The Ghost of Snapped Shot

Or, welcome to my low-maintenance heck.

Fraudulent Art in the White House?

October 13: Memo to the Los Angeles Times:

THIS IS WHAT YELLING LOOKS LIKE! (click to elaborate, since you seem to be a bit sketchy on the topic.)

An enterprising art-enthusiast FReeper has discovered a fraudulent painting amongst Barack Obama's new White House collection. While Beelzebubba didn't post both images together, I managed to throw together the following animation, which definitely shows that the layout of the two pieces is identical.

I'm not sure if I'd go so far as to call it a out-and-out "copy," but I'm no art expert.

More importantly: What do you think?

Sweet! Michelle Malkin links me by name. I love it when she does that! I'm even happier to notice that Michelle put all five A's in "Raaaaacism!"—Not that I'm trying to associate Michelle with a notorious wheat supremacist or anything.

It's also worth noting that Photoguy points out in the comments that Watusi (Hard Edges) is "a very famous piece that was created as a study of Matisse's piece."

Allow me to point out that (a) I'm a total retard when it comes to modern art, since I think it all looks either childish or nightmarish. Which means that (b) I have absolutely no idea if it is or is not a "study" of another piece, and (c) therefore, I admitted above that I wouldn't necessarily call it a "copy."

However, I will add that there is not a single online source that I've been able to find references Watusi (Hard Edges) as being a "study" of Matisse's prior work—Merely that she declared that, "If that old man can do it, then so could I"—which isn't usually considered to be how you "study" something.

But hey, like I said—Whaddo I know?

Excellent! Dan Riehl offers up a throbbing artwork of his own, and my good friend Ace enjoys a good laugh. It really must be a Crazy Thursday around here!

Update: Thanks also to Gateway Pundit and Confederate Yankee for the links!

Update: FakeArtGate, indeed. It's good to see the Moonbat Caucus is paying close attention to this pressing issue of national importance.

Oh, and as an aside to my Moonbattian friends:—None of this would've been an issue if President Obama had good taste in art. Case in point? ;)

Update: Upon further reflection, I would like to add that things could be much, much worse. I think I speak for all American conservatives in saying that I've got a thrill up my leg knowing that there are no new unicorns adorning the White House residence walls.

Update: Many thanks to Ruby Slippers for the link! As always, trackbacks will come once the server's feeling healthy again.

Update: Dense and denser.  I guess you morons missed the part where I deliberately said above that I didn't think this counted as a "copy," huh?  Always happy to throw a reciprocal link back, of course.

(Allow me to point out the irony of Charles Johnson decrying my use of the throbbing animated gif "art form" that he himself invented.  Glad I could bask in a healthy dose of schadenfreude this evening!)

Update again: Now that I think about it, I want to apologize to the kind folks of LeanLeft. I don't really have any issue with the way they presented this case, and I think they treated me rather fairly in their article. (More fairly than the King of Lizards, I might add.)

So anyway, my apologies, guys. I was wrong to lump you in with the denser types out there. Hope you can forgive a humble blogger!

Side note: Does the fact that Charles Johnson linked to this post, which contains a link to a notorious whiskey opportunist, mean that Charles himself is guilty of nefarious associations?

I think it doeth.

Your play, Charles!  ;)

Quickly: Links back to Secular Apostate, Just Grits, and Scared Monkeys.  (Oh wait... Monkeys? Shoot, that just might make me a Raaaaacist!)

Heh!!—Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the other side of the mirrorAll of you wascally waaaaacists should be ashamed of youwsewves!

(Charles, please be sure to stay away from pointy objects. You could get hurt running around with those, don'tcha know?)

Sweet! We here at Snapped Shot (almost) made it into an episode of Chris Muir's Day by Day comic! We were that {} close, I tell ya! (Many thanks to FulloseousFlap's Dental Blog for connecting the dots for this currently coffee-deprived blogger.  Unga!)

And Robert Stacy McCain comes up with the headline of the day. (The article's great for reading, as well. Man, does he have a way with words!)



#1 photoguy22 09-Oct-2009
This is a very famous piece that was created purposefully as a study of Matisse's piece and is advertised/described as such. This isn't much different than Egon Schiele's famous studies of Matisse during the same period.
#2 Jewels 09-Oct-2009

THAT'S the artwork that Obama wants to hang in the WH??

How long has it been there?

It looks like something my son did in kindergarten.

#3 TooLoose LayTrack 09-Oct-2009

So, then, using a color copier and fat-fingering the color adjustment, then placing the result on one side, is a "study"?

#4 Steve 09-Oct-2009

I took photographic science in highschool, and that included photo shop skills being taught...

That picture, is A. Too close to the original to be called anything other than a rip off of others art

B. those look too close to simple modifications that can be done in Photoshop.. heck.. it could be done in MS Paint probably for the most part.

#5 Randy Rager 09-Oct-2009

Modern art is crap, and utterly unworthy of the time spent to study it. No one will think the less of you when you admit unfamiliarity with the subject.

#6 winoceros 09-Oct-2009

Holy Equus, Batman.  Who is in charge of the art in the White House, Malia and whats her name?

#7 WrathofG-d 09-Oct-2009



Great find. 


Although I tend to be quite the fan of modern art, I am not particularly fond of some of the Obama's choices - but that is neither here nor there I guess.


Personally, if I were ever in the White House, I would probably leave up whatever artwork is already there.  You know... those old pictures of America, ex-Presidents, patriotic stuff like that...

But then again, I also wouldn't want to fundementally change America. So, I guess I am just an old fuddy duddy!


Keep up the great work.









#8 Anonymous 09-Oct-2009

At first glance the two pictures are very similar, but if you look at them separately, they are quite different. Matisse's work is bright and cheery. It reminds one of kindergarten work, but is relaxing and fun to look at. I don't know why it makes me happy to see it, whether it is the choice of colors, the shapes, the balance, whatever it is it cheers me. The feeling is similar to what happens if I hold a door open for a stranger and she smiles at me in response. I think I would not get tired of seeing the Matisse work.  The other one doesn't cheer me at all. It seems as exciting as cheap wallpaper. I don't hate it, but it moves me in no way at all. Except for four pieces, the colors are bluish and dull. There are distracting white lines on the edges. There is very little to like in it.

What this tells me is that Matisse really had something on the ball; he could produce something worthwhile, or at least likable with only color and shape, something that apparently can easily be lost by changes in color.

Also, when rotated, the non-Matisse piece looks a bit like a prosaic scene: a lamp on a cherry colored table with a reddish sunset in the upper right and a funny colored chair on the lower right. The subtlely different shapes lack this touch of reality in the Matisse version.

One could easily construct a computer project: take the Matisse work, rotate it randomly and choose random colors for the pieces. How many of them would have greater appeal than the other one here? My guess is that most would!




#9 peterike 09-Oct-2009

Indeed, this is a "famous" piece that is a "study" of the original. As Art in American informs us.

Matisse’s work had prompted her [Thomas] to paint an acrylic-on-canvas version of his collage The Snail (1953), in which nearly all the original colors were reversed.

See now? You silly philistines didn't recognize the genius at work here. THE COLORS WERE REVERSED. Could YOU come up with such shocking originality?  And it was done by a BLACK ARTIST.  Get it?  Get it?  It's a comment on how different races see the world. See? Now that I've made that up you've seen the light, you can just begin to grasp the inspiring artistic discernment of our Artist in Chief and his lovely wife, Concetta.

And in yet another gesture of pure genius, it's twisted around from the original. Or maybe they're just hanging it wrong.


#10 Ward Churchill 09-Oct-2009

"This is a very famous piece that was created purposefully as a study of Matisse's piece ..."

*coffee spew*

LMAO ... OMG ... and by reversing the riders "Winter Attack" was a study in horsemanship.

Gotta catch my breath now ... can't stop laughing ...

#11 peterike 09-Oct-2009

It's on the same genius level as taking the Edward Hopper painting of the people at the diner counter and replacing them with Elvis, Marilyn Monroe and James Dean.

#12 William Teach 09-Oct-2009

Heh! The King Of Loonacy, Chucky Johnson, has linked you, Brian. He's upset or something. And still proving he's nuttier than Sullivan and Kos.


PS: Like the new site design.

#13 Brian C. Ledbetter 09-Oct-2009

Thanks for the heads up—I saw that in SiteMeter and shook my head.  (Glad you likes!  Hope it's faster for everybody than Ye Olde Platform was!)

#14 Brian C. Ledbetter 09-Oct-2009

Okay okay, one last side note.  After getting front-page linkage from LGF, the trusty SiteMeter pegged traffic here at less than 175 people an hour.  Which is pretty sad considering that LGF used to send over 1,000 an hour back when it was still relevant.

(When the server was falling over last night, we were topping out at almost 1,800 an hour, split almost evenly between Michelle Malkin and Ace O'Spades.)

It's little factoids like this that make a blogger's life interesting.

#15 captainfish 09-Oct-2009

LGF who?

#16 N. O'Brain 10-Oct-2009

Wheat supremacist?

I got your wheat supremacist right here:



#17 William Teach 10-Oct-2009

Well, when one has 10 surrender monkeys essentially posting comments over at LGF over and over and over, not many people to send to an outbound link :)

One thing, even though I was subscribed to the comments, I didn't recieve any email notification.

#18 Blago Bloggo 10-Oct-2009

This looks like a collection of colored urinal cakes. Sorry, gotta go!


#19 Bob Belvedere 10-Oct-2009

Quoted from and linked to at:


#20 forest 11-Oct-2009

I read CJ's post on this, and he seems to be getting more unhinged and emotional by the day.

About the art, if Watusi were a "riff on" or "study of" the Matisse, shouldn't the artist have referenced the original work in some way - like hip-hop atists and DJs reference the orignal works they sample?  Giving the work a completely unrelated title like "Watusi" doesn't indicate good faith use of the ideas from the original, and can lead to embarrassments like the NYT writer being clueless about the background of the piece.

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