The Podcast about Art and the Creative Process

Episode 4: Grand Theft Art-O

“Steal Like An Artist”
-Stone Cold Steve Austin Kleon

Part I: Manet’s Malaise

Artists copy! Artists steal!
Artists sample! Artists conceal!
Artists absorb what’s around them and transform it into something original and exciting.

Go steal something! You’re an artist too!

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FUturama & The Simpsons

Everything is a reference all the time. These two shows created by Matt Groening are both highly original yet very referential. By it’s very nature, satire reuses existing material for the sake of humor. Both of these shows have since been copied by a number of artists and creators.

Beastie Boys & Led Zeppelin

The Beastie Boys, famous for their sampling, used Led Zeppelin’s The Ocean for their song “She’s Crafty.” Led Zeppelin did the same thing 20 years earlier with their copies, covers, and remixes of blues legends like Robert Johnson, Howlin’ Wolf, and Willie Dixon.

Kanye & Steely Dan

Kanye’s song “Champion” from his Graduation album samples Steely Dan’s “Kid Charlemagne.” At first Steely Dan refused the let Kanye use the sample until he wrote them a personal, handwritten letter.

 

Edoaurd Manet: the Modern Art OG

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Edouard Manet, Auguste Rodin, Paul Cezzane, and Gustave Courbet
These four men, along with others, began to turn the tide of art in the 19th century.
You can thank these guys for modern art and those paintings that are completely white.


Gimme a piece of dem whiskers….

Gimme a piece of dem whiskers….

Baron Haussmann

The famous urban planner and fake baron who redesigned Paris into what we know today.

Danny Ocean Knows the difference between Manet and Monet

 

Manet’s Olympia
Painted in 1863, exhibited at the 1865 Salon, number one most popular fridge magnet in 1885

Olympia, oil on canvas, 51” x 75,” 1863, Musee D’Orsay, Pairs

Olympia, oil on canvas, 51” x 75,” 1863, Musee D’Orsay, Pairs

Why is this painting important? What was Manet thinking of when he made it? What was the people’s response when they saw it? Why did it receive it’s own podcast segment?

Glad you asked! This painting, though certainly not the first painting of a nude woman (Manet just copied Titian’s nudes, see below), depicted a nude woman in a way that had not been seen before. Instead of painting a nude woman representing a goddess or biblical or historical figure, Manet painted what appeared to be, simply, a nude woman. Not only was she not a goddess, but she was a prostitute (the bracelet, choker, flowers, and black cat were symbols related to prostitutes). Manet also painted the woman gazed out directly at the viewer, a shocking twist from the usual coy gaze of a female nude.


What do you notice about these three paintings below? Any similarities?

MAnet’s olympia (left) was based off of Titian’s Venus of Urbino (middle), which was based off of Giorgione’s Sleeping Venus

Artist theft has been happening since the first caveman painted a horse in a cave. The way artists learn is by looking at and imitating other artists, so it’s no surprise that some of the most famous paintings in the world were based off of other paintings. However, Manet stealing the pose and setting from Titian (who learned it by finishing Giorgione’s nude after he died) doesn’t mean that Manet was unoriginal or an impostor. His remix of Titan’s painting, and of other classical works, allowed viewers to connect to something they were familiar with yet opens them up to something new. Or, the viewers reject the work and decry it as obscene and pornographic, which is what usually happens with great art (see below).

Courbet’s Le Orgine du Monde (The Origin of the World)
This painting has created many an uproar since it was created and causes John to laugh uncontrollably

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Manet was a kleptomaniac! Many of the poses and themes in his paintings were taken from other artists!
For example, his controversial “Dejuener sur L’herbe” was based off of another Titian painting, “The Pastoral Concert.” Looks like Manet liked Titian, and Titan liked painting naked women.

 

Part II: Anime All the Way

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Yes yes who’s on third? / Lupe steal like Lupin the Third

These are the first two lines from Lupe Fiasco’s verse on Kanye West’s Touch the Sky, which samples Curtis Mayfield’s Move On Up. The music video features Kanye in a parody of Evel Knievel. Knievel sued Kanye for copying his trademark, patriotic-as-fuck, red, white, and blue outfit. As you can see from the photo to the left, the gentlemen worked things out.

 

Lupin the Third and his meteoric history.

The OG Arsene Lupin, a gentleman thief

The OG Arsene Lupin, a gentleman thief

The original Lupin was Arsene Lupin, a short story character created by Maurice Leblanc in 1905. Lupin met up with his inspiration Herlock Sholmes in some of the stories.

The animated Lupin is the grandson of the original Lupin from the stories.

 

Ub Iwerks & Walt Disney

Disney on the left, Iwekrs on the right.

Disney on the left, Iwekrs on the right.

These two buddies helped create the Disney that we know now. Although just one of them got all the credit. I think you can guess who that was.

Iwerks created Mickey Mouse and used a thing called neoteny to make his characters cute and lovable. His style would help define animation as we know it today

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The Wan Brothers and Princess Iron Fan

The two brothers, Wan Guchan and Wan Laiming, along with their younger brother, helped kickstart Chinese animation

The two brothers, Wan Guchan and Wan Laiming, along with their younger brother, helped kickstart Chinese animation

Princess Iron fan was the first, full length Chinese animation, released in 1941 during WWII

Princess Iron fan was the first, full length Chinese animation, released in 1941 during WWII

Princess Iron Fan took cues from Snow White and created their own version based off of the novel Journey to the West. Princess Iron Fan was a retelling of an eastern fairy tale. Check it here.

 

Tezuka Osamu and Astroboy

The Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost of Japanese animation

The Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost of Japanese animation

Osamu Tezuka was for Japan what Iwerks & Disney were for America and the Wan brothers were for China. Tezuka is the reason anime looks the way it does, taking neoteny to the next level.

Hayao Miyazaki

What a dude

What a dude

Miyazaki co-founded Studio Ghbili which created movies such as My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, and Spirited Away.

 

Kiki’s Delivery Service is slightly different than Bible Black

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What do you think about artistic theft? Do you think artists can create something that is completely original and uninspired by other artists? Join the conversation! Let us know!

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Weekly Mini Inspirations

JJ is inspired by renaissance painting

John is inspired by Negativland and SrslyWrng