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Assignment three

The course calls for an emotional response to a piece of music and suggests drawing whilst listening to the music in an immediate response to it. I am going to do this differently and do a more lengthy, thought out response to a piece of music. This is more in keeping with the way I work and also it allows me to continue with my previous experiments with rust printing, which require time to complete.

Music chosen:- Peter Gunn (feat. Duanne Eddy) by Art of Noise.

I have no knowledge of the TV series this was a theme tune for, so my response comes from the music without this background. It obviously has a car driving influence, from the constant rhythm which brings to mind the noise of driving over sections of road. A screeching wheel spin sound is also used at one point which reinforces this. For me, I also have the background of listening to this tune whilst playing a car racing game called ‘Spy Hunter’ (En.wikipedia.org, n.d.) on the BBC in my childhood.

My plan was to combine rust printing, ink drawing and possibly watercolour to create my piece. I have been mulling over the design of this for many months and listening to the track on and off during this time. The main element of the drawing was going to be a car wheel, with musical elements running throughout it.

I devised a compass from a bit of metal tube and a magnet to allow me to work on a big scale and scribed on the design.

A3 ScribingA3 ScribedA3 v2 rusting

The resulting rust print:

A3 v2 print

I was aiming to add musical elements such as extracts from the music score, words, spectrograms or waveforms. However I decided that the first two looked contrived and I couldn’t get a clear spectrogram from any of the music. The waveform looked the most promising option. This was added to the first print, but more in a random way than replicating sections of the music. Another line which felt to me like a representation of the music (but I don’t think has any basis) was also added. Charcoal was used around the edge, smudged into the picture in a way which I felt to work with the music.

The music has some sharp forceful sections which felt to me like splats of bold colour. I experimented and ending up dropping ink from a height onto the paper. These were a bit smaller that the bold splats I had in mind, so maybe I should have experimented more before committing myself.

The resulting image:

A3 final

References

En.wikipedia.org. (n.d.). Spy Hunter. [online] Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spy_Hunter [Accessed 19 Aug. 2018].

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Assignment 3 Reflection

I struggled through this stage of the course as a lot of the projects held little appeal as they are very different to how I approach drawing. I worked through them, as often interesting work can result from unexpected directions, but the only project which directly clicked for me was the one on drawing machines. I am more scientific / technical and less inclined to draw from my emotions, which is what a lot of this stage of the course required. I probably didn’t push it as far as I could, but when my heart isn’t in it, it is hard to do that.

With the final drawings, the ones from the drawing machines project and the assignment piece hold the most appeal to me. Only the drawing from the first drawing machine feels like a complete and cohesive image though.

With rust printing, burning, ink and charcoal, and the combination of random and non-random mark making, I feel like I have found the materials and methods I enjoy working with. I think I need to experiment more with these though to achieve results I am happier with. I think it is the non-random mark making and the way of tying the two together which is where I need to focus my efforts. One issue which I think is holding me back is that I enjoy the results of rust printing, use expensive paper and only get a few copies. This means that I am far too precious about the drawings when they are only half complete and that is stifling what I then do with them. I plan to produce a large number of small works as part of my parallel project and spend time experimenting more with these without worrying about the final outcome.

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Assignment 3 Tutor Feedback

Overall

My tutor has identified that I have not fully engaged with the course in this part and have put up barriers rather than working out how to fit the exercises to me. I need to find a way in to take risks with my drawings and complete a fuller body of work in the next stage.

My research needs to be expanded, placed in the context of its time and linked more to contemporary practice. I need to research wider to find a way into the exercises and assignments

 

Research

My tutor suggested I look at a number of different artists and I researched two of these.

 

Rirkrit Tiravanija

Looking at his work initially, I thought that this was an artist I wasn’t going to be able to understand! His early work which formed on of his best known series (Guggenheim.org, n.d.) was ‘untitled 1990 (pad thai), 1990’, where he cooked for the audience. Said to be blurring the boundaries between art and life, making art come alive and making the audience part of the work, I struggle to see how this work is art.

However, on watching this video (Bloomberg, 2018), his work ‘untitled 2010 (who’s afraid of red, yellow and green), 2010’ where he collected newspaper images of protests in Thailand and got local art students to cover the wall in drawings of these, which was added to each day. In the gallery, he served red, yellow and green thai curry, referencing the colours emblematic of the opposing sides in the political unrest at the time of the exhibition, asking why people are afraid of each other. He took no side, but asked people to think about the issues

For ‘untitled 2015 (14,086 unfired), 2015’, bricklayers were employed to work in the gallery to produce bricks stamped with the message ‘Stop to work’, highlighting the irony of modern day life in our quest to get higher and higher paid jobs without questioning why we are doing it.

I see more of a point with these later works (and appreciate that the earlier works fed into these), but I do struggle with accepting these kind of works as ‘art’ and read them more as philosophy. I accept that the modern art world doesn’t agree with me here, but my belief is that there should be some form of visual beauty in a work for it to be ‘art’. Interesting to research into, but not the direction I wish to take my work in.

 

Mona Hatoum

Hatoum started out with performance art and now works in a wide variety of media. Three of her pieces I particularly like are looked at below.

‘Map (clear), 2015’ has an obvious appeal to me with my love of maps. As an installation it work very well and it seems to be saying that all places are equal, but borders and divisions are unstable and liable to move.

‘Impenetrable, 2009’ reminds me of Cornelia Parker’s work, although it is actually referencing Jesús Rafael Soto’s series of Penetrables (Lūse, 2016) and turning his inviting interactive work on its head by replacing plastic tubes with barbed wire rods.

‘Light Sentence, 1992’ also reminds me of Cornelia Parker’s ‘Cold Dark Matter: An Exploded View’, with the moving light bulb throwing interesting shadows on the gallery walls.

I like Hatoum’s work. They have a message, but it isn’t too deep to be impenetrable like many modern artists I come across in my research, and appearance and form are important to her and this comes across in her work (Cooke, 2016).

References

Bloomberg (2018). Rirkrit Tiravanjia on ‘Brilliant Ideas’.  Available at: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2018-04-16/rirkrit-tiravanija-on-brilliant-ideas-video [Accessed 4 Mar. 2019].

Cooke, R. (2016). Mona Hatoum: ‘It’s all luck. I feel things happen accidentally’. [online] the Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2016/apr/17/mona-hatoum-interview-installation-artist-tate-modern-exhibition [Accessed 4 Mar. 2019].

Guggenheim.org. (n.d.). Rirkrit Tiravanija. [online] Available at: https://www.guggenheim.org/artwork/artist/rirkrit-tiravanija [Accessed 4 Mar. 2019].

Lūse, P. (2016). “Oh, Mona!”. [online] Arterritory.com. Available at: http://www.arterritory.com/en/texts/interviews/6124-oh,_mona/ [Accessed 4 Mar. 2019].

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