Friday, December 31, 2010

Renaissance Art

Michelangelo Buonarroti's David

I choose to write on the topic of the emergence of learning renaissance art. What is meant by the term “Renaissance man” and how does the art reflect the learning ideology?

I support the idea that the Renaissance was a time of rebirth, and was plainly named as such by the European community after its surfacing from the Middle Ages as humanist scholars sought to extend themselves further than worldly theology. They then rediscovered the classic literature and art of Greece and Rome.

I think that for many Europeans, that in the Renaissance period they wanted to (and did) express themselves through art. They expressed their outward feelings, attitudes, inner feelings, and thoughts through their art (without the use of words). I strongly believe that the artists of the Renaissance period looked back at art from the past and recreated it into what they perceived what they wanted to tell a story about but in their own way while drawing inspiration from earlier works of art.They called the period that they were living in the Renaissance period (meaning literally the rebirth) because they were looking back at art work from the past and recreated it (gave it a rebirth), Their art work was inspired by artwork from the past they just gave it new life you could say put a new spin on it. A wonderful example of this is the marble sculpture called David by Michelangelo Buonarroti (1501-1504. He made a sculpture of David the biblical hero that gave the most powerful expression to the idea of David as a hero. The marble sculpture depicts David as the Greeks did by positioning David’s weight of his body on one foot. But Michelangelo Buonarroti gave his sculpture of David a spin/ different take by the positioning of the hands and tense frown indicating anxiety and readiness for a fight. Michelangelo Buonarroti gave David more humanized characteristics than the classical style of the Greek athlete that the Greeks depicted in their art work/sculptures. It took Michelangelo Buonarroti three years to make the sculpture of David but it was well worth it because most of the citizens of Florence were filled with admiration for his work. He was known after that as the greatest sculptor since the Greeks. So the term “Renaissance man” would fit Michelangelo Buonarroti very well. Do you think so as well?

Sadly to say though women were not regarded as good artists like men were. In chapter 16 on page 289 it discusses that in the Renaissance period “the idea was simply to produce women who could write poetry, dance, sing, paint, and excel in the art of conversation so that they would make good companions for artistic men.” Some women did become good at art but were denied access to the training necessary for professional careers. I believe that the term “Renaissance man” is very one sided. There were plenty of good women artists such as Sofonisba Auguissola, Artemisian Gentileschi, Marietta Robusti, and Rosa Bonheur. It very unfair and women should have been treated just as men were. There were probably women that were just as good or better that the men that became famous in that arts. Maybe our history would have been altered/changed if women would have been given the opportunity (the right) to peruse their dreams of doing art!

Written by: Gutter Chic of Gutter Chic Inc. 2010

Sources: Preble's Artforms

Source Type: Text book

Thursday, December 30, 2010

The human figure in art

An example of Greek art

The fact that women in the Stone Age were shown as child bearers and life givers. They may not have even wanted to be seen only as that. They may have wanted to be portrayed as beautiful women as well as mothers/ life givers. It seems that in this day and age that the beautiful woman is represented in a way that expresses her physical beauty as of that of being young and skinny. I feel that in our culture today that too much importance in given to the way people look and how much money that they make, rather than what is in their hearts. Our culture just seems to judge people without even giving them a chance. You see it in the tabloids, on TV, at school, at work, and even in our own homes. Our culture seems to have that “you have to look perfect” mentality. We as a culture are like picking favorites, making any people that look a certain “perfect” way feel special. When we all should feel special and worth something .We as a culture should be more supportive of one another rather than fighting about who is better than the next. It sure would make the world a nicer place to live! Don’t you think so?

In the Medieval Period of Greek and Roman art, the view for human beauty seemed to be very high. I did enjoy the marble sculpture called Head of an Old Man (25 B.C.E.-10 C.E.)the most because the Romans portrayed more of a realistic interpretation of the human figure. The Romans sculptures gave their art work careful physical details and imperfections which give character to the people’s faces. They did this by careful observation and recording these physical details and imperfections. Thus showing more of a realistic portrayal of the human figure.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Political art

Marcel Duchamp's urinal/ fountain

I choose to write on the topic of political art. The article that I choose to write about is about recycled art. Recycled art can also be called cause art or found object art. This article was written by Carlos Alcala of the Sacramento Bee.

This article discusses the use recycled materials in art. The quote from the text referring to recycling in the art world that Recycling is nice, but art's the goal It's the vision not necessarily an effort to go 'green' driving the creative process, artists say” is to me a very interesting and fun way of looking at garbage/recycling. This to me also seems like a political statement in that we are creating so much garbage/recycling that we cannot keep going at this rate so why don’t we just use the garbage/recycling as art or other useful substances such as art.

This article also discussed the concept of making art your own and not listening to other people to decide what is art and what is not art. A great, humorous, and unique example of not letting other people’s opinions decide what art should be is when Marcel Duchamp turned a urinal into art in 1917 to make people “question the concept of art”. A cording to the text is that” a tradition in art using discarded materials for art has a long tradition dating back to artist”. Another example of this is when Picasso used a bike seat and handlebars to make a bull. This emphasized the artist's vision. Contemporary gigantic artists like Joseph Cornell and Robert Rauschenberg also included found materials in their art works. An up and coming recycled art artist and associate director of Verge Gallery named Liv Moe created a chair made from an old chair and some Rolling Stone magazines that someone had given her. She tore the pages into strips and then sewed them together. At the point when she had a good amount of them together in a “long, looping mass,” it started to take on the appearance of a “figure draped on a chair” according to the text.

There are now even art completions for recycled art at the California State Fair. The exhibit is called Sacramento's Second Saturday. It has had a recycled-art category for at least 10 years. This year, the category will have its own division with its own competition. The top work will have a $700 prize. Recycled art entrants at this fair can have many environmental motivations but it can change from artist to artist. Although this all does depend on people’s political views, personalities, feelings, and other emotions/views.

In closing I would like to say that I thought that this article was very interesting. It made my interest for recycled art grow. It also sparked some new interests within me about recycling and recycling in the art world. This article also gave me a new appreciation towards Marcel Duchamp. I have heard of him before but now I have a new and improved interest for him. I will be very interested in finding more out about him and his works of art and to find out about all of the ways he made people question the concept of art. I am also interested in appreciating other/new works of art that people make out of recycling or found objects. I have a genuine concern for the environment and I think that it is a truly good idea to incorporate recycling into art. Well, you know what they say “another man’s trash is another man’s treasure!”

Written By Gutter Chic of Gutter Chic Inc. 2010


Carlos Alcala

Document types:




Publication title:

The Sacramento Bee. Sacramento, Calif.: Feb 22, 2010. pg. D.1



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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Role Of The Human Figure In Art

"Head of an Old Man"

For my second discussion question I choose to write about question 2 (discuss the role of the human figure in the periods studied in chapters 14 and 15).

In chapter 14 The Limestone Woman of Wiledorf (25,000-20,000 B.C.E.) is portrayed as a woman with big hips and breasts that seems to imply that women of that time were seen as child bearers or life givers. Prehistoric people may have given main credit to women for just that reason. Today in our time it does not seem like women are given much credit for that fact. You don’t really see that many pregnant models (or not so skinny women) on TV, movies, or in the magazines. Maybe pregnant women (or not so skinny women) back in the Paleolithic period were considered beautiful. Now in this day and age it doesn’t seem like pregnant (or no so skinny women) are given much credit or made to feel very beautiful or important. So it seems like our view of beauty has changed over the times. I feel that everyone should be made to feel good about them and feel important no matter what their size is.

Art in Egypt usually showed the human figure in a completely front view or in a profile view. Egyptian artists showed each object and each part of peoples bodies (carved or drawn) from what they saw as its most characteristic angle. Just like artists do now a days. They showed people and objects in their most characteristic angel to avoid causing random or chance angels of view. The Wall Painting from tomb of Nebamun is an example of avoiding random or chance angles or views and avoiding ambiguity. This painting shows a great deal of detail without making the painting confusing. This painting also shows a great deal of information. The nobleman in the paintings feet, head, hips, and legs and shoulders are shown from a front view. The family in this painting shows us what their day to day life was like. The nobleman hunted while the rest of his family (his wife and his daughter) were on a boat made from papyrus leaves with him. This painting also shows us how the people of the Egyptian times dressed and how they looked.

In chapter 15 it explains that Greece came into its classical period/phase in 480 and ended in 323 B.C.E. The Spear Bearer is one example of the Greeks classical art style. The Greek artists of that times main concern/goal was to only create the ideal individual (the “perfect” human being). The Spear Bearer shows this interpretation of the “perfect” human being form quite well. The Greeks classical interpretation of art empathized on simplicity, order, and restrained emotion. This classical style of art made human figures have more of a relaxed pose with a broad attention to detail of the human anatomy. This classical style of interpreting human beings gave sculpture almost a sense of movement and life while being ever so naturalistic. The Greeks gave their sculptures what they believed to be perfect proportions of the human form. They actually made observations and made mathematical calculations to figure out what they perceived to be perfect human form. Although the real Spear Bearer no longer exists there are later copies and documents to prove what the sculpture looked like. Which kind of reminds me of how the media and out culture thinks and shows us (well makes us believe) that we as human beings should look. For women we should have a very skinny waist, big hips, big breasts, dress however the media tells us to. This is just not realistic. We should be/ look like whatever we want to and no one should judge us. As for men they should by the medias standards be tall dark and handsome and have six pack abs. Also dress like however the media wants them to. This is also not realistic. But the Greeks most of their media still survives which depicts “perfect” looking people. I wonder did they ever make art work out of people that did not look exactly like that. I hope that some of our media does not survive as long as theirs because to me it shows that we as a human beings haven’t really evolved out of that “you have to look perfect” mentality. We as a culture are like picking favorites, making any people that look a certain “perfect” way feel special. When we all should feel special and worth something.

On the other hand the Romans portrayed more of a realistic interpretation of the human figure. An example of this is the Head of an Old Man in chapter 15. The Romans sculptures gave their art work careful physical details and imperfections which give character to the people’s faces. They did this by careful observation and recording these physical details and imperfections. Thus showing more of a realistic portrayal of the human figure.

Written By: Gutter Chic of Gutter Chic Inc. 2010

Sources: Preble's Artfroms

Source type: Text Book

Monday, December 20, 2010

Late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in art

"The boating party" by Mary Cassaties

I choose to write about late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries in art.There were three revolutions. They were the Industrial Revolution (1760), the American Revolution (1716), and the French Revolution (1789). The Industrial Revolution made a huge change in the way that people lived since the Neolithic agricultural revolution (that was ten thousand years earlier).Much change and technological changes have happened at a fast pace since thanks to the Industrial Revolution. The late Eighteenth century has been called the Enlightenment (or the age of Reason).

In the late eighteenth century artists expressed and encouraged changes in technology, mixing of peoples and cultures. In the beginning of the French Revolution (1789) the daily luxuries life of the people of France suddenly ended which disrupted and transformed the people’s lives. This intern made the social structure and the values transform. This made peoples tastes in art change. Jacques Louis David thought / felt that the arts should “serve a political purpose in a of social and government reform.” He rejected the current style of art called Rococo. He used an austere style called Neoclassicism. Neoclassicism refers to the emulation of classical Greek and Roman Art. In his oil on canvas painting called “Oath of the Dorati” (1784). Jacques Louis David Neoclassicism style is shown by the rational geometric structure. The paintings background truly resembles a real stage set.

Very wrong but believed to be true views/feelings/thoughts were also expressed in art of that time as well. In the painting “Oath of the Horatii” by David shows that women were “unfit” for public life. At that time women were excluded from most professions as well as the art world/ profession. Much like today as women are really not accepted in the construction world and should be (if they can do the work). Angelica Kauffmann is a prime example of women being able to do the work (art work) as seen in her oil on canvas painting entitled “Cornelia pointing to her children as her treasures” (1785). Her painting is proof to the fact that women can do anything that a man can do if they just try and believe in themselves. In this chapter there is another example of neoclassical art. This time it is in architecture. Thomas Jefferson’s design for his home (Monticello) was done in the neoclassical style. It was done in the Neoclassical American architecture style (also known as Federal Style). This style is heavily seen in Washington D.C.’s architecture.

Romanticism is an opposite reaction to the Enlightenment (the power of reason). Romanticism is an emotional expression in Europe (from perhaps 1825 to 1850). Romanticism is an attitude that made way for and invited a multitude of styles. It is formed on the core beliefs that emotion and imagination are more important that reason. My favorite quote referring to Romanticism is that “nature is less corrupt than civilization” and that “human beings are essentially good.” Romantics struggle for human liberty. Which I believe is a good and fair cause. The style of romanticism is the total opposite of the fixation on classical forms. The term romanticism reflects the emphasis on feeling over fact. I think that that is a truly interesting way of thinking. Because it is easy to get caught up in the norm of things rather than looking at the beauty and uniqueness around our daily lives. I feel that a good example of romanticism is the oil on canvas painting called “Blue hole little Miami river” (1851). It was painted in the nineteenth century in America by Roberts Duncanson .He was one of the first African American artists. This painting shows exact realistic qualities and great attention to detail. This to me represents Romanticism style in the fact that it shows the struggle for human liberty by an African American making it in art when many were denied the opportunity.

Photography. Delacroix believed that photography was possibly to be of a wonderful/great benefit to artists and their art. Fe’lix Tournachon (Nadar) believed that photography was simply a mechanical process and that the photographer had to be smart and be creative in order to get a worthwhile work of art with a camera. An example of one of his photographs is called Sara Bernhart (taken in1855). Many different classes people wanted their portraits taken by Nadar. Such as the most notable artists, writers, accretes, and intellectuals.

Realism as a style of art and literature that shows plain existence without the use of idealism, exoticism, or nostalgia. Realism can be interpreted by people in a shown rejection of romantic and neoclassical art “formulas.” A great example of this is entitled “The stone brakers (1849) oil on canvas by Gustave Courber. It shows “ordinary” road workers in a new light (by not just painting things that people would accept as “beautiful”). He rather did the opposite by painting real things as they were actually seen in nature. He was even one of the first artists to finish his artworks outdoors rather than indoors using thus using inspiration from the outdoors to emulate through his paintings. Most other artists used to work from memory in a studio or just use reference materials from the outdoors like rocks and plants/flowers.

Impressionism was created by artists opposing academic doctrines and romantic ideals. They wanted to express the contempory life. Impressionism is thought to be “what the eye actually sees rather than what the mind knows.” Impressionists were misunderstood by their public many of the artists made very little or no money in their early years. This is because they rebelled against accepted styles. They did this by use artificial poses that the academy wanted them to use. Such an example of this rejection of the Academy’s rules is the oil on canvas painting entitled “The Boating Party” by Mary Cassaties. She used different colors for the man and different colors for the woman and child. This was to show that the woman was of a higher class than the man. This also shows that the woman was paying the man to take her on a boat ride. She also used “sweeping curves and almost flat shapes” according to this chapter.

Lastly I will discussed the art style of the post-impressionist period (painting starting about 1885). Painters that were post-impressionist did not share any one kind of style, but they did build on Impressionism. Although that some people felt that Impressionism didn’t really allow an artist to have his or her own personal expression or religious beliefs. One of my favorite paintings falls under the category of Impressionism and is an oil on canvas painting called “The Sower” by Vincent Van Gogh. My favorite quote about his paintings is “with Vincent Van Gogh late nineteenth century painting moved from an outer impression of what the eye sees to an inner expression of what the heart feels and the mind knows.” I do feel that anyone can do art if it is first in their heart and then in their mind. Art is a very fun way of expressing your feelings and what you know. It is also a way of expressing your insights/views.

Written By: Gutter Chic

Sources: Preble's Artforms

Source type: Text book