Tag Archives: Luxury

On the way to living happily ever after. Or not.


This marriage chariot is taking couples to a happy marriage. The fairytale kind of partnership, in which they would never have disagreements based on taste. For they have none. Isn’t it a blessing?

Russian luxury is something to behold in awe.

I thought a weekend diversion from thinking about nudes  would be nice, before we get back to them.

Is it your first time here? To sample stuff the blog has on offer, click on ABOUT at the top. You’ll find links to some of my best or typical posts there. There’s an Art & Fun shelf there if you feel like in need of a laugh. And don’t forget you can sign up for my new posts: there’s a “Follow this blog” form on the right.

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge: “On the Way.”

Stupidity * Ignorance = Love for Renaissance?!

It is universally acknowledged that a rags-to-riches man in possession of the burning desire to be seen as a “cultural” human must be in want of some arts.

This is why defining beauty for today’s rags-to-riches men, as well as selling it to them, is such a thriving, crisis-immune business. What a few selected critics or gallerists define as art, becomes instantly marketable to those who confuse this definition for an axiom. Unlike omelette, which requires real eggs for it to be cooked, contemporary art does not need to have real art as an ingredient. Contemporary art is defined by a belief system of a few super-rich men. If they have been made to believe 30 grams of artist’s shit is art, it becomes art because they are the ones who can pay a hundred thousand dollars for a shallow gesture of irony and bitterness (the artist’s father owned a canning factory and once told his son that his art was crap).

Stocking art or buying a football club?

The question of why the newly minted super-rich want to possess contemporary art has been answered a million times before. They want to change the hoodies of ruthless thugs (the public opinion is locked onto the concept that Fortune favours those on whom Justice turns a blind eye) for the elitist white robes of contemporary leaders. There are only two ways to cut it: becoming an art connoisseur or buying a football club. While the latter is made somewhat inconvenienced by the limited supply of clubs, the former is inexhaustible.

I am sure a lot of art-world people are doing what they are doing not just for money, but out of the sheer enjoyment of working a small miracle each time they sell something. Just imagine the fun of persuading a yesterday’s thug from Russia, Ukraine or Kazakhstan who got suddenly rich by siphoning money from the budgets of their respective countries, or an oil sheikh, or a Chinese communist party bureaucrat that canned shit is art. Priceless! And, of course there is the buyer’s premium and dealer’s commission.

Now, there are super rich entrepreneurs who have risen from a background so humble that they don’t have the minimum mental capacity to understand that the magic wand capable of turning them into contemporary leaders is made with contemporary art. Guys, you can’t buy Botticelli and expect people to respect you for that. Everyone knows Botticelli is old, established, museum-quality, national-heritage type of art. You can only go for Botticelli if you hand it over to your national government. Otherwise, you are seen as a greedy, insensitive and stoopid thug, and that’s exactly the starting point from which you wanted to distance yourself! Oh, and if you buy Botticelli to hand it over to the people of your country, remember to do it only after you’ve amassed a collection of contemporary art. Otherwise, that Botticelli affair is likely to be seen not as an act of generosity but as you praying and paying for forgiveness of past sins, and that’s not leader’s quality. “Botticelli” here stands for any globally-recognised old master, of course.

Now, I want you to meet someone.

Let me introduce two brothers who have never read this blog and missed the opportunity to get enlightened on the subject of contemporary art. They have bought their “Botticellis”.

Meet the Kluev brothers from the East of Ukraine, the land of coal mines, steel-makers, and – allegedly – gangsters. I wonder why no one thought of changing the name for that part of Ukraine to Urkaine, as the word “urka” means a gangster in the old Stalinist lingo. I am sure Ukrainians from the Western Ukraine would love the idea, regardless of how untrue it is.


My grand-granddad had been a coal mine engineer there, until the moment Stalin’s NKVD decided he was an enemy of the people. A half of staff in my Kiev office is from Donetsk (one of the largest cities there), and they are the smartest people in psychology, sociology, marketing, and common sense that you can hope to get in any world capital. So, the Eastern origin of the Kluev brothers does not automatically mean they have been gangstering at the start of their careers. Look at their jaws sagging in amazement (in sync!) at such a suggestion.

The Kluev brothers are the personification of business & government marriage that people enter to beget money, just like rock and roll were married to provide fun to its listeners.

They are filthy rich, shrouded in security and secrecy. Their photographs are rare, and pictures of anything that can be described as “theirs” are even rarer. The “Reason Why” stares at you from this picture:


This is one of their bodyguards. He got famous after he introduced himself to a reporter taking pictures of the brothers’ car as, “My name? My-Dick-In-Your-Ass is my name!” Paparazzi may be willing to sacrifice the integrity of their faces for a great shot, but they still value their lives and the wholeness of their bottoms a tad above it.

Were you a Kluev brother, what would you want after a day of rubbing shoulders with a brute who loves to associate himself with a violent penis?

You’d want beauty. Loads of beauty. Pools of beauty to rinse the mind and wash the body.

Thanks to a construction worker (either extremely brave or just having suicidal tendencies), who published pics of the brothers’ house interior, we can be administered a spoonful of Kluev brothers’ style and refinement.

I need to warn you before you decide to click on any of the images. It is an atrocity against architecture and the gold-dripping interiors of an uncertain mixture of styles you’ll see there can burn a few thousand neurons out of existence.

As I scrolled down the online page with the pics, one of the images STRUCK me like a flying ball.

600x450 (2)

What? Excuse me?

Andrea Mantegna?! Who thought COPYING a Renaissance masterpiece was a good idea? I mean, buying a “Botticelli” is not right, but buying a fake “Botticelli” is stupidity squared.

And in this case, it is not just getting a fake Mantegna, it is murdering Mantegna’s ideas along the way!

Look at the beauty Mantegna created in the Ducal Palace in Mantua:

Frescoes in the Camera degli Sposi; scene: vault fresco detail; 1473

The vault fresco is the summit of the frescoed room, featuring scenes from Ludoviko Gonzago’s life (historians still debate which ones) and intricate design.

This is just one of the walls, but you can have a better look at it here:

I don’t think the Kluev brothers ordered the whole chamber to be copied. Unless, of course, they ordered something in the style of Mantegna, but depicting their own life.

I’d buy a ticket to see it.

As an afterthought, I wonder if the Kluev brothers understand the bridal symbolism of the fresco on their ceiling. I think the one who explains it to them will doom their interior designer to a slow and painful death.

I am afraid the new breed of rich and powerful from developing countries will continue corrupting art in the years to come, just as they’ve done to their own developing economies. Except that in the case of art, the effects will be global.

Any ideas on how this sad process can be stopped?

If this is your first time here, you can sample stuff in this blog by clicking on ABOUT at the top of the page. You’ll find links to some of my best or typical posts there. There’s an Art & Fun shelf if you feel like in need of a laugh. You can also sign up for my posts to be delivered right into your hands using the form on the right.

Sources of photographs I used in this post: 1 and 2 (the text is in Russian)

Tags are the mirror of the soul; and a car made with fur

In today’s world, it is not the eyes. It’s tags!


So, looking in the mirror of my tags, it seems that I like writing about art and its history with a dash of humour, illustrating this with photographs, and providing inspiration.

Does it reflect my personality or my soul?

Well, it does as a mirror with a built-in Photoshop. It is a doctored image of me.

I write about art, and many believe art is the mirror in which the observers see themselves, not the author.

It is not always true, but it is especially valid for Contemporary Art, where the objective is to jump-start your brain into thinking along its own neural lanes, not the pathways that the author traveled along when creating the piece.

This giant street art mural is a very good illustration of the idea:


When I say my image is doctored by the tags, I mean that I am a Russian, so, in the eyes of many, I need to love vodka and the luxury of Dolce&Gabbana studded with crystals. I don’t, but it is not right that my tag mirror turns a blind eye the subject!  I need to remedy this immediately. And I will start with luxury, opulence, and the infinitely-platimun lifestyle of super-rich Russians, encapsulated in a single object. 

Creating luxurious lifestyle is a form of art, don’t you think?  I just hope I am not deviating too much from the general theme of my blog, which happens to be among the recommended ones on the subject of art (thank you, WordPress!)


Some may say it is not art, but pornography, and PETA activists will probably faint with indignation at the images I am about to show.

Yes, this car’s body was made of fiberglass, and then covered by leather. The leather was treated in a very special way, so you can wash the car just as you’d do, were it steel.  The exterior leather is covered by lifetime warranty. Even the car’s engine is wrapped in leather, but the technology is high-temperature and high-tech, so don’t worry. The outside and inside decoration is done by hand, by an artist.

The engine compartment and the trunk are sparkled with Swarovski crystals.

You have the most expensive fur furnishings inside. I can’t call it fur finish. Not in this car. It is fur start.

One million euro, and it is yours.

Beware of passengers with fur allergies, they may scratch the car from the inside. To protect the car against PETA, the owner is issued a free gun with a corresponding license to kill and then use the skin of activists for repairs of any damage caused by them to the exterior.

Welcome to the art of crazy luxury. If you are religious, next time you go to church, please make sure a candle is lit for the unfortunate guy who crashes into this automobile. Neither the guy’s insurance, nor his life would cover the cost of repairs, ever.

Now, would you be so kind to share the adjectives that were rushing to your mind while you rummaged through the car photos? I’d love to hear them, and please do not censor yourself. Be frank, be loud: I am not aware of kids reading this blog. 

Thank you, the Daily Post, for inspiration!