CultureGrrl blogger Lee Rosenbaum is really not a fan of all these critics fawning over former President George W. Bush’s quirky bathroom paintings. Earlier this week, Rosenbaum called out New York Times critic Roberta Smith and New York Magazine critic Jerry Saltz for reviewing the works and linking to the source of the paintings, opining that it is a breach of journalistic ethics to publish something illegally acquired by a hacker (the Times should know better!). Yesterday, she brought up the subject again — this time floating the theory that the paintings themselves are a hoax.
The authenticity question came to Rosenbaum via an email from New York conservator Lenora Paglia. Paglia notes that a former president probably wouldn’t use such poor-art-sudent-looking easels:
I notice that in the photo of him actually at work, he is shown in his home, painting on a nice new metal easel, which I would expect. However, the two bath pictures are displayed on two different beat-up old wooden easels, which are covered with paint marks, like a poor art student’s. Would the former President be using such an easel? Also, notice how tentatively W paints—and yet at least one of the wood easels shows hasty-handed marks.
I wonder if the paintings are a hoax!
ARTINFO doesn’t really have an opinion on this, not being conservators ourselves, but we do love a good conspiracy theory — especially one involving paintings that have been shared all over the internet.
— Shane Ferro
(Image: via Gawker)