IF SHE APPLIES HERSELF, ONE DAY YOUR OWN ARTISTIC PRODIGY CAN PEDDLE KANDINSKY KNOCKOFFS IN FRONT OF AUNTIE ANNE'S PRETZELS AND THE BODY SHOP

Several years back, preadolescent Romanian immigrant Alexandra Nechita was turning media heads with her monumental, derivative paintings. The press called her "The Petite Picasso" and undiscriminating stars like Whoopi Goldberg, Phil Collins, and Stephen Baldwin added her artworks to their "private collections." Was this the future of American painting? The jury's still out, but the Boston Globe reports that you could have met the now-21-year-old artist and perused her works this past Saturday at the Burlington Mall - as it turns out, the same place Basquiat got his start.

"NOTHING BUT GRAPES AND SUNSHINE" - AND MAYBE A LITTLE SILICONE

Play_sunmaid The Times reports that the Sun-Maid raisin girl has received her inevitable corporate makeover. According to the company's Web site, the original Sun-Maid girl, Lorraine Collett Petersen, was discovered in May 1915 "drying her black hair curls in the sunny backyard of her parents’ home in Fresno, California. She was then asked to pose for a painting while holding a basket tray of fresh grapes." And that image, of Petersen in a loose-fitting peasant dress, had, with the occasional updating, remained the raisin maker's symbol, until this year, when company president Barry Kriebel demanded that she be given breast implants and squeezed into a shiny spandex blouse - you know, the kind commonly worn by migrant grape pickers. It's all about Sun-Maid's

core audience: families with children under 10. Company research showed that 97 percent of consumers who eat raisins recognized the Sun-Maid girl and felt she embodied freshness and wholesomeness. That’s why the new digitally animated raisin girl mimics the old portrait still featured on the box. The animated version is more contemporary, with a California-style tan and a wider, whiter smile. . . “She’s doing everything we want her to do,” Mr. Kriebel said.

We'll just bet she is, Barry, you sick, sick man.

AND NOW SOMETHING MORE WHOLESOME FOR THE UNDER-10 MARKET

Fastbird39_sgl_bgv2 The U.S. Postal Service has released its new "Wonders of America" commemorative stamp series, highlighting 40 natural and man-made superlatives from across this great nation. The stamps combine retro styling, valid postage, and golden teaching opportunities -- all for just 39 cents each. Or, see the whole collection for nothing here.





 

July 17, 2006 | Permalink | Subscribe to RSS

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