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Monday, 27 October 2008

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Well done Mike, thanks for taking the time to do all this.

Ahem. Re. "red velvet", I refer you to my earlier comment under the "Political Correctness" post... Looks like the old monitor is OK, after all...

Excellent! Thank you Michael Deas for putting this matter to rest. I certainly retract my remarks concerning speculation that a cigarette was removed for political correctness.

(And thank you, Mike, for tracking Michael Deas down!)

Mike,
Yes, I realize you did point out the business about the coat. I think Michael D. was more likely referring to the comments under the post on Roger Ebert's site.

Mike J.

The difference between revisionism for the sake of our remaining resources ( health, etc ) and revisionism for political reasons, is primarily motivation, and secondarily effect.

Removing leverage from cancer-making-habit, and from growing and slaughtering others for a bit of "feel" ISN'T the same as suppressing others' validity ( by denaturing history, e.g. ).

Just as all MBAs learn, it DOESN'T MATTER how much historically has been invested ( cigarette-habit, for instance ), it ONLY matters what we can do now ( having spent resources doesn't justify, itself, spending more resources ).

If I could show kids video of how blacks were treated in the late 1800's & early 1900's, interspersed with video of Martin Luther King Jr. & Barack Obama, to show contrast, to show that it was US ( everyone-altogether ), who made that difference, not some "inherent inferiority" supposedly among blacks, I'd do it: showing convinces, hearing-about doesn't.

Historical fact doesn't make imagined-history wrong, however, and fantasy-story is still a living-being's right ( modern comedies in the "western" story-form, e.g. ), but it hasn't any right to displace our race's valid-knowing, and THAT is the key.

Cheers.

Captain Obvious,
Interesting, but of course an oil painting for a 2008 stamp is not an historical document....

Mike J.

Hey, I call fraud- the picture's in B/W and the stamp is in color!!!

It's funny, actually... So just to revisit the idea... I'm sure that Bette Davis wasn't smoking all of the time, and I'm sure she wasn't wearing fur all of the time... so how could it be historically inaccurate? Whether Mr. Deas used an image of Bette Davis with or without a cigarette, why would he be bound to reproduce it exactly? And now I understand all of the folds in her coat, and though I still think they're a bit abstract, they make more sense as velvet than as fur. So I retract (at least partially) my earlier complaints against all those folds ;)

I think the stamp would've been really cool if she was wearing her mink coat, had a lit cigarette in her mouth, and was holding a pistol in the right hand, Bogart style.

Frankly, I am a little bit puzzled...
It seems to me that an illustrator can completely REDO HER FACE but he is prohibited to touch any mink or cigarette! Nose, size of the lips (and eyes)-it simply isn't Bette Davis anymore!!! How can any mink or cigarettes be of any importance after that?

Sergey Botvin

"I think the stamp would've been really cool if she was wearing her mink coat, had a lit cigarette in her mouth, and was holding a pistol in the right hand, Bogart style."

Now you're talking....!!!

I personally vote for historical accuracy, but none-zero chance we'll ever get it from any media source (TOP excepted, of course).
Thank you Mike, for taking aim on this one and bringing it down.

>>>Captain Obvious,
Interesting, but of course an oil painting for a 2008 stamp is not an historical document....

Mike J.>>>

Mike: in one hundred years it will be, though. It won't be a record of Ms. Davis, herself, but it will be a record of how Ms. Davis was seen in 2008. Thank you so much for tracking down the artist -- his response adds quite a bit of depth to the discussion. And, parenthetically, what an articulate reply!

On a related note, my father was an art dealer and had nothing but disdain for fakes, even if they were historical ones. I actually have a nineteenth century replica of a fifteenth century statue kicking around somewhere . . . whatever its aesthetic appeal may be, its lack of authenticity required that it be banished from my father's presence.

Quizzically,

Ben Marks

One thing nobody has mentioned is that we are looking at a grossly oversized copy of the final image. The final product is a postage stamp, how much detail can there be on a postage stamp, CYMK 300 x 300 or 600 x 600 dpi? Must drive the artists nuts.

-Hudson

Sad that Ms. Davis' image, the way I remember her, often wearing a mink coat has to be be altered. That was her persona. That was the era. Why those who embrace political correctness feel a need to distort history is a poor commentary on our times. Also disturbing is the overwhelming fear people possess about offending an extreme minority such as PETA.

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