This Day in Death

6.20.12: Artist LeRoy Neiman – DEAD!

Filed under: Dead —James @ 3:35 am June 22, 2012

The final photo of Neiman, taken moments before being suckerpunched by the ghost of Pastel Muhammad Ali. That guy is a fucking menace.


Impressionistic painter LeRoy Neiman, the second most popular LeRoy after Jenkins, has died this week at the age of 91. Let’s all slip on our tweed blazers and tastefully step back from this block quote:

Mr. Neiman’s kinetic, quickly executed paintings and drawings, many of them published in Playboy, offered his fans gaudily colored visual reports on heavyweight boxing matches, Super Bowl games and Olympic contests, as well as social panoramas like the horse races at Deauville, France, and the Cannes Film Festival.

Basically, if Thomas Kinkade fucked Bill Cosby’s sweater and they had the most bourgeois child ever conceived, you’d have Neiman’s style. There. I just saved you $60,000 on that BFA.

Alright, now that we’ve got a classy backdrop to work against, let’s get to what you guys expect from me: Softcore smut.

In 1954, after five issues of Playboy had appeared, Mr. Neiman ran into Mr. Hefner and invited him to his apartment to see his paintings of boxers, strip clubs and restaurants.

That sounds like every first date I’ve ever had. Personally, I like to hang the strip club paintings above the bed. It really helps connects the dots, and I find that women appreciate that.

In 1955, when Mr. Hefner decided that the party-jokes page needed visual interest, Mr. Neiman came up with the Femlin, a curvaceous brunette who cavorted across the page in thigh-high stockings, high-heeled shoes, opera gloves and nothing else. She appeared in every issue of the magazine thereafter.

Oh, the opera gloves are a smart touch; They keep it from being sexist. It’s like when a porno uses those soft dissolves between scenes. It’s too artful for anyone to be offended. “Is this some lost Orson Welles film? When did he work with Sasha Gray? Should I put on a tie before I watch this thing?”


Source: The New York Times

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