Saturday, May 10, 2014

Forming Connections

     So in class the other day my professor was talking about stop motion as well as other types of collaborative projects between people that takes a lot of effort to complete.  And he showed us a video called Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel. If you haven't seen it before here it is:


 All of this talk and discussion (plus the video) reminded me of one of the 1st videos I saw on youtube years ago. A video that I have always liked and thought how it would have taken forever to have made. The video's description reads as: "An abridged history of American-centric warfare, from WWII to present day, told through the foods of the countries in conflict."


What's interesting about this video is that I enjoy it but I don't fully know everything that happens within it. It's kind of a shame because I could then perhaps appreciate the video even more. My professor was saying that everything is connected and that even in the Peter Gabriel music video there was reference to people and things from history like Giuseppe Arcimboldo, an Italian painter best known for creating portrait heads made entirely of objects such as fruits, vegetables, flowers, fish, etc.

         I totally understood what he meant when he talked about creating connections everywhere, because even though I didn't fully remember/know Arcimboldo's name I had seen his pictures many times before. Once just recently in my monster drawing class as an example of hybrids, and the other in my psych classes because of  cognitive brain disorder called prosopagnosia, or "face blindness"--where the ability to recognize faces is impaired, while other aspects of visual processing and intellectual functioning remain intact. These people cannot recognize that there is a face "hidden" within the fruit arrangements of Arcimboldo's paintings, they literally cannot see the face, something that is innate within the normal functioning brains of the average person.

It's also interesting to see how other artists will reference each other and unless you know the artists being referenced then you won't understand the connection. Here is a digital painting by a German artist and film maker called Till Nowak, in which he makes a tribute to both H.R Geiger (the man that created the Xenomorph species) and Giuseppe Arcimbaldo. A blending of two very different artists to create something new.

Nowark remarked in an interview by Area  "I am on a continuous search for ideas which bring existing and known aspects of our world together in a new, twisted and weird combination. The challenge is to find new, but simple ideas. For Salad, I combined the old technique of Giuseppe Arcimboldo's vegetable portraits from the 16th century with the creations of H.R. Giger, at the same time, combining the style of an oil painting with modern digital art and turning around the relation between vegetation and flesh. So it contains at least three separate levels and if you want to go further, you can also read some social message in it, concerning our society as the wolf in sheep's clothing… but this kind of message is usually not where I start when I develop something"

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