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A Guide To Determine If Art Is ‘Good’

The quality of the work is directly related to how tied into the alarm system the piece is. As your fingers glide down the sides you’ll notice the wiring.

The Frame Is Of Good Quality And Laiden With Real Gold Leaf

This is often the case for 19th century paintings, but not every piece has luxurious framework. When art is especially good, it tends to come in heavy, ornate and delicately carved frames, carefully varnished and layered with 24K gold leaf that shines with a patina that has taken centuries to fully mature. Its style might read as Rococo, but it is most assuredly closer to the turn of the century. Also, it’s worth a buttload.

The Brush Strokes Are Easily Visible And Unique To The Artist

As you run your penlight over the surface of the painting, the brushstrokes should be easily identifiable. Place the light between your teeth and peer deeply at the art from either side. Does the oil paint still appear slick? Are the distinct swirls of colour dancing before you like playful gusts of wind? This is where one can evaluate an art’s full goodity. 

It also definitively proves that it’s not the fake they put up when the real one is sent for its annual cleaning in the heavily guarded restoration room, which would have made things far more complicated. Score.

The Tensile Strings Connected To The Newly Installed ArtSentry Alarm System Are Taught

The quality of the work is directly related to how tied into the alarm system the piece is. As your fingers glide down the sides you’ll notice the wiring. You strum the strings gently like your college guitar, the brief memory of your Art History professor telling you that you should switch majors flashing before your eyes. The wires hum briefly. Hm, tricky. Thankfully you and Dave ran the recon multiple times, and with the annual Gala making noise downstairs you’re confident you can disarm it without much fuss. If only Professor Ackerman could see you now, appreciating the good art.

It’s Van Gogh’s ‘Wheat Field With Cypresses’, Worth Over $100 Million

And it’s in the Met.

Steve The Security Guard Is Pretty Shocked To See You Standing In Front Of It

“Hey! No one’s allowed up here!” he says, confirming that the art is likely good. It’s advised to get multiple opinions from experts. However, Steve wasn’t supposed to be up here for another 20 minutes. Thankfully Dave brought the chloroform and rag for just such an occasion. Steve goes down quickly into a sweet sleep. This art keeps getting gooder.

Tying Steve Up Is Just a Temporary Setback, And The Plan Moves Forward

He’s got a kind face, this Steve. Just the wrong place at the wrong time with the almost certainly good art.

Your Partner Dave Starts Acting Shifty As You Finally Remove The Art From The Wall

You’ve trained for every eventuality, so why is Dave acting so nervous? He keeps looking over his shoulder, as if expecting someone. And then that’s when it hits you… Dave had the black market connections for the sale… Could he have orchestrated a double cross…? No, of course not. Don’t be ridiculous. You’ve thought of everything.

You Get Double-Crossed By Dave

Fuck.

Steve Wakes Up Tied To You In The Utility Closet; You Explain The Whole Story

Steve is a good listener with a face as symmetrical as the ornate frame to an incredibly valuable painting that you painstakingly researched and obsessed over for years, all because in college your professor mocked you for mispronouncing it ‘Vaughn Gogg’ and everyone laughed at you and it became your nickname for a full decade and now you’ve decided to exact revenge with the most elaborate and lucrative art theft ever pulled of in the history of this country. Plus, he’s got nice eyes. Too bad the plan went sideways. 

“God,” you think to yourself, doubt and despair beginning to creep in, “Is any art good?”

When The Cops Come Steve Covers For You Because Of Your New Bond, Pinning The Whole Thing On Dave. Steve And You Run Away Together To Italy

The flight to Venice is pleasant. Steve holds your hand with his usual warmth and reassurance. Who would’ve thought? All that time tracking guard rounds and you never realised you were stalking your future partner. Your stomach is unsettled. Could be the vodka soda, but likely it’s nerves over what’s to come next…

You Drive Up The Amalfi Coast, Stopping On A Hilltop Overlooking A Mansion Near The Ocean. Steve Points Ahead Silently And Hands You The Binoculars. And There He Is. Dave The Double-Crosser, Sipping Negronis And Cheersing His Partners Over The Successful Agreement To Sell The Piece To A Russian Oligarch. But How Did Steve Track Him? “It’s A Long Story. I’ll Tell You Over Champagne Tonight.” God, He’s Amazing. You Focus On Dave’s Smug Face, His Head Pitching Back In A Guffaw. Steve Taps You On The Shoulder And Hands You Your Wetsuit. He’s Right. It’s Now Or Never. You’ve Confirmed The Art Is In The Ocean View Suite Underneath A Loose Floorboard, And While They’re Busy Celebrating, It’s The Perfect Opportunity. One More Passionate Kiss From Steve And It’s Go Time. You Jump Into The Speedboat And Hit The Gas. Today, Revenge Is The One Laiden With Gold Leaf.

Oh yeah. This art is so fuckin’ good.


Author’s Pick

Feel a unique blend of envy and pride while watching the most dramatic reality TV show ever, Vanderpump Rules. You will feel like a better person for not being anything like the people on it, but also guilty for contributing to their fame. Melt your brain away, kids, it’s so worth it.

After the long sob-shower you’ll take for watching the above, reanimate your braincells by checking out the Netflix documentary How To Fix A Drug Scandal. A riveting true crime miniseries about two huge (drug) scandals in testing labs in Massachusetts in 2012.

Anything else?

The full expression for “Curiosity killed the cat” is “Curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back.” I just think that’s neat.

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Tara Millette

Tara Millette is a Canuck comedian based in Philadelphia. She’s an award-avoiding writer whose work has been featured in Reductress, McSweeney’s, Slackjaw, The Belladonna, Points in Case, and more. She's also the co-founder of The Honeypot Satire on Medium. You can check out her stuff at taramillette.com, medium.com/the-honeypot, and if you’ve read this far just follow her on Twitter already: @LazyGinger.

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