Fine Art: Construction

by charlottewootten

This week I was given my Fine Art brief and we were given the starting point ‘Construction’. Before having initial ideas, I decided to research the art movement Constructivism, as the constructivists created a lot of 3D sculptures.

Aleksandr Rodchenko. Spatial Construction no. 12. c. 1920

Aleksandr Rodchenko. Spatial Construction no. 12. c. 1920

http://www.moma.org/collection/browse_results.php?object_id=81043

A Constructivist piece I was particularly interested in was Aleksander’s Rodchenko’s ‘Spatial Construction no.12’. It reminded me of planet’s orbits in space because of the numerous circles and I think that space could be interpreted as construction.

After researching the constructivists, I looked at Damian Ortega’s ‘cosmic thing’, 2002.

Damian Ortega, ‘Cosmic Thing’, 2002.

http://www.influx.co.uk/wordpress/blog/damian-ortegas-cosmic-thing/#sthash.mKRgoWVz.dpbs

I really liked this installation of an ‘exploded’ VW Beetle, as it allows the audience to see the car in various and unusual ways. It also reminds us about the complexity of man-made designs. The title ‘cosmic thing’, also suggests that Ortega is hinting that all man-made objects originated from the cosmos; this would also link the man-made object with the cosmos, as both are complex.

Both pieces of research helped influence my initial ideas. I thought about how space is a complex construction of stars, planets, galaxies, etc. and in turn Earth is a construction of events in space such as supernovas, which spread out materials into space to construct new planets and life.

My initial 3D response.

My initial 3D response.

To start my ideas, I created a smaller version of what my installation would look like. I used transparent string to hang metal paper fasteners which would represent the stars in the galaxy, which construct the universe and also life. I liked how this set on a white background creates shadows and to develop this idea further, I would experiment with lights and also hang the ‘stars’ in a constellation shape to create a mystical feel.

I then began developing my ideas with 2D experiments. This began with a simple ink drawing which I accidently spilled diluted acrylics over. I really liked this ‘milky way’ effect as I thought it looked quite mystical and peaceful. I liked the mood of this and also the added texture of the chalk dust which emphasised the space look.

Ink, diluted acrylics and chalk dust.

Ink, diluted acrylics and chalk dust.

I then experimented with texture and colour, by using acrylic on acetate. I really liked the fiery look as it reminded me of the sun, which is a major part of the construction of our solar system. However, I wasn’t sure whether this portrayed the correct mood; I wanted my piece to be mystical.

Acrylic on acetate.

Acrylic on acetate.

I liked the depth layering acetate on black created so I continued to experiment with this material. I also wanted to portray the connection between us and the universe. So I used a marker pen to draw an astronaut onto acetate and layer this over a chalk pastel drawing. Although I like the contrast between the bold, graphical marker pen and the soft pastel background and how it shows our interest with the universe, I wanted to show a deeper connection between the cosmos and ourselves.

Marker pen, acetate, chalk pastels and black card.

Marker pen, acetate, chalk pastels and black card.

Finally, I found a link which would help portray the link between us and the cosmos. A lot of objects in the universe are of a circular shape, such as stars, planets, orbits etc. I decided to show the link between us and the universe by using the human eye in my piece. I feel that the intricate details in the eye relates well with the complexity of the universe.

My Fine Art final piece.  Chalk pastel on black card.

My Fine Art final piece.
Chalk pastel on black card.

I decided to use chalk pastel in my final piece as I liked the mystical, relaxed feel it created. The blended colours also create a soft look and the human eye in the centre really does blend into the landscape. I’m really happy with the effect created, as it looks surreal but also has a very real meaning behind it; space is a very complex construction which in turn contributed to the construction of life on Earth. The pupil in the centre could also represent a black hole found in the centre of galaxies, linking our life with space also as the pupil is in the centre of our eyes. Furthermore, black holes are also a source of destruction showing the circle of life; without destruction or ‘deconstruction’ in the universe, we would not have been constructed.

To develop my piece further, I would experiment with texture and maybe different materials to see how this would effect the mood.

I have learnt this week that before completing a final piece, a lot of experimentation should be completed as this helps develop your ideas and to improve your initial plans.

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