Monday, November 5, 2012

What the Art Teacher Wore #41

Batty Monday: Try to ignore the nappy hair and the messy background and focus on that batty dress. Holy guacamole, I love it so. I picked it up at Audrey K's while on vacation in Cali. tights: Target; shoes: Softt
Happy-Belated-Wardrobe post, friends! I'm just in and recovering from an art teacher conference held in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. What does an "art teacher conference" entail, you ask? Well, lemme tell you, it involves catching up with friends, making new ones and creating lots of stuff. And I'm totally an art conference junkie, so my weekend was just artsy-fartsy perfection. In fact, I got so involved in the fun that I completely forgot to snap a photo of Friday's outfit. Me so sorry! However, I do hope that this little bit of history on one of my favorite portrait artists, Vladimir Tretchikoff, will make up for it. Enjoy and I'll catch up with you later this week.

I have to tell you, Vladimir Tretchikoff's life reads like some sort of long-winded romance/adventure novel. The artist was born on December 13, 1913 (apparently the number 13 played a big part in his life) in Pertropavlovsk, Russia. I had no idea where Pertropavlovsk was but after some googling, I found that it's a peninsula on the far eastern side of Russia. Interestingly, it's the second largest city in the world that is unreachable by road.
Miss Wong. During the Vladimir's childhood, the Russian Revolution broke out causing his parents and eight siblings to move to an area in China that was Russian-ruled. It was there that Vladie discovered his flair for art. His talent eventually led him to Shanghai where he met his wife Natalie and fathered a daughter Mimi.
Day of the Dead Tuesday: On this day, kindergarten and I were talking Roy G. Biv. When we got to the "v", I asked the students if they could tell me the name of the color that looks like purple but starts with a "v". Surprisingly, they got it right! But soon after, one boy said,"My mom says I'm not allowed to watch violet movies. Violet movies are bad for little kids." They are so stinkin' cute. dress: made by me; tights and flowers: Target; shoes: Dolls by Nina; sweater: Anthro
Balinese Girl. Eventually, Vladie and his fam moved to Singapore where, in 1941, the Japanese invaded and took his wife and daughter. He was not to see or hear from them for five years. Vladie managed to escape by boat that was torpedoed. He eventually found himself with several others, struggling to stay alive on a small life boat.
Happy Halloween, Wednesday! Full outfit details here.
Chinese Girl. This painting is probably Vladimir Tretchikoff's most famous. But you want to know if he got off of that life boat, doncha? He did, arriving in Java, only to find that the Japanese had already invaded there. He was captured and thrown into solitary confinement for three months. His artistic abilities were actually what set him free. Impressed by his talent, his captors released him.
Art Conference Thursday: I never thought I'd buy polyester but this dress is just so awesomely cut. And I love the over-the-top pattern. What surprised me about polyester was how warm it is! I was perfectly comfy in my flammable frock. dress: vintage, Buffalo Exchange; belt: Anthro; boots: Seychelle's; double layer fishnet and tights: Target
Balinese Dancer. Once freed, Vladimir couldn't work fast enough. It seemed word got out in Java of his amazing portraits and he had clients out the wazoo. One such client, Leonora Moltema, became a muse of Vladimir's. She's the one featured in many of this portraits of Asian women. It was Leonora that took him to a seance that revealed the whereabouts of his wife and daughter.
Lady from Orient. Eventually, Vladimir found international success. His painting, Chinese Girl, has sold almost as many prints as Leonardo's Mona Lisa. Many write off Vladimir's portraits as kitsch but I find them absolutely beautiful. The artist, who lived to the age of 92, said near the end of his life: Express your passion. Do what you love. No matter what. Gotta love that.


  1. Those are some really awesome outfits! I love art teachers who dress the part :).

  2. Wow!!! I want that bat dress at once. So pretty and funny.


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