Thursday, October 24, 2013
Title: Square Thinking in Odd Colors
Hostess: Sylvia Weir
Theme: Interpret a common object in the style of cubism
Technique: Represent an object in non-realistic colors; i.e. a banana might be purple or a person might be green or gray. Think about using the complement of the normal color if you get stuck on what color to use.
Due date: November 2
Most of us are familiar with Picasso's rendering of the human figure into several aspects all seen at once. Georges Braque worked with Pablo Picasso with the two of them painting into the wee hours of the morning interspersed with whiskey consumption, cigar smoking, and a great deal of laughter. Comparing their pieces, I am not convinced that they did not switch easels when they returned to work thinking it a grand joke to sign their names to the other's painting which they may or may not have worked.
However, other painters explored cubism, notably some of the Latin American painters. One of Emilio Pettorutti's work is currently on display at the Museum of Fine Art in Houston in addition to other Latino American artists working in synthetic cubism.
The challenge for today: Take a common object in your sewing room or kitchen and convert it to a cubist piece using non-realistic colors. For example, if you choose the familiar tomato pincushion, it needs to have sharp angular edges, seen from on top and on bottom and a different color -- perhaps blue or purple. If you want a real challenge you could do your self portrait or that of your dog or cat. Think of pleasing colors that are not realistic. This is an impression of the piece, of what you know about the object and what you see and what you see over time as you circle about the object. In some ways this is suggestive of drafting a machine part in 3-D.
A brief history of Cubism in Wickipedia; interestingly enough it contains references to architecture -- Le Corbusier, literature, Faulkner; and sculpture.
A collection at MOMA in New York of Braque's work: http://www.moma.org/collection/artist.php?artist_id=744
I was fortunate to see Duchamp's Nude descending the Staircase in person at the Philadelphia Art Museum. This was a significant piece as it represented the beginning of modern art versus classical art. http://www.philamuseum.org/collections/permanent/51449.html
Cubism: Picasso, Braques and others
Emilio Pettoruti Paintings
Take a look at how the portraits were simplified into squares and rectangles and triangles using the face as a basis and the multiple aspects of the object seen and remembered. Note the odd colors.
Of course any good design text book will also have information. This is just one of several hundred websites I found. Libraries also have a lot of resources.
I am not aware of any fiber artists with this sort of work so this should be interesting.
And one more thing: have fun with this! :) Don't think too hard about it -- just have FUN!