Thursday, January 15, 2009


The Dominion Post takes a hardline populist approach to art. By now everyone must know that they’ve booted out their art critic and, after a couple of weeks of feature stories to try and cover their cultural butts, they’ve gone back to their more familiar stance of art-as-a-joke. Yesterday (Wednesday is the DomP’s art feature day) we were treated to a textile artist “who once cut off her hair, painted herself blue and climbed a sheer ice wall naked (yes, of course there's a photograph) to better understand how water works” as well as a classic animal art story on the front page with three column photo. The twist this time is that the animal is a two-year-old human, Aelita, who the DomP claims has “put her finger on what it takes to sell abstract art”. You can see the full story here on OTN Stuff.

Young tykes fooling the art world with their abstracts have sold lots of newspapers, so who can be surprised when the DomP finally catches up. The original story of Aelita featured in Australian papers three months ago and a quick Google search will swamp you with genius baby-painters, all of whose art is guaranteed to fool any old art expert. If you’re still with us on this, you can check out two-year-old Freddy and two-year-old Marla Olmstead, who even has her own web site. Oh, and here’s a Charlie Rose programme on the whole business of kids making art works that fool the art world.