To end it off

I would just like to say,

it’s really funny how everyone knows everyone else is chionging last-minute work right now because of the frequent pop ups at the comments box. Yeah, and it’s really funny to see like the visitor graph shoot up these 2 days, and yes i think that graph looks exactly like the “progress of coursework/eportfolio against time” graph. and to have most of our posts posted on sept 23 and 24 is the best evidence of last-minute work. (OMG LOOK AT THE ARCHIVE AT THE SIDE! LOL) sorry teachers, but it just wouldnt work otherwise.

JIAYOU TO PEOPLE WHO’RE STILL FINISHING!

This marks the end of art-chionging month, which started about two weeks before coursework was due.

But we won’t stop here.

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COMMENT #5

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Written Assignment on Field by Gormley and Growth by Han

  

1a) Compare the different treatment of form and use of materials in these works.

In Antony Gormley’s “A Field for the AGNSW”, terracotta is used to make the figures. The clayish materials give the figures a rough and unfinished fell. On the other hand, in Growth by Han Sai Por, marble is used. This gives the 5 figures a smooth and polished feel.

Both works portray human body figures that are abstracted and simplified. However, each is abstracted and simplified in their own way. In Antony Gormley’s Field, the forms are representation and rough, not precise and undefined. They also have the bare minimal form of eyes and torso, thus giving a primitive feeling. However, in Growth, the human figures are reduced to smooth organic and unrecognizable forms, giving a dreamy feel.

1b) Why have these artists used simplified and abstract forms to express their ideas?

There 2 artists used simplified and abstract forms to express their ideas as they want tthe viewers to imagine the figures for themselves. This is due to the lack of details present in the works, giving them space to visualize and imagine. If the figures were reallistic with all the details, viewers could take it for granted and wil not think into the sculpture because it would seem complete thus leaving the viewers with nothing to add on or finish, such as in Cleaner by Duane Hanson. THe simplificayion and abstraction in Gormley and Han’s works makes the work open-ended, thus inviting viewers to participate in imagining and thus interacting with their artworks.

1c) Assess how and why you think one sculpture is more effective.

I think that Field by Gormley is more effective. This is because of the mass repetition of small, similar figures. ALso, the large number of figurines imposes a sense of presence thus it is able to capture the viewers’ attention, as compated to Growth, where the 5 figures are small and not large in numbers, thus not shocking the audience like Field does.

Besides that, I think that Gormely also succeeds in inviting the viewers to participate in his sculpture by making them feel the strong and unignorable presence of the terracotta figures. The viewers may feel shocked or overwhelmed at the sight of the grand amount of small figures, thinking “what is this trying to show?” and from there intepret the artwork. Thus Gormley successfully created an interaction between the viewers and the artwork.

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FLASH MOB!

THIS IS MY INSPIRATION FOR MY INITIAL COURSEWORK IDEA:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwMj3PJDxuo

It’s a video of a flash mob at the Grand Central in New York. This was the first flash mob video that I have ever watched hence it created a deep impact on me. After watching the video I was so impressed by the idea of a flash mob that I wanted to do one myself!

Their flash mob was very successful as the people involved are very fun-loving and at the same time serious about it as non of them broke into laughters while being frozen. This flash mob was organized by Improv Everywhere, a comedic performance art group based in New York. They came up with all sorts of funny performance art, another one I particularly like is the Human Mirror and No Pants Subway Rides, both of which can be found on Youtube!

For my coursework, I wanted to do a flash mob because I realize from the video it’s a good way to attract the public’s attention. And since I am trying to spread a message to the general public through my coursework, I thought it was a very appropriate means of carrying out my project. I thought I would organize one in Singapore! AND WHO KNEW that flash mobs in Singapore are illegal without license! So I had to trouble the art teachers by consulting them on what to do.

My message is to ask the public to slow down their pace of life and enjoy their lives better. Hence I intended for the volunteers to wear a white glove on their left hand, which will say things like “PAUSE” and “STOP” which means take a break from your work and stop rushing blindly. I even wrote in a letter and proposal to the police to ask for permission to carry out my flash mob in Orchard MRT Station. However, due to a serious lack of volunteers and way-too-troublesome procedures (such as getting confirmation letter from school principal and ION ORchard/LTA authority), I decided to give up and move on to plan B: which was designing of products for my “campaign”.

However, before I gave up, I done a few try-out flash mobs both alone and with volunteers.

This is a solo performance art at Bugis MRT. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C8yzd5xCmYI

This one was rather successful in attracting attention, but my message is unclear, and i was wearing school uniform, so that was one major distraction. I was also wearing a no-smoking badge coincidentally, so people might have thought I wanted to raise awareness on smoking. I learnt from this experience that it’s important what people choose to wear during flash mob, because since you are not speaking, your actions, outfit and expression will have to speak for you, and you want don’t want others to misinterpret your message so it’s important to choose outfits wisely. Yup I also learnt that there are much preparation work to be done before doing a flash mob, like choosing a strategic location and time.

This is the other one with my friends as volunteers it’s pixelated.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5f7g_h352g

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COMMENT #4

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First attempt at oil painting

Expression of War, Oil and poster on paper, 2008, A3

This painting expresses my disapproval towards wars, the blue man with a shocked expression on the left represents my feeling towards war. In a war, many people are killed, even thought in end there may be victory. But as shown thru the fadedness and distancing in the painting, the victory is far less significant than the loss of so many lives in a war. And that is why the victorious people are merely stick figures, to the extent that they look unfinished. It’s intentional, to show that victory is not everything, it doesn’t give a complete feeling, not for me at least. And that’s why I used poster color for the background, because poster color is more transparent and it gives a rather unfinished look, as compared to oil.

The horse in the foreground is looking sympathetically down at the dead people, that is another way of expressing my disapproval of wars.

The blue man at the side is blue and is a stark contrast to the war scene next to him. This brings out the irony of war: powered by passion for one’s own land, but resulting in cold and inhumane actions.

For the then sec 2 me, I think it’s a rather well-done piece of work, afterall, it’s my first attempt at oil painting. However, both drawing and painting skills can clearly be improved. I also found drawing the person who’s lying diagonally with arms spread out extremely hard because of the point of view. I actually got Yijing to pose for me as preparation work.

Now looking back at it, I find that it was a superficial and simplistic understanding of war. Afterall, war is inevitable, and obviously victorious people don’t high-5 and chest-bump after they win a war. They’re probably laying out plans for the next war or how they’re going to take over control of the place. Actually, I don’t think my understanding of wars are any deeper now, I only know my then understanding was superficial so I can’t say much else.

It was a bold attempt.

Yeah, that’s about it.

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Musee du Louvre

This is going to be a long post Mr Chang, but there’ll be lots of photos so please don’t sleep! Haha.

Okay, i know it’s not louvre-y but it’s to show the old architecture.

I really looked forward to the visit to the Louvre Museum because of all the things I’ve heard about it, like all the best works being displayed there and so on. The first thing I’m going to say is that, I was surprised to learn that photography is allowed in the museum. I thought that such as prestigious museum would never allow photography. Then I thought it might be due to tourism. Like if the tourists aren’t allowed to take photos, especially Chinese love-to-pose-tourists, they will be upset. In fact I got a little disappointed and upset about how “commercialized” the Louvre was. But now I also think that it’s because of the fact that it’s already so famous and have photos of the works in it everywhere, there is no harm letting visitors take photos. But it still mostly look like a tourist attraction, at least the areas we visited, due to the large amount of camera-holding tourists and mass tourism. Like if you look at this photo

It’s quite a funny sight actually, like the amount of tourists. But this photo taught me something I wouldn’t have known otherwise: Venus de Milo is a really famous sculpture.

Another thing I learnt about the Louvre is that despite having a very old classic look on the outside, some parts of the interior of the museum actually looks really modernistic.

                    

this is the outside of the museum, near the entrance.

and the lift’s design is super duper cool as well!

A really minimalistic and space-saving as well as high-tech design.

And I think there is a pretty strong contrast between the modernistic and old architecture, and they actually go well together, it shows that the museum is up to date and not some run down dusty neglected  museum. It is modern and appealing while preserving its 300-years tradition.

This is its very traditional architecture on its interior, the Roman architecture with tall columns and arched ceilings.

Also, the glass pyramid is an entrance to the museum and was designed by a Chinese from the USA. Some may think it looks totally out-of-place because its modernism contrasts with the surrounding’s old architecture. But that is the exact purpose of this structure: to provide a stark contrast yet allow them to complement each other. It’s also designed for viewers on the inside to look through the glass to the outside, at the old Roman style buildings of the Louvre.

I am thinking it’s used as a metaphor, like in this 21st century, we ought to look beyond the present into the past, so as to gain more understanding of the culture and history of the past, especially for Europe, which has a long and rich history. I also think there is another way to interpret it, in this 21st century, we ought to make use of our technology and improvement over the ages to look closer at the past. Or rather, there are certain things about the past that can be learnt from the present if we look closely enough. I don’t know for sure, that’s just my interpretation. But either way, this design inspires us to think more about the relationship between traditions, culture and history and this modern and advanced society. Yeah, I would say this design is site-specific, and that it’s a really smart one!

At the Louvre, we also saw the Mona Lisa by Da Vinci. It is sad to say that I did not feel “OHMYGOD I FINALLY SEEN IT!!”. But I think it was because somewhere at the back of our heads we all know that’s not the real one. The museums actually keeps the real one in a really really protected place, and the one on display is usually a counterfeit. But i didn’t let that get to me so much because it would destroy the joy of being in Louvre, still, I didn’t feel particularly excited about seeing it, maybe it’s also because I’ve once been to an exhibition in Science Centre which displayed numerous Mona Lisas of various sizes and color schemes. Also, the viewers are at least three meters away from the painting, and the painting is kept in bullet-proof glass display case, so it feels rather distant. The other interesting thing i learnt about Mona Lisa is that it’s SO INVALUABLE that no insurance company dared to insure it. so now it’s uninsured. it’s totally impressive.

and again, the amount of visitors and photo takers amuses me

which is ironic because I am always taking photos too.

And I thought it was not a very good strategy to place any other paintings in the same exhibition hall as Mona Lisa because most people would be too attracted by Mona Lisa to look and admire other paintings. Haha, maybe Louvre was smart and place the less popular works in the same room as Mona Lisa.

Look at this huge painting:

I was really extremely disappointed to find out that it usually wasn’t THE artist (whose name is under the title) who painted the whole thing. Instead, the artist was the ART DIRECTOR of some sort, and instructed his “helper artists” to paint for him. It’s really disappointing to know that, because the reason why such paintings are impressive is exactly because of its size. So it would be very impressive if ONE artist managed to paint the whole thing himself, even if he took 10 years. But if he outsourced his job to his helpers, then it wouldn’t be half as impressive because each on of them just have to paint a small part, and then the canvases would be joined together. Although the main artist was still important as he did the composition and all the layout and color schemes and decided on the details, it still feels different from him painting it by himself. Yeah, even if he is really so professional to the extent that he doesn’t need to display his skills, it’s still.. disappointing. And I couldn’t get over that fact the entire day, and I felt SO CHEATED. I was SO SHOCKED when I found out and wondered “WHY THE HELL DIDNT ANYONE EVER TELL ME ABOUT IT???? YOU MEAN EVERYONE KNEW? THEN HOW COME I DIDNT KNOW???” But apparently a lot of other people didn’t know either, just that they weren’t so affected by it. (I STILL FEEL CHEATED AND DISAPPOINTED.)

Because the museum was so huge we only covered a small area, I was mostly impressed by the detailedness of the paintings, which was more possible to achieve by using color pigments rather than paint. Still it required lots of technical skills. And I felt so inspired by all the historical paintings, and looking at them was what made me realize that art is the visual form of literature. They allowed me to realize art history is not only about studying the painting and the art movements and the development of art, but is also about the events and situations the artists were experiencing or portraying, because only that can allow more complete understanding of the artworks. I was inspired to study art history at a higher level after the visit to the Louvre museum.

The visit to the Louvre museum was really worthwhile and invaluable despite the disappointments.

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