White Glove Shots upset Historian

Picture: BBC

Ok, this is getting ridiculous now. Above is a press shot accompanying the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art’s acquisition of a 1913 Picasso. It’s wrong on so many levels.

So I think that if museum press offices are going to insist on these daft ‘holding’ photos, then it’s time to introduce some rules:

1 – if you must wear gloves, let them be white and cotton. If you’re going to perpetuate the myth that people in museums really wear white gloves, then have actual white gloves to hand. Rubber ones of the type worn by vets at the back end of a cow are Not Good.

2 – if you must pretend to hold the painting, at least try and make it look like you’re really holding it. This means the picture must not be: (a) screwed to the wall with the screw visible; (b) obviously fifteen times heavier than the person holding it with one arm; or (c) hung so high above the ‘holder’ that they cannot reach it.

3 – Or better yet, actually just hold it, maybe with two people, before you actually attach it to the wall.

4 – And maybe, just every now and then, can we let the ‘holder’ be a bloke? Just for a change?

Source: White glove shot (ctd.) – Art History News – by Bendor Grosvenor

Jack Plane


About Jack Plane

Formerly from the UK, Jack is a retired antiques dealer and self-taught woodworker, now living in Australia.
This entry was posted in Distractions. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to White Glove Shots upset Historian

  1. There are two other things wrong …..

    1. The thing in the frame is not art – it’s a silly sham that the art world and cocktail party set bought into. It’s not worthy of a C grade in third grade art class. The king has no clothes
    2. The lady has purple split ends.


  2. Roy says:

    just a little peeved!


  3. Berniesr says:

    Good to see that grumpy old men continue to thrive. The photo is ridiculous


  4. Berniesr says:

    Reblogged this on A Galah’s View of the World and commented:
    A time to be grumpy


  5. Eric R says:

    All good points my friend, and given in an entertaining way !
    And those damn gloves look like she is going to do some electrical work or something.


  6. paul6000000 says:

    The “silly sham” has been going on for at least 30,000 years. At one end of the Chauvet cave you’ll find pastel wildlife sketches and at the other end, some hairy conceptualist has covered a wall with ocher hand prints.


  7. Kinderhook88 says:

    Ha! I’m a remodeling contractor, and the gloves she’s wearing are the same kind I wear when I’m carrying trash to the dumpster. The effect is jarring.


  8. oldbaleine says:

    I am pleased to say that I am still young enough not to be distracted by the gloves or the collage. (Note to Mr. Grosvenor: although it is in a frame, it is not a painting.)


  9. Warwick says:

    Ha ha. Mr Grosvenor has really got a bee in his bonnet.

    He may have some entertaining points of view, but I have to disagree about the blokes holding paintings. I personally think that attractive women perform the task far more admirably. In this case somewhat redeeming the lack of obvious appeal in the art IMHO.

    Also the fabric gardening/work gloves worn in this case would be worse than useless to a vet at the rear end of a cow. Vets tend to wear gloves that are plastic, shoulder length, waterproof (and faecal matter-proof) for obvious reasons.


  10. eliza says:

    Although the photo is a bit ridiculous in its way, i have to say, as a museum conservator myself, that a) white gloves are actually worn, b) rubber gloves have certain advantages and are worn for good reasons as well and c) theres a high percentage of women working in our profession – why shouldnt that show?


I welcome your comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s