Friday, January 27, 2017

Rorschach (BMA)

Andy Warhol's, Rorschach, was created with synthetic polymer paint on canvas in 1984. I am always drawn to Warhol's pieces but this one in particular I did not know was his until I read the description. I initially thought the image looked cool because it reminded me of the inside of a body. When researching more on what the title of this piece of art means, I found that Rorschach is an inkblot test that was used for psychological tests. It is when subjects respond to inkblot images and say what it made them think of. I also had thought it was amazing how well he was able to make this symmetrical, but apparently a technique Warhol used was to create one side of the image and just fold it in half to make it doubled. This image was intriguing to me because the description allowed me to see how much thought and effort Warhol put into this. It isn't just a bunch of inkblots but instead he was putting in his own interpretation of these old tests which one of his assistants had created for this piece. After staring at this painting for a while, I noticed that at about the center there appears to be two eyes looking at you and then a face as it goes further down. I wonder if Warhol intentionally did this to try and make the viewers think more deeply about the image. 

Harbor, Kerteminde (BMA)

Harbor, Kerteminde by William H. Johnson was created with oils on burlap from 1930-1934. This piece of art reminded me of Van Gogh's "The Starry Night". Both artists used a swirling technique that causes certain objects to not be visibly clear. Johnson also used really dark colors in this painting, almost as if a storm was coming through the harbor. I also liked how even with the unclear images you can still see reflections from the boats in the water and a city out in the distance. He still kept up reality even though the image itself looks distorted and not realistic. I think the technique Johnson used is what drew my attention to the picture. It reminded me of when I go down the shore in the summers and visit the marinas with all the boats. Usually I view the bay to be calm water and the boats swaying back and forth slightly whereas Johnson appears to be showing commotion in the water.

View of St. Lazare Railway Station, Paris (BMA)

View of St. Lazare Railway Station, Paris by Norbert Goeneutte was created with oil on canvas in 1887. What I liked about this particular piece were the colors Goeneutte used. He chose very soft colors that to me looked as though the sun was setting and casting the light pinks onto the buildings. The clouds of steam rising appeared to be showing that people were hard at work during this time. I also enjoyed what appears to be a balcony from which the viewer is looking out into Paris in the distance and watching people walk by. Having traveled to Paris before, I found this piece spoke to me because 1887 and Paris now have two completely different perspectives. When arriving at the train station I was seeing business people traveling as well as many others with suitcases who were there for leisure like myself. There were also no clouds of steam surrounding me but instead just many people walking around, taking the metro, and looking down at their cellphones. This piece was interesting to stare at for a while because if you look closely there are people walking and traveling by horse and buggy. This does not happen today and to see his perspective of looking out into Paris vs mine was eye opening to see how time really does change things. 

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Visibility by Italo Calvino

Throughout the reading, Calvino discusses the many ways we are able to imagine readings and descriptions of events that are handed to us. He talks about how imagination allows us to create pictures in our head of how we are perceiving the world around us. "O imagination, you who have the power to impose yourself on our faculties and our wills, stealing us away from the outer world and carrying us off into an inner one, so that even if a thousand trumpets were to sound we would not hear them..." (82). When thinking about imagination, I have never considered that it does in fact allow you to step away from the real world and see what you want to see. Imagination can be a cool concept in which everyone has their own version of how they want to see things. Another interesting factor he mentions is how there are two different types of an imaginative process: "...the one that starts with the word and arrives at the visual image, and the one that starts with the visual image and arrives at its verbal expression" (83). This also caught my attention because it is different when you are seeing something and then writing it down rather than when you are reading something and having to imagine it for yourself. Each is different in the sense that one is how you would describe the images in writing and the other would be how you perceive what is being given to you. Calvino posed scenarios that allowed me to realize how much goes into imagining that I had never thought of before.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Senior Exhibition - Thread for Thought

During my visit to the Senior Exhibition I found Elena Damon's "Thread for Thought" to catch my eye. She took pictures of people and used threads to create lines around their faces. Many of these lines stem out from the person eyes and forehead. It made me think that she was trying to convey how people are perceiving what is going on around them, what they are taking in, and even how that person may be feeling. There are certain threads that look as though they are going inside the persons' head and others that are coming out of the person. This aspect of the artwork was powerful because you then as the viewer are trying to grasp onto how the person may be feeling. You want to try and go inside their minds and see what they may be glancing at that are causing them to stare that way, or even just what may be on their minds that are causing them to feel pain or happiness.

I thought she did a great job with allowing the viewer to perceive the work how they want to. It gives them a chance to also see how the people they see in their every day lives are viewing life differently than the person standing next to them. Everyone has different worries, opinions and perspectives. The people you see on your daily commute to work every day may not be in a good mood the same day you are. Everyone all over the world are facing different life struggles every day and I think it is important to be able to realize that. To me, that is what this piece of art is showing us: people everywhere viewing life through different sets of eyes and perspectives.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Whole Ball of Wax

"The Whole Ball of Wax" by Jerry Saltz was an interesting read on how to think and see art from different perspectives and whether or not it can change the world. A quote that stuck out to me immensely was the Oscar Wilde quote: "The moment you think you understand a work of art it's dead for you." This quote stood out to me because I think it is something to think about whenever looking at or analyzing a piece of work. Everyone has their own opinion or view point on what an art piece means to them and therefore, there is no right or wrong answer. I think this is what allows art to be fun, because everyone has the ability to use their imaginations and choose what they want the piece of art to mean for themselves. Another quote that stood out to me was when Saltz says: "Art is a bridge to a new vision and the vision itself, a medium or matrix through which one sees the world, and that grants that pleasure is an important form of knowledge". Everyone has their own artistic abilities and have the ability to choose how they want to display it. Whether it is through warm colors, sad music, etc. it can show the mood that this particular artist may be in or what they are feeling about life in general. Overall, I found this article to be an interesting way to see how art is perceived and how/why it is good for the world.