Sunday, May 25, 2014
Reel People: Amy Adams is Margaret Keane
Margaret Keane was born in Tennessee in 1927. Margaret Keane was an artist who would become famous for her large eyed paintings of children.
Margaret married a man named Frank Ulbrich, they had a daughter named Jane. In 1952
Margaret Ulbrich met another artist, Walter Keane, while she was doing art at a fairground in 1953. Margaret would divorce Frank and marry Walter in 1955.
Margaret, Walter and both of their daughters (Jane from her first marriage, and Susan from his first marriage) did art shows together selling their work.
In 1964 the couple would separate. The divorce would be finalized in 1965.
Margaret would move to Hawaii, and at this time also became a Jehovah's Witness.
After the divorce, Walter was called out by Margaret for taking credit for art that was done by her, particularly the large eyed portraits. After Walter compared himself to Rembrandt and El Greco. Margaret challenge Walter to a paint off in San Francisco's Union Square, but Walter did not attend.
This feud escalated in the 1980s, specifically in 1984 when she claimed Walter "couldn't learn to paint at all...let him paint or shut up." Walter responded in USA Today article, to which Margaret responded with a slander suit. truly done by Margaret, and that she was the artist who had painted the famous large-eyed portraits.
During the 1986 jury trial there was a paint-off in which Margaret produced a painting in less than an hour, while Walter declined to paint due to medication for an injured shoulder. Margaret also produced similar pictures she had drawn as a child. Margaret won the lawsuit and was awarded $4 million in damages and emotional distress.
Currently, Margaret Keane lives in Napa County, California.
The film Big Eyes focuses on the relationship and story of Walter Keane taking credit for Margaret Keane's artwork, including their divorce and court room battles.
In addition to staring Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz headlines playing the part of Walter Keane.
The film also features Terrance Stamp (as art critic John Canaday), Krysten Ritter, Danny Houston, Jason Schwartzman and Jon Polito.
Amy Adams has been an Oscar regular over the past decade, will playing this contemporary artist earn her an Oscar nomination, maybe even a win, for portraying this Real (Reel) Person?