Author Archives: Sheila Blake

Cross-Pollination in the Arts

Our second show about artists who create in areas other than the one that has made them a name. Tom and Sheila discuss the paintings and practices of Anthony Dominick Benedetto (better known as Tony Bennett), Bob Dylan, and David Bowie. Sheila looks into the art training of President George Bush.

Artists and Their Mistresses

Sheila and Tom explore the professional, sexual, exploitative, inspirational, cooperative, and ambiguous relations between artists and their models, their lovers, wives, and allies. Discussed today are Pierre and Marthe Bonnard, August Rodin and Gwynn John, Picasso, Lucien Freud and Celia Paul, Francis Bacon and George Dyer, and Suzanne Valadon.

Artist Couples: Program 101

Today, program 101, we discuss artist couples who have been working side by side, in partnership.

We begin with two couples profiled in Intimate Collaborations, by Bibiana Obler:
Wassily Kandinsky & Gabrielle Münter and Hans Arp & Sophie Taeuber.

We then talk about mid-century American artist couples like Kienholz: Ed and Nancy Reddin Kienholz; Cristo and Jeanne-Claude; and Josef and Anni Albers.

Poems by Rainer Maria Rilke and Jane Kenyon.

African American Monuments

Sheila and Tom discuss monuments dedicated to African Americans – especially those created by African American Artists, many in Washington DC: among them:

• The African American Civil War Memorial, with its sculpture titled The Spirit of Freedom, by Ed Hamilton,
• the Martin Luther King Memorial, in Washington DC, by Lei Yixin,
• Public Statues of Mary McLeod Bethune, Sojourner Truth (by Artis Lane), and A. Phillip Randolph and Frederick Douglass (both by Ed Dwight)
• Sculptures by Martin Puryear

Cross-Pollination in Painting

A number of musicians, poets, and even politicians have seriously developed as visual artists, usually painters.  Today, Sheila and Tom discuss artists who straddle two worlds, such as poet Elizabeth Bishop, singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell, poet/novelist Henry Miller, and Winston Churchill. The poem, “The Moose”, by Elizabeth Bishop, is read.

Portraits in America

Sheila examines the history of American Portraiture, from the early colonial self-taught limners, through the virtuosos of the late nineteenth century.  We focus on a family of portrait artists in Richmond, Virginia: Ellis Silvette and his children, and discuss Kehinde Wiley’s exciting and intriguing response to the Confederate monuments of that city.

Artists Who Lived Long Lives III

In this program we discuss the late careers of artists whose work evolved into something different, something new, and something beautiful.  The artists discussed today are: Francisco Goya, Jasper Johns, Winslow Homer, Marc Chagall, Grandma Moses, and Louise Nevelson.

This is the third in a series of programs on this topic, while COVID minimizes our museum sorties.

Originally broadcast on WOWD-LP, Takoma Park, Dec 19, 2020.

Matisse, Monet, de Kooning, Martin, and Bourgeois: Artists Who Lived Long Lives

Sheila and Tom discuss the the careers and late paintings of artists who painted to the ends of their long lives: Henri Matisse, Claude Monet, Willem de Kooning, Agnes Martin, and Louise Bourgeois.

Originally broadcast November21, 2020.