As many of us journey home for the holidays, this map from eBay is a good reminder of why we left in the first place. EBay calculated the artists that eBay users search for most in each state. Raking in most of the midwest is South Dakota native Terry Redlin, who paints the kind of Christmasy winter wonderlands we’ve all seen at the house of an older relative or dentist’s office waiting room. Then there’s Thomas Kinkade, who takes quite a few other states including Alabama, West Virginia, and Tennessee, and whose paintings look like something a precocious 10-year-old might make on ecstasy. Peter Lik, desktop wallpaper photographer extraordinaire, takes Hawaii and Nevada, and vaguely homoerotic fantasy painter Frank Frazetta dominates in Washington, Colorado, and Arizona.
Most of these artists, in fact, look like something you’d come upon in a thrift store–it’s hard to imagine actively searching for them. However, there are a few pleasant surprises. Florida, perhaps demonstrating some kind of deeply repressed self-awareness, is the only state where Salvador Dalí tops the list, and brooding feminist Frida Kahlo is the most searched for in California. Art history staples like Marc Chagall and Pablo Picasso are scattered throughout. The popularity of street art is apparent on the coasts, with Banksy dominating New York while Emek takes Oregon and Shepard Fairey conquers tiny Rhode Island (he attended Rhode Island School of Design).
We’d love to see a more thorough examination of our nations most populist art (maybe one with less overlap), but as The Guardian points out, if there’s one upside to this list it’s that Jeff Koons is nowhere to be seen. America may love gooey kitsch, but at least they remain mostly unaffected by the money-grubbing trends of the high-art world.
[H/T: The Guardian]