Sunday, 3 July 2011

Does an artist need an image?

Trying you establish my art carrier I was wondering of how much of personal image of the artist effects the viewer,or is it important at all. Is being the regular person with everyday routine and dividing your time between the art and family is damaging oppose an image of bohemian eccentric artist that allows him(her)self to be above it all. There is an article i found in Fine Art News blog.
This article is by Brian Sherwin,
 "for example, many fans of Frida Kahlo note that knowledge of her personal life impacts how they view her art. The same can be said-- for better or worse-- concerning Pablo Picasso and knowledge of the volatile relationships he had. On that note, those who enjoy Mark Rothko's paintings often know details of the hardships he endured-- would people experience strong emotion before his paintings if they were not aware of his struggles and suicide? With that in mind, should art speak for itself-- or can the voice of art, so to speak, be strengthened or weakened by details of the personal life of the artist behind the artwork?
 I can recall a project that I was involved with while taking a college level  psychology class that explored this issue. We showed a group of people images of art without saying who the artist behind the artwork was. I recall that we had to make sure that the people involved did not recognize the artist's work. The two artists that stick out in memory happened to be Adolf Hitler and John Lennon-- two names that need no introduction for very different reasons. The goal was simply to see how people reacted with their art criticism after finding out who created the art. 
Those who observed Adolf Hitler’s artwork before knowing he was behind the creation of those images were impressed by it-- noting a strong sense of architecture and space. Those who observed John Lennon’s artwork before knowing he was behind the creation of those images were not very impressed at all-- most asking if they were drawings by a child
After showing the work and documenting the views that everyone had we revealed the artists name in connection to the examples of images shown. We then followed up on the study a week later. At that point when Adolf Hitler’s artwork was shown people tended to mock it and mention how it was technically flawed and mediocre as a whole-- completely opposite of what they had said before. When John Lennon’s artwork was shown again people tended to suggest that his works displayed a strong use of line and mastery of gesture drawing-- Lennon went from being viewed as a ‘bad artist‘ to being viewed as highly creative just because his name-- and thus all that is attributed to it-- was revealed.  Those who forgot the names of the artists after a week tended to stick with their original statement-- and criticism-- concerning the images. 
It leaves me to wonder if the power of art is found in the personality and life choices-- both that of the artist and of the viewer-- or within the image itself. Perhaps it is a meshing of both? Consider this food for thought."

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