Frida Kahlo’s painting burnt and ‘transitioned into the Metaverse’

Frida Kahlo’s painting burnt and ‘transitioned into the Metaverse’

Tommaso Berra · 2 months ago · Art

In his black jacket, slung tightly over his shoulders and painted with splashes of colour, Mexican art collector Martin Mobarak is holding a party in Miami, the guests are smiling poolside, about to watch a Frida Kahlo painting burn.
The crowd is looking right at Mobarak and this is not a performance like those seen in the past, where attention-seeking acrobats deface this or that masterpiece of art. Our anti-hero lives in a different timeline from the one that considers Frida to be one of the most intense artists of the 20th century, he lives in the one where the Mexican artist makes works in the metaverse, and it is there that Mobarak wants to take the painting Fantasmones Siniestro, which the meta-collector claims to have purchased in 2015 from the New York gallery Mary-Anne Martin Fine Art, who however claim to have never heard of him, as Vice reports.

In an aperitif atmosphere with plastic cups, Martin Mobarak pulls the work out of a black case, removes the cloth protecting it and starts unscrewing the frame with a screwdriver. Having completed the bricolage work, the meta-carpenter proudly displays the work that Frida Kahlo had created in 1944 for the Venezuelan art critic Juan Rohl, later exhibited in New York and sold first in 2004 to the Vergel Foundation and then to a private collector in 2013.
It is here that the meta-bartender places the work in a giant Martini glass, filled with ice and fuel (not even an olive, come on!). Flames start burning Fantasmones Siniestro, while in the background to make everything more surreal, the volume of Cielito Lindo (Ay, Ay, Ay, canta y no llores) is turned up. The cup is then transformed into an altar, on which a piece of art is sacrificed in the name of the future, the ritual of the ‘alchemist of art, who transforms physical art into digital gold’, as the meta-shaman called himself, is completed.

Frida Kahlo | Collater.al

The ritual is nothing more than a stunt by Mobarak to present his Frida.NFT blockchain project, which plans to make 10 thousand NFT digital copies of the work, each worth 3 ETH, about $4,000, for a total figure of $40 million, not very meta, very neoclassical. Part of the proceeds, however, will go to associations supporting children, a statement that does not conceal doubts about the value of the project.
The collector claims not to have destroyed the work but to have “consigned it to the metaverse”, to have thus introduced Frida’s work into a dimension that would “This community-driven initiative has a vision to introduce Frida’s work into the metaverse and leverage her powerful likeness to bring together a community of collectors, creators, and art lovers on a mission to merge the traditional art world with the digital art world’s expanding potential and immortalize humanities story”. A concept that does not convince insiders in the first place, who have doubted the provenance of the work, causing the case to reach Mexico’s National Institute of Fine Arts and Literature, which has opened an investigation in recent days.

Frida Kahlo | Collater.al

In Mexico, in fact, the destruction of an artistic monument constitutes a crime by law, and then there is the added doubt as to the provenance of the work (now a crypto work) authenticated by the merchant Andres Siegel on 30 July 2022, the day of the ceremony.
It no longer seems a coincidence, then, that the performance took place in Miami and not in Mexico, a grand entrepreneurial project perhaps, which has cast shadows on the management of artistic heritage in the possession of large investors unconnected to institutions.
Who knows if Fantasmones Siniestros is really in the metaverse, for the time being it is certain that we have lost a page in the diary of Frida Kahlo’s story, in which a giant weight, a broom, a duck, a bird and spectral creatures represented all the complexity and magic of one of the greatest artists in the history of art.

Frida Kahlo | Collater.al
Frida Kahlo’s painting burnt and ‘transitioned into the Metaverse’
Art
Frida Kahlo’s painting burnt and ‘transitioned into the Metaverse’
Frida Kahlo’s painting burnt and ‘transitioned into the Metaverse’
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The unpublished shots of the great fashion photographer Gian Paolo Barbieri

The unpublished shots of the great fashion photographer Gian Paolo Barbieri

Tommaso Berra · 5 days ago · Photography

Gian Paolo Barbieri is one of the giants of fashion on film, a member of a group of photographers who have been able to depict the world of models, fashion shows and product by going beyond any superficial narrative.
An exhibition by the great master of photography Gian Paolo Barbieri opens in Milan today, Nov. 29, and at the 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery at 13 Via San Vittore, Milan, he will present a series of never-before-seen, full-color works.

© Gian Paolo Barbieri – Laura Alvarez, Venezuela, 1976 – Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri : 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery – © Copyright Gian Paolo Barbieri/ Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri / 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery

The title of the exhibition is ‘Gian Paolo Barbieri: Unconventional,‘ and it is indeed unconventional how the artist has approached photography and fashion, reworked based on the many experiences and celebrities with whom he has woven relationships and direct contacts.
In the shots of Barbieri, known mainly for his black and white production, provocation and history chase each other, taking up poses from art history, citations to design and architecture, a symbolism that is connoted by an ultra-personal and authentic vision. The new elegance and eroticism that Barbieri has been able to represent in his career can be seen at the 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery, in an exhibition that comes a few days after the cinema release of “L’uomo e la bellezza,” the first docufilm on Gian Paolo Barbieri and already awarded at the Biografilm Festival 2022 in Bologna.

© Copyright Gian Paolo Barbieri/ Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri / 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery
© Gian Paolo Barbieri – Eva Herzigova, Roma, 1997 – Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri : 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery – © Copyright Gian Paolo Barbieri/ Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri / 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery
© Gian Paolo Barbieri – Neith Hunter, Grecia – 1983 – Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri : 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery – © Gian Paolo Barbieri – Neith Hunter, Grecia – 1983 – Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri : 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery – © Copyright Gian Paolo Barbieri/ Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri / 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery
© Gian Paolo Barbieri – Moira O’Brien, Seychelles, 1981 – Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri : 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery – © Copyright Gian Paolo Barbieri/ Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri / 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery
© Gian Paolo Barbieri – Isa Stoppi in Coppola&Toppo, Milano 1968 – Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri : 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery – © Copyright Gian Paolo Barbieri/ Courtesy of Fondazione Gian Paolo Barbieri / 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery
The unpublished shots of the great fashion photographer Gian Paolo Barbieri
Photography
The unpublished shots of the great fashion photographer Gian Paolo Barbieri
The unpublished shots of the great fashion photographer Gian Paolo Barbieri
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Triangle of Sadness in 10 frames  

Triangle of Sadness in 10 frames  

Giulia Guido · 2 days ago · Photography

What happens to society if suddenly the status quo changes? Swedish director Ruben Östlund‘s answer is called Triangle of Sadness. 

Triangle of Sadness was presented during the 75th Cannes Film Festival, where it was awarded the Palme d’Or for best film. Since then its success has crossed all borders. From Sweden to France, from France to the world, abetted by a trailer that in just a few seconds already manages to capture the viewer’s attention and catapult them into this critique of modern society watered by champagne and vomit. 

Carl and Yaya are two models who decide to take a luxury cruise. During the vacation they get to know the other passengers, without ever really relating to them, until at one point the ship sinks and the survivors find themselves on a deserted island. It is at this point that a role reversal begins, and those who were previously at the top of the social pyramid now find themselves having to work for the only people who really know how they can survive in that circumstance. Some will be able to forget the luxury and adapt to the new status quo, others less so, but the more days go by the more the transformation from human to beast takes place. 

Ruben Östlund, however, decides not to take sides and leaves it up to the viewer to decide whether this process of decivilization will be finished or whether there is still hope in human consciousness. 

In sharp contrast to the brutality and cynicism of the plot we find a clean and elegant aesthetic, also the child of the work of Fredrik Wenzel, a Swedish cinematographer who also collaborated with Luca Guadagnino on the miniseries We Are Who We Are. Thus, the more critical the situation becomes the more beautiful the image becomes, mesmerizing the viewer. 

One piece of advice, however, I will leave you with: watching Triangle of Sadness after dinner may not be the best idea. 

Triangle of Sadness in 10 frames  
Photography
Triangle of Sadness in 10 frames  
Triangle of Sadness in 10 frames  
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“The Beauty of Imperfection”-the shots of Alina Gross

“The Beauty of Imperfection”-the shots of Alina Gross

Tommaso Berra · 6 days ago · Photography

The female nude body in the photographic shots of Alina Gross becomes an element far from any erotic representation, or rather the language of photography facilitate the attempt to evoke the ambivalences of sexuality and gender.
The Ukrainian photographer and now based in Germany brings to mind erotic elements through the associations of natural shapes and elements, combining them to create an imperfect beauty, the “Beauty of Imperfection” that is also the title of her latest artbook as well as the project the artist has been pursuing for the past four years.
Alina Gross does not show a univocal beauty – and figure of women – to be told only through traditional canons of beauty, but expands the meaning of forms, thanks also to a pictorial rendering of bodies, aided by the use of color that often sprinkles the skin. The disturbing effect of viewing naked parts is not masked, Gross however invites the viewer to review the mental process of analyzing reality and its definition, which leads to breaking down dizzying barriers.

Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
Alina Gross | Collater.al
“The Beauty of Imperfection”-the shots of Alina Gross
Photography
“The Beauty of Imperfection”-the shots of Alina Gross
“The Beauty of Imperfection”-the shots of Alina Gross
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“Don’t Worry Darling” in 10 frames 

“Don’t Worry Darling” in 10 frames 

Giulia Guido · 1 week ago · Photography

Don’t Worry Darling is one of those cases where one watches the film more out of curiosity than healthy interest. The film, which arrived in theaters last Sept. 22 and was presented at the Venice Film Festival last Sept. 5, began to be talked about long before the trailer, teaser and first photos from the set. 

In fact, the controversies began right at the beginning of filming, when Olivia Wilde, who signs off as director, fired Shia LaBeouf, justifying this decision to the actor’s method of working, which according to Wilde did not fit her modus operandi.
Olivia Wilde’s problems also continued with the leading lady, Florence Pugh, with whom she seems to have had several tensions (never publicly confirmed).
Rounding out this complicated production phase came the director’s choice to replace LaBeouf with then-partner Harry Styles

Inevitably, all these events also took their toll on the promotion phase, which, however, shifted the focus from the actual film to pure gossip. 

A shame? Perhaps not. 

Alice and Jack Chambers are a happily married couple living in Victory, an experimental 1950s community where the men spend all day at work, while the women take care of the house, and then spend their free time with their neighbors. Something suddenly changes, however, and Alice begins to feel constrained in that life, with an increasing desire to discover what lies beyond the city limits. This is the plot, which in itself also hides something potentially interesting, unfortunately it is the development that is lacking. It’s like when teachers in school used to say “he has potential but he doesn’t apply himself.” 

Of all that Don’t Worry Darling puts on the table-which seems more like a need for redemption on Wilde’s part-something is saved and it is the reason why the film lets you watch it to the end: the aesthetics

In fact, the director used the work of Matthew Libatique, an American cinematographer and regular collaborator of Darren Aronofsky, to take care of the photography. In nearly three decades of work, Libatique has handled the cinematography for such films as Requiem for a Dream and The Black Swan, experience that led him to be prepared for the eerie reality brought to the big screen in Don’t Worry Darling. It is immediately noticeable how the warm light that illuminates the entire town becomes cold and gloomy when Alice is alone with herself, and becomes colder and colder as time passes. The use of light, then, goes hand in hand with the colors of the places: for example, the bathroom tiles are green, reminiscent of hospital uniforms. 

For this reason, it was particularly difficult to select only 10 frames from the film, which perhaps focused heavily on aesthetics and too little on content. 

“Don’t Worry Darling” in 10 frames 
Photography
“Don’t Worry Darling” in 10 frames 
“Don’t Worry Darling” in 10 frames 
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