PRAC Wk. 4

Looking back on last week’s work which we thought was quiet successful we decided to narrow our ideas down even more. Feminism is the decided political topic. We have also decided to keep the group quiet small as to not try and have too many things going on at once.

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The major idea my group is wishing to continue with is a projection combining data, images and small amounts of text.

Using three huge screens to represent billboards, our work will focus on an advertising effect to make our message of feminism simple and accessible to the masses. As advertising allows.

 

The current idea to put into practice next week is as follows:

 

  • The three ‘billboards’ will be placed in the following positions. One against a wall with a projection of a city scape on it. It will be night time so the lights of the city will be much more dramatic. The other two billboards will be parallel to each other allowing the audience to walk between them. The city scape projection will be at the end of this ‘travel’ experience.
  • On one of the two projection screens facing the other projections of influential and famous feminists throughout history with quotes by them displayed at speaking pace with a purple background which is the colour of equality.
  • The projection screen opposite will display a projection of statics relating to women and men and how society feels about certain issues relating to feminism.

 

 

This so far is what we have come up with for our final art work. The mixture of projection, interaction and data should create an interesting work.

PRAC Wk. 3

Taking on the advice given to us last week we decided to split into smaller groups and continue working on skills and ideas that correlated well together instead of trying to fit many things into one work.

 

The political message I personally wanted to focus on was feminism. It is such a complex thing for me and I find it incredibly interesting that in 2017 some people do not believe that everyone should be equal. The patriarchy is a topic I would love to focus on for another art work.

 

We were directed towards Barbara Kruger and her feminist artworks. Barbara uses mainly black, white and red. Which were three major colours evident in the works I looked at. For example a white pants suit was worn by Hilary Clinton during her election campaign is a representative of the colour white which was worn by the first wave of feminists. Red I now strongly associate with Republicans after Donald Trump’s ‘Make America Great Again’ hats.

 

With all this in mind we decided to look at the above concepts and try and work them into our ideas.

 

Trump was the first person to come to mind with feminism and so we photo shopped a picture of him and other famous people who cause controversy in the style of Barbara Kruger.

 

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Prac Wk. 2

This week’s work started off as one idea and ended up being a completely different one. In short, it was an absolute disaster.

 

We started off yet again trying to incorporate too many ideas at once. We wanted to do multi-layer text projection again, but to also project through fabric to create a different effect. We couldn’t get the correct text onto the projector, the fabric was too sheer and we could not pin it up. So we ended up making a ‘mountain’ out of think black felt and layering the white fabric over the top to be snow. We then found a manicians head which we placed on top of the ‘mountain’ and projected an X on to it. This was to represent death.

 

It was an extremely mismatched piece of work which really did not show case any of our skills or interests. Apart from a political message about the environment, but even then from week to week we did not have a strong political message we were all passionate about enough to make an artwork about.

 

After this week’s lesson we decided to split into smaller groups and work on individual skills and messages that we could then bring back to the group to hopefully create a larger work incorporating everything.

Prac Wk. 1

This weeks work began with looking at artists who had used both text and projection to get a political message across to their audience. This was the first problem the group discovered. Trying to be democratic and fit individual pieces from everyone’s projects into making one major work.

 

Our idea for this class was to use two projectors and project text onto the ground and the other aimed at the wall. The idea of this work was from Jenny Holzer and her text projection of political messages onto buildings. We wanted to use more than one projector for multi layering of text and to also allow for some audience interaction of standing underneath the projector directed at the ground, this would then show a shadow of the text on the wall.

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We faced many technical difficulties with the projectors not working properly. But we learnt a lot of what is possible to achieve in a small amount of time. This failure I believe set us up for thinking about we wanted to do for the remainder of the semester. We learnt that although it was a good thing to work as a group, trying to fit too many ideas into one work proved to be too difficult.

 

Holzer’s works were definitely different from what I originally stated as a major work, the similarity was the political messages behind them.

 

The difficulties faced this week were annoying when we only had limited time to create a work and present it to the class. This lesson though taught the importance of preparation before class.

Out of Hand: Materialising the Digital

Aki Inomata

Japan

White Chapel from Why Not Hand Over a ‘Shelter’ to Hermit Crabs? Series, 2014-2015

Video, photographs, mixed media

‘Hermit crabs change their shells as they grow. Sometimes they are kicked out of their shelters by stronger hermit crabs and forced to exchange shells. Aki Inomata gave hermit crabs shells she had made for them, and if they liked them, they moved into the ‘shelters’. The shelters represent cities from around the world. In White Chapel, the shelter is a wedding chapel. More than 60% of Japanese weddings have Christian-style ceremonies; for Inomata, these imitations of western-style architecture seem to reflect postcolonial identities living inside Japanese people.’

 

Hermit crabs are strange creatures, their little homes go everywhere they go, swapping them throughout their life time. Some hermit crabs are bullied out of their little homes on their backs and have to find new ones.

Aki Inomata has created several different works including hermit crabs, dogs, birds, turtles and octopuses. She is interested in nature and artist practice combined.

 

White Chapel is not the first set of homes Aki has created for hermit crabs, she has produced a series of homes for them. She is interested in hermit crabs as it Japanese their name translates to mean ‘somebody living in a temporary dwelling’ (called a Yadokari). Aki’s first set of shells for the hermit crabs were created in 2009 as a submission in as exhibition titles ‘No Man’s Land’ which was held in the French embassy in Japan. The idea of the hermit crab not having a permanent house their whole life is what inspired her to create the works. Previously in Japan the French embassy has been occupied by the Japanese, until the French were able to occupy it again. This is where the concept of no man’s land came from to be the subject of the exhibition.

 

The hermit crab shells were firstly made by Aki who did not study the inside of the shells, these were ignored by the crabs. When she looked more closely at the shells the mapped them and then 3D printed them so they would fit the natural shapes of the shells that hermit crabs are used to. These 3D printed shells were then accepted by the crabs. Aki saw the exchange of the French embassy between the Japanese and French as a peculiar exchange of land, much like what happens to many migrants and travellers exploring cities. The change of lands, and in the case of the hermit crabs, homes. Aki wanted to print homes, or shells to us, as representations of different cities and cultures globally. There is New York towers, Tokyo homes, Paris apartments and Gothic Chapels. The last type of shell, the Gothic Chapels are the homes created and focused on in the White Chapel exhibition.

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In Japan there is a great interest in the Western way of life. This includes religious practices and customs for special occasions such as weddings. 1% of Japanese people practice Christianity, but 60% of weddings held in Japan are Christian. The outside of these churches or chapels are often painted white and styled to fit in with their surroundings as most architecture in Japan in built upwards to deal with the lack of space. Furthermore, these churches or chapels are not fitted out on the inside to match their outside design. But instead and dark and cramped with car parks in the basement. Something that is very unusual for a church. Aki is interested in the Japanese people’s the Western styles they adopt and shape to fit into their lives in Japan. Aki quotes, ‘And I ask myself, Are we Japanese living in a mimicry of Western world? For me these imitation, or I would say reproduction or rearrangement of Western-style architecture seem to reflect identities of post colonialism inside of Japanese people.’ (Aki 2014). Further research into Japanese interest into Gothic style is evident in fashion especially.

Evident in Aki’s works she has tried to integrate different cultures and styles of housing for the hermit crab shells. The Why Not Hand Over a ‘Shelter’ to Hermit Crabs? Series began in 2009. This mirrored, and still does, the present movement of people across the globe from migration and travel. Also like the hermit crabs, some people are forced out of their homes by the ‘bigger’ people. This forced or bullied movement creates thousands of refugees looking for new homes. Much like the dilemma many hermit crabs face. Aki highlights a major social issue, though sadly the solution is not as easy as 3D printing people new homes.

 

Overall Aki Inomata has captured the social and political message she wanted to emulate in her art well. By having to produce a work based around the subject of ‘No Man’s Land’ it has lead Aki to make a connection between nature and the man made. She also highlights the political and issues surrounding nature in her works with not just the hermit crabs, but also the other works she has done involving animals. The political issue mainly covered in the hermit crab works, especially the White Chapel series is that of how the Western world influences the East. For the majority of history, the western influences have overpowered the East and Aki senses that their influence is still heavily present with the customs of Christian style weddings and Gothic churches all over Japan. Aki is obviously passionate about nature and animals as in many of her art works she creates shelters or homes for animals that are sustainable for them.

 

3D Printing

Like Aki Inomata’s 3D printed shells for her hermit crabs and the exhibition that sparked her idea for the pieces, 3D printing was also created in Japan. In 1980 the patent for the technology of 3D printing, known as Rapid Prototyping technologies (RP) was filed by Dr Kodama. This patent was not conducted successfully though and in 1986 when Charles Hull invented a SLA machine which allowed him to co-find 3D Systems Corporation which to this day is still one of the most successful 3D printing companies in the world. For the rest of the century and into the mid 2000 various companies created high end and more ‘affordable’ printers. Hull’s company 3D Systems Corporation in 2007 released a printer for regular businesses and people to buy. But at a cost of $10 000 it fell short of customers’ expectations of affordability of a new technology. It was not until 2012 that printer was accessible to consumers. Since then technology for 3D printers has continued to grow. They are accessible to students in schools and university, to people in their businesses and homes. And of course to artists such as Aki Inomata. The clear, hard plastic used to print the shells for the hermit crabs is durable and water safe both things needed to be suitable for a hermit crab home. Also the inside needed to be more than just hollow as Aki learnt from her first attempt at printing the shells. Mapping and scanning the shells insides made sure the crabs would enter then and make them their home. The right shape and fit was important to make sure the shell felt as natural as possible to the hermit crabs making them their new home.

Aki Inomata Process

Aki Inomata has a great interest with animals and nature. Several of her notable series contain works surrounding animals. These include teaching a parakeet named Wasbi-ho that speaks Japanese as a representation of learning a new language to connect with others (French lessons with a Parakeet 2010). Incorporating a turtle into representing the world after the earthquakes in Japan in 2011 (world outside your world 2011). Raising bagworms for two years until they had matured enough to make them little bags to love out of to represent gender roles in society (girl, girl, girl… 2012). Making coats for herself and her dog out of each others hair to show the relationship between a human and their pet (I Wear the Dog’s Hair, and the Dog Wears Mine 2014).

Aki uses so many of her pets in her art works as she wants to raise awareness surrounding the importance of understanding the ownership of a pet and what it means. She notes that there have been unusual hybrids of animals bred in Japan such as a racoon and a dog.  Aki hopes that all of her pets have been happy to live with her and that she has done the right thing by keeping them. This is why she uses them in her art works, to make people feel empathy towards animals and realise how much of a role that they play in our lives. Especially people that have pets.

 

 

References

 

http://www.boredpanda.com/3d-printed-hermit-crab-shells-architecture-aki-inomata/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/hermit_WhiteChapel/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/hermit_2009/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/hermit/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/hermit_sea/

 

https://3dprintingindustry.com/3d-printing-basics-free-beginners-guide/history/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/french_lesson/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/dogs/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/girl_girl_girl/

 

http://www.aki-inomata.com/works/world_outside_your_world/

 

 

 

 

Material Discourse Emerges

From the previous six weeks, there have been several areas emerge within materialising the digital. Expressing Digitality (Textuality and expression) is the area in which my assignment falls under. The political side of my work and the fashion both fit well into this idea.

 

The power of texts is so important. More so than just the meaning of the words too. The type of font used is important in conveying the message. This is known as typography.

 

 

 

 

 

Music and images are so prevalent within the 21st Century especially in advertising, that sometimes it only takes a few clever pieces of text to really pull an advertisement together.

 

 

There will always be a place for written texts, especially in the art world. People tend to not think of words when it comes to artistic practice, but they are extremely important. Often it is a few simple words which create a powerful message. There are so many different works involving words. Often these are projections on buildings or blank walls. No fuss and no frills art which lets the viewer think about the messages the words are conveying.  Sometimes modern art is not always understood by everyone but words are. Reading a text to get a message across, a viewer might not agree with it, but they will understand it.

 

The cliché, the pen is mightier than the sword is true in the art world. Signage is particularly powerful and useful in getting politic messages out there, so why not the same for art?

MEDA101 Sound Piece

My MEDA101 sound project relating to ‘Where I am From’ is about combining two types of distinct sounds for myself which represent home for me. Since moving away from home phone calls are how I’m kept in touch with my family, manly happening around dinner time when both my parents are home from work. A text is always sent before a call is made to see if my parents are free to talk. Growing up my Mum never finished work till late, so dinner time was when the family would be together. The sounds I’ve included in the ‘phone call’ are those I heard at night when hearing about the day my parents and sister had. The T.V sounds are very distinct to me as my sister and I would always watch ‘Friends’ while my Mum would have Channel 9 news on in the background. They may be menial sounds, but provoke powerful memories for myself.