Saturday, March 13, 2021

The Price of Monkeys

 Longtime readers of this blog...


...wow, thanks, I can't believe you still come around. I'm overwhelmed.

Anyway, for not-so-longtime-readers: the oldtimers know that I'm somewhat obsessed with singerie. Basically, art depicting monkeys in clothes doing people things.

Yep, it's a whole thing. 

Over the years I've done numerous posts highlighting various singerie artists. Like this one. And this one.

Go check them out. They'll make you happy. Because monkeys wearing clothes, you guys.

Today I'm going to highlight a subset of singerie that is very cool and also totally freaking awesome to say: singerie chinoiserie.

It's pronounced "Throatwarbler Mangrove."

Chinoiserie is a French term meaning "in the Chinese style," specifically referring to embellishing Western art or decorations with Eastern motifs. Singerie, of course, is French for "monkeys wearing plumed hats." No! It's even better: It actually means "monkey trick," which is totally going to be the name of my Lancelot Link and the Evolution Revolution tribute band (look it up, kids - I can't link to everything).

But I digress. Put it all together, and singerie chinoiserie is decorative art featuring monkeys dressed up in Chinese-style clothing. This is a thing that exists, and I am here for it. In these times of global pandemic and the heretofore fucked up response thereto, monkeys in Chinese-style clothing doing people things is the joy we all need. Trust me.

This is an entire rabbit hole that can be dived into (into which can be dived...dove...forget it), so I'm going to focus on decorative figurines today. Oh, you can get monkeys painted on vases:



You can even get vases that are mostly made of monkey:

This one is by a South African artist
and will set you back 2,750 euros.

You can also get bowls to hold your lemons.

$150 on eBay; doesn't say if the lemons
are included, which seems a significant
omission.

Now, monkeys carrying bowls on their head is a notable theme in chinoiserie.

When life gives you monkeys,
make lemonade.

Don't like lemons? Fortunately, the possibilities are endless.

Believe it or not, this one is from Walmart
and sells for $178.
You OK, Walmart?

I mean, monkeys with bowls on their head is a really popular theme.

A bargain at ninety bucks.

Vintage monkeys with bowls on their head fetch a premium - this one goes for almost $400.

I'm worth it, bitch.

No matter the price, they're just cute as the dickens, and functional. They'll hold your lemons, your spare change, your weed...monkeys don't judge (of if they do, they keep it to themselves, which is a lesson some people could stand to learn).



Some monkeys prefer to hold their bowl in their lap.

While others get really creative.



Sometimes monkeys hold other things, like candlesticks.

Swanky boys.

Or tiny vases. I saw this one for 98 dollars on Etsy.



But he must suck at his job, because this very similar and more primitive example will cost you $12,500 (not a typo), and I have no idea why.


Here's a tricky proposition: monkeys holding vases that are candlesticks!

The vases are adorable.
And I'm pretty sure those monkeys are high.

This monkey is minding his own business and reading a book.

And goes for $900.
Reading is fundamental.

On the other hand, this little guy is totally putting on a show and is a bargain at $99. 

I don't really understand monkey economics.

That's enough for one day. I don't want to spoil you, and I should probably do something more productive with my day than Googling singerie chinoiserie.

Just kidding, there is literally nothing more productive I could do today. 

I hope you enjoyed the show. There will be sequel if this proves popular. And probably even if it doesn't. Because, once again, monkeys wearing clothing.

It's a thing.


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