Posts Tagged ‘art’

  • Perceivings: Depth perception

    Nov 30, 18 • ndemarino • 5enses, Alan Dean Foster's PerceivingsNo CommentsRead More »

    By Alan Dean Foster I never tire of looking at art. Even bad art can be instructive, by showing that you can do better than those who are making millions hauling scrap from yards and calling it art. (What really differentiates so much modern “art” from what you see jumbled together at your neighbor’s yard sale?) But sometimes, it’s just as entertaining and enlightening to look at people looking at art. I don’t mean folks muttering fraught pseudo-intellectual claptrap while gawking at a toilet installed in a bare white museum room. I’m referring to art that is, or was, seriously controversial. Unsettling, even, to its audience. The 20th, let alone the 21st, century did not invent disturbing art. Work that was truly groundbreaking likely goes back to some scribe surreptitiously scribbling something outrageous on the walls of the king’s new bedchamber, and then ducking out before it was discovered so he wouldn’t lose his head. I just got back from Paris (I always wanted to be able to say that). Naturally I spent endless hours, accompanied by increasingly sore feet, exploring the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay and the Luxembourg museum, and others. I feasted upon works famous and less so, encountering the expected and the unfamiliar. It was while viewing the collection of the much smaller but still notable Petit Palais that I found myself sufficiently intrigued to spend

  • Nostalgia or art?: A picture’s worth, revisited

    Dec 1, 17 • ndemarino • 5enses, Alan Dean Foster's PerceivingsNo CommentsRead More »

    By Alan Dean Foster “Art is in the eye of the beholder.” The first known mention of this common aphorism is from the 3rd century Greek, and nothing much has changed regarding what is “art” since then. Opinions rage on. Is a boulder placed over a ditch “art”? The L.A. County Museum of Art seems to think so. Is a cartoon balloon animal blown up to Green Giant size art? Some believe it makes Jeff Koons — and others who execute likewise — artists. For that matter, is the rendering of the Green Giant on cans of vegetables “art”? Here’s where it gets interesting. Of the enormous, indeed unquantifiable, amount of art produced over the last few centuries originally for purposes of advertising, what can be considered art and what is simply junk? While a small quantity of such material was considered art (or at least containing some artistic merit) when it was originally produced, how does the vast volume of such endeavors hold up today? One only has to drop in on PBS’s highly entertaining and informative program “Antiques Roadshow” to find out. Substantial valuations are proposed for everything from travel posters to General Store box displays. None of this material was birthed for the purpose of creating art. Yet people will pay thousands, sometimes tens of thousands, of dollars for a poster promoting ship travel to South America,

  • ‘That’s not real art’: Considering game theory, art, art theory, and video games

    Dec 1, 17 • ndemarino • 5enses, Two-bit ColumnNo CommentsRead More »

    By Justin Agrell The first game that blew my mind was “Doom.” If you’re unfamiliar with the game, it was one of the first 3-D computer games available for later DOS computer systems. (It also featured quite a lot of pixelated violence; it was the mid-’90s and I was a young boy, after all.) When I discovered “Doom,” my mind was transported there, to Mars, fighting Hell-demons. The visuals and speed of interaction were ground-breaking. Thinking back, it wasn’t books or music or paintings or film that gripped my interest so firmly. It was video games. You may dismiss or reject them as works of art, but stop and think about that for a second. But I’m getting ahead of myself. First, some context. My first passion was drawing. In elementary school I sketched throughout the day. At first my sloppy doodles littered whatever spare surface was available to me, hardly representing the nonsensical images in my mind. They were purely for my entertainment and to pass the time. As time progressed so did my skill, and by the end of the 5th grade I had reached the point of classmates paying me for sketches with their lunch money. When I think about art, I remember this time in my life. OK, back to video games and art. When I first went to college, I wanted to create games but

  • Getting a buzz from Woody

    Feb 28, 14 • ndemarino • 5enses, Alan Dean Foster's PerceivingsNo CommentsRead More »

    By Alan Dean Foster For the beholder, art is primarily visual. For the artist, though, it’s often as much about what is touched as what is seen. Tactility. A painter needs physical contact with brushes, or pens, or chalk, or a keyboard. A sculptor feels as much as molds the material, be it stone, clay, metal or silly putty. But there is something special about wood that goes back to the beginning of human artistic consciousness. Maybe it’s because, unlike welded steel or chiseled marble or coagulated collages, carved wood is like us in that it’s also an organic material. Wood carving makes art out of something that was once alive. Unlike other organic materials that are frequently fashioned into art, like ivory or bone, wood is common. The woodcarver’s material lies all around us, even in the depths of big cities. We grow up with it. We live with it and, often, within it. It’s a material that is a part of our lives from the very beginning, lying in a wooden cradle or crib, to the end, when we are returned to the earth encased in a wooden coffin (which, as it slowly decomposes, helps to refertilize the ground and … give birth to more wood). Hand the average youth a hammer and chisel and point them toward a pile of rock and the first thing they’re likely

  • Lessons learned: A pair of art missives

    Dec 6, 13 • ndemarino • 5enses, Column5,272 CommentsRead More »

    By Debra Jan Owen The art habit “The thought manifests as the word; the word manifests as the deed; the deed develops into habit; and habit hardens into character. As the shadow follows the body, as we think, so we become.” – Guatama Buddha, Dhammapada An artist enters the studio focused and ready to be amazed. Guided by comfort in the art habit, the artist instinctively follows his muse, ready for breakthrough or failure alike. Will the muse lead him astray? This can happen. A painter struggles in his or her studio with a stack of canvasses, tubes of oil paints, and time. It is a romantic vision we all accept. It’s the way great painting takes place. Invested in process, the artist pursues a familiar experience of joy and pride. Art is habit forming for artist and devotee alike. Music and theater, the performing arts — they provide an intoxicating shared euphoria. Visual, decorative, and literary arts are more private. They require looking and contemplation. They require a willingness to see things that might otherwise not be seen. And seeing is a commitment to a personal moment. It is a stretching exercise of self reflection. And, not unlike the physical habit of exercise, the art habit requires reaching beyond one’s capacities. It requires exploration and affords the opportunity for self learning. Art is sensual, intimate, and personal. The artist

  • Music vs. art vs. science

    Dec 6, 13 • ndemarino • 5enses, Mike's Musical Musings6,888 CommentsRead More »

    By Mike Vax Our esteemed publisher and I were chatting about my previous column — about having scientific studies and facts to back up assumptions I made when talking about the good things studying music and the arts can do for young people — and it got me thinking. There are many similarities in art and science, but there are also things that don’t readily crossover between the two. For starters, art doesn’t have to be based on fact. I remember being a Trekie when “Star Trek” first came out and marveling at all the gadgets and stuff they used. One interesting thing about science fiction is when some of the pretend circumstances and gear actually comes into existence. In those cases, science took its cue from art. On the other hand, there’s painting — especially modern forms — in which there’s a speculative, highly personal treatment of reality. Sometimes the work has almost nothing to do with any reality except that in the artist’s mind. It’s up to the spectator to take away their own interpretation. To me, this about as far away from science as you can get. But, this column is mainly about music, so let’s look at music’s attributes. If you consider studying or performing music, you’ll find that it entails things like math, language, written symbols, and structure. It also includes communication on other levels

  • I love:

    Oct 1, 13 • ndemarino • 4rt Page, 5ensesNo CommentsRead More »

Celebrating art and science in Greater Prescott.

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