Terms Of The Elements of Art - "Space"
Space- element of art, refers to the emptiness or area between,
around, above, below, or within objects
Positive Space- the shapes or forms of interest
Negative Space- the empty space between the shapes or forms
Point of view- refers to the angle at which you view an object.
Illusion of form-is manifested by creating an image with a range of
value. By accurately placing highlights and shadows an artist can
create the illusion of form.
Chiaroscuro- An Italian word that means the arrangement of light and
shadow. Today chiaroscuro is also called modeling or shading.
Illusion of depth- is manifested through the use of several factors
Definition: (noun) - An element of art, space refers to distances or
areas around, between or within components of a piece. Space can be
positive (white or light) or negative (black or dark), open or closed,
shallow or deep and two-dimensional or three-dimensional. Sometimes
space isn't actually within a piece, but the illusion of it is.
! Out of the darkness, the void emerged and invaded modern art
with Russian artist Kazimir Malevich’s painting Black Square in 1915. As the
totalization of everything and nothing at once, this landmark painting is infinite
space represented on a flat plane. A undefinable negation that is at once
cinematic and static, it is not a representation of the void but the void itself. A
reduction of form and content to an absolute essence, Black Square conveys a
simultaneous flattening and infinite expansion of space. Just as when the screen
goes dark in the cinema, representations of distance are made palpable. There is
horror within this unknown space. It is an empty distance.
It has almost become a special art to paint empty space, to make it palpable, and
to develop variations upon this singular theme. Not only are there pictures upon
which almost nothing is painted, not only is it an essential feature of their style to
make the strongest impression with the fewest strokes and the scantiest means,
but there are very many pictures especially connected with a contemplation to
impress upon the observer the feeling that the void itself is depicted as a subject,
it is indeed the main subject of the picture….
For Void is, like Darkness and Silence, a negation, but a negation that does away
with every this and here, in order that the wholly other may become actual. –
Rudolph Otto, The Idea of the Holy: an inquiry into the non-rational factor in the
idea of the divine and its relation to the rational (1923)
Nearly one hundred years after Black Square and Otto’s The Idea of the Holy, the
void takes on new meaning in contemporary art and film. While Empty
Distances stems from art historical traditions of emptiness as subject (think Yves
Klein’s La spécialisation de la sensibilité à l’état matière première en sensibilité
picturale stabilisée, Le Vide in 1958 or Michael Asher’s wall removal at Claire
Copley Gallery in 1974), philosophically this exhibition is a provocation to rethink
the void’s meaning by considering it in post-apocalyptic terms.
Taking 20th century theologian Rudolph Otto’s phrase “empty distance” and idea
that the very act of pictorially depicting the void establishes darkness and silence
as subject itself,Empty Distances positions itself at the collapse of society. The
recent global financial crisis, governmental overthrows in Egypt and Libya, and the
current protests in Istanbul’s Taksim Square (violent repercussions of human-
produced horrors) have taken us to the other side; we are living in a post-
apocalypse. But within this cyclical fall and rise of society is the promise a new
future or, at the very least, an imagining of a different future that is both
dependent and secluded from the past. Films like Night of the Living Dead(1968)
and The Bed Sitting Room (1969) along with artworks like those in Empty
Distancesare able to provide unthinkable visualizations of what a new society
would look like and, in context with current international events, suggest that we
may already be living in a brave new world, only we don’t realize it yet.
Ornament VI by Barnett Newman