Tuesday, February 25, 2014

"Something Is Happening" Exhibition

Setting up the art exhibition was an unusual experience in itself. Typically, I hate having to deal with the details of ANYTHING, so I just usually leave the tedious minutia to everyone else. However, responsibility was inescapable this time. I, along with everyone else, needed to frame my pictures, line up on the wall in near-perfect symmetry, and arrange them so that the mind's eye was led around the whole room. I can't pretend that I like making sure that labels were lined up with the bottom of each frame, outside the edge of the shadow, of course. However, the act of creating an intriguing exhibit was an artistic process in itself, because it required knowing how your own pieces flow thematically with the others. Putting things together to make a cohesive whole is something that I was able to appreciate when the exhibition was done.

Monday, February 17, 2014

The Song That Never Ends

"The ear favors no particular 'point of view.' We are enveloped by sound. It forms a seamless web around us. We say, 'Music shall fill the air.' We never say, 'Music shall fill a particular segment of the air.'"The Medium is the Massage

To me, the radio is a way that our minds can get trapped in the web of song. Pop songs are often designed to be "ear worms," songs that are impossible to forget. They act like a virus. You listen to a song and it repeats itself over and over in your head. Viruses enter the body, infect cells, reproduce, and continue this cycle indefinitely. These are the songs that never end, because they are impossible to get out of your head. To me, the song "Wonderwall" by Oasis is an example of one of these ear worms. I have a developed a visceral and passionate hatred for the tune due to the fact it was played so often on the radio. I couldn't go anywhere without being assaulted by it. Thus, for this project I attempted to recreate the song to demonstrate how it makes me feel and expose it for the monster that it truly is. I incorporated an out of tune guitar and the sound of knives being sharpened to create a grating and not-easy-to-hear atmosphere. Then I repeated a verse of the song throughout, while also adding vocal transformations at some points. This was my first time working with sound, and I am not yet sure how I feel about the final product. It gets my point across, but I hope I never hear it on the radio.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Lauren Semivan

What can I say about Lauren Semivan? A former Lawrence student, Lauren’s photographs remind me of the work of early photographers such as Julia Margaret Cameron, with her soft focus, flowing fabrics, and black and white imagery. However, Lauren is in no way a portrait artist, unless you consider her work to be portraits of inanimate objects.

She appears as a subject in a few of her photos as well, but she never looks at the camera directly. Instead, she appears to only inhabit the image briefly, like a ghost intruding upon the space and then promptly disappearing.

Lauren is able to achieve this look in her images by continuing to use a very old camera that has a shutter that moves slower in the winter. The medium behind Lauren’s work defies the point of the Digital Processes class, which is to show how modern technology can be used to create art. Nevertheless, Lauren’s work serves as a reminder that good art can still be created utilizing the technology of the past. Check out her website here