Meet Lola June.
She’s 2 years old and lives in New York. And, like most 2-year-olds, she likes to draw and paint.
When I was 2, I also liked to draw and paint -- I stuck with markers and occasionally dabbled in Play-Doh sculpture, and it was always a treat when the fingerpaints came out. Even into grade school and beyond, I did well in art classes and spent free time at home drawing up illustrations of whatever scenes popped into my head. My art never went much further than the refrigerator, though, and apparently my parents were doing me a disservice. Apparently, rich New York City art collectors would have paid good money for my drawings. Just ask Lola.
This little one (with the help of her mother, California expat Lucille Javier) is selling her paintings for literally hundreds of dollars, sometimes up to just under $2,000. She has her own exhibition, “Hope.” Mind you, she’s still in diapers.
A friend of Javier’s, artist Pajtim Osmanaj, saw something special in Lola’s paintings and put them up in the gallery windows of the nonprofit art gallery Chashama. Celebrity dermatologist Dr. David Colbert is just one collector with a keen eye who bought one of Lola’s paintings, telling the New York Post. “I was walking down the street and I looked in the window and thought ‘These pieces are really great.’ I remember asking ‘Who is the artist?’ and there was a little girl sitting on someone’s lap and they pointed to her and I thought ‘Oh, it’s the mother.’”
Nope! It was the toddler.
Even a patron member of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (the freakin’ Met) bought one of the paintings for $700.
Listen, maybe I’m just really naive about the art world, but am I missing something? These “pieces” are the result of a 2-year-old throwing paint on a canvas -- she’s a kid! Could it really be true that her “work” is something prodigal and worthy of dropping hundreds upon hundreds of dollars?
“I believe it is not always necessary to have years of experience to create,” Osmanaj said. “With Lola’s art I want to create a show which makes people question [themselves] and the difference between a master painter and a young child.”
Well, whenever I have a kid, their scribbles are going in a gallery, too, damn it.