Birdland: Martin Brothers’ pricey avians

On March 8, 2014, Morphy Auctions in Denver, Pennsylvania held a sale featuring these two Martin Brothers birds, dated 1907 and 1908, respectively. They sold for $26,400 (left) and $27,600. Morphy Auctions image

NEW YORK – It isn’t often that the words “grotesque” and “highly collectible” are used to describe decorative objects, but such is the case with Martin Brothers birds. The wildly eccentric stoneware avians were the offbeat creations of British siblings who operated from several locations between 1873 and 1923, although little was produced during or after World War I. “Grotesques” was the common (and affectionate) term often used to describe their offbeat flock.

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Baltimore museum’s John Waters exhibit is weird, as expected

John Waters in New York City at the Chelsea Barnes and Nobles on 22nd and 6th Ave (now closed). Photo by David Shankbone, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

BALTIMORE (AP) – Only Baltimore bad boy John Waters would create a sculpture that envisions a babyhood encounter between the pop star Michael Jackson and the serial killer Charles Manson. In “Playdate,” the late singer, attired in a powder-puff pink romper beneath his surgically altered adult face, crawls on his hands and knees toward the bearded cult leader.

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Ralston Crawford photo exhibition opens at Nelson-Atkins Oct. 26

Ralston Crawford, American (1906–1978). Dancer and Meyer Kennedy at the Caravan Club, New Orleans, 1953. Gelatin silver print, 9 1/2 × 7 9/16 inches. Gift of Neelon Crawford, 2015.49.123               

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Ralston Crawford, who celebrated the modern American industrial landscape in a precisionist style and captured the vitality of New Orleans jazz culture, is the subject of a photography exhibition opening at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City Oct. 26 through April 7, 2019Structured Vision: The Photographs of Ralston Crawford, showcases the museum’s deep holdings of his work.

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