I wasn’t in class but the comparison essay was due today. Here it is:
Artists choose to express themselves in an unimaginable number of varying ways. Some people may choose to write a novel describing their life or bringing their own imagination to life through the different interpretations of children and/or filmmakers. Other might choose to sculpt or draw, expressing themselves in a more visual way and leaving their works of art a little more open for interpretation. Whichever way one might choose to do it, you can express yourself in whatever way you choose and have a tremendous effect on countless individuals needing to express the same ideas yet not knowing or realizing how to do so. Through watching the Art 21 videos and reading the booklet from the writers festival, I have learned how incredibly different but uncannily similar can be in the process of creating art. While Louise Bourgeoise uses molds and plaster to sculpt hands to represent multiple things, Briana Gerdeman of the University of Georgia uses the written word to get her ideas across.
When watching the Art 21 videos, one artist in particular stood out to me. Although she by no means limited to sculpting, Lousie Bourgeoise used the concept of the human hand both in her piece and also to make it. She constructed a work of art by either making molds of her or someone else’s hands (depending on what suited best) or dipping hands put in the desired position into wax. In one particular piece she portrayed her own hands covered by much bigger hands. What this piece says to me is: “Sometimes the guider, sometimes the guided.” If only everyone thought this way. So many try to do everything in life by themselves and it just doesn’t work that way. Everyone needs help every once in a while. No one can “do life” completely alone. The way a simple thing, as simple as a hand, can be manipulated to send such a powerful message is amazing. The complexity of the human body is so often over-looked. Ball your hand into a fist and you have strength, power, courage. Stick your middle finger up and you rebellion, defiance and, to a certain extent, arrogance. Stick your thumb up and it’s confidence, faith and sheer will power. Such simple gestures have such fabulous effects…
“There is nothing so fraught with significance as the human hand”
In the writer’s festival booklet, one story really got me thinking. Stories about People in a Café is a cycle of sorts. Briana Gerdeman uses her hands in a way that is completely different than that of Louise Bourgeoise. She writes the stories of different people she is witnessing until she comes to a man who is writing about her. In this story she creates a cycle…writing about writing. In this story it comes across to me that everything is connected in some way. Even though you don’t publish your life so that everyone knows what’s going on in it at all times, it’s always easy to read certain people. No matter what we depend on our surroundings (people, signs, music, etc.) to help us through daily life whether we recognize this or not. Sometimes the guider, sometimes the guided….
Both of these artists are truly inspirational in their own way. They use their own methods to express their views and ideas to the public. One through sculpting and the other through writing. Whatever the method, each piece is a beautiful representation of the artist behind it.