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What Do You Think This Is? December 14, 2007

Posted by Michael in News.


I know  what you are thinking. You are thinking: “Holy shit! Some demented weirdo cut a cow and her calf in half and pickled them in a tank, and this is the police photo documenting the heinous crime. And Michael [you are thinking] is one sick son of a bitch for posting this freakish picture.”

You are wrong to think such things. That, my uncouth friends, is an important work of Art.

Note the hot chick behind the tank. You can tell that she’s ordinarily just a shallow coquette, because her scarf teasingly conceals her cleavage. However, at this exact moment her rapt expression signifies that she is having an epiphonic experience as she groks the Art.

LONDON – Multimillionaire English artist Damien Hirst said on Thursday he was donating four major works to Britain’s Tate Gallery, including a sliced and pickled cow and calf.

It is the first time Hirst, who recently sold a diamond-encrusted skull for $100 million, has made a major donation to a museum.

“It means a lot to me to have works in the Tate. I would have never thought it possible when I was a student,” he said.

Artist donates pickled cow, calf to Tate gallery


1. Michael - December 14, 2007

I’ve seen that picture before somewhere. In fact, I sorta feel like I posted it before, but I can’t find it at IB. Sorry if this is a do-over.

2. see-Dub - December 14, 2007

I’m thinking I want a cheeseburger.

With pickles.

3. Bart - December 14, 2007

in before Tushar

4. Dave in Texas - December 14, 2007

a hunting cow, on point?

5. Chickens with Choppers - December 14, 2007

yeah the ‘Eat More ChikN’ ads were really funny werent they? Well whos laughin’ now?

Tonight, Bessie sleeps with the pickles.

6. Lipstick - December 14, 2007

This is why I don’t go to modern art museums.

7. daveintexas - December 14, 2007

Do you go to antique art museums?

Tell the truth. You think art sucks.

Go ahead. No shame in it. I do too. I can’t think of a single piece of art I’ve seen in 20 years that made me say “ooo, cool”.

Except at the Smithsonian Air and Space.

8. Lipstick - December 14, 2007

Michelangelo’s David.

From behind.

9. daveintexas - December 14, 2007

oh you just told a fib

(it is a teeny peeny though, isn’t it?)

10. Michael - December 14, 2007

I saw Michelangelo’s David in Florence. Note the freakishly large gnarly hands. Some professor in college told me the reason why Michelangelo deliberately made the hands so big, but I have forgotten it. It probably signifies that he’s about to kill Goliath or something (David is holding a sling over his shoulder).

11. Lipstick - December 14, 2007

He’s got a fiiine ass.

12. kevlarchick - December 14, 2007

David was hot back in the day.

And you KNOW what they say about a man with large hands….

13. Balaam - December 14, 2007

He’s got a fiiine ass.

yeah ok he’s got an ass you could bounce a shekel off of but he’s got nothing on my ass – he can talk!

14. Michael - December 14, 2007

And you KNOW what they say about a man with large hands….

Yeah, but with David you can clearly see that the old “large hands . . .” shibboleth is not necessarily true. Those hands are clearly not proportional to his, erm, you-know-what.

I have large hands myself, so I’m speaking from personal experience.

15. Bart - December 14, 2007

Do you know the origin of the word shibboleth (no gooogle)?

16. Michael - December 14, 2007

No, but it has to be Yiddish.

17. Balaam - December 14, 2007

its a test of some sort

18. Bart - December 14, 2007

Yes, it’s Jewish.

An English professor told me that the word was used as sort of a password. Oh shit, I forget who the other people were, but they couldn’t pronounce it properly so if spies or infiltrators used it they’d be caught.

(I wonder if it’s on wiki or google?)

19. Muslihoon - December 14, 2007

“Shibboleth” is in Hebrew and another Semitic language (Samaritan?). The Hebrews pronounced it one way, and the other Semites pronounced it another way. Thus, one could tell which group a person belonged to based on how he pronounced “shibboleth”.

20. Balaam - December 14, 2007

that was gonna be my next guess

21. danincali - December 14, 2007

The reason the he had extra large hands (and an extra large head too) is because he was going to be mounted on top of the Duomo Cathedral in Florence along with a bunch of other statues. Since he would be so high up (and far away from the onlooker), his hands and head were made bigger so you could notice them. They wouldn’t have looked so big from far away. David is not really meant to look at from so close like he is. Michelangelo would have probably been embarrassed by the way he is shown currently.

You want to see some really cool art? Check these out:

Pieta – Michelangelo

Daphne and Apollo – Bernini

There is lots of good inspiring art, its just that all the garbage gets all of our attention.

22. danincali - December 14, 2007

This is a better pic here:

23. Bart - December 14, 2007

Yeah, well, that’s what the joos want you to think.

But we know teh truth.

24. daveintexas - December 14, 2007

My hands are relatively small.

Hard to play a bass with these.

25. Mrs. Peel - December 14, 2007

Michelangelo’s Moses has similarly large head and hands.

26. Sobek - December 14, 2007

Bernini is the stuff. Seriously, his David is far and away better than Michelangelo’s.

The “shibboleth” thing turns on the Hebrew letter “shin,” which can make either a “sh” or a “s”, depending on whether it has a daghesh (a little dot in the middle). As Musli explained, it was used to identify one group, but not spies. They were traitors who wouldn’t join the Hebrews in battle against their enemies. It was far too early for the Samaritans — I’m thinking the story is in the Book of Judges. And I’m racking my brains to remember who the people were, and drawing a blank.

27. Sobek - December 14, 2007

Okay, I looked it up. It was the Ephraimites who pronounced it “sibboleth.” And it’s Judges 12.

28. Bart - December 15, 2007

Spies. Traitors. Whatever.

The point is that the word was either created or chosen (i don’t remember) because the other party couldn’t pronounce it. It was a lesson in linguistics.

29. Bart - December 15, 2007

No no no, listen to me. They could not pronounce the word properly.

30. Michael - December 15, 2007

The point is that the word was either created or chosen (i don’t remember) because the other party couldn’t pronounce it.

The word was chosen. “Shibboleth” refers to flowing water (Strong H7642b) and was used to identify Ephraimite traitors at the fords crossing the Jordan (thanks to Sobek for pointing at Judges 12):

(Judges 12:5-6 NIV) The Gileadites captured the fords of the Jordan leading to Ephraim, and whenever a survivor of Ephraim said, “Let me cross over,” the men of Gilead asked him, “Are you an Ephraimite?” If he replied, “No,” they said, “All right, say ‘Shibboleth.'” If he said, “Sibboleth,” because he could not pronounce the word correctly, they seized him and killed him at the fords of the Jordan. Forty-two thousand Ephraimites were killed at that time.

31. Bart - December 15, 2007

Bart +1
Yous -1

32. geoff - December 15, 2007

You are all thuch thilly thibbolethth.

33. lauraw - December 15, 2007

I guess the gay Ephraimites got to cross over.

34. Dave in Texas - December 15, 2007


35. brumm19 - December 15, 2007

hi my names brumm19,i like your site,check out mine and tell me if its any good

36. bob101 - December 15, 2007

i think its a deformed cow :emo:

37. nichevo - December 16, 2007

For those who are interested, the shibboleth is alive and well, or at least it was in pre-revolutionary Russia.

My great-aunt was accosted, during a pogrom in their little town in what is now the Ukraine, by a big Cossack type on horseback with a sack of loot over one shoulder and a saber in the other hand.

Briefly, he said to her (and the story was always told to me orally, so I may have the spelling wrong):

“Say, cucu ruse!”

(whatever the hell that means)

The point is, Jews in that time and place would not be accustomed to the “r” sound in “ruse” but would say something like “cucu khhuse.” And be slaughtered, or have whatever happen to them.

But my auntie was top of her class at the gymnasium (what they called the local gifted school – how she got admitted is another story) and her Russian was perfect , so she looked right up at him and trilled,

“Cucu rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrruuuuse!”

The villain grumbled, what was it, “E dik chort” (go to the devil) and rode off to rob the next house.

So … ?

Well, you had to hear her tell it. ‘Fraid she isn’t here anymore so you have to settle for my version.

38. Michael - December 16, 2007

Great story, Nichevo. Good thing your great-aunt was a bright girl!

39. Bart - December 16, 2007

Who was worse, do you think, the Cossacks or the Turks?


40. cranky - December 16, 2007

During World War II the Dutch underground would have people they had their doubts about their true identity pronounce ‘Schreveningen’ — the name of a beach near Den Haag . Pronounce it correctly and you were Dutch, mispronounce it and you were German.

I don’t know about back then, but nowadays tops are optional for the ladies and Schrevenigen is a popular destination and I have to guess it isn’t because of the balmy North Sea water temperatures.

41. geoff - December 16, 2007

I suppose Massachusettsians could do the same thing with Gloucester and Worcester.

42. lauraw - December 16, 2007

Billerica is more obscure and works every time.

43. dr4 - December 16, 2007

Why would anybody want to pretend to be from Massachusetts?

44. lauraw - December 16, 2007


45. daveintexas - December 16, 2007

or sheeee-it.

That’s a good one.

46. Mrs. Peel - December 16, 2007

Sobek, I’d say Bernini’s David is different, not better, just as Donatello’s David also captures a different aspect of the shepherd king. I don’t think you can really compare the two (or three), because the moment that each artist was trying to capture was totally different. Bernini’s is slightly more to my taste, but that doesn’t mean Michelangelo’s isn’t also a great work of art.

And yes, we have made our reservations at the Galleria Borghese. I can’t wait.

47. Sobek - December 16, 2007

Michelangelo’s is too static. The technique is flawless, of course, but there’s no energy to it.

My favorite Michelangelo piece is the Pieta’. Compare it to other Pietas and you can instantly see his solution to the akwardness of a woman holding a fully-grown man is ingenious. And he avoids the problem I have with a lot of Catholic art, of trying to substitute gore for emotion.

48. Lipstick - December 16, 2007

Peel, are you leaving soon? I think I remember that you were going around Christmas.

You must be so excited! I’m excited for you.

49. Christopher Taylor - December 17, 2007

Usually k’chortu is how they say “go to hell” (go to the devil) but that works too. That’s the worst profanity the Russian teacher would larn us in high school.

50. Anya - December 17, 2007

Nichevo, I’ve heard that story from other people, too. “Kukuruza” means corn in Russian. And yeah, Chris Taylor is right, “idi k chertu” means go to the devil, go to hell.

51. dfenstrate - December 17, 2007

I wouldn’t call it art, but it would make a fine anatomy display in a science museum.

52. BrewFan - December 17, 2007

I suppose Massachusettsians could do the same thing with Gloucester and Worcester.

I had a customer in MA (Christmas Tree Shops) who was opening a store in Worcester. I flew into Boston and was renting a car for the drive to Worcester. I asked the rental car clerk for direction to ‘Warcester’. After a puzzled look and me writing the name for her we agreed I needed to go to ‘Wooster’. lol!

53. geoff - December 17, 2007

…or, even more correctly, “Woohstuh.”

54. BrewFan - December 17, 2007

…or, even more correctly, “Woohstuh.”

yep 🙂

55. r smith - May 26, 2008

utter fukin shit… and a disgrace that this cunt gets to be rich…
sum people work thier guts out, grow crops, build houses.. only to get split-arses like hirst getting all the luxury…
Hirst… ure a fukin disgrace, and if i ever see u, i’ll crack ure skull.

56. r smith - May 26, 2008

actually.. i’m not sure who’s worse… maybe its them hob-nobbers at the tate for makeing a mountain out of a slop of dung.
better a lazy hippie getting the dough than those stuffy morons.. still..
i hope he actually does sumthing worthwhile with his oh so easily aqcuired millions..

57. Anonymous - November 22, 2011

The piece is called “Mother and Child Divided.” It’s supposed to show the mother and child separated, with their life like external characteristics still very real. Then it shows them divided so that you get the realization of their deaths.

58. Anonymous - November 22, 2011

It’s not stupid that Damien Hirst makes so much money because this is his life’s work. Sure, he may make a lot of money by selling pieces to personal collections, but he didn’t make any money by donating this and three other pieces to the Tate Gallery. Don’t be ignorant and threaten him when you obviously don’t understand.

59. Anonymous - November 22, 2011

modern art encompasses art starting in the late 18th century to present day.

60. Anonymous - September 11, 2013

typical modern art. Gross!

61. Anonymous - September 11, 2013

i post on out dated things 😉

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