlier Florentine artists. In many of the works, with quick strokes of the pen coupled with a dense cross-hatching to create shadow and form, Michelangelo sculpts a form out of the paper.

Michelangelo Buonarroti (Italian, 1475–1564) 
Study of a Kneeling Man in a Cloak Seen from the Rear
pen and brown ink 11 1/2" x 7 7/8"
Albertina, Vienna
(formerly in the collection of Peter Paul Rubens?)

Included with Michelangelo's early studies after the Italian masters is a richly pigmented fantasy based on an engraving by the 15th century German artist Martin Schongauer. ( I wrote about this painting in 2009 when the artwork was first exhibited at the Met as an  early work by Michelangelo - link here.)

Michelangelo Buonarroti (Italian, 1475–1564)
The Torment of Saint Anthony (after Schongauer)
c. 1487–88. Oil and tempera on panel, 18 1/2 x 13 1/4 in.

Martin Schongauer
St. Anthony
engraving printed on paper 15th-century - German 

Emulation and Personal Discovery

The young Michelangelo absorbed the influence of his predecessors into a rapidly developing personal style based on an exploration of the human form. Moving from a faux antique look such as the recently attributed sculpture The Young Archer to poetically observed life studies, Michelangelo like Leonardo before him learned that "accurate understanding derives from investigation and experience." 

Michelangelo Buonarroti (Italian, 1475–1564) 
 37" x 13 1/4" x 14" marble sculpture ca. 1490
Lent by the French State, Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs

In 1504, Michelangelo received a commission by the Republic of Florence for a grand mural of the Battle of Cascina in the Great Council Hall. At the same time Leonardo was working on his own mural for the grand space. Leonardo's chalk drawings for his battle scene are full of expressive movement and grand drama. After viewing Leonardo's powerful designs, Michelangelo, as evidenced in the Met's exhibit, went back to the well and drew a red chalk artwork inspired by the figures of Adam and Eve in Masaccio's fresco in the Brancacci Chapel. Curiously, in this chapel during his apprenticeship, Michelangelo was slugged viciously by a rival artist. His broken nose was never properly reset. Years later he went back to the scene  and reclaimed the space and Masaccio's art for his own use.

Michelangelo Buonarroti (Italian, 1475–1564) 
Study of Adam and Eve after Masaccio
1504  red chalk, 12 13/16" x 7 3/8 "
Musée du Louvre

More Like Flesh than Stone

Moving on from his inspiration, Michelangelo began a series of evocative drawings for the planned Battle of Cascina. Jonathan Jones in The Lost Battles writes that "time is included in Michelangelo's vision" in these studies. Jones continues - "There is a tragic power to these drawings. He portrays young men in their full strength and beauty and yet shades them with intimations of ruin."

Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475–1564) 
Study of the Torso of a Male Nude Seen from the Back
1504  black chalk with lead white gouache highlights on paper 7 11/16" x 10 5/8"
Albertina, Vienna
(formerly in the collection of Peter Paul Rubens?) 

These drawings are sumptuously beautiful, and set the stage for the rest of Michelangelo's artistic life. Michelangelo's touch is all over these works. The use of chalk in many of the drawings, rather than pen and ink, opens up a sensuous physicality that feels more like flesh than stone. Remarkably to me, in the Met's exhibit, a few of the drawings feature a model sporting a hipster worthy mustache who could have walked out of 21st century Brooklyn.
A map of desire seems to be drawn across the back of many of Michelangelo's figures. In the gallery I think of the poetry and art to come - Cavafy, Isherwood, Bachardy, Bacon, and Hockney.

Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475–1564) 
Study of the Torso of a Male Nude Seen from the Back
1504  black chalk with lead white gouache highlights on paper 7 11/16" x 10 5/8"
Albertina, Vienna
(formerly in the collection of Peter Paul Rubens?)
Coming up soon on Speed of Life - Part 2 on "Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer" at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

*All photos of exhibit and artwork by Gregg Chadwick 2017

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Come Back, Barack - Chance the Rapper on Saturday Night Live

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Don't Miss Your Chance to Enroll In Health Insurance for 2018

Happy Nov 1! 2018 ACA enrollment has begun.

80% can find plans under $75/month. Go to  .

Please spread the word.

November 1, 2017:
Enrollment for 2018 health insurance begins.

December 15, 2017:
Enrollment for 2018 health insurance ends.

Please share enrollment deadlines for health insurance.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

You Are Invited to Gregg Chadwick's Studio

Please Join Me This Upcoming Weekend
for the 13th Anniversary of the Santa Monica Art Studios 

Gregg Chadwick

City Lights (Chaplin's Night)
48”x36” oil on linen 2017

In my thirteen years creating at the Santa Monica Art Studios, 
I have opened my studio to visiting collectors, art writers, students, 
local groups, scholars, and international guests. Visitors to my studio
have included a bus load of Japanese nursing students from Tokyo, 
a group of academics from the University of Verona in Italy,
professional art conservators from the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam 
and the Getty Museum, a group art meditation session led by noted 
art writer Peter Clothier, as well as numerous visits by Santa Monica
students interested in the arts and culture.
At the Santa Monica Art Studios, I am part of a community of artists - 
driven to create, share knowledge and experience, 
and help the community at large.

This week, I would be honored to have you join the long list of visitors
to my studio #15 at the Santa Monica Art Studios.

Hope to see you soon!

            (New Paintings by Gregg Chadwick in Studio #15)
Where: Studio #15, Santa Monica Art Studios, 
             3026 Airport Ave. SM 90405
When:  Opening Night - Saturday, October 21, 2017,
              6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

               Gregg Chadwick's Studio Will Also be Open:
               Thursday, October 19th 12-6 pm
                Friday, October 20th 12-3 pm
                Sunday, October 22 12-5 pm  
Link to my recent Clark Hulings Fund podcast with Daniel DiGriz.

Gregg Chadwick

Jazz City (Newark Bay)
48”x96” oil on linen 2017
Find Out More

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Walk with Ai Weiwei through his newest outdoor art project in New York, “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors”

Walk with Ai Weiwei through his newest outdoor art project in New York, “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors,” which tackles issues of immigration and inclusion.Publish DateOctober 13, 2017. Photo by Jean Yves Chainon/The New York Times. Technology by Samsung..


Saturday, October 14, 2017

#MLK: Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech in Oslo, Norway, 1964 // #Nonv...

was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize 53 years ago today. His Dec 1964 acceptance speech is powerfully relevant.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Stand Up Against @realDonaldTrump 's Cynical Sabotage of Our Health Care

After Congress failed to repeal Obamacare, the Trump Administration is now taking matters into their own hands and sabotaging the Affordable Care Act through executive orders. Their latest action will raise premiums and create junk insurance policies with none of the protections that families need.
Watch this video and then call your representatives and tell them to stand up to Trump's sabotage of our health care: 202-224-3121

Stand Up Against @realDonaldTrump 's Cynical Sabotage of Our Health Care

 #SaveTheACA #Health #Nursing

These back-door moves to undermine health care are stacking up and quickly taking their toll on our health care. President Trump's actions are intentionally causing premiums to skyrocket and could end coverage for those with pre-existing conditions -- threatening the health care of millions of everyday Americans.
Call your Member of Congress and tell them to stand up to sabotage, and we'll hold them accountable for their votes: 202-224-3121
We were successful in preventing Congressional Republicans from stripping away our health care, but we can't let up. We must stop these new attacks and continue to protect our care.

Monday, October 09, 2017

RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked the World – Trailer

Happy Indigenous Peoples' Day. If you're in the Milwaukee area this evening, there's no better way to celebrate than catching tonight's screening of RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked The World, the new documentary about the indigenous influence on American popular music. See the official trailer above, and click here to buy tickets for tonight's screening.

Springsteen on Broadway, The Wish

Monday, October 02, 2017

RIP Tom Petty and Prince "While My Guitar Gently Weeps"

Sunday, October 01, 2017

And Still I Rise

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Bruce Springsteen's Album "Nebraska" was released on September 30, 1982

"Highway Patrolman" from the album "Nebraska"

Recorded live at Brendan Byrne Arena
on August 5, 1984
Film clips are from the Sean Penn directed movie "The Indian Runner" (1991)

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

U2 - You’re The Best Thing About Me (Official Video)

Monday, September 25, 2017

The myth of race, debunked in 3 minutes

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Take The Knee

"... I cannot stand and sing the anthem. I cannot salute the flag; I know that I am a black man in a white world." - Jackie Robinson, 1972

Saturday, September 23, 2017

New Biography of Leonardo da Vinci by Walter Isaacson

“Walter Isaacson is at once a true scholar and a spellbinding writer. And what a wealth of lessons are to be learned in these pages.” —David McCullough, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize

Walter Isaacson, author of a new biography of Leonardo da Vinci, discusses the Renaissance genius' wildly eclectic notebooks that contained everything from landscape sketches to math equations to 'to do' lists. For more about Leonardo da Vinci by Walter Isaacson

Also by Walter Isaacson
Steve Jobs
Benjamin Franklin
The Innovators

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Thursday, September 21, 2017

First trailer for 'Isle of Dogs' takes you inside Wes Anderson's next animated film

Saturday, September 16, 2017

What A Night!

by Gregg Chadwick

Sergio meets Sergio!
Thanks to everyone who came out to the Santa Monica Art Studios last night to see my exhibit Luchador's Dream which was inspired by the incomparable Sergio Arau.

Saturday, September 09, 2017

Please Join Me at Art & Home 2017: a Benefit for LA Family Housing

by Gregg Chadwick

Gregg Chadwick
Generation Pink
14”x11” oil on panel 2017

 Generation Pink will be exhibited at Art & Home 2017, a benefit for LA Family Housing hosted by Room & Board in Culver City. 

 In collaboration with Angeleno magazine, please join us for a special art show at Room & Board in Culver City on September 13, 2017.
Over 100 local, contemporary artists have donated artworks in support of LA Family Housing. (LAFH).
Dedicated to helping families and individuals transition out of homelessness and poverty, LAFH offers a range of housing opportunities enriched with supportive services.

Artwork on display in the showroom will be available for purchase for $400!
If you have always wanted a Chadwick, this is a wonderful opportunity to get an artwork at an affordable price and to support an important cause.

Please RSVP at

Wednesday, September 13 at 7 PM - 9 PM
Room & Board
8707 Washington Blvd, Culver City, California 90232

More at:

Don't forget my recent Clark Hulings Fund podcast with Daniel DiGriz.

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