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  • I want to begin by thinking about a definition of appropriation, since it has numerous appellations…readymade, remix, mimesis, simulacra..to name a few, perhaps you can think of some more. Fundamenally, appropriation is a synthesis of material, both historic and current, and it makes references to a wide range of sources from design, fine art and popular culture. Appropriation is an important historical practice in art-making, in design, and film in which previously existing forms, images or sound are utilised in new ways. The creative element of the so-called-appropriator is the creative effort which is defined by the inspired selection and manipulation of the pre-exisiting or found materials. The end result is a strangely familiar, yet an altogether new creation.
  • Appropriation, this idea of deliberate reworkings of other people's words, art and ideas iis significant Postmodernist idea. The thought being that if nothing is original, then why not just steal shamelessly? Already this idea of appropriation raises a number of questions? Especially at a time when reproductions can’t be distinguished from the original. Perhaps we should consider whether artist and designers seek control of images ? This is of course what has historically happened and can be described as Artificial scarcity: So what is that? Well Artificial Scarcity is controlling the uncontrollable medium (particularly relevant when thinking about new media) Artifical Scarcity is an example of a Closed Source since it describes the scarcity of something even though the technology and production capacity exists to create an abundance i.e. infinite supply. (Andy Warhol Foundation control the authentication of his work and therefore the market and an inflated demand.) But this is an era of ubiquitous images, and mass distribution, and Appropriation means that you can select from this abundance of Intellectual Property. What do we mean by Intellectual property? Well it refers to creations of the mind: so that would include inventions, literary and artistic artworks, symbols and names, and images used in commerce. So when an artist creates a unique image, it is called Intellectual Property and immediately upon it's creation, without any registration, the art --and all the rights associated with the art-- belong to them.
  • This makes us consider the ethics of such practices. Well there are important distinctions between plagiarism, piracy and what we call “transformative appropriation.” The first, plagarism, is copying someone else’s work and trying to pass it off as your own; the second, piracy, is outright stealing of someone else’s product. The third entails using a preexisting work in the process of creating something new.
  • Undeniably we are in a culture of the copy, and it has an interesting history with regards to a whole series of practices. There are also some philosophical and cultural implications of the appropriation or of the copy? One idea I want to cover and I want you to consider is the problem of cultural responses to the copy, and it’s relation to the idea of authenticity and identity
  • To problematise this further I want you to think about the inherent tension between the fact that we are all simultaneously copies and copying machines, surrounded by a world of copies, and yet we feel the the incessant need to distinguish, to be unique, to differentiate ourselves, to find the authentic and to create the original
  • The Culture of the copy is all around us How does Intellectual Property deal with the culture of the Copy The discourse of Intellectual Property is centered around massive anxieties produced by the copy and more importantly the culture of the copy I want us to think about the various ways through which we can think of the social, cultural and philosophical histories and reverberations of the copy
  • One important theorist Douglas Crimp wrote in his 1985 ‘ Ap propriation, pastiche, quotation - these methods can now be seen to extend to virtually every aspect of our culture, from the most calculated products of the fashion and entertainment industries to the most committed critical activities of artists … ’ CRIMP, DOUGLAS. Appropriating Appropriation, in HERTZ, RICHARD. (ed) Theories of Contemporary Art, Prentice Hall Inc, USA, 1985
  • As a term in art history and criticism refers to the more or less direct taking over into a work of art of a real object or even an existing work of art. Some art historians regard Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque as the first modern artists to appropriate items from a non-art context into their work. In 1912, Picasso pasted a piece of oil cloth onto the canvas. Subsequent compositions, such as Guitar, Newspaper, Glass and Bottle (1913) in which Picasso used newspaper clippings to create forms, became categorized as synthetic cubism. The two artists incorporated aspects of the "real world" into their canvases, opening up discussion of signification and artistic representation.
  • The notion of appropriation, in the fine arts, was progressed by Marcel Duchamp, who took everyday objects like a bicycle wheel, a bottle rack or a urinal and turned them into artwork - ‘Ready made art,’ as he called it. By taking these objects and placing them in an art context, Duchamp made us question the definition of an art object and how an object is influenced and determined by its surroundings.
  • Who is the author of the work?
  • Sherrie Levine reproduced as her own work other works of art, including paintings by Claude Monet, Egon Schiele and Kasimir Malevich. Her aim was to create a new situation, and therefore a new meaning or set of meanings, for a familiar image.
  • Appropriation is and exploration of signification, originality, appropriation, authorship and deconstruction. The term ‘simulacrum’, drawn from the writings of the French philosopher Jean Baudrillard, is often used to signify this idea of representation as reality. For Postmodernists nothing we can say or do is truly ‘original’, for our thoughts are constructed from our experience of a lifetime of representation, so it is naive to imagine a work’s author inventing its forms or controlling its meaning. Instead of pretending to an authorities originality, postmodernism concentrates on the way images and symbols (‘signifiers’) shift or lose their meaning when put in different contexts (‘appropriated’), revealing (‘deconstructing’) the processes by which meaning is constructed.
  • French philosopher Roland Barthes' canonical manifesto, ‘The Death of Author’ (1967), demonstrates that an author is a socially and historically constituted subject. He emphasizes that an author does not exist prior to or outside of language. In other words, it is writing that makes an author and not vice versa. He extended this concept to question the very possibility of originality and authenticity, he stated that any text (or image), rather than emitting a fixed meaning from a singular voice, was but a tissue of quotations that were themselves references to yet other texts, and so on. Barthes proclaimed that previous philosophical thought focused too heavily on the role of the author in the text.
  • Richard Prince's work should be seen in the context of the ideas of French philosopher Roland Barthes. In the age of multiple meanings and mechanical reproduction, Barthes argued there are no more authors, just editors working with existing ideas to create a new voice. Prince's habit of rephotographing existing photographs, initiated in the late 1970's, helped spawn the appropriation craze of the 80's. The artist himself is best known for his deadpan recycling of magazine and newspaper images that range through the highs and lows of popular culture. References to sex, drugs, rock-and- roll, alcoholism and the movies frequently give his efforts a dark and familiar undercurrent. But his relentless replication of found images also has its esoteric side and continually questions definitions of art, originality and artistic technique. Creating a new cultural understanding Marlboro Man’s ever self-reliant cowboy, Prince understood that isolating and removing mass-culture imagery offered an opportunity to examine various codes of representation including gender and class. By re-contextualizing them by severe cropping or removing any ad copy or simply by re-photographing a black and white image on colour film, the artist found ways to blur meaning and to create a critical dialogue with the objects created to satisfy the perceived needs of the expanding American consumer.
  • Julian Schnabel’s paintings served as a focus for an already burgeoning art world debate about authorial intent. His imagery is as quotational as the appropriators. One work which exemplifies this is ‘Exile’. in which the young man holding a basket of fruit is a copy of a figure in Carravaggio, the other figure is from a child’s comic’. Schnabel self consciously plays along with the notion of the death of the author, by revising the myth of the ‘world-historical’ individual and the inherent force of progress. He illustrates that there is no personal language only a personal selection of language with work which is layered, shifting and elusive His work questioned the assumptions behind meaning and art’s borrowing. It was not, as his critics claimed, merely an art of surface, lacking substance and cynically cobbled together from elements seized because of their superficial visual appeal. Schnabel’s approach to style refuted the assumption that the history of art is a narrative of progress, and that the artists role is to rebel against the immediate past. His combinatory approach became his overriding mode, he found ways to integrate previously opposed media and styles in his work from and since the 1980s. He began to use quotations eclectically and to bring more opposites into play, regularly introducing highbrow and lowbrow subjects and formats. He experimented with combinations of past styles, as opposed to rejecting the art of the recent past. This was part of a general move towards a relativistic position, no longer seeing past styles as obsolete or mutually exclusive.
  • Biblo is another artist who uses appropriation of existing imagery and ruptures it from the original antecedents.
  • Glenn Brown Glenn Brown presented large, meticulously wrought oils inspired by sci-fi imagery and paintings by Salvador Dali and Frank Auerbach. Some critics referred to Brown as an appropriation artist, and he has faced copyright infringement litigation mounted by a number of detractors ranging from pulp novel illustrators to the Dali Foundation. It seems that his strategy runs closer to sampling than appropriation in that his goal is not proximity to source material, but rather mixing sources as a DJ does to create combinations of words, images and even types of brushstrokes.
  • Glenn can definitely be counted as a second generation appropriationist, the twist being his interest not in establishing truth to or a critique of originality, but rather his sense that sources are available for quotation, decontextualising, stretching, reorientating, morphing and re-situating in his own work. Appropriation is at the heart of Brown's work. He painstakingly recreates images borrowed from both high art and popular culture. Favourite subjects remain the work of Frank Auerbach, but also Salvador Dali, Rembrandt and the apocalyptic Northumberland painter John Martin. But the pieces are far from mere reproductions. Brown stretches distorts and manipulates his chosen image – colours are amplified, turned putrid or rendered kitsch by the "callous use of lime green and pink" creating an entirely new visual and emotional experience for the observer. Also, Glenn appears to have moved away from the critical aura surrounding appropriation art of the late 1970s and early 1980s in the way his work does not seem born out of a desire to comment politically upon or critique his subject matter (as was the case with first generation artists such as Sherrie Levine). Instead, his motivation to appropriation seems more born out of lovingly fetishising his sources, whether obscure or iconic art works. He carries the appropriationist torch to a next level – further blurring the cultural status of original and copy, traditional methods and avant-garde gestures.
  • Again I want you to think about how appropriation creates new meaning or new sets of meanings from a familiar image.
  • Given that there has been a number of high-profile 'appropriations' of ideas in recent times - instances in which creative thinking has been duplicated with a suprising degree of openness - key question becomes "what would our culture be without borrowing, adaptation and derivatives?" In the area of visual art, such a question has taken on additional relevance given the extent to which appropriation and the recycling of pre-existing materials have become crucial factors in contemporary practice. While the possibility of originality is a persistent theme in contemporary art, the re-use of images and ideas does not always take place without controversy, particularly when concepts from visual art are re-applied by creative teams from the advertising world.
  • There still exists a false binary or original and copy despite the fact that we are in a N ew Media Revolution, of a Tinkering culture. We still maintain some outmoded ideas, For example copyright as a right originated within the technology of paper so now we need to consider what happens with the digital era We should think about the idea of the original and the copy as an alternative way of thinking about creativity, as adding something rather than as a taking away form the original In a work such as Douglas Gordon's 24 Hour Psycho , for instance, there is in one sense very little of the artist's 'own' work (Hitchcock's classic thriller being merely re-played at a radically slowed-down pace) yet Gordon's intervention makes for a powerful, transformative artistic statement.
  • This idea then that nothing is original takes us back to last week, back to Plato’s cave to be precise. Mimesis?: Plato believed artists’ productions to be 1 step away from that which exists as created earth, man, the universe… and 2 steps away from the idea or ideal of the Gods). All art/poetry is mimesis (Re-presentation rather than strictly making a copy).
  • Steve McQueen's 1999 Turner Prize-winning video work Deadpan , for example, featured an image of a falling house which had been famously first used in a 1928 Buster Keaton film Steamboat Bill Junior (more recently the idea has been re-used again, appearing in the video for the Chemical Brothers' single The Test ). Today, artists working in new media, including video, web projects and music confront contested and conceptually confusing terrain in which reproduction can be as perfect as the artist desires and endless copies theoretically possible. Yet many find the lack of clarity stimulating and a compelling space in which to break new ground. Why are so many artists today mimicking new forms of visual culture and their distribution systems -- even at the risk of confusion with their popular sources?
  • For example who is the ‘author’ of the image that Shepard Fairey used as the source for the Obama HOPE prints? Shepard Fairey’s Obama: he created his image by initially tracing a copyrighted photo, the changes he made to the image and its re-contextualization within the campaign poster might well be sufficiently transformative to make his work non-infringing fair use. Fairey never attributed the image to the photographer and, of course, never compensated him. In fact, I’d go so far as to say I genuinely believe Fairey’s image is a creative work in its own right even though it derives from another work. The photo is a generic image that is indistinguishable from photos seen constantly the world over in the months of Obamas campaign. The image on the poster became a resonant symbol. The photo could not begin to be considered a substitute for the poster. I think the poster is in fact “transformative” of the photo.

Transcript

  • 1. Appropriation and collective creativity
  • 2. What is appropriation? readymade d eto urnement pastiche rephotography recombination simulation parody replicating remixing adaptation bricolage collage fake faux mimesis montage plagiarism recycling simulacrum
  • 3.
    • Some defining factors include:
    • -The deliberate reproduction of (elements of) another’s work
    • ‘ Copying’ for your own artistic expression
    • It involves adopting intellectual property from elsewhere
    • It borrows images,styles,or forms from art history or popular culture
    • This ‘movement’ evolved in the 1960s and peaked in the ‘80s
    What is Appropriation?
  • 4. http://www. eclecticmethod .net/biography/ In music, appropriation is the use of borrowed elements (aspects or techniques) in the creation of a new piece.
  • 5. Schwartz investigates most varieties of simulacra, including counterfeits, decoys, mannequins, ditto marks, portraits, genetic cloning, war games, camouflage, instant replays, digital imaging, parrots, photocopies, wax museums, apes, art forgeries, not to mention the very notion of the Real McCoy. The culture of the copy
  • 6. REPRODUCTION We are all simultaneously copies and copying machines, surrounded by a world of copies, and yet we feel the the incessant need to distinguish, to be unique, to differentiate ourselves, to find the authentic and to create the original
  • 7. Debord : “T h e spectacle is not a collection of images, but a social relation among people, mediated by images. ”
  • 8. ‘ Ap propriation, pastiche, quotation - these methods can now be seen to extend to virtually every aspect of our culture, from the most calculated products of the fashion and entertainment industries to the most committed critical activities of artists … ’ CRIMP, DOUGLAS. Appropriating Appropriation, in HERTZ, RICHARD. (ed) Theories of Contemporary Art, Prentice Hall Inc, USA, 1985
  • 9. The practice of copying another existing artwork is often identified with the formative years of an artist. Copying old masters has traditionally been part of the training to become a fine artist. You could therefore assume that Appropriation Art merely widens this good practice to contemporary or at least modern artworks.
  • 10. There is a clear distinction between Appropriation Art and forgery. Forgers intend to deceive, Appropriation Artists openly show their authorship and the fact that the work is a copy of another artists work.
  • 11. Picasso, ‘Guitar’, 1913 As a term in art history and criticism ‘Appropriation’ refers to the direct taking over into a work of art of a real object or even an existing work of art. The practice can be traced back to the Cubist collages and constructions of Picasso and Georges Braque made from 1912 onwards, in which real objects such as newspapers were included to represent themselves. Antecedents of Appropriation Art
  • 12. Appropriation was developed much further in the readymades created by the French artist Marcel Duchamp from 1917. Most notorious of these was Fountain, a men's urinal signed, titled, and presented on a pedestal. Antecedents of Appropriation Art
  • 13. The great exemplar of the appropriationist painterly attitude was Andy Warhol, with his use of existing commercial and media images in the early 1960s.
  • 14. However, the term seems to have come into use specifically in relation to certain American artists in the 1980s, notably Sherrie Levine and the artists of the Neo-Geo group particularly Jeff Koons.
  • 15. Sherrie Levine, After Monet, 1983 Sherrie Levine, Self-Portrait After Egon Schiele, 1981
  • 16. Appropriation artists were influenced by the 1934 essay by the German philosopher Walter Benjamin, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction, and received contemporary support from the American critic Rosalind Krauss in her 1985 book The Originality of the Avant-Garde and Other Modernist Myths .
  • 17. Appropriation is and exploration of signification, originality, appropriation, authorship and deconstruction. The term ‘simulacrum’, drawn from the writings of the French philosopher Jean Baudrillard, is often used to signify this idea of representation as reality. For Postmodernists nothing we can say or do is truly ‘original’, for our thoughts are constructed from our experience of a lifetime of representation, so it is naive to imagine a work’s author inventing its forms or controlling its meaning. Instead of pretending to an authorities originality, postmodernism concentrates on the way images and symbols (‘signifiers’) shift or lose their meaning when put in different contexts (‘appropriated’), revealing (‘deconstructing’) the processes by which meaning is constructed.
  • 18. Barthes extended this concept of ‘The Death of the Author’ to question the very possibility of originality and authenticity, he stated that any text (or image), rather than emitting a fixed meaning from a singular voice, was but a tissue of quotations that were themselves references to yet other texts, and so on.
  • 19. Richard Prince
  • 20. Richard Prince's work should be seen in the context of the ideas of French philosopher Roland Barthes. In the age of multiple meanings and mechanical reproduction, Barthes argued there are no more authors, just editors working with existing ideas to create a new voice. Prince's habit of rephotographing existing photographs, initiated in the late 1970's, helped spawn the appropriation craze of the 80's. The artist himself is best known for his deadpan recycling of magazine and newspaper images that range through the highs and lows of popular culture. References to sex, drugs, rock-and- roll, alcoholism and the movies frequently give his efforts a dark and familiar undercurrent. But his relentless replication of found images also has its esoteric side and continually questions definitions of art, originality and artistic technique.
  • 21. Creating a new cultural understanding Marlboro Man’s ever self-reliant cowboy, Prince understood that isolating and removing mass-culture imagery offered an opportunity to examine various codes of representation including gender and class. By re-contextualizing them by severe cropping or removing any ad copy or simply by re-photographing a black and white image on colour film, the artist found ways to blur meaning and to create a critical dialogue with the objects created to satisfy the perceived needs of the expanding American consumer.
  • 22. Richard Prince Appropriation artists embraced the undermining of authorship, making free play with the vast repertory of images and styles available to them through reproduction. With the concept of originality becoming hackneyed and outmoded they built their practice around quotation and appropriation.
  • 23. Julian Schnabel, ‘The Exile’, 1980
  • 24. Mike Bidlo, installation, 2003 Biblo is another artist who uses appropriation of existing imagery and ruptures it from the original antecedents.
  • 25. "As far as I'm concerned I'm painting things from real life. Like a painter going out and painting the landscape and the buildings, these paintings that I use do already exist and they are part of my life, my education and my way of understanding the world is through art," The Independent: A real scene stealer: Glenn Brown's 'second-hand' art is the subject of a Tate retrospective: Jonathan Brown, Monday, 16 February 2009
  • 26. Frank Auerbach Glenn Brown Giuseppe Arcimboldo "Vertumnus"(portrait of Rudolph II), ca. 1590.
  • 27.  
  • 28. Makers and Takers Gillian Wearing, (1992),Signs that say what you want them to say not signs that say what someone else wants you to say
  • 29. Douglas Gordon's 24 Hour Psycho
  • 30.  
  • 31. Copying or Transforming
  • 32. Who is the ‘author’ of the image that Shepard Fairey used as the source for the Obama HOPE prints?
  • 33.