Introduction - Theme
Art is all about celebrating something, and what better way than celebrating oneself. The human body is one of the most complex, alluring and fascinating things on earth, so many artists are naturally drawn towards the body. There are may artworks that celebrate the human body as the underlying theme. These paintings and sculptures have a sense of honesty around them, and they show humans simply as they are.
and fascinating things on earth. This art exhibition uses the human body as a theme to highlight the many issues surrounding physical abuse, sexuality and a general lack of appreciation for the physical body. Around the world today, women are being abused in every way possible, ranging from rape to domestic violence. Every minute a woman is raped, molested or abused, and this is a serious issue facing our society today.. Sadly, it is also the most neglected one as it has been accepted asbecome a way of life in many societies. To draw attention to this issue, this art exhibition celebrates human body and its value.
Another related issue is sexuality. LGBT discrimination and same-sex marriage protests have become a common feature, and this is because of the lack of understanding of what is sexuality. Again, this lack of understanding stems from a complete lack of appreciation for the human body and its myriad needs. Therefore, this art exhibition brings the focus back to the human body, and the may ways in which its beauty can be expressed.
Lastly, obesity has become rampant around the world. Recently, the World Health Organization (WHO) stated that one in three persons around the world is obese. This obesity problem stems from a sedentary lifestyle, poor diet and negligible physical activity. The root cause of the problem is again the neglect of human body. Most people fail to understand how beautiful the human body is, so they do not take any steps to maintain it. Through this exhibition, the organizers want to draw attention to this aspect of the body too, and the problems that come with its neglect. Therefore, this art exhibition brings the focus back to the human body, and the may ways in which its beauty can be expressed. To draw attention to this issue, this art exhibition celebrates human body and its value.
Many artists are naturally drawn towards the body. There are many artworks that celebrate the human body as the underlying theme. These paintings and sculptures have a sense of honesty around them, and they show humans simply as they are.
Below is a depiction of some body- based artworks by prominent artists around the world.
Charles Ray was born in 1953. He is a renowned artist who is well-known for his sculptures. He works with altered and refashioned objects to give the sculptures a natural feel. He is a Los Angeles-based sculpture who is known for his strange ideas and enigmatic expressions. Unlike many other artists, Ray does not have a fixed style or a limited set of materials. The entire world is open for him, and he picks his topics to reflect this openness. Also, he uses a wide range of materials for his works.
A unique aspect of Ray is that he uses the developments that have taken place in the twentieth century as the theme for many of his art workspaintings. His works are displayed in North America and Europe, and he has a big following for his art piecesworks.
In 2009Recently, Ray did his first outdoor commissioned work at the Punta Della Dogana in Venice, Italy. This work is called the Boy with a Frog, and as the name implies, this sculpture has a boy holding a big Goliath frog near the Grand Canal. This sculpture is big in size, and has a smooth white finish to it. A salient aspect of this sculpture is that is based on a unique tradition of marble sculpture. This kind of sculpture had its origins in Italy, and this is why this piece reflects an important part of the Italian tradition.
TheThe sculpture is akin to to the statue of Apollo Sauroktonos, a Roman sculpture present in the Musee de Louvre in Paris. In this statue, a young adolescent boy reaches his arms to catch a lizard that is climbing up a tree. Drawing inspiration from this sculpture, he created this one to depict modern times. Also, the fact that his sculpture is nude appreciates the beauty of the human body and its oneness with the nature around it. The backdrop of the Grand Canal is a perfect setting for this sculpture.
Raymond Pettibon was born in 1957. He is an American artist well-known for his punk images and. He is well-known for his pencil sketches using India ink on paper. Most, ad most of his early works are in black and white, though the last few years has also seen some color in it. His work embraces many aspects of American culture and values, and depicts it in the form of humor. His common themes include baseball players, marginal youth culture, environment, and sexuality and sports. He is an avid sports fan himself, and this is evident in many of his pictures where there is some element of sports in it. This sports theme can be from the athletic frame of the people in the picture to the act they are performing, but some pieces of it will be present in most works (Hoby, 2013).
In the painting below, Pettibon depicts the callousness of Americans towards the environment. This painting sarcastically targets people who excessively worry about the environment, and also those who completely do not care for it. The idea behind this painting is to show the so-called final end for the human race where the world is burning, and the handful of remaining people are running hither and thither for a place to live. The words, “Land or Water – Either Will Do!” summarizes the idea of the painting.
As with all his work, the people on the painting are athletic. However, they have a grim face because they are looking for somewhere to live. In one sense, this painting emphasizes the need to be fit and active because they need this energy to save themselves from a possible catastrophe in the future.
Chris Burden was born in 1946. He is an important America artist who is popular for the radical approaches taken to depict body art. His work has featured in any prominent museums around the world such as the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. His art works include sculpture and installation art. Many of his work continues to inspire young artists to create body work with an underlying sociopolitical message.
One of the best-known works of Burden is a 1974 piece called Trans-fixed. In this artwork, Burden lies on a Volkswagen with his arms stretched over the roof. There are nails on Burden's palm, similar to the crucifixion of Jesus, with the difference being that it is on a Volkswagen and not on a cross. This idea behind this image was to use a little bit of humor to invoke feelings andor religious martyrdom.
It also shows the human body in new light, and more importantly, the mental and physical connection that exists with pain. By experiencing this type of pain andad vulnerability, Burden in many ways, has brought the horror behind such acts, thereby making it more knowable to his audience. Through this picture, he wanted to bring out the collective fears that exist in society, and the way it is used to keep people under check. Therefore, the idea is that the human body is not governed by the laws that exist in the society, rather by the mind that controls it (wtfarthistory.com, no date).
Another unique aspect about this image is that he uses his own body to get the message across, and this is not something see commonly among artists. For this reason, and also for its simplicity and resounding message, this piece is popular.
Mike Kelly is an American artist who extensively used objects, textiles, drawing and collages to express his thoughts and ideas on American culture and youth. He was an influential artist who inspired many young artists to take to this form of art. Born in 954 in Wayne Michigan, Kelly drew his inspiration from many different sources such as working-class expressions, history, philosophy and politics. He died in 2012 of an apparent suicide, andad has left behind an art legacy. The Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts established in 2008 continues to support young artists with their innovations and endeavors.
Mike Kelley is well-known for bringing new dimensions to art. One of his well-known works is called Half A Man, and it was completed in 1987. In this work, he bought hand dolls and stuffed animals from thrift stores, and sewedsew it together in jammed clusters. He also used old blankets and afghans to bring out different emotions in each of the human bodies (Cotter, 2013).
The idea behind this artwork was to depict the human body in a new light, using materials that are available everywhere. It is also in some ways, a lesson in recycling for budding artists. With a double connotation of human body and reusable nature of products, Kelly has set a new mark for himself.
This artwork also has brings out the traditions of art-making in the church. Such works are used in contemporary churches, but this one takes the ideas of obedience and strength to new levels, that cannot be done within the context of the church (The Renaissance Society, 1998).
In short, the above gallery of images show how different artists have used the human body to bring out their skills, and at the same time, convey a message to viewers. Whether it is political satire or environment issues, these images have had a profound impact on art-lovers around the world. More importantly, these artists have inspired young people to take to art, and to use the human body as a canvass for all expressions.
It is hoped that this exhibition brings the focus back on the human bodies, and helps societies to appreciate its beauty and resilience. Such appreciation can go a long way in inducing more respect for the body than before, that in turn, will bring down the physical abuse and atrocities.
Cotter, Holland. (October 17, 2013). The Show's As Big As His Career. The New York Times. Retrieved from: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/18/arts/design/mike-kelley-a-survey-at-moma-ps1-in-queens.html
No author. (1988). Mike Kelley: Three Projects. The Renaissance Society. Retrieved from: http://www.renaissancesociety.org/site/Exhibitions/Intro.Mike-Kelley-Three-Projects-Half-a-Man-From-My-Institution-HYPERLINK "http://www.renaissancesociety.org/site/Exhibitions/Intro.Mike-Kelley-Three-Projects-Half-a-Man-From-My-Institution-to-Yours-and-Pay-for-Your-Pleasure.110.html"to-Yours-and-Pay-for-Your-Pleasure.110.html
No author. (No date). Crucified on a Volkswagen Beetle. WTF Art History. Retrieved from: http://wtfarthistory.com/post/14HYPERLINK "http://wtfarthistory.com/post/14868420227/crucified-on-a-volkswagen-beetle"868420227/crucified-on-a-volkswagen-beetle
Hoby, Hermione. (December 14, 2013). Raymond Pettibon: Punk With A Pencil. The Guardian. Retrieved from: http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2013/dec/14/raymond-pettibon-sonic-youth-black-flag