Thursday, October 3, 2013

The New Media


       Every day artist Gabriel Orozco takes a walk [1]. He meanders around whatever city he is in and notices the intricacies of the sidewalk, the people, and the surroundings. He will snap a few photos here and there—but mostly, he engages with the objects around him. At one point during his walk—he stops at a trashcan full of hay-like bushels of paper ends and fumbles them through his hands.
“I try to be intimate with everything.”
Orozco coos these words to us in his documentary entitled, Loss and Desire. That’s his advice to us—notice everything. Interact with everything. Truly see everything.

  Gabriel Orozco, Fluttering Flowers, 2011. Pigment ink and acrylic on cavas, 23 5/8 x 31 1/2 inches.

      This is a much more difficult task than we realize. Nowadays, we hardly live in our current moment. We are either somewhere nostalgically looking in the past or glaring way too far forward into our future—and most of the time we are looking at a screen. So what is the remedy for this predicament? How can we really be engaged with our here and now when our here and now is so spread all over the internet and in our cell phones and in cubicles and in photographs?
                 Art is the answer. As philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche believes, art is an escape into the eternal [2]. It takes us out of the moment and into one which spans the course of time. Modern artists have taken this belief a step further and have made their lives into art—expanding their interaction and engagement with life. They seek to live in the moment by synthesizing life and art and in the process. By materially making an object that defines a period or moment in their life—artists are able to produce a more bearable and more beautiful form of life in art.
                But, modern artists are now faced with the fact that our reality is irrevocably intertwined with technology. To be an artist now means to be a master of almost every technological platforms—video, sculpture, product manipulation, sensory distortion, performance, writing, film, sampling [3], photography, painting. It seems you cannot stay relevant unless you dabble in them all.
                In the current Luther W. Brady Art Gallery exhibition, Decenter NY/DC, it is hard to find an artist who sticks to one medium. Their names are normally followed by a slew of professional descriptors [visual artist, essayist, poet, dancer, sculptor, filmmaker, etc.].  For example, Canadian artist Douglas Coupland does everything from painting to writing novels to furniture design with SwitzerCultCreative. New York based artist Andrew Kuo does everything from avid Tumblr and Instagram blogging to making humorous charts for the New York Times. New media artist Cory Arcangel tries his hand in everything from performance to video game manipulation.

Andrew Kuo, If I Could Redo Tuesday, 2013. Acrylic and carbon transfer on panel and paper, 51 x 38 inches.
           This sense of multi-dimensional inspiration stems from the fact that the forms of expression have changed. Artists are no longer expected to use paint or cast-iron molds to express their inner worlds—they are more inclined to use varying forms of technology or pull from the large surplus of found materials [which is so present in our consumerist society]. The result is something incredibly modern and beautiful—a synthesis of art and life.
                The Economist describes this new movement as artists living in a “post-studio” environment. The world is their studio and the art flows easily from their surroundings. Experiences become art and an artists’ life inevitably flows through them. For example, Decenter artist N.Dash creates her works while immersed in the world. Her pieces titled Commuter were formed and folded while she was on public transit. Instead of reading a book or glaring at her iPhone—she makes her ride interactive and provides a concrete representation of the monotony and tediousness of riding public transportation. She coats the repetitive patterns and folds of the paper in grimy graphite—representing the dirt so present in public transport [and life].

N. Dash, Commuter. March II, 2012. Graphite on paper, 20 x 22 inches.

                So, what we should we glean from all of this? These multimedia artists bring to our attention that art is in constant collaboration with life. They lead us towards a more emotional and experiential undercurrent of life—a more observational perspective. These artists and their works can show us how to live in the present and how to make sense of our rapid and ever-changing world.  
               


[1] “Loss and Desire.” Orozco, Gabriel. Art 21, PBS. <http://www.pbs.org/art21/watch-now/segment-gabriel-orozco-in-loss-desire>
[2] Nietzsche, Friedrich. The Birth of Tragedy. Oxford: Oxford Univ., 2000. Print.
[3] Sampling is when one takes pieces from another work, reproduces or distorts it, and uses it as part of a new work. It is common in video, music, and many visual art fields.

No comments:

Post a Comment

About the Blog

Ipsum Tempor

Sit amet

Covering exhibits at the Luther W. Brady Art Gallery and giving you a peek into the Permanent Collection of the George Washington University.

Ultricies Eget

Coming Soon...

Coming Soon...
Howard Hodgkin: Paintings - May 16, 2012

Thursday, October 3, 2013

The New Media


       Every day artist Gabriel Orozco takes a walk [1]. He meanders around whatever city he is in and notices the intricacies of the sidewalk, the people, and the surroundings. He will snap a few photos here and there—but mostly, he engages with the objects around him. At one point during his walk—he stops at a trashcan full of hay-like bushels of paper ends and fumbles them through his hands.
“I try to be intimate with everything.”
Orozco coos these words to us in his documentary entitled, Loss and Desire. That’s his advice to us—notice everything. Interact with everything. Truly see everything.

  Gabriel Orozco, Fluttering Flowers, 2011. Pigment ink and acrylic on cavas, 23 5/8 x 31 1/2 inches.

      This is a much more difficult task than we realize. Nowadays, we hardly live in our current moment. We are either somewhere nostalgically looking in the past or glaring way too far forward into our future—and most of the time we are looking at a screen. So what is the remedy for this predicament? How can we really be engaged with our here and now when our here and now is so spread all over the internet and in our cell phones and in cubicles and in photographs?
                 Art is the answer. As philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche believes, art is an escape into the eternal [2]. It takes us out of the moment and into one which spans the course of time. Modern artists have taken this belief a step further and have made their lives into art—expanding their interaction and engagement with life. They seek to live in the moment by synthesizing life and art and in the process. By materially making an object that defines a period or moment in their life—artists are able to produce a more bearable and more beautiful form of life in art.
                But, modern artists are now faced with the fact that our reality is irrevocably intertwined with technology. To be an artist now means to be a master of almost every technological platforms—video, sculpture, product manipulation, sensory distortion, performance, writing, film, sampling [3], photography, painting. It seems you cannot stay relevant unless you dabble in them all.
                In the current Luther W. Brady Art Gallery exhibition, Decenter NY/DC, it is hard to find an artist who sticks to one medium. Their names are normally followed by a slew of professional descriptors [visual artist, essayist, poet, dancer, sculptor, filmmaker, etc.].  For example, Canadian artist Douglas Coupland does everything from painting to writing novels to furniture design with SwitzerCultCreative. New York based artist Andrew Kuo does everything from avid Tumblr and Instagram blogging to making humorous charts for the New York Times. New media artist Cory Arcangel tries his hand in everything from performance to video game manipulation.

Andrew Kuo, If I Could Redo Tuesday, 2013. Acrylic and carbon transfer on panel and paper, 51 x 38 inches.
           This sense of multi-dimensional inspiration stems from the fact that the forms of expression have changed. Artists are no longer expected to use paint or cast-iron molds to express their inner worlds—they are more inclined to use varying forms of technology or pull from the large surplus of found materials [which is so present in our consumerist society]. The result is something incredibly modern and beautiful—a synthesis of art and life.
                The Economist describes this new movement as artists living in a “post-studio” environment. The world is their studio and the art flows easily from their surroundings. Experiences become art and an artists’ life inevitably flows through them. For example, Decenter artist N.Dash creates her works while immersed in the world. Her pieces titled Commuter were formed and folded while she was on public transit. Instead of reading a book or glaring at her iPhone—she makes her ride interactive and provides a concrete representation of the monotony and tediousness of riding public transportation. She coats the repetitive patterns and folds of the paper in grimy graphite—representing the dirt so present in public transport [and life].

N. Dash, Commuter. March II, 2012. Graphite on paper, 20 x 22 inches.

                So, what we should we glean from all of this? These multimedia artists bring to our attention that art is in constant collaboration with life. They lead us towards a more emotional and experiential undercurrent of life—a more observational perspective. These artists and their works can show us how to live in the present and how to make sense of our rapid and ever-changing world.  
               


[1] “Loss and Desire.” Orozco, Gabriel. Art 21, PBS. <http://www.pbs.org/art21/watch-now/segment-gabriel-orozco-in-loss-desire>
[2] Nietzsche, Friedrich. The Birth of Tragedy. Oxford: Oxford Univ., 2000. Print.
[3] Sampling is when one takes pieces from another work, reproduces or distorts it, and uses it as part of a new work. It is common in video, music, and many visual art fields.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Labels

Lorem ipsum

.

Lorem ipsum

Recent News

There was an error in this gadget

About

Washington, District of Columbia, United States
"Found In Collection" or simply "FIC" is the way many museums classify the more mysterious items in their possession that have little or no documentation. Here at the Luther W. Brady Art Gallery of the George Washington University, we do keep extensive records of our collection, but some of the items we come across in academic buildings or our own storage can leave us wondering. This blog is an effort to showcase some of the more curious examples and their stories, and to provide a glimpse of the great variety of art pieces within the collection. To learn more about the Brady Gallery's history, recent exhibitions, or the George Washington University, take a look at the links below.

Followers

Sociable

There was an error in this gadget