Tony DeZuniga

(Originally posted at on May 12, 2012 10:33 AM)


According to Wikipedia, Tony DeZuniga “was the first Filipino comic book artist whose work was accepted by American publishers, paving the way for many other Filipino artists to do break into the international comic book industry.”  He passed away yesterday.

Last year my sister bought a print (shown on the left) by DeZuniga (the initials “adz” are on the lower right) and gave it to me as a gift.  The print is signed (but not numbered) and the paper size is 13 inches by 19 inches.  (I made some minor edits to the edges of the picture.)

The print is apparently a pinup (on page 57) from Savage Sword of Conan #59.  (The picture on the right was taken from here.)


Jackson Pollock: Blue Poles

(Originally posted at on March 10, 2012 9:47 AM)

When I was a child, I could not understand why people liked Jackson Pollock‘s paintings.  It was only when I read Richard Taylor’s Order in Pollock’s Chaos in the December 2002 Scientific American did I understand.  Taylor cites a paper he coauthored in Nature; its abstract starts: “Scientific objectivity proves to be an essential tool for determining the fundamental content of the abstract paintings produced by Jackson Pollock in the late 1940s.”  It turns out that Pollock’s paintings have fractal properties.  It was through mathematics that I was able to see the beauty in Pollock’s paintings.

The painting above is Pollock’s 1952 Blue Poles, which is featured prominently in Taylor’s article.  (I got the picture from here, where controversy about who really did the painting is discussed.)  It was bought in 1973 for US$2 million by the Australian Government and caused quite a scandal at the time.  In 2006, it was estimated to be worth between $100 million and $150 million.

Roy Lichtenstein at Christie’s

(Originally posted at on November 14, 2011 9:37 PM)

The auction house Christie’s has recently sold Roy Lichtenstein’s 1961 I Can See the Whole Room and There’s Nobody in it…  for $43,202,500 (including buyer’s premium).  (I got the picture on the left from here.)

Last November 2010, it sold his 1964 Ohhh…Alright… for $42,642,500 (including buyer’s premium).  (I got the picture on the right from here.)

It seems that these are currently the highest prices paid at auction for his work.

Piet Mondrian: Composition with Blue

(Originally posted at on September 22, 2011 10:04 AM)

The Wikipedia page on Piet Mondrian provides the following quote from him:

I believe it is possible that, through horizontal and vertical lines constructed with awareness, but not with calculation, led by high intuition, and brought to harmony and rhythm, these basic forms of beauty, supplemented if necessary by other direct lines or curves, can become a work of art, as strong as it is true.

The painting shown on the left is his Composition with Blue, 1926.  (I got the image from this Philadelphia Museum of Art website.)  Note that the painting has to be hung at a 45 degree angle so that the painted lines appear horizontal and vertical.  This painting has an interesting history; it was confiscated from the Hanover Museum by the Nazi government in 1937 because it was considered degenerate art.

Early Roy Lichtenstein

(Originally posted at on June 24, 2011 7:37 AM)

An early work by Roy Lichtenstein was recently sold by Heritage Auctions for $95,600 (including the buyer’s premium), which is beyond the pre-auction estimate of $25,000 to $35,000.

Entitled The assimiboins attacking a blackfoot village at fort mckenzies – 28 august 1833, the 18″ x 24″ oil on canvas was painted circa 1951.  (The image above was taken from here.  Click on the image to see a high resolution version.)

The painting’s listed title seems to have a typo; the correct name is most likely Assiniboins. Also, the other names written on the painting are most likely Fort MacKenzie and Karl Bodmer.  I guess the painting that Lichtenstein was studying was Karl Bodmer’s Fort MacKenzie. (The image below was taken from here.)

Tom Taggart

(Originally posted at on June 5, 2011 5:32 AM)


In 1993, I wrote a letter to the letter column of Doom Patrol, an edited version of which was published in issue no. 74 (Jan. 1994).  Here’s part of the letter:

The cover of DP #70 is one of the best I’ve seen (for DP).  It made me laugh out loud.  I really was hoping for some covers by “new regular cover painter” Brian Bolland, but as long as Tom Taggart makes covers like this, keep him.

I was later very pleasantly surprised when I received a package from Tom Taggart containing an autographed copy of the issue with the cover I praised.  I wrote him back to thank him, but I don’t know if he received my note.