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tv   Charlie Rose  Bloomberg  May 16, 2016 10:00pm-11:01pm EDT

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announcer: from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. charlie: new developments this week in a fight against isis. in a report this sunday on nbc news, you will learn the identities of 15 americans who have joined up with the jihadi's . it is the latest investigation by richard engel. he is the chief correspondent for nbc news and a friend of this program. take me to the beginning. richard: from the beginning, two months ago, in southern turkey. we met an isis defector, someone
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who claimed to be an isis defector who was part of their security division. he said he grew disillusioned with isis, thought the group was too brutal and too savage and wanted to escape. but you don't just walk away from a group like isis. you are not allowed to leave. and if you go to another country and you have been associated with isis, you are a fugitive. so he wanted to have something to trade for his new life, some collateral. so he says that he stole a thumb drive, a flash drive. he did not know what was on it. he just knew that it was important, valuable stuff that isis kept close watch on. he gave it to us. and we opened it up. and there were thousands and thousands of documents on this file. a lot of them were duplicates. there were folders inside of folders. they were in arabic. we spent a lot of of time going through it. we eventually worked with west
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point's combating terrorism center and we were able to not only authenticate the documents, but identify patterns. and what these documents were the isis personnel registration files for over 4000 foreign fighters. so when foreign fighters would arrive in isis territory, like when you land at the airport, in many countries, you fill out a little form, name, address, etc. except the isis form was filled with fairly detailed information. name, emergency contact, the countries you have visited, special skills, nationality, blood type -- a full dossier. then when we were sorting through these, we focused on the 15 u.s. citizens or u.s. residents that were among this cache of documents. charlie: you will reveal on the program on sunday night. richard: yes. we got a team of producers together.
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we were working with a former fbi investigator and we set up a motel room with a board on it and started printing out the names on the dossiers and photographs and trying to identify patterns. and then we canvessed the country. charlie: what patterns did you find? richard: we identified a cell. there was a family group that had become radicalized in the united states. we identified 16 isis member who was not even on our list. this husband and wife got together and became increasingly radicalized. and then they brought in her little brother. and then the three of them traveled overseas. and the fbi, consistently we found, didn't respond to clues. ,eople in the community knew
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people in their families knew what was happening to them, that they were becoming more and more dangerous, more, more radicalized. charlie: so what did the fbi do and what did you do that they had done? richard: these documents are from 2013 and 2014. these are people who left this country or their country of origin and left or entered syria to join up with isis and to join up with the group that was forming isis and becoming isis at the time. these all represent intelligence failures. if the fbi had known about these people or stop them, then they would never have joined isis and filling out the registration forms. so these are the ones who got through the net. charlie: so have they talk to the parents? richard: once they got through, clearly, they made it. they managed to get out of the country. the families that we have spoken to have been contacted by the fbi. what we found is it did not extend the investigation by the fbi, as far as we could tell, far beyond the immediate parents.
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we spoke to former teachers. we spoke to neighbors. we spoke to friends. and in many cases, none of them had been contacted. charlie: they did not know about the child that went to syria? richard: none of them. charlie: no teachers knew, no friends knew? richard: in most cases, they did not. charlie: but the parents knew? richard: they did. charlie: where was a port of entry? richard: all these files were from turkey. the files had come from an isis commander, according to the defector who gave it to us, who had a role with a kind of isis customs and border crossing division. so the people who are coming in through several crossing points between turkey, the southern turkish border and northern syria. charlie: what does the fbi say now? richard: we interviewed the -- the fbi and a senior department justice official.
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they said they have gotten better. that they are preventing more americans from leaving this country to try and join isis, that the number of americans and other foreign nationals that are going to join the so-called islamic state has gone down. but there is a flip side to that. if the u.s. law enforcement in general is better at locking the door and keeping them from going to join isis, that means you have locked them inside this country and they are here. that is a concern that law enforcement officials have. they might not be leaving but they are still here. charlie: they go to syria and learn all kinds of techniques, bombings and destructive weapons, and then come back here because they have an american -- american passport and slip in and do damage. richard: the concern now is the ones who went, the 15 and the one we identified that was not in the documents, they have already gone.
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their names are known by now. pretty soon, their names will be known by everyone. they will have a difficult time ever coming back to this country and doing some sort of violent act. the question is what about the ones who never try to leave? and isis has achieved its message, saying don't bother coming here, just stay at home. that said, it wasn't a huge number. considering the u.s. population, to find among 4000-plus files, the fact that we only found 15 names, people could take some comfort in that. it's not nearly the problem per capita of most european countries. charlie: what were the shared characteristics of the people, the 15? richard: lost. people who wanted to find something, who are depressed, who are looking for meaning. i think these were the kind of people who would have joined a cult in years past or a fringe religious group or charismatic leader.
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charlie: what shaped their thinking? was it online? was it at a mosque? richard: i think it is a combination of factors. everyone is always looking for that -- where do they drink the special sauce? or where do they get that injection of evil? it is a scale. and people can get radicalized online. they can then self radicalized themselves more. they can meet up with a like-minded individual. like in our cell, they got married. then they worked themselves up into more and more of a frenzy. but in most of the cases we found, looks like the initial contact with this ideology was through propaganda. charlie: what is the status quo in first syria and then iraq? reading about, one, some degree of build up the american effort to help retake mosul on one
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hand. the results of talk about trying to retake another city. richard: i think there is not one clear military strategy. the u.s. is building up forces slowly. but if you look at the numbers, they are tiny. if you look at the troop increases in iraq, if you've noticed, the white house goes to great lengths to say how small they are. there are only x number of troops -- 412 or 25 here. charlie: the latest addition in syria is 250. richard: before that, there was a specific number given. there are two messages. one is to the american public. we are not rolling down a slippery slope and getting back involved. charlie: incremental. richard: but it's also to balance the competing interests in the region. iraq does not want u.s. troops back in iraq.
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there is something of a redline. if the u.s. suddenly increase the number of boots on the ground in iraq, then we would potentially be facing violence on a scale that we are not seeing right now because iran says, ok, it is a small number of troops helping to help isis, then iran can handle that. iran is an enemy of isis. it is also a redline for russia. if a lot of american troops go into syria and for iran. there are so many regional efforts and regional interests that are trying to be counterbalanced. the u.s. wants to support the kurds, but only so much that it doesn't completely provoke the turks. the u.s. policy right now is trying to thread this incredibly small needle between russia and iran and the kurds and turkey.
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and the result is a policy that is still somewhat muddled. charlie: what would the turks do if the united states, even more strongly with weaponry, supported the peshmerga? richard: well, there is the peshmerga. there is the ypg, the different kurd groups. it'll all 0-- they don't all see eye to eye. and now turkey is against kurds who are inside turkish territory. so it is not even that the u.s. has a united policy with what to do with the kurds. we have three or four different policies just for the kurds. i think that is emblematic of a larger strategy against isis. we have different strategies for different kurdish factions. charlie: you think that they will retake mosul before this administration hands over power to the next?
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january 20 or whatever it is, 2017? richard: it's possible. i don't think he will see a lot of american troops but it is possible. isis is not that strong. it is a bit of -- everybody hates it. the group is losing territory. its ideology is generally loathed. i like to think of isis as a virus. viruses are strong because the host is weak. and right now, the host in that region are weak. charlie: the government in syria and iraq. richard: because of all of these divisions that i've been talking about. the divisions between the kurds and the turks, between the russians and the iranians and the u.s. the divisions between , syrian opposition groups. because all of these fractures have weakened the host, the body, this disgusting virus, isis, has managed to flourish. most say the way out of this is through russia.
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and there are serious conversations going on now through the geneva peace process between the u.s. and russia. and the way i think -- charlie: broader than a cease-fire. richard: it's broader than a cease-fire. the way they seem to see a way out of this is the following. that bashar al-assad gets to stay temporarily. he stays in power in syria. the russians help them reestablish his authority. charlie: within a certain portion of the country. richard: they've been making some progress. then there is a transition phase that, over the next 18 months or so, there is a transition phase to a new government. bashar al-assad goes. perhaps even leaves the country and lives happily ever after that we don't hear from. and there is a new government that contains the remnants of
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-- old regime charlie: some of them are moderate forces. jihadists or not? richard: probably. moderate jihadists. not isis, let's say. once you have removed bashar al-assad in a smooth transition that the russians can say it wasn't libya once over, the iranians can say it was a smooth transition of power that looked like a process everyone can accept, that once bashar al-assad and his inner circle are removed, then you can have a new government that looks a lot like the old government, but a new government that everyone can agree upon to and is kind of like world war ii. you blame hitler, goring and a couple of top nazis and you let everyone else get off. you say hitler, everything was his fault and the rest of the regime gets a pass. charlie: this was amazing. thank you. richard engel "on assignment" sunday night.
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check your local time. ♪
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charlie: may is a busy time for the art world. spring auctions bring art lovers and collectors together here right in new york. no one knows that world better than the legendary auctioneer
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and cofounder of the auction house now known as phillips. he writes about that and more in a new memoir called "the auctioneer, adventures in the art trade," i am pleased to have simon du pury. welcome. it is about time to have you here. subtitle of the book as much as i love the title. simon: i have been in the art world for now 45 years professionally speaking. , i love art. art,ays say when you love it is a little bit like when you love candy, you want to work in the candy store. charlie: how do you begin? simon: i grew up in switzerland, in basil. it is a small city but it has a fantastic museum and has a great art fair. very early, i would go to museums and art galleries and i
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loved to draw and paint when i was a child. somehow, that awakened my interest in art. charlie: you thought of being a painter. simon: i initially wanted to be an artist. charlie: artist rather than painter. simon: i would have been a painter because i was not going to be a sculptor. i was going to paint and draw. when i finished school, i went to japan. i went to the tokyo academy of arts. i studied japanese brush painting and a technique of paint with japanese minerals. and i rapidly realized i wasn't going to be the great artist i hoped i would be. charlie: did your father give you any advice? simon: my father was a little concerned that i wanted to pursue an artistic career. my father was a lawyer with a legal background. i did attempt to study law. that only lasted a few weeks.
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so when my parents didn't know what to do with me anymore, my mother called ernst byler, a top dealer from basel. she asked can you talk to this young boy? it is a desperate case. can you talk some sense into him? charlie: what did he say? simon: he asked me a question first. artaid is a reproach to physical or intellectual? i told him it was purely physical. he said in that case you must not study history of art. you must become an art dealer. [laughter] that sounds good but how do you go about it? then he gave me some precise advice and told me where to go and how to get my first job. i followed exactly his advice. i am eternally grateful to him putting me on the right track. charlie: what makes a good eye? simon: i think a good eye is seeing lots of things.
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the more you see lots of things, the more you begin to distinguish what is good from what is not good. i always think auction houses are an amazing place to train your eye. if someone is a secretary in the porcelain department one of the , big houses, they see a lot of porcelain, day in and day out. at the end of the day, something sticks to you and then you begin to distinguish what is good. what is good then automatically leaps at you. charlie: back to the study itself. can that give you an eye? simon: you need to study as well. it is a combination between the physical experience of looking at a lot of art. then of course, you have to do your homework. if you are attracted to an art work and all of that, you want to read about it and find more background about it. charlie: one of the things that fascinates me about ron water, just to take one collector who is said to have a great eye -- his older brother thought he had
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a better eye than he did. he started so early and he wanted to be a collector. and whatever he could afford, he bought. simon: i think you picked the person with the best eye i know. he has an eye right across the board. he is able to buy the best. he has the most stunning sculpture or master drawing. right across the board. he has an eye for what is the best. but i think very often you start as a collector very early. it is a basic instinct to have. whether you start collecting little cars or dolls. i think when you are a collector, like ronald lord's, it is an artistic pursuit in itself. charlie: talk about auctioneering.
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you are very good at this. you have been there. there is a picture of you. people talk about you. give us a sense of what it is to be good. simon: when i started working at sotheby's way back, i thought the one thing that distinctions of an option compared from any other gallery in the art world is doing auctions. i do want to become an auctioneer. i told my colleagues i would like to start conducting auctions. some colleagues allowed me and gave me the chance to start doing options. when you do that, you do a mock ou simulatere usy everything that can possibly go on. if you survive that, then you go to your live auction. firstcharlie: they are superstars in the art world. simon: i think auctioneers have to try to always try the best possible result of the clients
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who entrust these artworks to him. i do a lot of benefit auctions as well. it is the same thing. you always need to try to obtain the highest result for the charity you are selling for. charlie: you have devoted a certain kind of experiences and wisdom. you said it is better to think you overpay for something outstanding than to get a bargain on something mediocre. that almost is a maxim for life. simon: that's true. i've seen people who are really -- brilliant businesspeople but who, when they approach art, they only want to buy bargains. i've never seen a good collection by someone just making bargains. very often, i see people who occasionally felt they overpaid but it was something really exceptional. at the end of the day, it was that work that increased the most in value over time. charlie: so you look for quality.
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simon: quality is essential. you want to distinguish between something a fantastic quality and something that is mediocre. charlie: i assume the best nose and the best eyes can look at a known artist and look at an artist's life and work and know the very best he ever did. simon: the benefit of buying from the past is that you have a work of knowledge. every artist has good days and some less good days. so you know what are the best works and you can compare them with other works. but when you buy contemporary art, you don't know how he is going to develop. you don't know what his life will look like. you don't know how active he will be, how he will grow. and you take a chance because you cannot predict all of that and you cannot compare with other things. so you take a bet and it is kind of a gut instinct. charlie: have you fallen in love with the work of young artists?
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simon: yes, there are a number of young artists that i felt, my god, this looks so exciting, and you really want to follow what they are doing. and the exciting thing at philips is that, every season, we sit down with our colleagues and discuss between ourselves -- because we all share the same passion -- discuss which young artist we felt was the most promising, which we felt had the most upside potential. and then we would put them into the auctions. we would normally put them into the day sale. and if they did ok in the day sale, next time, we would put them in the evening sale. the evening sale is the one that gets all the attention. occasionally, we would fast-track an artist and put them directly into the evening sale. so we would introduce a number of artists to the secondary marketplace, artists that had never been sold at auction before. i was very excited to see this week, for instance, one of my
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all-time favorite artists, mark bradford who lives in los angeles, his works have been selling very well this week. and when we for the first time saw the work by mark bradford, we decided to put him straight away into the evening sale. the first auction it made , something like $180,000, which was sensational. this week, we have prices in excess of $3 million for him. so it is exciting to follow artists through their careers. charlie: did you champion richard prince? simon: richard prince is an artist i love very much. i remember when he did an exhibition of his nurses at the gladstone gallery in new york. a number of friends said it is crazy what he is doing now with these nurses. i madly fell in love with his nurse paintings. they were all selling between
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$35,000 and $75,000. at philips we are championing , his work. we are including his work. i remember telling a number of colleagues -- listen, you should really look at prince. and it would go in one ear and go out the other ear. then we sold one of these nurses for just under $1 million. when that happened, the same friends came back and said where can i get prince? [laughter] tonight, there is going to be a stunning nurse called the runaway nurse. i don't know what the price will be running away but we expect it to maybe do something between $7 million or $10 million. you can see an artist like him -- charlie: how long did it take for you from recognizing his work to now get to this point? simon: we're talking about 10 years. it is not a very long time. charlie: talk about the market today. here we are in the center of this this week.
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what is going on? where are prices headed? simon: so there is a moment of readjustment in the market. after all the economic uncertainty that has been kind of general a lot of owners of , top works have decided to hold back and felt, let's see what happens. so this season, there are far less really top-end works on the market. charlie: holding back because they think the market will not support the kind of prices justified in receiving? simon: yes. what we saw overall these last years, literally from 2009 up to the end of last year, prices kept climbing and going up and up. so if you did own something totally exceptional, even if you inherited it and you had it forever, you are very tempted to feel now is the time to put it on the market. on the market. if you look at the catalogs, and
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outstanding condylox, amazing quality -- outstanding catalogs, amazing quality of work i came onto the market place, the kind of works you would see in top museums. now come at the end of the year, people felt a little uncertain of what the situation was. so the volume and the auctions is considerably lower than it was. but the sale taken place so far this week have been solid. because the sales sunday night at christie's and phillips had sold rates of more than 90%. at more than 90%, that is a solid market. a lot offered were actually sold. back in 19 90, june 1990, or in october, november 2008, there was a moment when suddenly the sold rates at the auctions went down to about 50% or 55%. then you think, oh, my god, what is going on? charlie: what are the factors
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that determine the market as a whole? i imagine during the recession, there was not a lot of buying and selling of art. am i wrong? what happens in bad economic times? simon: yes. what is interesting, the last two adjustments of the art market was 1990 and 2008. in 1990 boom of the late 1980's had been entirely fueled by japanese collectors. in may 1990, records were beaten at christie's for $82 million. renoir at sotheby's first $78 million. then in june, all japanese buyers had withdrawn from the market. so the sales in june, one month later, were really, really bad. then the market rebuilt very gradually, very slowly. by 1996 and 1997, it really gathered steam again.
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but then in 2008, the opposite happened. it stopped in october 2008. but then in march 2009, there was the pierre auction at christie's, which was the most successful option at the time ever to take place. they were selling their collection. when people saw that it made amazing results, the confidence came straight back. and so, since 2009, we have seen prices rising until 2016. charlie: how much speculation is there? in other words, people buying pieces of art that they like and love having, but if someone offers them a huge profit, they would easily get rid of it? simon: there are as many motivations for collecting as there are collectors. some are interested by the speculative aspect of it all. but even the mysterious serious collectors have never seen a
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civil collector who will show you i work and say, listen, i bought this for $1 million and now it is only worth two in a thousand dollars. [laughter] so even -- worth $200,000. [laughter] so those take content meant iron discontentment on those they have spent a lot of money on. charlie: you have those who are looking for particular pieces all the time? simon: yes. they key is to know basically who has what and who wants what. charlie: and that comes from experience. simon: and that comes from experience and that is one of the advantages of having been around for a little while. because after a while, you begin to know where things are and who is looking for what. charlie: so what is happening at sotheby snap? there have -- at sotheby's now? simon: there have been a number of changes with a number of specialists who have spent many years there who have recently
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left. charlie: they also have new owners. simon: at all times, there has been some ability with people living -- leaving and moving on. it always offers an opportunity for the junior staff to move up one or two notches. what is maybe unusual in terms of what happened recently is the number of seasoned specialists who did leave. but for instance, this week, sotheby's had perfectly good sales. i think some will go to other houses. some will become art dealers. that is a mobility -- some will become art dealers. this is mobility that is not too bad. the art world is -- the auction is a difficult way to sell because you need a huge network and you need employees and a machine to sell successfully
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well. at $10,000 and up to one million dollars, in my view, the internet is probably more effective way. charlie: $10,000 up to $1 million? simon: yes. in time, i think that the internet will be more effective at selling art in a more affordable way. when you have the chance to see something physically come if you want to inspect it physically, you may be able to do so. i feel you should be offered that chance. charlie: what is your favorite museum in the world?
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that's a hard question. simon: that's a hard question. one of my favorite museums is the museum of basel, the museum that developed my love for art. i like the hermitage museum of st. petersburg. charlie: other than knowing as much as you can and enjoying as much as you can? simon: i think you have to keep looking. it is essential to visit all the exhibitions, the art fairs, the auction previews, the biennials. and you have to stay in it. you have to be current. you cannot say, ok, i take a step back. in any case, you don't want to take a step back. it is so enjoyable. you never get tired of it or blase. you can never seek a much art. it is like music. if you are obsessed with music, you can never listen enough to music. that is the key at the end of the day. charlie: miami has arrived as an
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art center? simon: yes, miami has become an important place for the art fair. miami basel is probably the most important art fair in the united states. charlie: how did that happen? one family there? simon: in miami, you have a community of great local collectors. whenever the art fair takes place in miami, all of these collectors open their homes. and each year, they arrange something different for the visitors who come to miami. so this makes it a very personal, very special thing to go there. but i would say, artistically speaking, los angeles is probably the most vibrant art center today. not only in the states -- charlie: with new museums as well. simon: new museums and you have so many important artists. charlie: for contemporary art. simon: yes. you have a great amount of very
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interesting and important artists based in a leg or living and working there today -- based in l.a. who are living and working there today. i feel very privileged to be doing what i do. i think, whenever you are -- and it about what you do, you don't feel like you are working. so i don't have any regrets of not being an artist. charlie: what was the hardest thing to write about in this book? simon: it was very weird because i wrote this book in conversations with the co-author. he lives in l.a.. i was having long skype sessions with him and he would ask me questions. it was like going to a shrink. speaking, speaking, and you forget -- it was like a conversation. when i saw the manuscript, i thought, oh, my god, did i say all of this?
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it was kind of a strange experience. of course, it is all my anecdotes, my stories that i was saying. but it's told with a different voice. but i think that is what probably makes it interesting. charlie: thank you for coming. it is a pleasure to see you here. simon: a great pleasure to be here. charlie: the book is called "the auctioneer, adventures in the art trade." we'll be right back. ♪
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charlie: edgar degas is one of the most enduring and influential artists of the 19th century. he is best known as a painter and chronicler of the ballet. the museum's first monolithic exhibition of the artist. it features approximately 100 20 monotype's along with some 60-related works, including paintings, drawings and prints. "the new york times" says the exhibition makes the past feel alive and useful. joining me now is jody hoffman, seamier -- senior curator in the department of prints. thank you for being here. jody: it is a pleasure to be back. charlie: put degas in the context of the 21st century?
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jody: he is known, as you said, the great chronicler of the ballet and that is what we associate him with. but he was also wildly experimental, relentlessly excremental. and that is what the exhibition seeks to show, the way he defined convention, reached for something new. and in that and i think that is where his influence really is. we have some really wonderful, important works by the artists. but nobody -- no other curator had really taken it on. we are always thinking about who among the foundational figures for the collection we should look at again, bring to the attention of our visitors and kind of think about the relationship between 1880 when we begin and contemporary art. said degas seemed such a perfect figure to do that with but there
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was no model to look at. we were beginning from the beginning. charlie: what is a monotype? jody: that is an important question. it is a hybrid of drawing and print making. what degas did was use a damp piece of paper and run it through a press. it yields a similar impression, a single print. it is mono, one parent but they got, --dega wass always making materials do what they are not meant to do and often played with that idea of singularity and we tried to show that in the exhibition. charlie: "the new yorker" said that it underlines that his genius was a graphic on the historical arc of linear sorcery from ingrid to picasso. jody: it is a beautiful description and it is something
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i think you see in the exhibition. degas is a follower of ang. what he learns with monotype, what monotype encourages is a kind of looseness, a kind of gesture. so you move from something very precise to something very loose and liberated. the way monotype did that was that come if you think about the plate being very slick and the ink he is using being very viscous, did that slick plate encourage him to move the ink very easily so there is no resistance like you would have with paper. that encouraged him to move the ink around and to loosen up and be more improvisatory. also, when you draw on the plate, you can make a change with monotype ride up to the very instant that you print it. it is not like would cut when you carve into it and you are making a commitment. so the idea that you can make a
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change, simply change what it looked like and try again. it also encouraged the kind of spontaneity and malleability in his work, and you see that over the course of the exhibition. the way it gets looser, more abstract. the idea of process as product pervades this. jody: absolutely. this is something that was always part of his work, but really comes out with monotype. here is an artist wher e finish was not that important; it was about trying new things. drawing, it wasn't about making preparatory drawings for a finished painting. every kind of media was equally valid for degas. they all taught him something. they all showed him a way to use materials in a different way. he was always interested in
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trying new things. charlie: why ballet? jody: he was once asked why du always depicted dancers? and he said it is just a pretext for depicting movement. charlie: that is exactly what i was thinking. jody: an monotype, because of the loose line and was talking about, it allowed him to depict the leap of those dancers into the hair. it was a show -- a way to show the way they were almost weightless. so monetize was at -- so monotype was apt in showing that. charlie: he also had relationships or sincere wishes friendships with the artists of his time. renee, monet. jody: yes. he helped organize the exhibitions of impressionism at the time. but he didn't like that term. he didn't like to be called an impressionist.
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he called himself a realist. charlie: let's talk about some things. first is the ballet master. jody: this is his first monotype. the exhibition starts with -- opens with this work. his friend is a printmaker and a painter. you can see in the upper left corner that they both signed the work. it is important for us to begin the exhibition with it because not only because it is the first but it indicates to visitors that here is you're looking at something by degas. you see the ballerina and the ballet teacher. but you see an image that is dark and murky, unresolved and mysterious. so it says hopefully to our visitors that you are seeing a different kind of day the -- degas. this is such a great work. it is small and intimate. what we see here is the way the
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god -- degas expands his toolkit. instead of just using a pencil or a brush, he's using rags or a short implement and his own hands. his hands are really in their caribbean sea until the right side how he has taken his finger and run it horizontally across the image to make that horizontal shape. so if you go on the middle right, you can see -- charlie: yeah, i see it can jody: even if you go up from that, you see these small fingerprints that kind of make the sky come alive. so you get the sense of an artist who has embraced this medium, who is physically covered in a because he's got his hands in it up to his elbows. and one of his very good friends says about him to another person in a letter, he says, degas is no longer a man. he is a plate. he is covered in ink and he has
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gone through the press. you really get the sense of a man who is been immersed in this process with enthusiasm. charlie: 1877 to 1880. jody: it really gets to this important thing about degas's practices, that he is always looking for new techniques to describe new subjects. as i said, the most pressing of the most urgent subject of the time is the expansion of the city. so he gives us an elegantly dressed man and woman. he has drawn them on the plate. at the 40 prints it, he takes a rag -- but before he prints it, he takes a rag or his fingers and rubs it. so it gets the impression of rushing through the city. you only catch people in these quick moments. charlie: the next one is factory smoke.
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jody: again, just a wonderful image and completely unexpected for degas. i don't think anybody would ever associate this image with degas. he is again capturing the new aspects of life in the city. so the impact of industrialization, here, factory smoke. and there is a beautiful analogy of subject and means, where you think about the ink moving across the plate just the way the smoke moves across the sky. charlie: the next one is cap facing her -- cafe singer. jody: these are two works. one of the interesting ways that degas used a monotype comments and of just limiting his work to a single impression, which is what monotype usually is, after he prince a first impression, which you see on the right side of the screen, he will see that there is ink still left on the plate and he will make a sandwich again with a piece of paper, run it through the press again, and what he gets is a second oppression. but it's a ghost image, a degraded image.
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then he takes that image and uses it as a total map to then add pastel. and you can see he does that on the image on the left. what he does with these pairs is he sometimes sticks very directly to the first image. but sometimes he makes changes. you can see has thinned out this thing or changed her hairstyle. he has added another figure. so you get to images that are both the same and different. and that is an important lesson for him in understanding that making art is not about a fine or finished thing. there is always another image to be made. another thing i want to point at or quickly is that the image on the right is kind of an essay on new forms of elimination. -- illumination. so the globe on the right is electric lighting that is new in the day. and he juxtaposes it with the softer glows, the old gaslight. so we get the impact of light on the body. at some point, degas says the spotlight is not the light on the image but the impact.
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charlie: most of these are 1879-1880. jody: exactly. he is working with monotype said he makes over 300. even a he is still painting and doing other things, he is really engaged in making monotype. charlie: the next is three ballet dancers. jody: what degas would have done is taken the plate and laid a curtain of black ink across it. then he or the ballerinas by removal. so he is using rags and his own hands again, a sharp implement. what you get is this image of dancers emerging out of darkness. what that does for him is lets him depict the footlights and also what we were talking about before, the idea of movement. you really get the sense of these dancers leaping into the air. charlie: is "woman in a
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bathtub." jody: again, this is where he has made a first impression, the one on the right and the second one on the left and covered the second one with pastel. the one on the right is a very dark and murky. she is a most bathing in a bath of ink. and the pastelized version is resolved. the light is even. she is prettier. and often, the dark print, the print that doesn't have the pastel, was a private or exploratory practice. you might share it with friends. where is the one with pastel would actually go out on the market. charlie: the one on the right is a woman in the bath time. and the one on the left is woman in her bath. jody: right. sometimes the titles are not degas's titles. they were given much later after the fact. i just want to point out also that, in this work, the one on the right, you can see two
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spigots, indicating that this is an apartment of some means because it has running water. but when degas as a pastel, he eliminates them. he's not only changing the feel of the print, but changing the class. this is a work in the museum of modern art collection. in the mid-1880's, degas stops making monotype's with black ink. he takes a break. and then in 1890, he starts making monotype's again. but this time, he uses oil paint instead of black ink and that is an innovation. oil paint is very liquid and responds in an is your sting way to the press. you can see he has put a lot of green inc. on the plate. as it goes to the press, the ink gets pushed across it and you get this kind of abstract invocation of the land without being an action the diction of it. -- being an actual depiction of it. this is a room devoted to
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answering the question -- what did monotype do for degas? he stops making them in the 1890's, but he is still making art. so what did he do for him? i think you can see it almost encapsulated in this great painting. you might look at and say that they are for dancers tying their shoe. but maybe it is a single dancer where degas is moving around. if you look at the two on the left, they are almost mirror images of each other. when we think about degas, we think of great experience in in his work. it is something that his friend to sorrow taught -- pizzaro talks about. pizzaro was so politically active. he says that his anarchism and his willingness to defy convention is an art.
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charlie: the title of the exhibition is "edgar degas, and extreme new beauty." thank you. great to see you. jody: i encourage you all to come and see us. charlie: thank you for joining us. we will see you next time. ♪
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