Recently in Artist Responses Category

Pipilotti Rist -Kat

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Pipilotti Rist is a very interesting artist, much like most all of the artists we have seen this semester. Most of her art was very straight forward and it is easy to understand her point. An example of this was the piece where she smeared her face all over that type of glass, rubbing her makeup off and all over the glass. To me, it portrayed how difficult it is to overcome the societal stigmas there are for men and women (obviously she specifically focuses on the stereotypes on women). As she struggles to smear her makeup off, I can see that it is really uncomfortable, much like it would be if she had to break out of the norm and break free of stereotype.
On the other hand, she does some work that is semi-difficult to understand like her piece I'm Not a Girl That Misses Much. It was interesting to me that she says "girl" instead of "woman". Along with that, she changes her voice to sound high-pitch and almost child or girl like. I did not understand the aspect of the video that showed her chest exposed... it did not seem to match the girl like theme she originally had. However, maybe that was her point. Has has moments of abstractness and of clear messages. I enjoyed learning about Rist.

Paul Pfeiffer

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I really like Paul's work because I thought it connected the most to the class itself within it's media aspects. I like that he took away some of the athletes bodies, or the basketball to really outline the significance of the sport or the player to really define the movements and how incredible they really are. I really like his intent because he is also trying to illustrate what we have made the sports world.. which is essentially an advertising campaign if you take the celebrity out. I like how it asks the question of whether or not we create the world of sports, or if it creates us and I really think it creates us with all of its hype and advertising, as if it matters. My favorite thing he did was getting rid of the basketball because than I could really focus on the complex movements of the basketball player and I could really what he was doing with each body part and how out of the ordinary the player was.

Paul Pfeiffer

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For me, I had a different impression of Mr. Pfeiffer's works than the conclusions we arrived at in class while discussing his works. Keeping in mind his third piece titled "Morning After the Deluge" as well as his comments on the second piece regarding the process in which he made "The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse" and "The Long Count," I was given a more contemplatively artistic, meditative impression as a motif of his work. I felt that that was a little bit overshadowed by the overarching biblical theme (which is indeed prominent and important, but maybe a little overemphasized considering his Amityville Horror piece as well as his later works tend to deviate from that theme.) His remarks regarding the editing process of his Horsemen of the "Apocalypse piece portrayed a relaxing, meditative process that may not be present in the piece, but overt in The Morning After the Deluge" and I felt that accordingly. His work is clever, insightful, and snide all at the same time, and that is something I aspire to do with my work.

Paul Pfeiffer

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I thought the re-created house from Amityville Horror was very interesting and creative. All the details he put into creating this house were amazing. I liked how the piece was not just out for everyone to see, but how they had to look through a hole to see it from a different perspective. The sport projects remind me of the artist who took away pieces from video games, but Pfeiffer has a different goal to why he does it, he is not trying to make have a theme of "failure or loosing," but rather having the viewers look at sports and their technique in a different way. The last piece that was shown was with the sunset and sun rising and I found that one very beautiful. I like how he says you need to be patient to view the whole piece to understand what is going on. I know when I am at an art museum, I tend to look at a piece of art then keep walking instead of fully understanding what is going on. After viewing this presentation of Paul Pfeiffer, I will now be patient and really take time to view art. I definitely believe his work is considered art and I would love to learn how to use some of his techniques in my work!

Bas Jan Ader

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There was a beautiful humanity to his silent films. Falling... is something that is highly metaphoric. The videos revealed this giving into the force of gravity. Since he made the conscious choice to fall on purpose, it was this willingness to fall into the strongest natural force we know. His piece, "too sad to tell you" I don't actually remember if that was the exact title, but the placement of that piece within these pieces about falling... it altered the metaphor from the force of gravity to the more common metaphor of emotional collapse and took the conflict to the internal. I think that was something beautiful about the piece. There was a clear metaphor, both external and internal and both conflicts were represented in each other. Like... the internal conflict was shown through the external and the external conflict was shown internally, so they just built off each other. Yeah?
The thing I really enjoyed about Bas Jan Ader was the discussion he stimulated in the classroom about the necessity of an audience and what it means to perform and be performative. There was this blatant honesty in his work... but... it was a performance, and we knew it was a performance... and it was filmed... which takes us away from the performance even one more layer... I DON'T EVEN--

Harrell Fletcher

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I really liked Harrell Fletchers work because he took it for exactly what it was. He didn't distort any colors, take some object and distort and didn't make people act like people that they weren't and I really appreciate simple and thoughtful art like that. The works that we viewed also seemed pretty modern, which I really enjoyed. It was a nice change of pace to see an artist make his audience the canvas, essentially. I really liked the first one we watched, seeing everyone with all the scars, and I thought it was really cool that he didn't show their faces and left it up to us, and their stories to put a face and a personality (stereotype) to the scar. I think that was his intent for the piece and I think the theme behind it is that no matter who we are, what we do, and what we come from we all have a scar to tell a story with. As for changes to that piece, I think I might have done a quick slide show of the faces of the people that were part of it so than we could have a better idea of what kind of people that were telling stories, whether they were all different, or all the same.

Harrell Fletcher -Kat

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Harrell Fletcher's work is meant to get us thinking. The first piece we were shown was If It Wasn't Me It Would Be You. This was the piece Harrell did where it showed scene by scene all these people with scars, big and small, and had them talk about how they got them without showing the person's face; only the scar. The stories ranged from surgeries and accidents, to fights and drug usage. This was definitely my favorite out of the three pieces shown. I feel that there is a message in this piece of art somehow conveying that we judge based on appearance and that we should look beyond that.
The next piece was called Hello Friend and showed Harrell picking things up from off of the ground in a city. I like that he just used the all natural sounds of the city streets etc., however, I feel that it would have been more affective had he used a sound track that fit the theme he wanted to express. At times the endless repetitive scenes of the same thing happening got a little dry. I liked what someone said in class, "One man's trash is another man's treasure." I think that it is a significant play on this phrase, especially because it sure looks like his just picks up what ever he sees and cradles it in his hand as if it is something special.
The next piece was the one called Babies. This one was probably my least favorite. This is only because I could not detect any prominent themes or any strong messages. At this point I really noticed that Fletcher has a very distinct artistic style. He seems to be drawn to the repetitive collage video style. I also heard from in class that he likes to talk to strangers and incorporate them into his videos. In Babies he used young children all around the same age and all in strollers. He also used babies of all different shapes and sizes as well as color, race and ethnicity. There could be a message in that, however, the video left a little too much to one's own imagination. In my opinion.

Harrell Fletcher

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I really enjoyed watching Harrell Fletcher's videos. The video Babies was one of my favorites because I love kids! I feel that the babies could have done more to make the video more interesting like, "talk", laugh, or cry. I didn't really like the video Hello Friend because I found it boring, and it could have used different sound to make the suspense of what the object would be in the hand greater. I did like how someone in class said that it is kind of like "one man's trash, is another man's treasure." The If it Wasn't Me it Would be You video was very interesting because I love the idea of not seeing their faces when they tell their stories. It makes it a lot easier for the viewers to relate and the storyteller does not need to feel embarrassed. In the end, I really liked Harrell Fletcher's art work and the way he includes the viewers into his pieces. For me, it is definitely a new way to look at art!

Jenny Holzer

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Jenny Holzer was extremely intriguing to me because from a personal point of view I really think words themselves can be the most beautiful form of art because you can connect and apply it to your own life, and things you really care about. My favorite piece of hers was " YOU ARE MY OWN" projection (can't remember where it was actually projected?) I think the goal behind it was the get the audience to think of, who and what is their own, that may be someone or an object that they love, really care about, enough to call their own. Something that has made a big enough impact on their lives to consider it something as big as themselves. I really liked the way she presented it, in the big font, all caps, it suggests that whatever the truism makes you feel, don't deny those emotions. I love the way it made a reflection on the lake, and the scenery behind it. There is so much more for the audience to view aside from the truism itself, and I think many people might miss that.
And YES, I now follow her on twitter.

Jenny Holzer -Kat

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Jenny Holzer was a very interesting woman to learn about. It was interesting to see the way she used art to carry her message to the viewers. I actually think it would have been extremely creative had she used more art in the deliverance of her "Truisms". The LED lights were very cool and I think brought a really modern and pertinent aspect to her words. Many of the artists we have seen use very historic and/or "older" style of presenting their work. There is something to be said when a piece of art can speak to the modern-day person. History definitely matters, but what matters most is the here and now. People living today better identify with art depicting the world we live in now, rather than the world of the past that we have not lived in. One is not better than the other; there are just equal pros and cons. One thing that bothered me a bit was the fact that she uses Twitter. It is extremely good at projecting an idea or thought to hundreds if not thousands of people. However, I think that something like Twitter and Facebook should be left as a network for floosy and whimsical entertainment. It is not a serious environment: therefore her work cannot be taken seriously. Overall, Jenny's work is new-age and inspirational. She was presented well.