Monday, November 30, 2009

Final Project Proposition

I have decided to create an exhibit that tells the story of my younger brother’s life surrounding his 1998 Cystic Fibrosis diagnosis. When Evan was diagnosed he was hospitalized for two weeks. In that two weeks his life changed dramatically and I want to create a visual representation of that change. “Cystic Fibrosis” can be very difficult for young children to say, one of the ways that the CF foundation came up with to help kids learn to say it, and in a way to make the concept of chronic illness seem less frightening, was by saying “Sixty Five Roses” instead. I want the theme of my exhibition to be literally 65 roses. I have been thinking about using a suitcase full of boxes that all have something in them surrounding my brother, CF, and the literal image of 65 roses. I’m still in the brainstorming phase but I think my end product will work out well. 

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Creative Commons

I suppose that the idea of copyrighting my own work has always felt foreign and intangible to me. Legal documentation that I created something seems so far out of my league as an artists. Reading about the Creative Commons makes copyrighting seem so much more simple, and smart than I thought. My boyfriend is a songwriter going through some trouble with ex-band mates "stealing" his work. I am starting to think he should take a look at this CC thing!

I now realize that in today's world it doesn't really matter if you actually wrote the song, or drew the picture, or authored the book. Unless you have legal documentation proving that you created something someone can easily, and legally, claim ownership of it. That's kind of a depressing and scary thought. As for the sharing aspect of the CC, I think that is a totally new take on the idea of ownership and copyright.  I believe that this is a good medium between having no copyright of one's work, and having a very solid copyright. 

In the case of Sherrie Levine, if she had used CC to copyright her work I feel that it would have taken away from it’s meaning. I suppose that if she had done this then Michael Mandiberg probably wouldn’t have done his “After Sherrie Levine” work because his message would have been lost as well. 

Monday, October 26, 2009

Icons in Persepolis

I have seen Persepolis several times, but I haven't really paid attention to the icons that were used in the movie. I think this is partially due to the fact that I am usually busy reading the sub titles. I think that I have seen it enough times now that I could follow the story line without reading the words. It would actually be very interesting to watch this movie without subtitles so that the only thing I would be able to use to follow the story would be the imagery and icons. Just breifly looking back on the movie several icons stand out to me. The veils the women wear, the fact that most of the men in the movie had mustaches, and the nuns in their head to foot attire. I believe that these are icons that are supposed to show that the Iranian people were forced to let go of much of their individuality and that when they were outside of their homes they lost much of their identity in a sea of facial hair and veils. 

Cooley Gallery: The Language of the Nude

Our visit to the Cooley gallery on Wednesday was very fascinating. I hadn't ever really thought about how different the naked human body looks in works of art from centuries past as opposed to today. Although many of the men depicted in the pieces were supposed to be very muscular I tended to see them as more childlike in body then adult. I tried to think of why these depictions of the human body were so different from the reality of the human body that I know. It crossed my mind that not only were there social reasons (ie. nude models were reserved for high end artists and females could not pose nude) playing into the depiction of the human body but there could also be medical reasons. Our understanding of the human skeletal, and muscular systems is far more advanced today than it was two centuries (or more) ago. This could be one reason why some of the proportions of the pieces seemed a little off, or why many of the "muscular" men looked more like they had a little left over baby fat! I was very drawn to the selection of work from the Netherlands and Holland. To me this work stood out from the rest quite a bit, mostly because it was very full of imagery compared to the other pieces. I was particularly drawn to the round piece which showed Neptune. It held my attention much longer than any of the other pieces and had much more of a story to tell.  

Spirit of the Times: Movie Posters

Here are a few movie posters that I found online that I believe have many characteristics that clue the viewer into what decade they were made in. 

"The Day The Earth Stood Still" (1955)
Many science fiction movies from the 50's have similar posters to this one. There are often many images depicting different parts of the movie, many of them also have the classic "damsel in distress" front and center. Coloring is another key to figuring out when movies are from. Technicolor was a from of color film processing that was used quite a bit between the 20's and 50's. Technicolor was known for it saturated coloring of film, thus many movie posters from this time exemplify the bright, high contrast color that was found in the film it self.  Below is a poster for the 1955 film "This Island Earth." Another Sci Fi movie from the 50's that has similar coloring and subject matter to the poster for "The Day The Earth Stood Still."

 The third poster that I found was for the 1971 film "Harold and Maude." Color photography had become more widely available by the mid to late 60's, so by the early 70's most movie posters were color photographs. The 70's are known for bright colors in photography, fashion, art, etc. Many household objects were quite kitschy around this time too. (ie. mushroom shaped cookie jars, salt and pepper shakers, etc.) In the movie poster for "Harold and Maude" there are several things that let the viewer know it was made in the 70's. First is the bright orange psychedelic-esque font which was very typical of the early to mid 70's. Second is the fact that the poster is simply a color photograph of the two main characters from the movie. Third is the wardrobe of the characters which is normal attire from the 70's.

The last poster that I found that I believe is a good example of a movie that exemplifies the decade in which it was made is the poster for "Pretty in Pink" a John Hughes film from 1986. Again we see a photo of the character's from the movie dressed in attire that is very specific to the time period. The contrasted photo makes the characters look grungy. During this time the "grunge punk" music/fashion persona was a common sight, thus the poster shows us that the movie was made around the same time when that music and fashion scene was part of pop culture. 

Monday, October 19, 2009

Image Hunt

"But in time we grew up, and seeking refuge in each other's beds became completely inexcusable."
- Thompson, Craig. "Blankets". pg. 459 (2003). 

This photo is of two children (brothers) who found comfort, or "refuge", in sleeping in the same bed. When we see a photo of children sharing a bed we think nothing of it. It seems totally normal, maybe even sweet or endearing to us. What is it that makes us think differently when children grow up?

This sentence, even when taken out of the context of the book, is clearly discussing grown children. When we are young many of the social/cultural boundaries that exist don't necessarily apply to us. We can do many things that, when we get older, are seen as inappropriate. In this phrase it is discussing two young brothers sleeping in the same bed. I found this photo of lavender separated by a row of rock, which could represent the social/cultural boundary that these brothers were introduced to when they "grew up" which made it inappropriate for them to share a bed. 

Here is a photo which is depicting a literal meaning of the above quote. When you look at this photo, and the photo of the two young boys above you see very different things. This photo is not necessarily endearing, possibly because there is a loss of innocence. These are not children, they are men. Our society has taught us that adults "should know better" than children, or "should know better" than to do things that may be inappropriate for their age. When an adult viewer looks at this photo they could think that the men's actions are "inexcusable" and that the social/cultural boundary of who can share a bed has been crossed. Growing up is so strange.