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Motion Theory

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Guest mofresh

whoa, this thread got pretty intense out of no where. but good talks. have to say that fred cleaned up with those pretty amazing paragraphs :o

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Guest rairai

(note: this post goes off on tangents, but still very relevant. and it's REALLY LONG. heh.)

 

i feel inclined to speak up because of the discussion around art vs. design the video seems to have sparked.

 

govinda, i don't know why you seem to have stepped down from the vitriolic tone of your initial post. sometimes venting is more honest than a balanced response that tries to be alittle too diplomatic (maybe like this one, heh). your frustration with young 'designers' proclaiming that their commercial work is "art" is i think symptomatic of a culture whose majority of people seek identity and merit in a primarily visual culture that doesn't concern itself so much with controversial concepts and thought-provoking ideas (it probably never will, because quite simply, it's not popular, it's not marketable like a pair of Nike shoes), as it does glorify the gratifying immediacy of visual excitement and public spectacle. think of the success of the ipod ad campaign.

 

for decades, perhaps a century or two, the advertisement industry has re-appropriated art for commercial use. this is a no brainer. as capitalists, it's a rational thing to do. we live in an era/culture that values commercial success, individual effort. the fact that the kid [in the video, which i haven't seen yet] naively asserted his work as art is totally telling of how art is perceived today - accessible, public, and only meaningful through public consumption. which also suggests that the brand of art being exhibited (in advertising, broadcast) is designed to entice the viewer, then enter their subconscious, then perhaps motivate them to think about buying marketed product later.

 

from my experience, i think most "designers" make wonderful consumers on the whole, and i say this factually. most design studio folks i know (me included) are really supportive of visual culture, and its related activities ("work in it, live off of it"). but never do we/they (on a large scale) think about the implications of supporting such a culture based on capital gain at the expense of other more important issues at hand. at the very least, the signal to noise ratio is very weak, and usually remains in academic circles, and very rightly so, because really, who wants to sabotage your their economic system? "ignorance is bliss" right? sometimes it's better to live in your bubble, when you got everything you need, and enough problems at hand, like making that next proposal for a GAP ad. again, this behaviour is unfortunate of a culture that hits a dead end in its own limited perception of the world, and rather, promotes a gross indulgence in personal success, at the expense of others. of course, no one's expecting you to change the world while you are still alive (we have other priorities, like making art), but i think as it was mentioned in another post, a little perspective doesn't hurt, especially since we live in such an increasingly globalised society, it's impossible not too consider how interrelated things are today. this is also an issue of a sociological order, a bit of sensitivity to that field would benefit anyone.

 

my work experience in under-developed countries has taught me to (and especially because i chose to work in the advertising industry (like most of you) work in this environment with a very negotiated response to the feedback i get from my work - ie. think about what your work does to people, in what context, what other people from other cultures and social classes would think, the latent response, its consequences etc. is it really truly a work (of art?) to be proud of? are your contributions to visual culture valid, near-sighted, or benefiting anyone, and fairly?

 

activist preaching aside, as individuals working in a primarily visual medium, it would be good to consider pushing past merely technical "craft" (as govinda mentioned), and think about underlying theoretical concepts that drive your craft. why does art have to be all about clever visuals? it's been done the world over for thousands of years, in every culture. the "beautiful" is such a traditional concept. post-modernism (which questions the validity of beauty) might be over, but maybe because things are in limbo, it's a good time to revalue what "art" should be considered. whether it makes money or not, or about being laden with so much theory and idiosyncratic language the the artist forgot about making art "look good" and convincing.

 

granted, you don't need a high intake of theory to make art, the cavemen didn't (but it's likely they didn't consider their wall paintings art either- it's more of an artefact than anything else, as an art historian would tell you). "art" in itself is highly bloated with pretension. today, i would rather think of "art" as "communication", because art, whatever the case, has something to communicate, regardless of pretension or area of interest. in our context, as shapers of visual culture (i'm intentionally avoiding the term "designer" - i think its ill defined), we definitely have alot of responsibility on our shoulders. whether its making a beer ad or an oxfam ad, it's bound to have repercussions on someones visual cortex. and yeah, i know client work isn't exactly "liberating" most of the time, but think twice about sending out your final design. and think even more if your own personal work (assuming its video & motiongraphics) is truly art and/or design, or is it merely a product/derivative of a system about capital gain.

Edited by rairai

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Guest Scorch

But then came those final ten minutes. They made me want to claw my eyes out. He talks about how hard it is to do something you love for clients. You know, the eternal compromise of doing commercial work as opposed to the purity of doing things directly from the soul. 'This stuff is 'art'' he says. Pffffftttt!!!!

 

 

46211[/snapback]

 

agreed.

 

"design, art, art, design, creative, blah blah, sell out, blah blah" heard it before, either do it or don't, it's not life or death.

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Guest Sao_Bento
WHERE DEM DOLLAZ AT

47324[/snapback]

Cash Rules Everything Around Me C.R.E.A.M get the money, dolla dolla bill ya'll!

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Guest govinda

Yow, great points rairai.

 

I backed down off my post for a few reasons: for one thing, Gabe Dunne only barely audibly says, as an aside in an hour presentaiton, 'I mean, this stuff is art.' It bothered me that he thought that, but he was definitely not pressing the point. If you watch the vid, he's so humble in general, it's crazy. For another thing, we've been over this ground, and I was just raising it again for no good reason.

 

But one thing I've learned on a hybrid non-technical forum like this is that you almost need to revisit the same Big Questions once in awhile because more recent posters haven't had the same chance to vent as ones who've been around awhile. It's almost not fair for the ones who want to work out the situation for themselves. The natural tendency for a near-founder-member like, say, Igor, is to put up a link to the long 'from Exopolis' thread in answer to someone who brought up the 'art vs. commerce' debate. And that's fine, but I think it's okay just to let people air stuff out and lend half an ear. I don't want to start those things, and I don't want to stop them.

 

If you start shutting people down by saying things like 'hey, we've had this debate before,' you don't get to read cool things like yours or Fred's.

 

For another, I kinda dissed sputnikk and was really sorry.

 

What you say about 'impacting culture' is my favorite definition for a craft that has done well. I've seen it happen a couple of times that someone I know has made something that joins the local or national vocabulary. My favorite art critic is the semi-blowhard Richard Hughes, and his theory doesn't say what art IS, but it says what it DOES: it not only *joins* the vocabulary, it *creates* the vocabulary. So ideas of a society in accelerated motion in the early 20th century was best portrayed by Picabia and his bunch, and they became the way that everyone imagined motion. A culture built around worker socialism was given its vocabulary partly by Rodchenko and his cohort. Hughes is saying that artists have an ear to the tracks and can sense the coming train before others, and what's more they can describe the train. Later when the train shows up, culture uses their description because it was so right on. You see this with Picasso's 'Guenrica' and a million other ways also. So: design joins the culture, art leads it. Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world; visual artists are the judges laying down precedents. That's my simplification.

 

I kind of ignore in that formula that there are artists who only do things that are so sensually fucking cool that they can't NOT be called artists rather than decorators, like Ingres I think. But, then, maybe someone like him is saying something about a society that favored rampant sensualism. Oh my...it's gone all meta.

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Guest nutrition_facts

kaikai.... very concise, nearing perfection.

 

i think general theoretical and practical knowledge in what art (as in "not something you're doing for a client") is about would really help. i mean.... travelling, getting to know different countries and artists.... that puts a lot of stuf into perspective i think.

 

if we look at how the world works today.... the only people with real power to change it are designers. you're not going to get (most) ceo's to be resonable..... but they still need their marketing/advertising teams. :)

Edited by nutrition_facts

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Guest DRNZ
and i consider commercial art just as much art as any other art, except for the fact that it's commercial.  it is for-hire art!  but still art!  the shit motion theory is doing, there can be no question to any of us that it is art.  look at it!  it's beautiful, amazing, and incomprehensible.  who cares if it has a logo at the end... that logo is what funded that art.  it funded the lives of many artists.  we should be thankful of those logos and the fact that we can sell out, because it means we can live as artists!  artists without all the pretension and bullshit that typically comes with the word.

 

now i don't know a lot about art history, but it seems to me that a lot of great "classical" art (let's say the ceiling of the sistine chapel) was commissioned by the church.  perhaps the corporation is the church of today.  the church was certainly the institution with the power and money back then, as is the corporation today.  should we not consider the ceiling of the sistine chapel art because it was commissioned by a larger entity, and not the artist himself?  from what i've read, michelangelo prefered the art of sculpture to painting, and took on the sistine chapel commission in exchange essentially for a massive sculpting commission he had been bugging the pope about for years.  so it could be that michelangelos sistine chapel frescos was just some hack work to pay the bills until the project he really wanted to work on came up.  hey, we all gotta do it sometimes.

46290[/snapback]

No doubt....the Church was THE first Multinat. corporation.....and hack work beats the hell out of no work.........

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Guest jeickholt

I though Milton Glaser hit the nail on the head...

 

Excerpt from:

 

Art is Work : Graphic Design, Interiors, Objects and Illustrations

by Milton Glaser

 

We eliminate the word "ART" and replace it with "WORK" and develop the following descriptions:

 

1. Work that goes beyond its functional intention and moves us in deep and mysterious ways we call GREAT WORK.

 

2. Work that is conceived and executed with elegance and rigor we call GOOD WORK.

 

3. Work that meets its intended need honestly and without pretense we simply call WORK.

 

4. Everything else, the sad shoddy stuff of daily life, can come under the heading BAD WORK.

 

This simple change will eliminate anxiety for thousands of people who worry about whether they are artists or not.

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Guest djkorova
and i consider commercial art just as much art as any other art, except for the fact that it's commercial.  it is for-hire art!  but still art!  the shit motion theory is doing, there can be no question to any of us that it is art.  look at it!  it's beautiful, amazing, and incomprehensible.  who cares if it has a logo at the end... that logo is what funded that art.  it funded the lives of many artists.  we should be thankful of those logos and the fact that we can sell out, because it means we can live as artists!  artists without all the pretension and bullshit that typically comes with the word.

 

now i don't know a lot about art history, but it seems to me that a lot of great "classical" art (let's say the ceiling of the sistine chapel) was commissioned by the church.  perhaps the corporation is the church of today.  the church was certainly the institution with the power and money back then, as is the corporation today.  should we not consider the ceiling of the sistine chapel art because it was commissioned by a larger entity, and not the artist himself?  from what i've read, michelangelo prefered the art of sculpture to painting, and took on the sistine chapel commission in exchange essentially for a massive sculpting commission he had been bugging the pope about for years.  so it could be that michelangelos sistine chapel frescos was just some hack work to pay the bills until the project he really wanted to work on came up.  hey, we all gotta do it sometimes.

46290[/snapback]

 

Yeah i think it was someone on here that said most of the renaissance was funded by the Medici family. And I wouldn't be suprised if they had a few suggestions for some of the artists works. Just like a client like MTV or Nike may let you kinda go wild and do something really unique but may have some ideas on how to do it a bit differently and more to their liking since they are putting up the scrilla.

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Guest nutrition_facts
I though Milton Glaser hit the nail on the head...

 

Excerpt from:

 

Art is Work : Graphic Design, Interiors, Objects and Illustrations

by Milton Glaser

 

We eliminate the word "ART" and replace it with "WORK" and develop the following descriptions:

 

1. Work that goes beyond its functional intention and moves us in deep and mysterious ways we call GREAT WORK.

 

2. Work that is conceived and executed with elegance and rigor we call GOOD WORK.

 

3. Work that meets its intended need honestly and without pretense we simply call WORK.

 

4. Everything else, the sad shoddy stuff of daily life, can come under the heading BAD WORK.

 

This simple change will eliminate anxiety for thousands of people who worry about whether they are artists or not.

51325[/snapback]

 

that he did. :H

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Guest fishface

Well, well, well. What have stumbled into. Here is my take:

 

I would say that (relevent) art has to have an argument. That is, it has to make a statement. It doesn't necessarily have to be clever or even correct, but it should say something and be made with some conviction.

 

John Cage is an artist and not a musician. He composed a song, 4'33", where no music or sound is recorded outside of the recording environment. I believe it was composed for piano, and the pianist (hehe, I said pianist) walks onto the stage, opens the cover to the piano keys and sits down. He sits there for 4min 33sec (thus the title) not playing a thing. Then he closes the cover and walks off stage.

 

You don't have to like it, but it makes a statement. It is about expectation and negative space. It's about the sound of your environment that you dismiss everyday. It is 'the' long, awkward silence.

 

Say what you will about the concept, but make no mistake, it is art. It makes a statement. An argument.

 

If 'you' are not making a statement, but rather you are perfoming the statement mandated by others, does that make you an artist? I would say no. You are a craftsman. That goes for those of the High Renaissance as well. If your argument is compromised by the prospect of money, then it's not really your argument anymore, but rather a more popular one. You are a craftsman. Perhaps a very good one. If you make your argument, and it sells - well then, good for you. You are now a working artist.

 

When Govinda (I think it was, anyway) rencently (a few months ago) made a political piece in response to recent events - that was art. The argument was made without regard (presumably) to outside forces, but rather true to the argument itself. The craftsmanship may or may not have been compromised for various reasons, but the statement was not. Art. When I added more fire to a Domino's Steak Fanatic Pizza endtag at a clients insistance, it was not art. In fact, it hurt a bit. Even if it was the most innovative use of fire and smoke ever (which it was not), it was still not art.

 

Just because you are a genius and you solved the most difficult design problem in the history of the world, it does not elevate you to an artist. Not untill you make an uncompromised argument and someone purchases it and simply attaches their name to your art.

 

Plenty of craftsmen make pretty things to look at. There is many a reason to take pride in this, but it doesn't make it art.

 

thats my take.

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Guest Awesome Swelles

Some people might say that you were defining an artist rather than art. While an artist may make arguments that become infused in the work he produces, if art itself has innate qualities then the artist and his message will become marginalised. So far so dull, but my point is this: if you found a "work of art" today, with no idea of who did it, you could still feasibly call it art, perhaps because of some deep philosophical analysis, but more likely because you took it to an art expert and he quivered slightly before valuing it very highly. More importantly, in respect of your argument, any reading you place upon that work will be your own, and it is possible that the work can sustain many arguments (try looking up the various interpretations of American Gothic). What this means is that the artist and the art can, and some would say should, be separated. Even the artist's argument is just one of many that can be found in his work, and all, so the reader response advocates tell us, are equally valid.

 

Personally, though, I think that trying to define art is almost always a pointless task, and it's usually done either to exclude something ("Monsieur Duchamp that is but a urinal it cannot be art!") or to justify a moral boundary; Helmut Newton's erotic photos are art, Hustler's are porn. Of course, any trip to the photography section of Borders, accompanied by a discreet glance at the heavily dog-eared pages of a Newton tome, will tell you that deconstruction is alive and well.

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Guest Firebetty

I'm just going to add another stupid point to this pointless debate. Even though I used to get all worked up about this, because I too spent an exorbitant amout of money on "ART" school..and felt only people like me should be able to call themselves "artists" I soon got over it.

 

The only universal truth about art; is that Art is relative.

 

One could argue that design IS art, just as much as one could argue that design ISN'T art. It really depends on who's arguing. And who really cares in the end? We all make our paycheck, get to do a job that uses our creativity and many times our blood, sweat and tears, and we can all appreciate what good design is.

 

Marcel Duchamp is my favorite painter, but it was his "readymades" that got me interested enough to even care about his paintings. For me, it's concept (even if the concept is to completely rip someone else off), THEN execution.

 

Just because a computer was used for most of my work, doesn't mean it didn't take time, creativity, and some real genius. I DARE any of you to tell me it's not art.

 

Artist, Designer, Whatever. At least you're not a <you fill in the blank>. And for those of you who disagree with this whole stupid point, you need to stop the self-deprecating, "I wish I was a REAL artist" bullshit and get back to work.

Edited by Firebetty

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Guest SermonOfMockery

totally... i love Met-RX chocolate chunk Protein Plus bars. i'm tipping the scales at a rock-solid 165 these days thanks to those babies.

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