The Best Luminous Markers for Otherworldly Effects

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In the early 1900s, Dr. Sabin Arnold von Sochocky formulated a radium-based paint that glowed in the dark. For many years the radio-luminescent paint was used on things like watch faces so they could be read in the dark. Unfortunately, it was highly hazardous, and von Sochocky’s premature death was likely caused by exposure to the material over his lifetime. Now, glow-in-the-dark ink in items like markers and paint pens contains phosphors like zinc sulfide and strontium aluminate, which slowly radiate the light that they have absorbed (hence the need to “charge” such materials with light). Today’s glowy art tools are safe and nontoxic, freely used by kids and adults alike. Find five of our favorite glow-in-the-dark markers and pens below, for when the light bulb of inspiration switches Read the rest

The Best Brush Pen and Dual-Tip Brush Pen Sets with Gray Inks

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To achieve shadows and depth in their artwork, many artists rely on a set of gray drawing implements. An achromatic color—meaning it has no hue—gray comes in all kinds of shades, and many art brands have thoughtfully curated sets of gray markers and pens. These are a smart way to efficiently build a palette at less expense than purchasing individual implements. Here we focus on gray brush-tip pens and markers (which can typically achieve both fine and broad lines) and present our top picks below.

Tombow Dual Brush Pen Set
Tombow’s dual-tip pens offer a wide variety of grays at a relatively low cost. You get nine markers ranging in tone from black to a very light gray, plus a colorless blending brush so you can create
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The Best Art Sets and Gift Boxes for Adults

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If you want to make a creative friend smile, give him or her a set of art supplies. There are kits that cater to a specific medium but also beautifully put-together boxes that allow users to experiment with all sorts of materials—paints, oil pastels, and more. Art sets offer a convenient way to learn something new while carving out some personal relaxation time. Note that because they are often designed as an economical way to explore different media, the quality of the products are typically student-grade or intended for hobbyists. In other words, they’re a great option for beginners who would like to familiarize themselves with painting or drawing before investing in the absolute best materials. Read about our favorite art sets for adults below.

Artist’s Loft Read the rest

How Sir Peter Blake Became Britain’s Preeminent Pop Art Star

Peter Blake, whose storied six-decade career continues to evolve, is one of Great Britain’s foremost artists. Known as Sir Peter Blake since being knighted in 2002, he helped establish Pop art in England, where the movement took on distinctive qualities of its own while coinciding with the rise of American Pop in the 1960s. And as befits a Pop pioneer of his stature, Blake ranks in an uncommon class of artists whose notoriety has roamed beyond the confines of fine art—most notably into the realm of music, thanks in part to his iconic cover art for the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. At the age of 88, Blake has long been the subject of tributes and testimonies, and a new book—Peter Blake: Collage, forthcoming from Thames & Hudson in June—offers a monographic survey of decades’ worth of work in one of his favored mediums, with … Read the rest

The World’s Oldest Cave Art Is Being Destroyed By Climate Crisis, A New Study Finds

Some of the world’s oldest cave art is being lost due to the detrimental effects of climate change, according to a new study on the effects of climate change on Sulawesi’s Pleistocene rock art conducted by Jill Huntley and others from the Place, Evolution and Rock Art Heritage Unit at Griffith University in Australia. In southern Sulawesi, Indonesia, more than 300 cave sites are at risk of deterioration—this notably includes some of the earliest cave art ever created, even older than some better-known sites in Europe such as Lascaux and Chauvet.

The art was created using red and mulberry pigments, and includes hand stencils, animal depictions, and images of human-animal hybrids. The Sulawesi caves are home to the oldest animal depiction—a warty pig that is at least 45,500 years old—as well as the oldest hand stencil in the world, made more than 39,900 years ago. One cave even contains what … Read the rest

The Best Erasers for Graphite

Before rubber was first used as an eraser in the mid-1700s, people employed everything from pumice to damp bread to expunge their errors. Luckily, we no longer have to turn to the bread box to cleanly remove graphite from paper, but sorting through erasers to find the right one can be a headache, especially when they appear so similar. We’re here to help. For erasers that work beautifully on graphite, last a long time, and don’t leave your workspace grubby, take a look at our top five recommendations below.

Pentel Hi-Polymer Eraser
Plastic erasers like the Pentel Hi-Polymer are soft enough to avoid traumatizing your paper but firm enough to offer a high level of control. This eraser, which comes in small (1.7-inch), large (2-inch), and “super XL” (4.5-inch) sizes as well as in pencil-cap form, don’t smear or ghost. Most important, they receive the highest marks in
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Move Beyond the Blackboard with these Quality Liquid Chalk Markers

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There’s no reason chalk drawing should be consigned to a fond, faint childhood memory. After all, the possibilities of an easily washable, blendable drawing tool are too great to ignore. Cue liquid chalk markers: a sophisticated alternative to traditional blackboard chalk, sans the noxious, messy chalk dust. Use chalk markers to decorate photo frames, mirrors, windows, dry-erase boards, and many other nonporous surfaces (when drawing on an actual chalkboard, you’ll need to determine whether or not it is nonporous—we recommend testing first in an inconspicuous place). What you can create with chalk markers is limited only by your imagination—and, of course, the quality of the markers at your disposal. To help you find the best ones for your project, we’ve assembled a list of favorites for artists of all Read the rest

$70.4 M. Monet Tops Sotheby’s $597 M. Evening Sales

On Wednesday evening, Sotheby’s staged its three-part evening sale event which included postwar American art from the collection of Texas ranching heiress Anne Marion to contemporary and Impressionist and modern art. Together the 4.5 hour sale was expected to reach $436.8 million; the final tally (final prices include the buyers’ premium; estimates do not) was $597 million. The event debuted a new David Korins-designed auction stage in New York was managed remotely by head auctioneer Olivier Barker in London. He was assisted by Sotheby’s head of jewelry Quig Bruning fielding bids on site in New York.

Between the contemporary and Impressionist and modern art sale 17 works in total were guaranteed, with four carrying irrevocable bids making up a collective low estimate of $138.5 million or 32 percent of the total low estimate value across both sales.

Andy Warhol,Elvis 2 Times, 1963.

Warhol, Still Top Marion Collection SaleRead the rest

As Part of $3 M. Initiative, Researchers Document Ancient Murals at U.S.-Mexico Border

Archaeologists are working to document ancient artworks at the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas that face environmental threats. The Texas-based nonprofit Shumla Archaeological Research and Education Center has established a $3 million research effort, called the Alexandria Project, to support the research.

According to a report by the Art Newspaper, researchers have already recorded over 230 murals that are between 1,500 and 4,200 years old along the Rio Grande. These ancient paintings are found in the Lower Pecos Canyonlands Archaeological District, which spans 50 miles in Texas, primarily in Val Verde County, and 60 miles south into Mexico’s Coahuila state. Many of the works, which depict human figures, animals, and more, are situated on private land. As a result, most of them have not been previously documented by researchers.

Archaeologist Carolyn Boyd, who founded the Shumla Center, told the Art Newspaper that the team has offered “educational and outreach programming … Read the rest

Essential Books: 7 Compelling Artist Biographies

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Art history actually began as biography when Giorgio Vasari published his Lives of the Most Excellent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects in 1550. Eventually, however, the two genres parted ways, with the former evolving into an academic discipline and the latter becoming the more popular avenue for learning about art. Most artist biographies tend to focus on famous names, for a reason as simple as it is self-perpetuating: Even if you don’t know much about Picasso’s work, for example, you’ve probably heard of him, which makes it more likely that you’d pick up a book about him. Still, writers often find lesser-known artists to be just as fascinating as their more canonical cohort—and ultimately, that matters just as much as, if not more than, name recognition. Whatever the case, a … Read the rest