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Art Appreciation 2013-2014

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Title: Art Appreciation 2013-2014


1
Art Appreciation 2013-2014
  • Back to the Basics
  • Elements of Art
  • Principles of Design

April 2014
2
Principles of Design How the Build Blocks are used
  • Balance
  • Contrast and Proportion
  • Emphasis
  • Rhythm or Movement
  • Pattern
  • Unity
  • Variety

3
Unity and Variety Unity creates a sense of
harmony and wholeness. Unity gives the work a
sense of completion. Variety adds interest by
using contrasting elements within the artwork.
Unity emphasizes the similarities. Variety
emphasizes the differences.
4
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6
Unity and Variety
Kandinsky was a pioneer in the development of
abstract, non objective art. He believed in the
expressive qualities of abstract forms. For him,
each color and shape had its own symbolic
significance and properties. In this composition,
unity is provided by the repetition of circles on
a neutral background. Variety is added by varying
the sizes and colors of the circles, and by
overlapping them.
Several Circles, 1926 Wasily Kandinsky Oil on
canvas, 55 ¼ x 55 ½ inches Solomon R. Guggenheim
Museum, New York
7
Unity and Variety
The Impressionists limited details and used
strokes of pure color on the canvas to convey the
sense of a fleeting moment in time. This painting
conveys the excitement and exhilaration of a
celebration on a flag-lined street. The flags are
blowing in the wind, the noise of the crowd can
almost be heard in this moment that Monet has
presented to us. Unity is created by the
repetition of the flags and the people, and the
arrangement on canvas, with all elements of the
composition facing inward from the edges of the
canvas. Variety is provided by variations in the
sizes and position of the flags and people.
Rue Montorgueil in Paris, Festival of June 30,
1878, Claude Monet, 1878.
8
Unity and Variety
What appears to be a candid moment captured by
the artist is in fact, a deliberately posed study
of the human figure. Unity is suggested by the
repetition of the figures and their muscularity.
They are also enclosed within the architectural
structures of the foundry. Variety is obvious in
the number of different poses struck by the
ironworkers, while showing off their physiques.
There is a complex arrangement of poses and limbs
that appear to be interconnected. The result is a
lively composition of carefully composed figures.
The Ironworker's Noontime 1880 Thomas Pollock
Anshutz  oil on canvas Fine Arts Museums of San
Francisco
9
Unity and Variety
Again, the color palette is limited. Rene
Magritte used grey tones and pastels throughout
the work. The windows, which repeat across the
bottom half of the piece, and the men are about
the same size, which, along with the repeated
men, create a pattern across the entire painting.
Relief from the constant pattern is provided by
the plain building on the right. Since the
artwork is busy with pattern, the plain side of
the building is where he put in some variety.
Golconde, 1963 Rene Magritte, Oil on canvas The
Menil Collection, Houston, TX
10
Unity and Variety
The non-representational colors of Pop Art do not
depict the artists inner sensation of the world.
They refer to the popular culture, which also
inspires Warhol to experiment with the technique
of silkscreen printing, a popular technique used
for mass production. On the occasion of Marilyn
Monroes suicide in August 1962, Warhol used this
image for his screen printing. It was a publicity
shot by Gene Korman for the film Niagara, made in
1953. Assembly Line Art? In August 1962, Andy
Warhol began to produce paintings using the
screen printing process. He recalls, The
rubber-stamp method Id been using to repeat
images suddenly seemed too homemade I wanted
something stronger that gave more of an
assembly-line effect. With silk screening you
pick a photograph, blow it up, transfer it in
glue onto silk, and then roll ink across it so
the ink goes through the silk but not through the
glue. That way you get the same image, slightly
different each time. It all sounds so
simplequick and chancy. I was thrilled with it.
My first experiments with screens were heads of
Troy Donahue and Warren Beatty, and then when
Marilyn Monroe happened to die that month (August
1962), I got the idea to make screens of her
beautiful face. (Andy Warhol, Popism, 1980)
The Nine Faces of Marilyn Monroe, 1962 Andy
Warhol Silk screen printing
11
Unity and Variety
Cakes, 1963 Wayne Thiebaud (tee-bow) Oil on
canvas, 60 x 72 in National Gallery of Art,
Washington
At first glance it might be obvious that the
easiest way to create unity is to repeat one item
over and over. Thiebaud does that here, but he
also uses other methods. His palette is limited
in color and value. He also scatters the bolder
colors and values in triads across the canvas.
Notice how he has the brown and yellow cakes
arranged to form triangles across the picture
plane. Variety is created by using the sliced
cake with the sharp horizontal layers in the
upper right. Imagine if that cake were round like
the others, or just one or two layers. The
picture would become too repetitive if he had
made that decision. Where do you think the focal
point is of the composition? Why?
12
the portrait by Hans Holbein the Younger on which
Johns work is based.
Jasper Johns has arranged color in triads across
the page. Notice how the red makes a triangle
across the page, as well as the purples and the
yellows. All of the colors have the same level of
saturation (intensity) that is subdued and
grayed. The thickness of the blue/grey lines that
go across the artwork is about the same, but
instead of being boring, they wiggle and dance
and lead the eye around (rhythm). He uses
textures almost arbitrarily across the page, but
keeps it them from being boring by using
a variety of lines and type and drips. Notice
that the wood texture is the exact same color as
the outline around the man, another way of
bringing together two different patterns.
After Hans Holbein, 1993 Jasper Johns 32 ½ x 25
½ " Encaustic on canvas In private collection
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