Here’s a digital illustration version of Basilton. Basilton’s back story is that he is Chief Inspector from Somerset in England. A resident of the bat colony of Somerset, he was promoted to Chief Inspector of Police after he solved several high profile crimes.
For this week’s RMCAD ACAD1000 assignment, we were supposed to critically read Guy Debord’s The Society of the Spectacle and pose a question based on the theme of the work. The following is what I wrote.
The example I used was an interesting social ad campaign trying to reach out to children who were the victim of physical abuse. The Spectacle paper clearly made points about the negative side of ‘spectacles’ and visual appearances, but imagery can also redirect people at reality and have positive effects on society.
Guy Debord’s The Society of the Spectacle discusses the negative effects that imagery propagated by capitalist culture can have on people and society. However, there have been campaigns for good causes that have used the same tactics.
Recently, an advertising campaign created by the Spanish organization Aid to Children and Adolescents at Risk Foundation created an illusory image that was designed to empower children who are the victims of child abuse. When a normally-sized adult looks at the ad, they would only see an image of a child and the phrase “Sometimes, child abuse is only visible to the child suffering it.” However, if a child or anyone shorter than 4 feet 5 inches looks at the ad, they would see: “If somebody hurts you, phone us and we’ll help you.”
Do you believe that the tools of the spectacle can be used for good? If so, can you name any examples? If not, can you explain why you believe so?
Here’s my response to several questions posed by the teacher:
“1. Mark Rothko has spoken at length about the intent and significance of his artwork.He maintained that the purpose of his art was to convey emotion through color, and that he was not specifically concerned with abstract relationships.With that in mind, his artwork seems to be experimenting with how much an image can be reduced while still having an emotional impact.
2. Rothko’s artwork breaks with most of the culturally-accepted norms of “good art”.There’s no attempt at depicting the physical world, little real skill in the actual execution, no explicit ideological statement.Rothko makes the case that these factors aren’t necessary for artwork to have an emotional impact on the viewer, and that mainstream art culture’s idea of “great art” isn’t the only way to produce great art.
3. Rothko’s artwork seems to be directed at a more intellectual art viewer, one who is willing to appreciate more abstract forms of art.His paintings aren’t that obvious in their aesthetic appeal; it takes a more conscious effort to be emotionally impacted by them than with, say, Vermeer’s paintings.This type of viewer would probably be older, and if I had to guess, I’d say they’d tend to lean more to the upper class.”