Sculpture Community - Sculpture.net  

Go Back  Sculpture Community - Sculpture.net > Sculpture Roundtable Discussions > Sculpture focus topics
User Name
Password
Home Sculpture Community Photo Gallery ISC Sculpture.org Register FAQ Members List Search New posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #26  
Old 07-08-2006, 04:44 PM
mark pilato mark pilato is offline
Level 8 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: new york
Posts: 223
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Raven- interesting , I don't agree with you that an artist that does a work on war is an opportunist. What is your definition of Opportunist? maybe thats where we stray. To me a opportunist is someone who takes advantage of a situation and to take advantage of war - well thats not so cool. But to take the opportunity to learn more - to educate yourself and others - to take the form as far as you can - finding things along the way - then this is an opportunity well worth taking. but then we are all opportunist every time we sculpt, aren't we? So help me her I still don't understand. Give me some examples from our history? Try Moore. Or Goya- start the sentence - Goya was an opportunist because....Or Moore shows us he is an opportunist because...... But first please give a description of opportunist.
All the best,
Mark
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 07-08-2006, 06:49 PM
robertpulley robertpulley is offline
ISC Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Columbus, Indiana
Posts: 104
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Another thought about trying to tie artists to someone's idea of responsibility:
The Soviet Union tried to put its artists to work making art that glorified the revolution, state heros and the power of the working man. It offered support to those who were responsible in their art making and official condemnation of those who persisted in making "decadent" art. Many of their best artists left the country. Others had to find ways to work unsupported by Soviet system.

Goya's work on war is extraordinary. Gary Burden (I hope I have the correct name) has done a lot of art that addresses the military and violence. But not every artist's talents are appropriate to those kind of messages.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 07-08-2006, 07:21 PM
RCFA-Raven's Avatar
RCFA-Raven RCFA-Raven is offline
Level 7 user
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Missouri
Posts: 146
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mark pilato
To me a opportunist is someone who takes advantage of a situation and to take advantage of war.
All the best,
Mark
I don't see an opportunist as someone that necessarly "takes advantage" of a situation as much as I see them noticing the opportunity and taking it. Not necessarly acutey agressive but you have to have a little to hop at an opportunity presented before you. Basically a broad spectrim deffination.
__________________
http://www.ravencenter.org
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 07-10-2006, 08:58 PM
Max Silver Max Silver is offline
Level 3 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: west Texas
Posts: 48
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

War is as old as humankind. It will never cease. We in the US are a free democracy because of wars. We will lose this gift when we lose the will to defend it. The citizens of North Korea are not free because of war. They will gain their freedom when they war to free themselves.

Artists should comment and opportunize where and when they feel compelled to do so. Would Auguste Rodin's Gates of Hell be a proper visual summary of all wars....... perhaps Picasso's Guernica?
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 07-11-2006, 11:10 AM
WeiMingKai's Avatar
WeiMingKai WeiMingKai is offline
Level 6 user
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New York, New York
Posts: 110
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

what is our responsibility when it comes to Sports?
what is our responsibility when it comes to Love?
what is our responsibility when it comes to Pets?
what is our responsibility when it comes to Housework?
What responsibility do Artists have at all?

IMO Artists bear no special responsibility to anything beyond a choice to excersize thier talents creating artworks or not. If it happens that an artist is inspired to create works which offer political or social commentary so be it, that is what they should do. If your inspiration is to create horrific, offensive, or disgusting Art then have at it (just don't expect the world to react without horror, offense, and disgust to you and your work if you are any good at it). If you are compelled by your innermost being to bring a legion of sock-puppets or a warehouse full of dogs playing poker/velvet elvis/matador or 'Doggie-Elvis-Matadors-Playing-Cards' paintings then godspeed to you.

If you offer up discernable comment about the world through your art be prepared for some people to disagree with what you are 'saying'. That some folks won't approve or agree with the content is no reason to avoid creating it if you are able to withstand the criticism.

An artist requires an inspiration and War is a topic that is sure to stir powerful emotions/ideas in anyone who contemplates its meaning. Small wonder that many artists have channeled thier reactions to war into thier Art. An artist processes thier inspirations and ideas through an internal lens making adjustments, adding emphasis, pairing away the inessential, deciding how the concept of a particular work will mainfest - be it a nebulous platonic abstraction of geometric forms or the gritty immediacy of a hyper-realistically rendered mutilated corpse.

One thing Art can do is communicate powerfully, and the Artist is responsible for how they wield this power. I would hope that Artists would follow thier conscience when using thier power.
Reply With Quote
  #31  
Old 07-11-2006, 10:53 PM
tobias tobias is offline
Level 10 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: canada
Posts: 749
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

I cant possibly imagine any thing more distant from what I do as an artist. I believe that if you want to make a statement on some thing do it with words. I think it is far to easy to distort and difuse a political statement as it is (even when made in plane language on paper) let alone some thing that is suppost to symbolise your view point. If you want to get your view across stand up and say it dont hope that someone will interpret your work the way you ment it to be . This is just an opinion . If you want responcibility act responcibly.
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 07-12-2006, 02:19 AM
Cantab's Avatar
Cantab Cantab is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Cambridge, England
Posts: 440
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Quote:
Originally Posted by WeiMingKai
IMO Artists bear no special responsibility to anything beyond a choice to excersize thier talents creating artworks or not. If it happens that an artist is inspired to create works which offer political or social commentary so be it, that is what they should do. If your inspiration is to create horrific, offensive, or disgusting Art then have at it (just don't expect the world to react without horror, offense, and disgust to you and your work if you are any good at it). If you are compelled by your innermost being to bring a legion of sock-puppets or a warehouse full of dogs playing poker/velvet elvis/matador or 'Doggie-Elvis-Matadors-Playing-Cards' paintings then godspeed to you.
I'm not entirely convinced by this 'it's your choice what you do with your talent' argument, WeiMingKai. I do think there is a difference between painting, say, 'Guernica' and making sock puppets. And the difference for me is to do with the moral perspective we bring to our lives and work. I think the question 'What is our responsibility when it comes to the war?' invites us to think of the consequences for serious art if it is not ethically engaged. I don't regard sock puppets as serious art, so no issue there. I do regard most of the sculptors I know as serious practitioners, though, who decide quite carefully what they do, why they do it and what the values that underpin their work are. This is why the question of this thread is important, even if sculptors decide not to do political work.
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 07-12-2006, 05:40 PM
WeiMingKai's Avatar
WeiMingKai WeiMingKai is offline
Level 6 user
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New York, New York
Posts: 110
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Tobias: Here is a link to an image, one that I think makes a political statement that is not diffuse or ambiguous to anyone from my cultural background. This image conveys an idea/message with greater efficiency and power than having to read a description of it or an explanation of its cultural referents. The potency of imagery versus verbiage is a well accepted belief in our culture (hence the old saying 'a picture is worth a thousand words' and the domination of media by advertising).
http://www.ruppsworld.com/ProdImages...e_bush_big.jpg


Cantab: I am trying to find where what you say disagrees with anything I've said and I don't see any - if I've missed it help me out here.

Sock-Puppets are not serious and you would drop them from this discussion - I get it. (There goes my plans to announce my new work 'Guernica 2: Sock-Puppet Boogaloo')

Lots of discussion can be had about Ethics, Seriousness, Sculpture, and War but the existance of any dependancy or predication of one atop the other seems strangely left out of the discussion - which to me opens the door to my 'it's your choice what you do' line.

Are we going to assert something determinant like:

Serious Artists have a responsibility to be ethically engaged and War is both serious and laden with ethical significance.

do we reformulate that into:

Artists are responsible for engaging the war through thier work.

which i would disagree with saying an Artists only reponsibility is to create, the content and focus of that work is free from any obligation. If seriousness is to be defined as limited to ethically engaged works, then not all works will be serious. Simply being an Artist does not entail anything beyond creating work (in any medium) - everything beyond creating work is an act of personal conscience/choice - to be serious, to be ethically engaged, to confront war, to include these elements in the work, or to refrain from doing any of these things yet still produce work, that's an artist.

Is a non-representational artist whose work gives no indication that it expresses ethics of any kind a serious artist?

Is a graphic artist who depicts Bush as a Vampire serious?
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 07-12-2006, 10:29 PM
obseq's Avatar
obseq obseq is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,700
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cantab
I'm not entirely convinced by this 'it's your choice what you do with your talent' argument, WeiMingKai. I do think there is a difference between painting, say, 'Guernica' and making sock puppets. And the difference for me is to do with the moral perspective we bring to our lives and work. I think the question 'What is our responsibility when it comes to the war?' invites us to think of the consequences for serious art if it is not ethically engaged. I don't regard sock puppets as serious art, so no issue there. I do regard most of the sculptors I know as serious practitioners, though, who decide quite carefully what they do, why they do it and what the values that underpin their work are. This is why the question of this thread is important, even if sculptors decide not to do political work.
Cantab,

Not everyone is interested in placing purely subjective artistic endeavors against any from of a moral/ethical/sociopolitical rubric. The "consequences" of art that is free of "ethical engagement," as you note, do not exist in any objective consideration whatsoever.

It is far too reductive to assert that only a serious consideration of "moral perspective" and our artistic 'responsibility' therein is an effective and accuate marker of 'worthy' art.

What you speak of is solely what you value and that's fine--
But you don't need me to tell you that.

Last edited by obseq : 07-13-2006 at 06:06 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 07-13-2006, 05:44 AM
Cantab's Avatar
Cantab Cantab is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Cambridge, England
Posts: 440
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Hi WeiMingKai. If the choice is between “Serious Artists have a responsibility to be ethically engaged and War is both serious and laden with ethical significance.” and “If your inspiration is to create horrific, offensive, or disgusting Art then have at it (just don't expect the world to react without horror, offense, and disgust to you and your work if you are any good at it). If you are compelled by your innermost being to bring a legion of sock-puppets or a warehouse full of dogs playing poker/velvet elvis/matador or 'Doggie-Elvis-Matadors-Playing-Cards' paintings then godspeed to you.”, then I’ll go for the former. I don’t think the issue is whether artists want to produce war art or not, as if its just, well, an act of personal choice. I feel that many artists, like Henry Moore and Picasso, have seen the production of war art as acts of artistic integrity. They have formed their idea of the artist in a noble mould, and that’s what drives them to such work. They don’t get up in the morning and ask themselves ‘Oh, what will I make today, then. A nice glove puppet, I think, or maybe something disgusting’. Their work is an ongoing exploration of fundamental human questions within the demands of an artistic discipline, and that has GOT to lead you eventually to dealing with war. So, I am expecting many serious British and American artists to eventually get round to dealing with this (Iraq). Certainly the writers are already doing so. No offence, though. I personally see art as a kind of religious thing (read Don Cupitt on this). My ISC registration has the strap line ‘Pietra viva’, a phrase I picked up learning to sculpt in stone in Carrara, Italy. It means ‘living stone’. For the Carrarese sculptors the stone is sacred, and the artists duty to it equally sacred. Marble starts out as living organisms, they die, they are turned to stone, and brought to life again by the sculptor. It is to this process of life and death (and life again) that we commit ourselves. If the stone sculptor ends up completing a work on Iraq, or war, it is doubly meaningful as a result. The stone and the artist’s duty to it are echoed in the subject – it’s a story of life and death.
By the way, I like your idea of the artist's 'internal lens' - this means a lot, and may account for a lot that I say here.....
Reply With Quote
  #36  
Old 07-13-2006, 08:43 AM
mark pilato mark pilato is offline
Level 8 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: new york
Posts: 223
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Cantab, Pietra viva, I agree with all that you wrote. to me first and formost is artistic integrity.
Mark
http://www.pilatostudios.com/pages/home.html
Reply With Quote
  #37  
Old 07-13-2006, 08:49 AM
tobias tobias is offline
Level 10 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: canada
Posts: 749
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

WeiMingKai this image does have some potency to it but it is still watered down and subject to interpertation. A vampire depending on who you talk to draws its life force from a victum does this mean that bush is doing this to america or the statue of liberty. Why is bush so big does the artist mean to suggest that he is such a huge force that he can destroy this monument with his bare hands or teeth. Is this an economic reference or social. If i say bush is bleeding america dry this is a common economic reference not social. I think that most of this would be cleared up if he just told us what he was thinking. I know he doesnt like bush or he doesnt like what bush is doing or he thinks bush is a vampire or he thinks bush is a very powerful force or....
Reply With Quote
  #38  
Old 07-13-2006, 08:59 AM
mark pilato mark pilato is offline
Level 8 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: new york
Posts: 223
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

I think a sculpture of Liberty would do much beter, one sculpted today with a referense on this war. I can see her in my mind and she is still strong but there is someting else. What a trip that would be, to find Liberty in this day and age. Way to much work for me, the ups and downs, the reserch... what the hell, i will give it a go.
all the best,
Mark
http://www.pilatostudios.com/pages/home.html
Reply With Quote
  #39  
Old 07-13-2006, 11:16 AM
WeiMingKai's Avatar
WeiMingKai WeiMingKai is offline
Level 6 user
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New York, New York
Posts: 110
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Tobias: I concede that imagery is subject to interpretation of the viewer and that process determines all understanding and comprehension of the images significance. It follows inevitably that each individual who engages in image interpretation has a unique perspective and capacity born of thier life experiences (education, beliefs, attitudes) and so if any two individuals are asked to interpret an image there will be differences in what they say. This is true for all imagery and is sometimes specifically sought by artists looking to elicit a reaction in those who observe thier work.

That image appeared on the cover of 10/20/2004 Village Voice with the caption 'Sucking Democracy Dry' in the lower L corner. Inside the paper were 2 articles - neither were specifically about Vampires, Statues, Giants, or Blood (one was about a gay marriage ban support rally in DC and the other about the 2004 election). Clearly the viewers were invited to interpret the imagery on the cover, and the editors chose the cover art and caption as being complimentary to each other (as is commonly done with just about every topic about anything - from childrens stories to car ads to religious imagery) viewers are encouraged to interpret images not as a poor 'watered down' substitute for specific verbal articulation but as an evocative stimulation of viewer imagination. Effective imagery/art tends to 'hit the communicative mark' more often than not - as is the case with the Bush image - evoking a possibly wide range of interpretations as was definitely intended.

I did find your interpretation of the image as saying 'Bush is a giant who can destroy monuments with his teeth' interestingly different from mine but you went on to generally hit some other key points of what the image says to me (and to you, and to others probably). The thing is it is ok and desireable for viewers to have multiple levels of inerpretation/appreciation/meaning for a visual piece - the more facets they can 'see' the better and more compelling the image becomes.

So I was wrong about ambiguity and imagery but we disagree apparently on if that is 'good' or 'bad'.

Last edited by WeiMingKai : 07-13-2006 at 11:23 AM. Reason: er its was 'Sucking' not 'Draining'
Reply With Quote
  #40  
Old 07-13-2006, 06:13 PM
tobias tobias is offline
Level 10 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: canada
Posts: 749
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

WeiMingKai I just wanted to point out that it is dificult to make a clear statement with an image. Which I think should take any responcibility for interpertation away from the artist. There for it is not really a matter of responcibility but choice. If I were to feel so strongly about something that i felt responcible to make a statement about it I would surely not want that statement misread. So i dont want to have any thing to do with this in art. I am sure you can tell I have strong beliefs and i choose to let people know them in no uncertain terms.
Reply With Quote
  #41  
Old 07-13-2006, 08:20 PM
mark pilato mark pilato is offline
Level 8 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: new york
Posts: 223
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

I think art should always be looked at with a new eye. When i am done a sculpture and it is placed in a public space I am always siked to here what others have to say. They have no idea who I am so i can just sit and listen. Sometimes they see it as I see it, and sometimes they show me something i did not know. If they say it's crap then, oh well. If you are honest then who cares if some people miss the point. If I am always concerned about what others will say I will never find the way. Its only my insecurity that holds me back. . But if i let all that go....
all the best ,
Mark
http://www.pilatostudios.com/pages/home.html

Last edited by mark pilato : 07-13-2006 at 08:32 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #42  
Old 07-16-2006, 09:29 AM
Blake's Avatar
Blake Blake is offline
ISC Professional Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Monaco
Posts: 668
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

As artists I feel that we have a duty to speak where we can, expressing in images as much of, and as close to an objective truth as is possible, for we can offer a perspective on human nature as well as the nature of our society. Although it is difficult to make a clear statement with an image the artist can only be held responsible for his intented message, the audience must bear a responsibility towards their interpretation.

Below is the story of a sculpture that was inspired by war, repression and freedom.

"1989: Emerging Continents"
This sculpture expresses compassion and solidarity for victims of an oppressive government in China in the portrait of a young oriental man, and represents liberation and hope in an African man, emerging from a marble block.

The inspiration for this project came in June of 1989, as the Chinese government met the pro-democracy movement with repressive action in Tiananmen Square. This brutal silencing of a student congregation became the spark that was to initiate this political statement in marble. The image that haunted me was a head bowed in surrender and submission, a young Chinese student buried to the neck in political turmoil.

Later that year, I travelled to Berlin arriving on the morning of the eleventh of November to witness the collapse of the wall. History was being made and I felt that I had a responsibility to mark itsí passage. I spent the second day there trying to obtain a piece of the Wall as a symbol of Communist repression.

I left Berlin inspired with ideas and images of revolution, freedom, and victory, the triumph of a people over a repressive government. These images mixed in my imagination with those of subjugation and failure as was experienced in Beijing, and brought me to visualize one of the dichotomies of political reality; revolution is treason for those who are being disposed. I would develop this theme in my search for expression, and return to the image of surrender and victory beside each other, freedom and repression back to back.

Then political upheaval again rocked the world, the apartheid government in South Africa released Nelson Mandela, and with this news came my focus, the image of a native African rising in triumph from the restrictions of a political power, emerging from the bonds of stone. His raised hand clutches a piece of that Wall, representing those political injustices that he survives, and at his back, the Chinese student, head bowed in submission sinking into the depths of repression.

Publicly displayed, this sculpture has evoked conflicting emotions; once a swastika was pencilled on the marble. It's significance can be understood in many different ways, however, after I had washed off the graffiti, I thought that perhaps I had silenced a voice and the work was less complete as a result. At another time, the work was subject to physical attack and the face of the African shows the marks of some twenty blows that struck and chipped the surface of the portrait. Rather than thinking of the sculpture as now being flawed, I wished to view this disfigurement as in some way confirming the essence of the democratic process: A voice for all who care to speak.

The sculpture was created in 1990 in marble thanks to a friend and patron Mr. Ted Field to whom I owe my most sincere gratitude for his trust and his belief in my work.

Blake
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	1989-Side-1-Web.jpg
Views:	155
Size:	12.1 KB
ID:	3484  Click image for larger version

Name:	1989-Detail--copy-Web-.jpg
Views:	148
Size:	10.7 KB
ID:	3485  Click image for larger version

Name:	1989-Louis-4Web-.jpg
Views:	145
Size:	20.2 KB
ID:	3486  
__________________
Art that does not attempt the impossible is not performing its function. W.B. Yeats
www.facebook.com/blakesculpture
www.blakesculpture.com
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 07-16-2006, 03:21 PM
mark pilato mark pilato is offline
Level 8 user
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: new york
Posts: 223
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Hi Blake, great sculpture, congratulations, I only wish I could see it in person. Like Michelangelo's slaves I want to tuch them I look forward to seeing more of your work.
all the best,
Mark
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 07-17-2006, 07:01 AM
Blake's Avatar
Blake Blake is offline
ISC Professional Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Monaco
Posts: 668
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Mark Thank you for your comments

The responsibility of the artist

I thought that I would give this example of the type of political statement that we as artists can make about socio-political issues, and which I believe remains our responsibility to make.
My idea of the artistsí responsibility drives me towards ethically and moral engagement with society. For we as artists can offer a distinct perspective on human nature and in the role as commentator or perhaps critic. However, the artist in this position acts as a form of visual journalist, and must take the time to research and contemplate the issues being presented.
The above sculpture is an example of what I feel is our responsibility when it comes to war.
Although it is difficult to make a clear statement with an image the artist can only be held responsible for his intended message, the audience must bear a responsibility towards their interpretation.
__________________
Art that does not attempt the impossible is not performing its function. W.B. Yeats
www.facebook.com/blakesculpture
www.blakesculpture.com
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 07-17-2006, 09:52 AM
sculptor's Avatar
sculptor sculptor is offline
Level 10 user
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: IOWA
Posts: 1,493
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

responsibility
generally, i'm rather apathetic---(warsux people shouldn't do it...etc.)

a few years ago, I was invited to offer a macquette for a postmortem medal of honor winner

honesty forms a basis, and I came up with an heroic(8') hero--weapon slung, carrying his helmet, marching happily away from battle

attached at the ankles was his mutilated corpse, who'se outstreatched arms-hands were touching the 12 ft legend Shadow cast on the wall behind the hero.

I thought it told the story well, with text concerning the young mans life and heroism and death and his family's thoughts

----
treat all with compassion and integrity and maybe the killing stops?
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 07-17-2006, 12:01 PM
Duck Duck is offline
Level 10 user
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 384
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blake
As artists I feel that we have a duty to speak where we can, expressing in images as much of, and as close to an objective truth as is possible, for we can offer a perspective on human nature as well as the nature of our society. Although it is difficult to make a clear statement with an image the artist can only be held responsible for his intented message, the audience must bear a responsibility towards their interpretation.

Below is the story of a sculpture that was inspired by war, repression and freedom.

"1989: Emerging Continents"
This sculpture expresses compassion and solidarity for victims of an oppressive government in China in the portrait of a young oriental man, and represents liberation and hope in an African man, emerging from a marble block.

The inspiration for this project came in June of 1989, as the Chinese government met the pro-democracy movement with repressive action in Tiananmen Square. This brutal silencing of a student congregation became the spark that was to initiate this political statement in marble. The image that haunted me was a head bowed in surrender and submission, a young Chinese student buried to the neck in political turmoil.

Later that year, I travelled to Berlin arriving on the morning of the eleventh of November to witness the collapse of the wall. History was being made and I felt that I had a responsibility to mark itsí passage. I spent the second day there trying to obtain a piece of the Wall as a symbol of Communist repression.

I left Berlin inspired with ideas and images of revolution, freedom, and victory, the triumph of a people over a repressive government. These images mixed in my imagination with those of subjugation and failure as was experienced in Beijing, and brought me to visualize one of the dichotomies of political reality; revolution is treason for those who are being disposed. I would develop this theme in my search for expression, and return to the image of surrender and victory beside each other, freedom and repression back to back.

Then political upheaval again rocked the world, the apartheid government in South Africa released Nelson Mandela, and with this news came my focus, the image of a native African rising in triumph from the restrictions of a political power, emerging from the bonds of stone. His raised hand clutches a piece of that Wall, representing those political injustices that he survives, and at his back, the Chinese student, head bowed in submission sinking into the depths of repression.

Publicly displayed, this sculpture has evoked conflicting emotions; once a swastika was pencilled on the marble. It's significance can be understood in many different ways, however, after I had washed off the graffiti, I thought that perhaps I had silenced a voice and the work was less complete as a result. At another time, the work was subject to physical attack and the face of the African shows the marks of some twenty blows that struck and chipped the surface of the portrait. Rather than thinking of the sculpture as now being flawed, I wished to view this disfigurement as in some way confirming the essence of the democratic process: A voice for all who care to speak.

The sculpture was created in 1990 in marble thanks to a friend and patron Mr. Ted Field to whom I owe my most sincere gratitude for his trust and his belief in my work.

Blake

That your statue remains at all..

well, I gotta say, they are either a very graceful people or have one hell of a sense of humor.
Reply With Quote
  #47  
Old 07-17-2006, 04:09 PM
Blake's Avatar
Blake Blake is offline
ISC Professional Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Monaco
Posts: 668
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Dear Duck
I am pleased that the work has evoked a reaction that is the point of the exercise.
Your point remains unclear.
Perhaps this is all too serious for you, is decoration more the purpose of your work? Even with a good sense of humour, three metric tonnes of marble will be difficult to erase, remove or ignore.

Although it is difficult to make a clear statement with an image the artist is responsible for his intended message, the audience must bear a responsibility towards their individual interpretation.

Sculptor
I think you told the story very well, any photos of the piece?
Treat all with compassion and integrity yet I doubt the killing will ever stop, it is not in our nature.
Blake
__________________
Art that does not attempt the impossible is not performing its function. W.B. Yeats
www.facebook.com/blakesculpture
www.blakesculpture.com
Reply With Quote
  #48  
Old 07-19-2006, 01:14 PM
Duck Duck is offline
Level 10 user
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 384
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Clearly Iím new to the art world and need to learn a lot, my goal is to create a decent sculptures within the next few yrs., along the way I hope to understand some of the Ďbusinessí aspects of art as well. Will someone please break these two questions down so us newbeez might understand.
Thanks,
Lawrence Duckworth

#1 Why would anyone commission a Canadian school boy to try and illustrate the feelings and sufferings of an oppressed people?

#2 How could anyone walk by Blaks statue and not laugh and say loudly, "what a bunch of bullshit"?
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 07-19-2006, 02:18 PM
deborah4923 deborah4923 is offline
Level 2 user
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Oakland California
Posts: 15
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

I just looked at Blake's website and Duck's homepage, which make Duck's "comments" about Blake's work even harder to understand. Also Duck's comments constitute the first time I have ever seen any on this site that weren't either encouraging or constructive (and usually both). Why are you being so mean-spirited, Duck? Do you have anything worthwhile to say? Why don't you tell us what you mean by "decent sculptures"? Obviously, what you've seen here is not what you intend to do when you break into the art world. Enlighten us.
Reply With Quote
  #50  
Old 07-19-2006, 04:44 PM
JasonGillespie's Avatar
JasonGillespie JasonGillespie is offline
Level 10 user
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: NYC
Posts: 429
Re: what is our responsibility when it comes to the war?

Duck,

In response to your questions:


Quote:
#1 Why would anyone commission a Canadian school boy to try and illustrate the feelings and sufferings of an oppressed people?

#2 How could anyone walk by Blaks statue and not laugh and say loudly, "what a bunch of bullshit"?
I will address your second question first....Your 'newness' to the art world may in part account for your lack of discernment in regard to Blake's works and your characterization of his work as "a bunch of bullshit" makes that possibility near certain. Besides being rude, it is the sort of unsophistocated commentary that is usually associated with those that don't understand art. Given your own self-confessed inexperience with the larger world of art, might you not accept that the subtle qualites of Blake's sculpture(and possibly many others) are, at the moment at least, beyond your grasp?

The meaning of a piece of art is not always the most obvious of its qualities. Just as in literature, metaphors and symbolism abound and a superficial reading can leave a viewer with less than the whole story. Art demands interaction and not just passivity. This interaction is one of the great things about art. The viewer can't just walk up and turn it on like a TV where the viewer is spoon fed the meaning of things.......art has to be dealt with mentally as well as visually. A person who brings nothing to the experience of looking at artwork may take nothing away.

I am almost positve most of those here would not walk by Blake's sculpture and think as you do. That should make you wonder what you are missing.


As to your first question.....the obvious answer is that no matter where we are from, we are all human and can feel empathy for others. (Whether we chose to or not is another story) Beyond that, it is probably sufficient to say that Blake, as an accomplished sculptor, is more than capable of dealing with issues of this nature. Rather than question his credentials, I would see what might be learned from his work....If your goal is, as you stated, "to create a decent sculptures within the next few yrs."

Last edited by JasonGillespie : 07-19-2006 at 05:35 PM.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


Sculpture Community, Sculpture.net
International Sculpture Center, Sculpture.org
vBulletin, Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Russ RuBert