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  1. #1
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    "The Cycle of Terror and Tragedy: September 11, 2001" by Graydon Parrish

    I was going to put this in the Finally Finished forum but I'd feel strange being the messenger there Anyway, with Mr. Parrish's permission this is his recently completed painting, and two links describing the image and process:

    http://www.courant.com/features/life...,4700457.story

    http://www.sandstead.com/images/arti...h/parrish.html

    Be forewarned that the colors are not as punchy as they are in person


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  4. #2
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    That is stunning, on all levels. What an absolutely magnificent piece.

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    For those too lazy to click links , a study, some details, and the artist at work.

    Tristan Elwell
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  7. #4
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    wow. just. brilliant.
    My work: [link]

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    Did what I could with Photoshop to make the colors more accurate. The compression is unfortunate but it's much closer to the original now:
    Last edited by darkwolfb87; September 17th, 2006 at 09:30 PM.

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    The thread on this at Cennini has been a great one. I think this painting is important for so many reasons. I believe the piece is going to tour. I will definitely be making plans to see the piece in Amhurst or at one of the exhibition points. Beautiful, inspiring, important work. Your implementation of controlled palettes and lowered chromas in flesh have me thinking along new lines.

    Thank you and thanks to Stephen for taking the time to post the image and links here.

    Tristan and Stephen it is fun to see you guys at Cennini as well.
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    I'd be scared if they tried to tour this painting! I'd rather make the trek down to Connecticut, though it'd be a little tougher for you

    That's interesting, I didn't know there were so many CA'ers hanging out in Cennini.

  11. #8
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    That is an amazing painting.
    * Help a CA artist! Visit the Constructive Critique section! *



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    Amazing bit of work and very inspiring.

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    Truly, that is amazing. Gonna check this guy out when I get some time.

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    Well I need to see this before it tours. The NB Museum is only about 20 mins from me....

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    Wow no wonder that it took him 4 years of work , just impressive piece

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    That's intense stuff. At first I thought it was digital until I saw the specs. Really amazing rendering, though I must admit, I'm more a fan of the skill than of the actual concept.
    ...

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    The skill rocks. I don't like the concept much either.
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    The colours look much better in that second image. I've never seen them that way before.

    Yeah I'm necroing a thread, but it's the least it deserves.

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  23. #17
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    THANK YOU for resurrecting this thread! I'd been trying to find it a while now.

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    I really liked this piece, so I googled Graydon Parrish to find some more of his work and found this article in the New York Times.

    http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpag...5AC0A9609C8B63

    Needless to say, I want to kick this critic where it hurts. I thought she must have been sarcastic when she called Bouguereau and Alma-Tadema hacks, but as I read through the article I realized she wasn't.

    Fucking art critics...

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    I'm sorry for being honest here, but as much as I admire this artist's skills, I find the piece more than a bit of a failure conceptually...
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  29. #21
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    On a technique level it speaks for itself, but painting it as some Greek tragedy kind of dehumanizes it.

    ....and painting the terrorists as innocent little children, fuck that poo poo

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    I found more pictures on this blog, for those who are interested.

    Name:  IMG_7505-1.JPG
Views: 29503
Size:  194.6 KB


    Also, Graydon Parrish does post on this forum occasionally, so please try to be polite when it comes to criticism.

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    DeadlyFreeze, according to the texts, the blindfolded children are representing the naiveté of the Country for not being able to see it coming(?).

    Whilst the concept is not to my taste, either, I don't think it's fair to judge it solely on them terms, especially since it was painted for a client. For me, what's important is the sheer ambition and technical brilliance. Something like this has not been done for decades, and with art being dominated by so much crap over the years, and with such talent being kicked to the side, I find it to be something extra special.

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    this is nicely done but i dont really get it.

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    Most critics like to think great art should stir some controversy. Almost *everyone* thinks it'd be nice if it made you think. So I'd say it's quite the success there.

    The article by the art historian was a bit concoted I felt. Evidently he's the only North American Realist currently painting!

    Personally I feel as though it's technically brilliant except for a slight feeling of disconnection with the lighting conditions between the 'towers' and the rest of the scene. There's something about it which makes them feel a bit 'pasted' into the picture. But overall - I mean hell, look at the ankles on that kid! Jeeezus!

    *edit: DeadlyFreeze: Dehumanizes it? Interesting. I think the point here is that he's trying to make it seem more timeless and 'core' to the human experience. All those Renaissance
    paintings you see where everybody's depicted wearing robes and looking all Greek - you think that's how people dressed then? It's not, it's an attempt to make things seem more universal
    and less tied to a certain time than they really are. I hate to use art speak here but the obvious juxtaposition of that with the planes is really interesting to me. And tbh, the themes of what
    happened are larger than just the loss of lives in New York city. Showing a bunch of people in pain and dying may seem more 'human' but it restricts the eye to seeing only the American,
    victim's viewpoint. mutilation and death is such a visual sledgehammer that it doesn't allow people to withdraw from the pure shock value and start to ask 'why?'.

    And seriously, how much more blood do we need to see? I don't think it helps anybody understand the situation, it just stokes the ember of righteous anger and doesn't let people try to
    move on.*
    Last edited by Dirty C; February 15th, 2009 at 01:58 PM.

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    OK a bit more..

    THis from the new york times article:

    "But with all due consideration for the horrific circumstances that occasioned it, and Mr. Parrish's impressive technical skills, the entire installation comes off as a pompous piece of stagecraft"

    Ok, so basically the same argument here. It's a new yorker getting pissy because somebody she knows died. Fair enough, it's personal, and nobody's going to take a shot at her for saying that when she probably had some experience with it. But all human tragedy was personal to somebody, and all of it either eventually gets turned into opera or it fades from history completely. So I'm taking this as a bit of a one-eyed new yorker picking a fight knowing they've got the ultimate argument to back them up.

    Now, having said that, invoking the three fates is a bit of an easy piece of symbolism. Shit, who here hasn't done it hahaha

  35. #27
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    I actually just stumbled into this piece and this thread this morning and realized that this has been around since last year! That being said, I'd like to share this youtube link of Graydon talking about his painting. At the same time, I'd like to apologize for reviving such an old thread but the discussion was starting to get really interesting.

    Graydon Parrish talks about his Painting

    I agree that this piece is technically amazing, though I fail to understand how it fails conceptually. Of course, with anything, we will always have our own opinions but to call it a "pompous piece of stagecraft" blatantly neglects the whole fact that there was a huge ideation process behind it all. Hours and hours of sketching, studies and thinking behind the piece is definitely obvious in this painting.

    I think that it is conceptually well made, and depicting the scenario of 9/11 in human forms is creative and thought-provoking. I think as the audience, we can connect more to our emotions because we see these emotive figures on a canvas. Will we be able to evoke the same amount of feelings if the artist merely painted the actual two towers? If he is really an amazing artist (which he is) he might be able to pull that idea off, however the fact that he chose to go towards this route and go straight for the viewer's gut is even more of a respectable decision.

    Is the argument here that the symbols were too easily realized? That the two blind folded twins obviously stand for the two towers and that the three women together are the three fates? I feel that that's almost the point.

    In any case, I am curios to hear supporting statements that backs up arguments instead of just saying that it fails.

    As a side note, anybody who says Bouguereau is a 19th-century hack probably has never tried to paint realistically before, ha.

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  36. #28
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    Great work truly masterful. I can see you truly want this to be universal and timeless. The only problem I have is the symbolism is too specific to your opinion. You might want to let the viewer form their own opinion. You just bring out the emotion to make it relevant. But that's just my philosophy.

  37. #29
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    Graydon is coming by the TAD Austin POD tomorrow to spend some time How strange to see this thread pop up the night before. I had not seen that image. Wow. Ambition is a wonderful thing.


    Jason

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    Can't argue with the technical brilliance of the piece, but I find some of the metaphors...irritating.

    In particular, the blindfolded children wielding airliners. Like it or not, it seems to impart some sort of symbolic naivety (and worse, a level of innocence) onto the real-life terrorists. That's my gut reaction, and it bothers me. Maybe his intent was to represent the Third World as colonial "children", a new generation walking in imperialism's violent footsteps (the sprawled elderly man [Uncle Sam?] kind of implies that), but that's still kind of trite. The record now shows that the act was committed neither out of naivety nor on behalf of the downtrodden...it was reckless fanaticism at its worst. I'm a hardcore leftist, and it still annoys me that he couldn't be more honest about that. There's a lot of pain conveyed in this image, but the viciousness behind the act is curiously absent.

    Haven't watched the video to see his fuller explanation (and I'll make the time) but that's kind of the point...this painting is a piece of visual language, and that's what it "sounds" like he's saying. There's no aggressors in the work, only victims, and that representation seems a tad incomplete.
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