This 1999 photograph provided by Chrisitie's shows the Rhine river by German artist Andreas Gursky. Titled "Rhein II," the chromogenic color print face-mounted to acrylic glass was sold for $4.3 million Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2011, at Christie's in New York City, setting a record for any photograph sold at auction. (AP Photo/Christie's, Andreas Gursky)
WTF! exclaimed akalol. “$4.3 million US dollars for a photograph!”
I was not complain only surprised that someone paid so much money for a photograph in these uncertain economic times. I also wondered why this photo. Was it the camera – Pentax, Nikon, Canon, Olympus, or Sony that some like to pointlessly argue? Was it taken with film or digitally recorded on a super-fast Sansa SD card bought from Amazon? Was it a scene that can never be captured again? Did the Rhine evaporate since 1999? Was it the 81 x 140 inches size since size does matter despite claims by the unfortunate that it doesn’t? Would the answers to any of these questions affect the price? I doubt it. If the photo looked the same but was a picture of the Caroni River and not the Rhine would the photo even fetch a price? It might if the photographer was Andreas Grusky, photographer of Rhine II and who ” is widely regarded as one of the most important and influential photographers of his generation.” I never heard the name Grusky until this week but thanks to Google I found out he is quite famous despite never doing weddings.
All I can assume is that the photograph called Rhine II fetched that record price since it was considered “art” by those influential ones who know what art is, or at least pretend to know. Works of art are works of creativity and the photo above is creative to some and probably represents more than just bands of grass, road, grass, water, more grass and then dull sky. One can only assume this photo represents something very deep to the buyer and hopefully even the photographer but to the average blogger, looking at this low quality small photo, it simply looks kind-ah-nice.
Long before Anya Ayoung-Chee made Trinidad and Tobago proud for a third time, there was a Trinidad postage stamp from 1847 selling for around US$29,999.00. The stamp features the paddle steamer called the Lady McLeod which sailed between Port of Spain and San Fernando from 1845 to 1854. This rare stamp can be bought on eBay from a seller based in New York if you are interested in boosting your collection. Like all collectibles, its value is based on what collectors are willing to pay which is determined by how rare an item is and the condition of that item. The price of these collectibles are somewhat subjective but not as subjective as the price placed on works of art by those with money.
I don’t think the money TSTT is spending to stage the Beyoncé Concert is exorbitant or unnecessary as it will bring more exposure and happiness to Trinidad and Tobago than the two useless summits held in the country last year along with the vindictive property tax. If Government Ministers are to be believed, the summits cost around a billion local dollars and caused nearly 99.99% of the World’s population to yawn almost in sync. Yet, when the Anya Ayoung-Chee sex-tape hit the Internet, Google was flooded with interest in Trinidad and Tobago, and genuine interest, not a corn soup level of interest. Some say the sex-tape was a fiasco but given the spate of suicide bombings and attempted terrorist attacks on the productive people of the world, I would say a sex-tape is a wonderful breath of fresh air for our country. But, I digress.
If staging the Beyoncé concert will take away sales from those who sell things for Carnival then it will show how weak Carnival really is among locals. It’s always better to know a weakness than to pretend it doesn’t exist. Beyoncé is World Class and world-known, and for a country the size of Trinidad and Tobago to stage a Beyoncé concert says more about our abilities as a country than holding useless Summits to entertain the top dummies from various countries. We have to stop pretending that world leaders are important and start recognizing the greater influences entertainers have on the world.
Despite the increase property tax, I am in favor of Beyoncé since she has a pretty face, great legs, wicked dancing ability and great personality. These characteristics are appreciated much more than the ability to lie to the public or to wrongly say one is stronger than a lion. To pretend that Beyoncé hasn’t done more for world hope and happiness than all the politicians in Trinidad and Tobago combined, is to continue to live in the delusion that we as a nation are as World Class as Beyoncé Giselle Knowles.
Trinidad and Tobago is never a dull place with activities taking place like the proposed restructuring of the now much-too-fat-for-years Petrotrin, and the creation of more lucrative industries such as the flagpole sector. The entertainment industry is also now more entertaining than ever with the unexpected release of a sex-tape featuring former Miss Trinidad and Tobago, Anya Ayoung-Chee and “boyfriend American photographer, Wyatt Gallery” – what a name. There was a comment in The Daily Express today by Photographer Wyatt concerning the sex-tape(s) and I do feel sorry for the couple since I rated the tape a 3 out of 5, at best. They need to brush up.
Hot on the heels of the sex tape, there was Jerry Narace, Minister of Health, saying now that he has conquered tobacco; he is going after sugar. Don’t laugh since sugar kills more people and causes more suffering in Trinidad and Tobago than many popular lifestyle diseases such as eating animal fat or drinking vodka and orange juice, but not as much as sitting in traffic. As Minister of Health, he is obligated to tell people what to eat to avoid being killed in one of the nation’s hospitals. I am all for prevention and any law that will make a Kiss Cake seem as dangerous as three bandits attacking you and your wife at home, I am for.
What I hope the Minister will do soon is to pass even more laws that will put alcohol in its rightful place. These laws must include making the selling of the single bottle of beer illegal, forcing people and maxi taxi drivers to buy beer by the case or keg instead. I hope the Minister does not think the breathalyzer is a deterrent since it just changes the way people drink rather than how much. The minister should look at making sure rum shops and night clubs open only from 7:00 p.m and close at 11:00 p.m rather than any time, any day. The new Keep Trinidad and Tobago Drunk Free initiative will see supermarkets being banned from selling alcohol and people working in the alcohol industry being retrained to plant flagpoles instead of drinking rum in stock rooms and Board Rooms. As much as alcohol encourages sex and sometimes even good sex tapes, the Minister must have alcohol banned over a 3 to 5 year period with the last alcoholic thing to go being the Christmas Fruit Cake. It is not until action is taken against alcohol will I believe this, or any, Government as being patriotic as a big flag.
This video was produced by this blog on the 26th, December 2008 at around 9:00 p.m. It was done in association with boredom and it should not be considered complete. I selected only five women to include in this video since five is a manageable number for a video and possibly in life.
Some of the highlights of this video are the music from Kevin MacLeod and two internationally known beauties from Trinidad and Tobago , Gabrielle Walcott – third place winner in Miss World 2008 and Anya Ayoung-Chee - a finalist in Miss Universe 2008. Also included is Rosario Dawson – star of Seven Pounds and Freida Pinto – star of Slumdog Millionaire. Rihanna needs no further introduction.
I recommend you look at this video in High Quality Mode at YouTube
Just click on the link at the bottom of the video screen which says watch in high quality. In HQ mode the video is better and the sound is in stereo.
Gabrielle Walcott and Anya Ayoung-Chee
I like shopping at the Miss World website and adding the various girls to my shopping basket but I don’t mean to make the girls seem cheap because I know they are not. Surprisingly, I am not a keen follower of beauty competitions but I do dabble on special occasions and at night. What I have noticed over the years is that modern-day contestants are not airhead in nature and most contestants now have a university degree, or enrolled for a degree the day before submitting their entry forms. Being educated and beautiful has now replaced having more than ample bosoms but it has not yet replaced the flat stomach or smooth, and freshly shaved legs. I don’t think any contestant of any reputable beauty competition ever made it to the top-10 with an education and a potbelly. A degree helps but it is hardly ever visible to the untrained eye. These ambitious contestants spend as much time with their books as with their gym instructors. Contestants, though they may be academically qualified to run the biggest corporations in the world, must still look amazing in a swimsuit. I once believed the winners of these various competitions were selected based on some hidden political agenda but if my theory was true these competitions would be meaningless and their popularity declining.
Trinidad and Tobago, despite the usual funding issues, managed to send a very pretty contestant to South Africa (the country and not simply the southern part of Africa, the continent) for the Miss World 2008 competition . She is Gabrielle Walcott, a model, actress, and visual artist. Gabrielle is no relation to Nobel Laureate Derick Walcott or even V.S. Naipaul. She is 23 year old and 170 cm long. Gabrielle likes to ride horsebacks and swim in the ocean. I am sure she is an excellent runway model and would also model for photographers with the right professional equipment. Maybe you were not registered to vote for Barack Obama, but you can register to vote for Gabrielle Walcott, this blog’s choice for Miss World 2008. You won’t regret it when she wins.