Pipilotti Rist

Elisabeth Charlotte Rist was born in 1962 in Switzerland. As a child she was nicknamed Pipilotti. She went to the University of Applied Arts Vienna and later studied video at the School of Design. Rist’s work is mainly in video. She began making super 8 films. Her works vary in color, speed, and sound and usually relate to the human body, gender, and sexuality. Her work is sometimes seen as feminist. She is seen sometimes as a conceptual artist but her works give a sense of happiness and simplicity which is opposite of what one expects of a conceptual artist.

Rist’s work was possibly my least favorite so far. She seems charged with a distinct desire to appear different and unique, and while she succeeds in that, I don’t find her work accessible. I do appreciate the way she uses focus in a lot of her work, however. In her videos many of the subjects are not in focus. Like in I’m Not the Girl who Misses Much the girl in the video is completely out of focus. I think this was the entire point because she has exposed breasts and looks ridiculous, but we can’t every quite see what she really looks like. We are left dissatisfied in a strange way because you are wondering what was really going on and what she looks like.

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Class Vacation to Italy

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Cory Arcangel

Cory Arcangel is a digital artist who was born in 1978 and currently lives in Brooklyn, New York. His work relates to technology and culture, and media appreciation. His work has been displayed at various galleries and is represented by galleries all over the world. He is best known for his Nintendo game hacks and reworkings of computer systems. He has collaborated with other artists to put together videos as well. His main point of art is that you should use technology as it is designed, something that is not an expert entity.

Arcangel’s art was very interesting to me. So far I consider his the most original and intriguing. His work obviously takes effort as computer science is obviously an important part of it. I liked his work Video Painting because it was very unexpected. He prefaces it by saying these are still from a video of things he had lying around the house, but upon seeing the “things” you are surprised with strange images that you wouldn’t expect in a video. I am wondering how much editing he did to those. The piece about the Mario clouds was interesting too. At first it was confusing as to why this was interesting, but then I remembered his motivation in art is to be able to use technology any way you want, not as a complex with only one use.

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Matt Siber

Matt Siber was born in Chicago in 1972. He grew up in Massachusetts, however. He earned a BA in History and Geography from The University of Vermont, and then earned an MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago. He worked as a commercial photographer from 94′-00′, and now works teaching digital imaging and photography at Columbia College Chicago. His worked has been displayed at many well-known galleries.

I really liked a lot of Siber’s work and was excited to see that he is a photographer, because that’s what I’m really into as well. I particularly liked his piece Floating Logos. I thoroughly enjoyed how he took something so ordinary and overlooked and made it that much more interesting by removing part of the picture. One normally thinks that the only way to draw attention to something so dull is to add things to it to make it more appealing. But Siber reasons that taking the supports away is a way of giving the signs and the companies “another worldly quality.” I was immediately drawn to this piece and I looked through the others but I found myself most fascinated with this work.

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Michael Wsol

Michael Wsol is currently an Assistant Professor in Sculpture at Georgia State University. He earned a bachelors and masters degree from Eastern Illinois University, a masters in architecture from the University of Virginia, and a masters of Fine Arts in Sculpture from the University of Georgia. According to “The Bullet,” UMW’s student newspaper, Wsol’s work is inspired by “the variety of systems—structural, social and economic—that exist is contemporary culture. His pieces simplify these systems into their functions and potential evolutions, as seen through his focus on portraying interesting and sometimes impossible architectural-style images.” At the exhibit at DuPont gallery at UMW we see a distinct example of this in his wooden sculpture in the middle of the room. Some of his drawings were complex and intricate while others were simple lines and shapes; this seemed to suggest the different types of structures we have in the world.

I found Michael Wsol’s approach to art very unique. It is nothing like anything I had ever seen. It is interesting that he incorporates so much of his knowledge of architecture into his work. I particularly loved his piece “Support” or the large hammer in the middle of the room. I noticed a small sketch of the hammer on the wall which you see he developed into a sculpture. What I loved about the hammer is that to me it seemed to be a representation of the most commonly used tool in architecture and structure. Just the fact that piecing this very sculpture together looked like it required a hammer was so ironic and intriguing. Also when I first saw the hammer I thought it was perhaps a crane which it was not, but it is interesting because a crane is often used to build structures anyway. I thought, in light of the name “Support” it could also be a support beam of some sort for a bridge. Just the fact that it is made out of simple wood is suggestive of its meanings as well. It is all representative and symbolic of architecture and the simplification of it. I also liked his piece “Drain Rooms.” It was uniquely placed in the corner which I found ideal because it sort of looked like an underground drainage system, which could be hidden under a house.

His work seemed to be either sketched on paper or possibly drawn with straight lines and geometric shapes in photoshop. Some of his sketched pieces looked like he may be planning to make them into large sculptures like he did with “Support.” His pieces, to me, seemed to be suggesting potential, which is what the our world is full of.

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Four Elements of Design

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Jon Gitelson

Jon Gitelson was born in 1975 in New York City. He works with book arts, photography, and film. He received an M.F.A in Columbia College in Chicago, where he currently resides. He is fascinated with the ordinary and commonplace. Things like “overheard conversations, chance encounters, and found objects”. He finds his inspiration in mundane, perhaps overlooked things. He likes to tell stories with his work, through photographs, video, and posters.
Personally, I found Gitelsons work to be quite intriguing and unique. I was able to overlook the fact that some of his work probably did not take much time to put together. Sometimes I thought his work did not have much meaning, like one piece where he simulated a 25 minute staring contest. I found this impossible to concentrate on. While the idea was creative, it was too long and difficult to understand. It had me wondering “why” for a long time. I particularly enjoyed his poster art however. I could see there was a lot of work put into it, and it was still unique and creative. I enjoyed the piece, “The Quitter.” He left his viewers hanging at the end, and allowed for your own imagination to work. I loved the story made out of photographs and all the photo descriptions. I found it very unique and thoughtful.

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What is Digital Approaches to Fine Art?

I’ve never taken a class like this before, but I have always thought digital approaches to fine art is taking non-digital things, like a person or a landscape and bringing them into a digital setting like a computer. For example taking a photograph and editing it and changing the appearance completely, using softwares like photoshop. I would say approaching art in a digital way is a way of increasing the amount of options you have when creating art. Incorporating computers and photoshop and such, has always seemed to bring about more options.

Seems like digital arts can be anything you want. I mean why do you think photoshop is so expensive if you aren’t going to have an endless list of choices? I feel like digital arts can also be the opportunity to use someone else’s art and make it your own. It can be used as an inspiration for some idea you have, and can give you the building blocks for creating something original. Digital arts can help bring about an idea that you are not able to develop without digital options. Digital Art can also be a good way to get critical opinions because when using photoshop, you are able to change little things on command without upsetting the entire piece of art.

To use a digital approach probably means looking at something you want to turn into art and considering the many options you have to choose from. There seem to be so many different ways you can turn one thing into many different pieces of art. With tiny changes, using a digital approach, you have so many ways to create something and constantly improve it. I am very interested in the many options I will be learning about. Personally, photography is my thing, and I am so excited to finally learn photoshop and basically how to improve my photography skills.

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