‘My Kid Could Paint That’ film is coming

  • Mar. 31, 2008 10:00 a.m.

Submitted by Jack Litrell, HG Film Society-In the span of only a few months, 4 year-old Maria Olmstead rocketed from total obscurity into international renown, and sold over $300,000 dollars worth of paintings. She was compared to Kandinsky and Pollock, and called “a budding Picasso.” Inside Edition, The Jane Pauley Show, and A/PR did pieces, and The Today Show and Good Morning America got in a bidding war over an appearance by the bashful toddler. There was talk of corporate sponsorship, with the family fielding calls from The Gap and Crayola.But not all the attention was positive. From the beginning, many faulted her parents for exposing Maria to the glare of the media and accused the couple of exploiting their daughter for financial gain. Others felt her work was, in fact, comparable to the great Abstract Expressionists, but saw this as emblematic of the meaninglessness of Modern Art. “She is painting exactly as all the adult painters have been in the past 50 years, but painting like a child, too. That is what everybody thinks, but they don’t dare to say it,” said Oggi, the leading Italian weekly. Through no intention of her own, Maria revived the age-old question, ‘what is art?’And then, five months into Maria’s new life as a celebrity and just short of her fifth birthday, a bombshell dropped. CBS’s 60 Minutes aired an expose suggesting strongly that the paintings were painted by her father, himself an amateur painter. As quickly as the public built Maria up, they tore her down. The New York Post asked whether “the juvenile Jackson Pollock may actually be a full-fledged Willem de Frauding,” the Olmsteads were barraged with hate mail, ostracized around town, sales of the paintings dried up, and Maria’s art dealer considered moving out of Binghamton. Embattled, the Olmsteads turned to the filmmaker to clear their name. Torn between his own responsibility as a journalist and the family’s desire to see their integrity restored, the director finds himself drawn deeper and deeper into a situation that can’t possibly end well for him and them, and could easily end badly for both.The film shows Friday, April 11 at the Skidegate United Church, and Saturday, April 12 at the Masset Green Church. Showtime is at 7:30 pm

Just Posted

Prince Rupert’s ferry issue is a North Coast issue, MLA Rice

Prince Rupert not alone in fight to save ferry to Ketchikan: Alaskan Rep. Ortiz

Brand new vessel for Massett Marine Rescue

The Tagwaal was unveiled to the public Sept. 6

First Nations given max compensation for Ottawa’s child-welfare discrimination

2016 ruling said feds didn’t give same funding for on-reserve kids as was given to off-reserve kids

Council Briefs: Village of Queen Charlotte

Child care and clean-ups on the agenda

Power restored to 120,000 customers after northern B.C. transmission failure

Lightning is suspected to be the cause of the outage, says BC Hydro

On the Wing: Small Yellow Flying Things

by Margo Hearne Distance doesn’t seem to deter migrating birds; they travel… Continue reading

B.C. ends ‘birth alerts’ in child welfare cases

‘Social service workers will no longer share information about expectant parents without consent’

U.S. student, killed in Bamfield bus crash, remembered as ‘kind, intelligent, talented’

John Geerdes, 18, was one of two UVic students killed in the crash on Friday night

Free Tesla 3 offered with purchase of Surrey townhome

Century Group’s offer for Viridian development runs through Oct. 31

B.C. communities urged to improve access for disabled people

One in four B.C. residents has disability, most want to work

Sikh millworker lodges human rights complaint against Interfor, again

Mander Sohal, fired from Delta’s Acorn Mill, alleges discrimination based on religion and disability

UVic students killed in Bamfield bus crash were from Winnipeg, Iowa City

Authorities said the two victims were a man and a woman, both aged 18

Safety concerns resurface after fatal bus crash on Vancouver Island

Huu-ay-aht First Nations wants a safe route between Bamfield and Port Alberni

National weather forecasters predict average fall, cold winter

The Weather Network says precipitation will about average in most parts of Canada

Most Read