Monday, June 11, 2012

From The Shelf

Here are some of the inspirational references I go to when I'm working. I don't refer to them all of the time, but these particular books give some insight into where the content of my work originates from, both superficial and conceptual, exterior and interior. Of course, commercially I can't always apply these influences onto the pictures that I draw each time; however, I'd like to believe that sometimes parts of these influences do inform the way that I think while I am creating my work. 
Right now, I'm starting to build an interest in Keith Haring's work. I've been in love with his art for several years now, and admittedly have fantasized numerous times about what it would've been like living and working as an artist in New York thirty years ago, but I understand this fantasy is really rooted in my own ignorance - things always seem rosier through the looking-glass.  Over the past year, I've devoted more time reading about Haring's process, particularly about the work he did before the subversive subway chalk drawings that became the climax of his career, which were his videos, collages, text based, and semiotic work. 
Haring's art is so visual, his patterns seemingly random, and his pictures so happy; this was the initial attraction for me, the superficial quality of his drawings and paintings. But after having read a little bit about his history, I learned that he was much more aware of the relationships between the shapes of black and white that patterned his work. He analyzed the effects of the patterns that he made, how they were perceived as a whole and also how small sections of it related to each other. This evaluative process is so fascinating to me because it inspires me with a new way of seeing, and a new way of making art. 

*From top to bottom: Keith Haring (mug, left); Gilbert and George (mug, right); Hans Silvester, "Natural Fashion, Tribal Decoration from Africa"; Jamel Shabazz, "A Time Before Crack," (80's fashion, when I used to swoon over New Edition and Bel Biv Devoe); Keith Haring's Journals published by Penguin, Yayoi Kusama (she's having an exhibition at the Whitney Museum on June 13th); Shiaparelli & Prada, Impossible Conversations; Ballets Russes, The Art of Costume; Art of Armor, Samurai Armor from the Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Collection.

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