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ERIK RAVELO

25 Aug

Los Intocables (The Untouchables) 2012
The right to childhood should be protected.

Provocative photographs addressing systemic and institutional child abuse. The images capture children pinned up crucifixion style against the backs of adult authority figures .The first one speaks of paedophiles in the Catholic Church, child prostitution in Thailand, child army recruitment in Syria, child organ trafficking in Brazil, free guns in USA and child obesity (McDonalds). I love this piece. I find the concept really political, moving and powerful. I also like how it addresses the responsibility of adult figures with regard to the harming of children in various contexts. Placing the children at the forefront of issues such as military occupation, tourism, healthcare, religion, and school violence, asks viewers to consider the potential for abuse within these issues and institutions.
I’ve read some comments that people feel that the McDonald’s image seems very out-of-place amongst the others. I disagree, because to only feed a child junk food, let it reach obesity and damage its health, is abuse in my opinion. I do however, agree with comments that point out that a black child is missing. “Or maybe it’s because we don’t see black kids as kids, but rather as hoodlums, and thugs…” Perhaps the artist could have included an image of a black child crucified on a white male cop..?

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OTTO DIX

13 Jan

Born in 1891, Germany

• 1914 volunteered for the German Army in WWI
• Wounded several times during the war. Nearly died when a shrapnel splinter hit him in the neck.
• In 1918 (end of the war), Dix had won the “Iron Cross” (second class) and reached the rank of vice-sergeant- major.
• Developed left-wing views and his paintings and drawings became increasingly political
• Angry about the way that the wounded and crippled ex-soldiers were treated in Germany.

otto dix, trench warfare

• “The Trench” was purchased and exhibited by the Wallraf-Richartz Museum. Its depiction of decomposed corpses in a German trench created such a public outcry that the museum’s director, Hans Secker, was forced to resign.
• “No More War!” travelling exhibition put on with other artists who had fought in WW1
• 1933: Hitler and Nazi Germany
• Government disliked Dix’s anti-military paintings and arranged for him to be sacked from his job as an art tutor at Dresden Academy.
Dismissal letter said his work, “threatened to sap the will of the German people to defend themselves.”

otto dix, war cripples

• “The Trench” and “War Cripples” appeared in a Nazi exhibition to discredit modern art. Later several of Dix’s anti-war paintings were destroyed by the Nazi authorities.
• With the Nazis in power, artists in Germany could only work as an artist, buy materials or show their work if they were members of the Imperial Chamber of Fine Arts.
Dix was allowed to become a member in return for agreeing to paint landscapes instead of political subjects.
• Dix mainly painted landscapes during this period, but still produced the occasional allegorical painting which contained coded attacks on the Nazi government. He exhibited several of these paintings in a one-man exhibition in 1938. In 1939 Dix was arrested and charged with involvement in a plot on Hitler’s life. Eventually he was released as the charges were dropped.

otto dix

• In 1945 Dix was forced to join the German Army to fight in WWII. At the end of the war he was captured and put into a prisoner-of-war camp. Released in Feb. 1946.
• Most of Dix’s post-war paintings were religious allegories. However, paintings such as “Job” (1946), “Masks in Ruins” (1946) and “Ecce Homo 2” (1948), dealt with the suffering caused by WWII.

Otto Dix died in 1969

MARY COBLE

11 Nov

‘Blood Script’ 2008

• A live performance piece that took place at the PULSE Art Fair at Pier 40 in New York.
• A list of over 200 hateful words and phrases previously given to her by viewers
• The artist had 75 of the most common words tattooed onto her skin, without ink, in a very ornate script.
• Created a dichotomy between the beautiful visual form of the words and the ugly meanings they convey semantically.
• Contact prints were made of each word by immediately pressing watercolour paper against the fresh incisions.

‘Note to Self’ 2005

• A twelve hour performance where the names of 438 gay, lesbian, bi and transgender individuals who were murdered due to hate crimes, were tattooed onto the artist’s body, (using no ink).

‘Binding Ritual, Daily Routine’ 2005

• A live performance that took place at Artists Space in New York
• The artist repeatedly taped and untaped her breast with duct-tape for over ninety minutes.
• This piece speaks to the emotional and physical pain that many transgender people may feel on a daily basis.
• For Female to Male transgender individuals, who may bind daily, want to be perceived as having no breast at all. To bind that tightly can be not only extremely physically painful but can be mentally trying as well.
• The artist wanted to create a physical manifestation of the mental space where she imagines transgender individuals silently suffer, while shortening a lifetime into a few hours.

‘Aversion’ 2007

• A live performance piece performance that took place at Conner Contemporary Art in Washington, DC.
• The artist attached electrodes to her arm and had herself shocked, with an electric shock device, to recreate the severe effects of electric shock aversion therapy that was once commonly used to “cure” homosexuality.
• Patients were subjected to repeated sessions during which they were shown a series of erotic images. Where as opposite-sex images elicited no negative stimulation, shock was administered in conjunction with same-sex images.
• The performance lasted thirty minutes, which was the length of an actual shock therapy session.
• The artist wanted to not only call attention to a practice that many did not even know existed. The piece also points to continued social pressures towards conformity, which perpetuates the advocacy of reorientation therapy for homosexuals by extremist organizations today.

VOKA – ‘Spontaneous Realism’

9 Nov




La Fête des Lumières

26 Oct

La Fête des Lumières is the French Festival of Lights:

4 million visitors
80 light projects
8 million candles sold in Greater Lyon

CARLA KLEIN

17 Oct


• Dutch artist
• Environments that can be filled with meaning only because they are so empty to begin with
• Absented the body from her images altogether
• painted series of empty terrariums, schematic suspension bridges, swimming pools, deserted airport terminals, blank television screens and minimal architectural models of athletic stadiums.
• Palette is watery: cool aqua greens, silvery greys and icy blues
• Almost forensic in their lighting, and, due to their isolated status, impossibly scaled

KATHARINA GROSSE

17 Oct

• Rich, bright colours are applied to a broad range of surfaces
• Involves applying acrylic paint to various grounds with a spray gun, which creates either very atmospheric, loose coverings or thick applications
• Absence of drawing
• Pools of colour evoking both a luscious artificial environment and the disgusting aspect of vomit
• First occurrences of this mural use of spray paint: spare museum room (at Kunsthalle Bern, 1998), or in minimal industrial spaces (for the Sydney Biennial, 1998)


Infinite


Hello Little Butterfly