Thursday, April 1, 2010

Object theory - 5

Body, Materiality and Process: 

Reading: Howard Risatti 'Hand and body in relation to craft' in Risatti, H. A theory of craft: function and aesthetic expression, University of North Carolina Press, USA, 2007, pp108-115.

Whilst you can't really have any one of the three without the other for the sake of definition the class brain stormed (or a light drizzled) the specifics of the three.

limits of resources strength and skill
body imposes form and shape
work with material using process
material determines handling
maker<-> user
design for use

qualities of the material
availability (cost supply)
influence on product
sentimental attachment
cultural / tradition

model macquette

Clare introduced us to Clement Greenberg a modernist art critic writing in the 40's - 70's when modernism was mainstream. He has influenced (however unwittingly) the way craft is thought of written about today.

Before we carry on with that though Clare gives us a quick trajectory of modernist painting starting with

Claude Monet and his Haystacks (morning snow effect and thaw sunset)

Thanks to the invention of the Camera artists were not so needed to portray realism, these are considered to be the first steps away from the representational creating feelings and impressions, capturing the moment and the feeling of really being there! The availability of Paint in tubes assisted painting outdoors.

Post impressionism
Paul Cezanne and his 'Still life with apples & oranges' (1899)

Painting of everyday objects, different perspectives..see how the apples seem to be about to tumble toward you. Change of convention by using contrasting colours to create shadow rather than black.

Pablo Picasso's 'Woman playing mandolin' (1909)

More flattening of perspective, capturing and portraying more than one viewpoint / all surfaces at once. Fractured space.

Eduard Munch 'The scream' (1893)

Painting portrays pure emotion. Gestural lines and movement with paint. Image articulates emotion and feeling through the use of colour, line and form and warped perspective.

Wassily Kandinsky. Black Strokes I. 1913. Oil on canvas. 129.4 x 131.1 cm. The Solomon R. Guggebheim Museum, New York, NY, USA

Music is the ultimate form of abstraction. Exploring colour, movement and form. brush strokes and mark amking led to the question of "What is painting?"
The moderninst definition being: 'Marks made in paint on a surface' This style was thought of as a 'truer' painting. Nothing is looking like something else (paint made to look like a person (or pipe)). This is paint, you can see how it was applied, the raw elements express the artist.

Kasimir Malevich 'Black square' (1929) the ultimate truthful painting..a definite move away from the past.

 Abstract expressionism
Mark Rothko no 12 (1951)
This is all about colour, saturation, soft edges, gestural. Expressing the inner nature of the artist, playing with paint in its pure form. 'essence of materials.
Clement thought that modern art needed to have a specialist audience (who was learned and sophisticated anough to sppreciate it), and that one should look at a work in isolation.
Then we had a quick recap on the concept of 'Truth to materials'.
Part of the modernist movement that had it's beginings in the arts and crafts movement. Decoration was subservient to form.

Sussex Rush-Seated Chairs. Page from the Morris and Co. catalogue. The Rossetti chair is at top left, the Sussex chairs the next three in the top row, and the roundseat chair possibly designed by F. M. Brown at bottom left. Thank you to the Victorian Web for the picture and credits.

"Simple objects speak for themselves" "Materials should determine the form" pure form..bring out the nature of the material

Mies van Der Rohe: Barcelona Pavillion (1929)

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