Whoa ! This discussion is up to 19 pages and growing fast. When I signed up to join the ER gang and make a comment or two, I thought it was just a "tempest in a teapot" that would soon blow over. Holy smokes! It's now jumped from here, and seems to be all over the Web...and in languages other than English.
OK. So I was wrong about this being a little "Tempest in a Teapot". I have also turned out to be wrong about something else I posted last Sunday, and am back to steam-roller myself with the rest of you as witnesses.
I went to Bob's exhibit at the Gagosian last Saturday, without copies of my own Flickr pics to strictly compare to his. However, I was SURE he "painted one of my lines" (a border line I added to the photo Bob used for the "EMPEROR" painting. I was so sure, in fact, that I had a good laugh, and went home quite satisfied with myself that I had put one over on him.
However, when I got home, I didn't have either his Exhibition Catalog or my own photos of his paintings (no photography of the exhibit proper was allowed) to critically compare with the original photos.
So, I was out of luck in both NYC and PA, but trusted my memory to have "read it right"....and posted my little "New York Story" right here on these boards.
Today, the Catalog came in the mail.
Dylan did NOT paint my "tag". That is, he didn't paint my little chunk of borderline that gave me the good laugh at the Gagosian, and which I told about in my little post that was well received by a few of you esteemed members.
LOOK AT THIS PHOTO : http://www.flickr.com/photos/24443965@N08/3492941386/
What Bob did was, in order to get the SQUARE Flickr pic to fit his PORTRAIT RECTANGLE, was to trim off both sides of the photo. My laugh on Dylan was tied into the LEFT border of the photo, and his art made from it. But, I laughed too soon.
Dylan simply moved the border over to that white screen you see in the background (the one with the distant girl standing in front of it). He stopped the edge of his canvass just short of the white screen, leaving part of the already dark background as a natural "Black border" to replace the the one I had added on Flickr. The result was a dark "border line" that runs right down to the plant -- a line from the natural dark background next to the white screen that Dylan made just was wide as my own border. The size and feel of Dylan's new border line above the plant was a perfect match to my old one that ran down the side of the photo.
While in the Gallery, and working from my memory, this trade-out of lines fooled me. Dylan was a magician, and the illusion was masterful. While I went away laughing at Dylan for copying my line, it now turns out that that the trick was his, and good 'ol Dylan got the last laugh on me !
Damn it. I'm getting old.
Lesson learned : (1) When dealing with Bob and his questionable paintings, HOLD OFF until you have all art, photos, and catalogs in front of you ! (2) Do NOT under any circumstances post anything on EXPECTING RAIN when your sleep cycle has been disturbed by a long round trip from PA to New York and back, without haven't eaten anything for over 30 hours. (3) When your wrong, say so, and get it over with !
The cost of finding out that Dylan put one over on me ? 80 Dollars...for the Catalog !
The upside --- being forced to ignore my own Flickr posts, and go dig out all of the original photos I used to make those posts. And through that, understand how Dylan grabbed and re-painted the photos.
Perhaps the best thing was finding out the real name of "MAE LING" --- the women in Dylan's close portrait of the smiling Ainu girl. I knew that the Chinese-sounding "MAE LING" could not be right, as the Ainu of those days were already adopting Japanese names. After an hour of digging through the boxes of old photos, there she was. And amazingly, her name was on the photo --- ASAKO MIYAMOTO.
I wonder...if I had put that name on Flickr from the beginning, would Dylan still have called her Mae Ling
? Probably. He ignored all of the other Titles and Locations of the other photos he used. Apparently, Bob's "Art" calls for a re-invention of everything.
OK...so his Asian Series
is full of little mistakes, odd misdirection, alleged deceit, possible lies, outright deception, and butt-naked controversy....butt-naked to the point where some might say "The Emperor Bob has no Clothes
Only this time, I'm not laughing at Dylan. He's taught me to watch myself a little closer, and forced me to learn a few more things about these photos (both mine and those of others that he used). And following all of the posts here on EXPECTING RAIN, I've gotten exposed to a lot more heartfelt opinions (on both sides of the sticky issues surrounding Dylan's ways of doing things) than I've ever been flooded with before.
If I come up with any more IDs for the yet-unsourced photos behind some of the remaining paintings, I will post the links here first.
This is certainly a damn good "Tempest in a Teapot".
--- Okinawa Soba