Ncc art100 ch.4

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  • Edward Hopper, Nighthawks, 1942
    Subject—customers in a corner diner, late at night
    Subtext—oneliness of city life
  • Edward Hopper, Nighthawks, 1942
    Subject—customers in a corner diner, late at night
    Subtext—oneliness of city life
  • Metaphors or symbols
  • --two houses
  • Ncc art100 ch.4

    1. 1. Exploring Art:A Global,Thematic Approach Chapter 4 Deriving Meaning
    2. 2. Deriving Meaning • Formal Analysis • Content: subject matter, iconography, written materials and cultural background • Criticism: formalist criticism, ideological criticism, structuralist-based criticism, psychoanalytic and feminist criticism • Writings on visual culture • Personal interpretation • Context • Ways we encounter art
    3. 3. • Formal Elements: – Line – Light and value – Color – Texture and pattern – Shape and Volume – Space – Time and motion – Chance, improvisation, and spontaneity – Engaging all the senses Formal analysis; integrated study of the elements and principles of art and the way they are used in a specific artwork. The arrangement of elements and principles in an artwork are called its composition.
    4. 4. U.S. Capitol Building, begun 1793, exterior renovated 1960. Washington, D.C. Consider the complex iconography in the architecture that links the United States to the idea of democracy (Greece) and power (Roman Empire). Large, symmetrical, dome (focal point)
    5. 5. U. S. Capitol Building formal analysis • Very wide—compared to height • Symmetrical—central vertical axis • Horizontally—divided into 5 parts—three stand out and have vertical columns • Central section—most emphasized—dome is focal point • Color—white • Balanced and aesthetically satisfying
    6. 6. OLOWE OF ISE. Palace Sculpture from Ikere. Wood and pigment, 60x13". Yoruba. Nigeria, 1910–1914. Formal qualities: frontal symmetrical vertical form dominates hierarchical scale
    7. 7. Dorothea Lange, Migrant Mother, 1936 • Formal analysis: • Woman’s face focal pt. • Dramatically lit • Verticality—arm leads to face • Symmetry—children act as wings • Verticality and symmetry recall religious art • We read—worry, rear, family devotion, poverty
    8. 8. Content Analysis • Content is an artwork’s theme or message • Content – subject matter, – iconography – written materials related to the cultural background • Iconography is the symbolism or ‘hidden’ meaning behind what is seen
    9. 9. Subject Matter • Substance of a work of art, in contrast to its form. • Some are obvious and others must be learned. • All works of art have subject matter, even abstract works—sometimes the materials themselves • Subtext—underlying ideas or messages
    10. 10. Dorothea Lange, Migrant Mother, 1936 • What is the subject matter? • What does her body language say? • What does the title tell us? • How significant is the date?
    11. 11. OLOWE OF ISE. Palace Sculpture from Ikere. What we can guess: king and queen What we may learn through research:
    12. 12. OLOWE OF ISE. Palace Sculpture from Ikere. What we can guess: king and queen What we may learn through research: King—ceremonially enthroned Senior wife—behind him (revered due to procreative power) According to local custom senior wife crowns king Iconography: bird—Yoruba symbol of reproductive power
    13. 13. Edward Hopper, Nighthawks, 1942
    14. 14. Edward Hopper, Nighthawks, 1942 Subject—customers in a corner diner, late at night Subtext—loneliness of city life
    15. 15. Jackson Pollock, Lucifer, 1947 3’5”x8’9” All works of art have subject matter. What is the subject matter? What is the subtext (underlying theme or message)? What is the style?
    16. 16. • What is the subject matter? – Paint (oil, aluminum and enamel) and how it is applied— dripped and splattered • What is the subtext (underlying theme or message)? – Energy of artist – Lucifer—predominance of black--underworld • What is the style? – Abstract Expressionism—Action Painting
    17. 17. Iconography (visual metaphor) icono = image graphy = to write Lucifer—splashes of paint can also be visual metaphors for artistic energy Palace Sculpture—king’s crown is topped by a bird—Yoruba symbol for mothers and female reproductive power
    18. 18. Iconography is a system of symbols that allow artists to refer to complex ideas. Metaphor—image or element that is descriptive of something else Symbol—image or element that stand for or represents some other entity or concept. Symbols are culturally determined and must be taught. i.e. dove is a symbol of peace (in our culture)
    19. 19. • A visual metaphor uses an image rather than words to make the comparison.
    20. 20. • One common example of a metaphor in art is the use of a cross or crucifix. This symbol is usually used to represent Christianity or certain aspects of the faith, such as peace, hope, salvation, judgment, or condemnation. The exact meaning behind a visual metaphor in art will depend on the frame of mind and feelings of the artist who created the work. For instance, a Christian painter may view the cross as a metaphor for hope, while someone has felt judged or ridiculed by the church may view it as symbolizing oppression or damnation.
    21. 21. Iconography can be embedded in architecture. This design reflects Greek and Roman architecture, to visually connect the government of the United States to the ideas of democracy (Greece) and power (Roman Empire). Two wings—two houses of Congress Dome—symbolizes unity
    22. 22. Context—historical, political, religious and social— external conditions that surround a work • Interrelated social and political conditions – Historical events – Economic trends – Contemporary cultural developments – Religious attitudes…etc.
    23. 23. Rembrandt, The Company of Captain Frans Banning Cocq (Night Watch), 1642 • How does this painting represent its time and place?
    24. 24. Shirin Neshat, Speechless from Women of Allah series, 1996 pen ad ink over GSP
    25. 25. Shirin Neshat, Speechless from Women of Allah series, 1996 pen ad ink over GSP Weapon and poetry Ambiguity…words but unable to open her mouth Poem…is of a woman crying out to be socially active and not be left at home The context…is political and social climate in fundamentalist Islamic cultures and Western reactions to
    26. 26. Physical Surroundings • Location affects meaning: • “Bent Propeller” was 25 feet tall, steel forged into elegant curves painted red by its sculptor, famed modernist Alexander Calder. It arrived at the World Trade Center in 1971, part of a Port Authority plan to humanize the space around the immense Twin Towers with public art.
    27. 27. afur Eliasson, NYC Waterfalls, 2008 Installation along the East Rive
    28. 28. Art writings help us understand the full meaning of artworks. • Art critics—describe art and evaluate their significance • Art historians—research art of the past • Curators—write catalog essays, wall labels, educational material for museum and gallery exhibitions
    29. 29. Writings about Art • Modernist Criticisms: • Formalist • Ideological • Psychoanalytic • Postmodern Philosophical Positions: • Post-structuralism (deconstruction) • Feminist
    30. 30. Formalist Criticism • Examines the formal qualities of the art – Line, shape, space, color are all formal qualities –The design principles are also formal qualities – Media, ground, materials are also considered
    31. 31. Jackson Pollock, Lucifer, 1947 3’5”x8’9” Clement Greenberg—pure painting because it was abstract and because it emphasized paint quality and the flatness of the painting surface. Formal qualities were most important, while representational elements, such as recognizable imagery, symbolism, or narrative, were considered detrimental distractions. Painting was the medium that most thoroughly represented the ideas of FORMALIST CRITICS .
    32. 32. Ideological Criticism • Rooted in writings of Karl Marx: – Deals with the political implications of art. – Accordingly all art supports some particular political agenda, cultural structure, or economic/class hierarchy. – Lucifer—after WWII the U.S.A. was engaged in the cold war against Communist countries. – U.S.A. land of democracy and freedom—Lucifer represents artistic freedom and individual expression.
    33. 33. Psychoanalytic criticism • …holds that art should be studied as a product of the individual…shaped by ones past…unconscious urges…social histories. • Freud wrote the first psychoanalytic criticism when he examined Leonardo’s work in light of his presumed homosexuality.
    34. 34. Psychoanalytic Criticism • most appropriate when applied to works dealing with strong emotional content, dream imagery, or fantasy – Surrealism – Assigns meaning to imagery Miro’s work alludes to hallucination, fantasy or dream Joan Miro, The Beautiful Bird Revealing the Unknown to a Pair of Lovers, 1941
    35. 35. Postmodern Philosophical Positions • Postmodernism questions Modernism. • Modernist philosophies stated certainties • Postmodernism deals with subjectivity, nuances and ambiguity.
    36. 36. Post-structuralism • The painting is the result of his fascination with a terrorist group in Germany that tried to draw attention to their grievances about capitalist society by means of armed robberies and bomb attacks. • The title of the series, October 18, 1977, refers to the date on which three were found dead in their cells in Stuttgart-Stammheim prison. Richter …“The deaths of the terrorists, and the related events both before and after, stand for a horror that distressed me and has haunted me as unfinished business ever since, despite all my efforts to suppress it”. Gerhard Richter, October 18, 1977
    37. 37. Deconstruction holds that: • From the inside, any system looks natural and coherent, but that it is in fact filled with unseen contradictions, myths or stereotypes.
    38. 38. Cindy Sherman. Untitled Film Still # 35, 1979. Stereotypes It fits with the Postmodern idea that there is no original, no “real”, only copies. In contrast, Formalist critics placed great importance on the unique art object. Post-structuralist-based artists often focused on the medium of photography. Cindy Sherman, Untitled Film Still, 1980s
    39. 39. • Cindy Sherman’s work reveals how the subject can be mediated in this capitalist, consumer culture and postmodern world. The question of the identity of the subject has been a modernist question, with the split between the subject-object and the private- public spheres creating a sense of the subjective individual and sense of self. • Her images have characteristics that subvert these modern notions of the subject creating a postmodern subject or an absence of the subject.
    40. 40. • Sherman’s work can tell us two main things about the mediation of subjectivity in postmodern culture. • Firstly that the subject has become simply an image that lacks any depth, and can mediate between interior and exterior spaces breaking down the subject-object boundary. • Secondly the subject is fragmented and has become hybrid in its gender and material makeup, being in transition between man and woman and between ‘fake’ plastic mannequins, and ‘real’ bodies.
    41. 41. Feminist criticism: • Concerned with the oppression of groups… especially women…in a given society. • Feminists question works made for the male gaze. • Feminists have broken down the barriers encountered by women’s artwork. • Feminists have researched and publicized women artists who have been ignore in the past.
    42. 42. – Representation of gender in art • Can support male-dominated social structures • Borrows from structuralism, deconstruction, and psychoanalytic approaches to criticism – The Guerilla Girls use artwork as feminist criticism
    43. 43. Artemisia Gentileschi, Judith and Holofernes, 1612
    44. 44. Jacques-Louis David. Oath of the Horatii, 1784. Oil on canvas, 10’10” X 14”. Louvre, Paris, France. Describe how -- and why -- two writers describe this painting differently. Feminist criticism, Personal, Formal etc.
    45. 45. Meaning is not fixed and permanent • Some say O’Keeffe’s flower paintings represent female sexuality…a notion that she rejected • Others see her work as feminist • Most art writers base their writings on a particular philosophical position
    46. 46. Georgia O’Keeffe, Yellow Calla, 1926
    47. 47. Georgia O’Keeffe, Yellow Calla, 1926 What are the complex messages associated with O’Keeffe’s flower images?
    48. 48. • Modernist criticism—formalist criticism, emphasizing formal analysis • Ideological criticism—rooted in Marx, deals with political underpinnings of art • Psychoanalytic criticism—art studied as the product of individuals who are shaped by their pasts/unconscious urges/social histories • Deconstruction criticism • Feminist criticism
    49. 49. Cildo Meireles, Insertions into Idological Circuits: Coca-Cola project, 1970 • “Yankee go home.” • Protesting US economic ventures in Brazil.
    50. 50. René Magritte, Personal Values. 1952

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