Thursday, August 16, 2018

Being Sold a Pup

by David Van Gough (writer), San Diego, December 02, 2011

Credit: Guardian news paper
Kieron Williamson, contemplates his next masterpiece

Recently, my attention was drawn to news article that relates the story of a precocious eight year old boy-Kieron Williamson-who is described as some kind of artistic child savant.

The journo literally falls over herself with soliloquy, setting the muck and brass scene of a Northern working class family and a boy innocently daubing at the kitchen table, before relating that a recent exhibit of 16 pieces sold out in a mere 14 minutes (gasp),from collectors as far as America, garnering a staggering £18,200 (almost $30,000).

Reading on we discover that Dad Kieth-a former electrician-is something of a hobbyist himself and is in fact an art dealer and young Keirons agent.

Hmm...pushy Stage mum syndrome anyone?

Of course, little Kieron is not the first 'child prodigy' the press has waxed lyrical over-Stephen Wiltshire-the west Indian autistic kid with a photographic memory (enabling him to draw vast cityscapes) came to prominence in the 80's and nowadays has his own London gallery. Then there was the more dubious and controversial four year old Marla Olmstead featured in the documentary-'My kid could paint that' in 2007.

It's obvious young Kieron has has been well schooled by his old man and is already throwing high brow quote's around about dark intent, and though he has technique and effervescence in abundance, I would hardly use the word 'genius' so haphazardly.

His work strikes me as the kind of beginners guide to a learn to paint by numbers manual at best. At worst it's the kind of lackluster landscapes lining every Sunday school hobbyists, church fare. Which is to say that if it where painted by anyone else but a child, it would barely even warrant a footnote in a local community rag, let alone the column inches of a broadsheet.

That isn't to say the lad doesn't show promise-indeed he has considerably more painting chops than say former Turner prize alumni Damien Hirst or Tracy Emin, and I daresay may one day enjoy his own gallery just like the aforementioned Wiltshire, but what it does demonstrate, all too glaringly-is the publics gullibility to be sold a pup for a thoroughbred.

About the Writer

David Van Gough is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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4 comments on Being Sold a Pup

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By Bessie Jewel on December 02, 2011 at 01:03 pm

Interesting article! Having owned an art gallery for quite a few years, I learned an enormous amount about what motivates art buyers and actually had an artist/ University prof. sum it up beautifully...people buy art for 3 reasons. 1 - because of who else owns it. 2- to start a conversation. 3- to keep them company. I've found this to be pretty much on target. Thanks so much for addressing ART!!!

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By Theresa H Hall on December 02, 2011 at 08:22 pm

The young lad shows amazing promise and he has the eye, plus persprctive. I wonder how good he'll be by age twelve. Hisintense look shows the passion that has to be released on the canvass. I applaud him.

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By Theresa H Hall on December 02, 2011 at 08:22 pm


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By Theresa H Hall on December 02, 2011 at 08:22 pm

His intense. (sorry for my typos!)

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