To begin with this exercise, we were asked to read 3 articles to help us understand various views on appropriation art.
We were then asked to look at the work of some of the artists mentioned and describe our responses to their way of working.
My responses on appropriation art
Within my Understanding Visual Culture module, I first became aware of the concept of appropriation art. My initial thoughts were that it was wrong and that by using the work of others in any way, shape or form was considered plagiarism. However, as I delved further into it, I found that some of this appropriation art is very good and is necessary for the natural progression of art. In some instances, when an artist has appropriated someone’s work, either discreetly or indiscreetly, they have taken the opportunity to put their own spin on it and make it their own. the perfect examples of this are works by Banksy, Jane Perkins and Jocelyne Grivaud all of these artists have taken well known work and taken it a stage further to create something new.
The work of artists such as Andy Warhol, Damian Hirst and Jeff Koons is interesting as they use everyday objects to create their art. I think that their ideas are very clever and help to make them stand out. From their work, other artists have taken this idea and created art in a very similar vein. However this begs the question, if someone copies an idea but makes all their own work are they copying, using the work as inspiration or appropriating it?
I have differing views on the works of Sherrie Levine, Richard Prince and Michael Wolf who have appropriated the work of others but chosen to do very little, if anything, to make them different from the original. Although Wolf had an “honourable mention” in the 2011 World Press Photo Awards, I struggle to see how his work is considered art as he has merely cropped surveying images created by Google Street View.
I, myself, have dabbled with appropriation. Firstly, by using an image created by my husband’s company, Cloudbase Images, and merging it with a map.
The second time was while completing a workshop at the local gallery in which I created butterflies from panoramas of buildings as the photographer, Chris Oldham, created. Although, I created the piece using his idea, I used my own photos and to take it a step further, I made them into 3 dimensional butterflies.
In conclusion, I think that appropriation is appropriate but only when it contributes to an artist evolution of the original.
In the second part of the exercise, we were asked to look ahead to the second assignment and start to think about what journey we would like to document. Using maps, we can then chart the journey and think about good and bad points of each journey
As I am writing this, I am still undecided on which journey I would like to document. I will update as I begin this part of the exercise