Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Lecture Notes//High culture vs Low culture

•Understand the term ‘avant-garde’
•Question the way art/design education relies on the concept
 of the avant-garde
•Understand the related concept of ‘art for art’s sake’
•Question the notion of ‘genius’
•Consider the political perspectives relating to avant-gardism
•Question the validity of the concept ‘avant-garde’ today

Dictionaries link Term – ‘avant-garde’ with terms like
innovation in the arts or pioneers.

- Idea of doing art/design work that is progressiveinnovating
- But also it refers to the idea of there being a group of people being
   - Being avant-garde in the work you do  - challenging,
      innovating etc.
   - Being a part of a group – being a member
     of the avant-garde.

Course definitions
Visual Communications
‘The second level aims to let you experiment within you chosen range of disciplines
 ‘Our aim is to encourage students to take a radical approach to communication’
 To be a student on the course you need to enjoy: ‘Challenging conventions’

Printed Textiles & Surface Pattern Design
Our aim is to provide an environment, which allows you to discover, develop, and express your personal creative identity through your work’
 ‘Level one studies concentrate on ‘… experimentation’

Interior Design
 ‘We encourage students to challenge conventional thinking ’

Throughout the course you will be encouraged to form a personal vision and direction based upon critical self –analysis’

We encourage you to develop your individual creativity to the highest level . . .
 ‘Level one studies concentrate on . . . .experimentation’

Art and Design (Interdisciplinary)
‘What will unite all your creative output will be the ability to apply your creative and technical skills in innovative ways, which are not limited to traditional subject boundaries’

LCAD quotes prioritise certain concepts:
1. Innovation - creating new stuff
2. Experimentation - process involved in order to achieve new stuff
3. Originality - to copy is bad, to be original is good
4. Creative genius - to bring out hidden creative depth held deep within the student

End of the 19th /early 20th Century
Two approaches to avant-garde art were created:
1. Art that is socially committed - artists being the ‘avant-garde’ of society, pushing forward political objectives
2. Art that seeks only to expand / progress what art is (in itself and for itself) / art for art’s sake
Art for Art’s Sake - James Abbot McNeill
Whistler Nocturne in Black and Gold (1874-78)

Clive Bell stated:
The relations and combinations of lines and colours, which when organised give the power to move someone aesthetically’
The “Art for Art’s sake” approach dominated much thinking and practice in 20th Century Art.

A major problem for the avant-garde is that it seems to necessitate ‘ELITISM’
So for those members of the ‘left wing’ [interested in social change] there was a tendency to have to rely on ACADEMIC TECHNIQUES in order to appeal to the ‘public’.

What is Kitsch?
Constable Haywain (1821)  [Not Kitsch]

Definitely kitsch!

Putting a price on Art Work
Picasso Les Noces de Pierrette, 1905 sold 1989 Binoche et Godeau, Paris, Tomonori Tsurumaki

Renoir Bal du moulin de la Galette, 1876 sold 1990 Sotheby’s, New York Ryoei Saito

Van Gogh Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers, 1888, sold 1987, Christies, London Yasuo Goto, Yasuda Comp.
$ 39.7M

Van Gogh1889 Portrait of Dr. Gachet (1st version), sold 1990 Christies New York Ryoei Saito

Awkward questions to ask your tutors
•1. Why does our work have to be ‘original’?
•2. Is it possible to be ‘avant-garde’ and/or
•3. If I make my work socially committed so
       that people can understand it can it still be
       avant-garde / innovative? 

This lecture was something that is always discussed within graphic design. The fact that graphic design is seen as low culture but most graphic designers would disagree with that and often have some sort of hate for fine artists; which is seen as fine art.
It was good to get another angle on this subject and learn more about the subject, from this we did have a separate seminar on it because it was such a talked about subject and something that does cause a good debate and something to get people opinions on.
I personally don't see fine art and the idea of it, to me it has no meaning behind it but the artist would differ. As a graphic designer i find that our work has a purpose and we design for a purpose, whereas i don't see this in fine art, it is just there to be there. 

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