Maiden Voyages: September 2014

(Last Updated On: September 5, 2014)

Sometimes, I can’t get over how wonderful our readers are. The only reason Pigtails in Paint still exists is because of our readers. And as our readership increases, this site gains credibility and resources which can make our site even better. I am still not sure what Pigtails’ ultimate function will be, but I am confident that we are addressing something important that does not get talked about in popular culture.

One of the things I am pleased to see right now is that my dream of having more writers contribute is starting to happen. Ami has told me she has begun work on a Mark Ryden post. WCL is doing a post on some interesting statues he found in cemeteries. Another writer is promising a scholarly piece on the famous—iconic really—image of a naked Vietnamese girl fleeing a Napalm attack. Yet another wants to do a piece on Ida Teichmann and another is working on Range Murata.  RJ discovered an artist who received some flak for images of his 2-year-old daughter.  He is now exhibiting and has used the derogatory comments as titles for his work!

In the last month, one of the artists we featured, Zoltán Jókay, requested that his images be removed from our site. This was a surprise, because of all people, I would expect artists to be tolerant and to understand the need for a range of expression that say something meaningful. Also, anyone who has taken a closer look at this site realizes that we are offering substance, not just eye-candy. When a person cannot take the time to recognize this, he/she reinforces the corrupt paradigms of mainstream culture.

Another brief item is that Graham Ovenden is scheduled to be released from prison in November, assuming there are no new developments.

I have been meaning to mention an amazing documentary called Tim’s Vermeer. Because it does not deal with little girls, I could not make an excuse to make a dedicated post. However, anyone who has any interest in art history or technique owes it to himself to see this. I don’t want to spoil the premise except to say it is about the painter Vermeer and it will blow you away.

I also read an interesting book review. Understandably, the conflict in Afghanistan has been taking its toll on girls and it appears that some Afghan families are raising their girls as boys in order to give them access to education and other privileges offered exclusively to boys. It is hard to bring out most of the complexities of this situation, so I recommend anyone interested in gender roles or the devastation of military conflict read The Underground Girls of Kabul by Jenny Nordberg.

Thank you for your time. -Ron

7 thoughts on “Maiden Voyages: September 2014

  1. ALSO, could you give the name of the photographer who is doing the images of his 2YO daughter? Sounds interesting.
    And imagine, even THAT some people find obscene!
    Maybe next they will decide that an picture of a newborn baby is obscene
    if her first diaper has not been put on her yet.

  2. P.S. Another case that comes to mind is that of the talented comic singer Rolf Harris. He is also (currently, I believe) imprisoned in Britain after being convicted on similar charges. Some people don’t like him because his biggest hit song contained a reference to “Abos”, a slang term for Australian Aborigines. A few decades have passed since that song came out. In today’s world “Abo” is considered an ethnic slur, or just politically incorrect, depending on how one wants to view it. Anyway, I wonder if he also was actually guilty or not.

  3. Allow me to ask your opinion:

    Do you believe that Ovenden was actually guilty, or that he was “framed up” because of the controversial nature of his work?

    • The Ovenden case is a complicated one mostly due to politics. I am confident he is not guilty of what he has been accused of and certainly did not deserve to do prison time. I tried to offer some details in the Fall from Grace? post, but it was a difficult challenge because I had to make sure the readers had enough information for the story to make sense, but I was reluctant to air more dirty laundry than was necessary. To boil it down, Ovenden’s real issue has to do with his personality and judgment lately that afforded the authorities the opportunity to build a case. The visibility of his work has embarrassed prosecutors for years and they cannot publicly appear to be doing nothing. The secrecy of what transpired in the courts is another indication that this was a show trial meant to send a message to other artists in the UK. -Ron

      • Just like what happened with Jock Sturges here in the United States. But at least in HIS case, the prosecutors realized that they did not “have a case” and they decided to forget about bringing him to trial.

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