Archive for the ‘Fine Art’ Category

I am a designer, and not a painter. Or an illustrator for that matter. Well, I’m not trained as an illustrator, however, in this contemporary world of ours, I feel that designers are often called upon to fulfill the role of illustrator/painter, and vice versa as well. Many of the best posters I have seen have a combination of illustration with good use of type, or photo with type, or a combination of all three—concert posters, as well as posters for art exhibitions, galleries, and other artistic means fall heavily into this category. Likewise, many of the best design pieces I have seen at school use a combination of good concept, good layout/type/design, and good hand-done illustration. Often, painters create some of the most beautiful “graphic designs.” Continue Reading »

I visited the Museum of Modern Art on January 7th, with my girlfriend, Anna, because she really wanted to see the new Tim Burton show. Yes, it was interesting, and yes, it was incredibly crowded; the entirety of the exhibit plus the people viewing it was a huge fire hazard. After we left the Burton show, I saw a few signs flitting about pointing upstairs to a Bauhaus show—this greatly piqued my interests, so I proceeded to convince Anna that the upstairs show was going to be incredibly awesome, and she followed.

Unsurprisingly, I found that the Bauhaus 1919-1933: Workshops for Modernity show was indeed awesome. Continue Reading »

Five points of interest on chapter 3 “The Fair”, from the book Seven Days in the World by Sarah Thornton:

  1. Art collectors seem to not care about the art, merely the price tag.
  2. The art-collection culture seems entirely too far removed from the culture of artists and art making.
  3. Uber-rich art collectors raise the market value of particular artists’ work, thereby making that artist a “hot” commodity. This, seems (to me at least) to hurt the overall art economy—not help it—as it devalues the work of other artists, who essentially become business competitors. These other artists, who are the majority, then find it harder to sell their work. Therefore, the art economy is determined by, and rests upon the sole shoulders of rich people and families who seem more interested in making a financial investment as opposed to an artistic one.
  4. Art as a business seems to be counter intuitive to the idea of art as a social vehicle.
  5. Philippe Segalot is a jerk.

-rgm

It was 9:15 PM, on Wednesday, September 30th, and I was with senior thesis student, Allie Bajew, at her studio in the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. The assignment was to interview each other as artists and students, while referencing each other’s past works. We went about this by looking over each other’s pieces first, and then getting into the interviewing. Here is the resulting dialogue (with physical actions displayed in italics):

Rohan Mitra: So, uh… should we start?

Allie Bajew: Um, sure.

RM: Alright. So, do you know what you’re interested in? Or do you have a specific purpose or direction that you are going in with your work?

AB: Well, I have certain things that I like and I just try focusing on those themes. A constant theme are bunnies and ghosts.

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RM: Haha, yeah, I can tell.

AB: Heh, yeah, I use a lot of children’s illustrations.

RM: Uh huh. Do you try and use children’s illustrations to show something dark or something more… lighthearted? It seems more lighthearted than dark.

AB: I use ghosts and stuff like that, but they’re not scary.

RM: Nothing comes out as overtly gothic. There is a lot of texture, or rather, a play between texture and flatness. For instance, there’s texture here, but the ghosts are still flat. And even the houses here—they have these faces that are really flat. It seems like a lot of your stuff has that going on.

AB: The thing is that, I almost never use backgrounds. It’s usually just a figure and then open space, and the collages help me with that since its like, instant background.

Continue Reading »

Frederico Diaz’s “Adhesion” Exhibit consisted of four large sculptures, a number of paneled pieces, and a series of I-Mac monitors, as well as one very large lcd-screen, playing videos. All of the works explore the relationship between art and science, specifically, science in the context of nature.

Three of the four sculptures caught my eye first, as they are the closest to the gallery doorway, rather large—3 feet or so wide as well as tall, leap off the wall, and are completely chrome. All four sculptures depicted some sort of liquid, dripping form, turned solid. The fourth sculpture, black as opposed to chrome, formed a column of sorts in the middle of the gallery space. The sculptures did enforce the idea of a literal visualization of nature, and were extremely well crafted, however, I felt as if I had seen similar sculptures before.

The panels, the highlight of the show, are placed around the room, save for the wall with the sculptures. Two of the panels take on very large, stretched, octagonal shapes, whereas the rest are more akin to vertical rectangles. All of them, except for one of the “octagons,” are made up of a deep purplish-black material with white linear markings on it. The left octagonal piece is white with blackish markings on it—the inverse of the other octagonal piece to the right of it. The purplish-black (or white) material is actually a thermosensitive paint/paste, and the white (or black) lines formed are from heat sensors built into circuits placed underneath the paint. The white lines change in width, opacity, and intensity as both the programmed temperature as well as the atmospheric temperature change. These slow, but detailed changes in these linear, tree-like structures easily capture the viewer’s attention and interest, as well as force him/her to visually understand the intricacies of a taken-for-granted natural phenomena.

The monitors, placed off in their own secluded corner of the space, all played the same video, entitled Sakura. The film is a vaux-company’s promotional video in which technology runs the company and humans are the subjects. The film failed to grasp my immediate attention, as it moved at a rather slow pace, and I was extremely captivated by the panel pieces. However, the film did provide a nice ambient soundtrack of the future, complete with downtempo lounge music and robotic bleeps and bloops.

I feel like the video is more powerful if you watch it on your computer rather than in the gallery space. Here it is a la YouTube:

-rgm