In the late 1950s, a small group of painters created the art movement as a nod to photography as art. When the camera was invented, over a century before the photorealists responded, photography immediately leapt to the forefront of documentation, superseding portraits and paintings of historic moments. Through the lens of the camera, a photograph stood for unbiased truth in the way a painting never could.
At first glance, Photorealism looks like a painted copy of a photograph. But there are significant differences as the subject passes from the mechanical shutter of a camera through the painter's brush. Because a camera has a single lens, images are recorded in a monocular fashion ' through one eye. But a painter has two eyes, and the depth of perspective in Photorealism has more to do with a human perception of an image than its exact replica. Exaggerated color is another Photorealism characteristic, as the painter manipulates his subject.
The first generation of photorealist painters worked in the 1960s and '70s. Their subject matter is mostly urban scenes. Street scenes, buildings, and the two iconic images of the era ' gas stations and diners ' are all represented. Reflections off glass, metal or water, a popular image of the period, shows off the virtuosity of these artists.
The Besthoffs acquired paintings by each of the 20 or so major painters in the movement. Today, they own one of the most comprehensive collections of Photorealism in the country. Sydney Besthoff is the heir of beloved New Orleans K&B drug stores, famous for the purple K&B logo and long-gone soda fountains. The local drug store chain was sold to Rite-Aid in the 1990s, but the Besthoffs' Crescent City presence continues with the founding of the Contemporary Art Center and the sculpture garden at the New Orleans Museum of Art.
While Photorealism attracts high prices at art auctions, the genre has not been well received by museums, and there are no permanent collections in the United States. Photorealism from the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Collection, now on display at the Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum through Dec. 31, is a rare chance to view a comprehensive collection of this distinctive art movement.
For more info on Photorealism from the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Collection, on exhibit at the University Art Musuem, go to the museum's Web site, www.museum.louisiana.edu, or call 482-2278.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Tuesday, March 11, 2014:
The board hopes to recover all fees paid, plus one-half, along with what could amount to hundreds of thousands in additional penalties.
Oh, the irony... or something like that.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Hopefully he’ll be better prepared today than he was in that Feb. 20 deposition.
They came by the hundreds, arriving from all regions of the state to gather on the steps of our Capitol in protest of the Legislature’s long tradition of giving industry the go-ahead to abuse our air, our water and our coastline, all in the name of good economics.
Gov. Bobby Jindal’s recent rhetoric against President Barack Obama has failed to boost his standing among the conservative base.
Louisiana's annual legislative session begins.
The state has hired marksmen to shoot feral hogs from helicopters at two wildlife management areas in south Louisiana.
St. Patty's Day crafts
The former star of Saturday Night Live throws in his 2 cents on the Big Oil lawsuit.
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
She’s the daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, but she’s been a gifted artist in her own right for three decades, and she’s coming to Lafayette.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.