Artist of Week 5: Victorine Meurent

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Victorine Meurent was a French painter who was also famously known as a model for painters, especially for painter Edouart Manet.  She was also an artist in her own right who would often have her art exhibited at the prestigious Paris Salon.

Victorine Meurent posed as a model for many of Manet’s paintings, but Meurent is credited as the artist for all of these.  In most nude paintings you see, most of the people have goddess-like bodies.  She is nude in a number of these, but she does not necessarily look like a goddess, but rather an ordinary human being who does not have a perfect body.  I think she is trying to say that she is no goddess, but rather a mortal person who has flaws, just like the rest of us.

I feel like as a society today, we all want to look perfect like the models we see in magazines and on T.V.

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Week 5 Activity – 2D Painting

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For this week’s activity, we had to do a painting of our name, graffiti style.  I decided to go to Venice Beach to do this activity because of the lively environment.

At first, it was kind of hard to control the spray paint when spraying, because the wind was blowing pretty hard.  But after playing around with it, I got better at it, and I wrote out the letters but it still didn’t look very good.

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Then I tried outling it and it made all the difference.

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Overall, I think it was a great experience being at Venice Beach, and it was also my first time spray painting, so that was fun too.  I hope I can go back another day and spray paint again.

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Week 4 Activity – Virtual Design

For this week, our activity was to make a 3D chair in a virtual world.  You can make any kind of chair, so there were no restrictions to what kind of chair you made.  There were many options on which programs to use, and I ended up using SketchUp, which had a free 30 day trial.

At first, it was hard and confusing to make anything, and I had to toy around with a bunch of the options first.  Eventually, I was able to make shapes and I made a chair after a while.  For my work in progress, I first made the seat and four legs of the chair.

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Then I completed it by making the back of the chair.  Here is the finished product from two different angles.

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After I made the chair, I put it on the CSULB campus in front of the rec center as you can see below.

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I know it isn’t very clear, but it is in the very middle of the picture.  This assignment was probably the most challenging one so far this summer, and it took me a lot time doing it, but it was fun after I started getting the hang of it, and I might try doing this again sometime.

Artist of Week 4: Joseph Cornell

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Joseph Cornell was an American artist and sculptor, born on December 24, 1903, and died on December 29, 1972 at the age of 69.  He was one of the pioneers and one of the most celebrated exponents of assemblage.  He was influenced by the Surrealists, and was an an avant-garde experimental filmmaker.

Cornell was an artist who made boxes called shadow boxes and would put everyday materials and random objects he found in the boxes he made.  Although at first glance, his art may look like something random with no meaning, but if you look specifically at his different pieces, you can tell they have some meanings about life.

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For example, the picture of the wood box with a pink building called Pink Palace, has a bigger meaning than just a regular pink building or palace.  The pink palace looks like a European type in palace in the backdrop of a winter forest.  To me, I think it looks like a magical fantasy world that gives evokes the idea of fairy tales and child’s play.  But since it is closed in a small, sealed space, it also stirs up the idea of an unnatural stillness, which makes it a little eerie.  Another piece of art that he made was called Soap Bubble Set.  He made it using soap and basically a soap set.  He has a round piece of soap as the moon, and he makes the background a deep blue color to represent the night sky.  So with the moon and the dark blue sky, it looks like a peaceful childhood moment with space.

A lot of Cornell’s art has themes with childhood, which I think is interesting because I feel like inside every adult is a child, and Cornell expressed his feelings about it.  For me, I often feel like getting older brings a lot more pressure and stress, and therefore, I wish I could be a child so I could avoid all the adult problems.

Week 3 Activity- Social Photography

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For this week’s activity, we had to take at least four pictures of our day and upload them to Instagram using the hashtag #art110su15.  Our goal was to create a “giant selfie”, and see what everyone posted during the day.  In the end, it looked something like this.

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As you can probably tell from the “Group Portrait”, there were definitely some pictures that were very different from other pictures.  However, there were some of the same themes in this collage.  Some of the themes were selfies, food, pets, work and school, and wherever they were during the day.  Although a lot of the pictures were different, because we are different people who live different lives, there was a sense of community because we all used the same hashtag, #art110su15, and because we are all in the same art class.

Artist of Week 3: Francesca Woodman

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Francesca Woodman was an American photographer who was best known for best known for her black and white pictures that featured herself and other female models.  Most of her photographs show young women who are nude, and the pictures are often blurred due to movement and long exposure times, merge with the surroundings, or have obscured faces.  Her work continues to be the subject of a lot of critical acclaim and attention, even years after she killed herself at the tender age of 22.

When I see Francesca Woodman’s art, I see a lot of similarities between her and Ana Mendieta, last week’s artist of the week.  Both of their works of art are similar in the way that they both express how they feel, whether it is about sadness and depression for Woodman, and feelings about nature, feminism, etc. for Mendieta.  They also present a lot of nudity in their art, which is hard to look at.  For Woodman, her art reflected her thoughts and what she felt.  Mendieta, on the other hand, reflected more about her values and what she thought was important.

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After seeing some of the discussion and doing some research on Francesca Woodman, it was obvious that she was not a happy person.  And since she was obviously depressed and freely expressed it, I wonder why nobody tried to help her, which led to her suicide.

Week 2 Activity- Plaster Casting

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For this week, our activity was to make a plaster sculpture of your foot or hand.  I went to Seal Beach last Thursday and met up with Professor Glenn and some classmates to work on this activity together.  For this activity, the supplies you need are a bucket, shovel, stir stick, and plaster.

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First, we dug a hole to make room for a hand or foot to put in.  Next, we used a bucket to get water and make the sand wet to put around the hand or foot to tuck it in.  Then, carefully take out the hand or foot so it won’t break the mold.  Then make the plaster in a bucket, 1/3 water and 2/3 plaster, and stir hard.  After making the plaster, pour it into the mold.  After that, wait for about 25 minutes for it to dry.  Then dig out your casting and marvel at your creation.

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I really liked this activity since I had never done any kind of art like this before.  It was fun and I really want to do this again in the future.