Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Blog Assignment No. 6: The 1st 30 Minutes of the Artist Book Project

Here's some work by John Currin, the featured artist for my Artist Book Project:

"The Cripple"

"The Old Fence"


"Honeymoon Nude"

"Blond Angel"

John Currin's work is relatively new. He received his MFA from Yale in 1986, in the 90s his bold paintings drew quite a bit of attention to him, and now his work is selling for millions.
His work is influenced by Renaissance figurative painting, 50s culture, politics, and social issues. Although I have not included any of them in the images above, Currin is known for his grotesque sexual paintings. These paintings depict people having intercourse, nude women with a feel of sensuality and eroticism. Those works had a huge affect on his popularity due to how contraversial they were. I'm sure that the raise of "political correctness" also had some to do with it.
What interests me about Currins work, is not just the beautiful rendering of his forms, but the way he distorts his figures. When he began to paint images depicting high social classes of people, the figurative distortion implimented seemed to speak to the distorted, scandalous life styles the ruling class lives that are so often capitalized in our media.

For my artist book project, I plan to create ten boards. These boards will consist of images and text on paper that are attached to black mat board. These boards will be hung in two rows of five on a wall, the wall acting as the containment of the book, and the mat board, alluding to its pages. The first board will have the title of the book and a recreation of one of his paintings. On the other pages, I plan to do my own figure drawings that are influenced by Currin's style, including portraits, nudes in various positions, and the like. For the sake of the CVA foundation program, I will not do draw any figures engaging in sexual intercourse. Currently, I'm not sure if I will do any paintings. I'm hoping that in my research I'll encounter some drawings that Currin has done. If they are to be actuall drawings, I've been thinking about doing them in graphite, soft pastel and watercolor.
The drawings will be orientated towards the left side of the page, and the text will be placed opposite the image and spaced out to create a rough sense of symetrical balance that is seen in Currin's paintings. the text will, for the first half, or so, of the book be concerned with biographical information. The last half, or so, of the text will concern itself with interpretation of Currin's work.

Images taken from artstor.org