Friday, May 11, 2007
From his master he learned the craft of painting by numbers, for which Ravenwheel was to become famous. He composed enormous canvases depicting scenes from popular (but not necessarily factually precise) historical memories.
Here, in the apty-titled, The Execution of an Odd Man (oil on canvas, 1834, at the National Gallery), one can see the Davinci, Sr influences, as well as the tribal remnants of Ravenwheel's years spent in a remote Antarctic farming village.
This one painting was the culmination - the beginning AND end - of Ravenwheel's foray into art. Had he lived longer and not been so thoroughly taunted for his initial art, who knows what manner of masterpieces would grace our museums today.
His sensational failure acquired the attention of the British and Early American art scholars, although neither nation was yet in existence in any meaningful way. "'Tis a shame," one fella was reputed to say.
A shame, indeed.
Posted by Dan Trabue at 9:00 AM