Constructing Movements in Art and Design Week 6 – Surrealism and Psychoanalysis

Having already decided on which question I was going to answer in my essay, I was quite looking forward to gathering all the information I could that would help me, and this lecture was one of those helpful nuggets of information. This week we were looking at Surrealism and its foundation, Psychoanalysis.

Surrealism emerged onto the art world at the start of the twentieth century and was heavily influenced by the revolutionary psychoanalytical work of Sigmund Freud. Surrealist artists were concerned with the representation of the unlimited human imagination in art which was classed as highly innovative. Shocking and bizarre are two words often linked with Surrealism and this was certainly true of the work of Andre Breton and Rene Magritte, to name but two of the many artists involved with the Surrealist movement. The movement found its leader in Anfre Breton who wrote a number of manifestoes highlighting the aims of the movement. Breton himself was bit of a control freak which I find somewhat at odds with the idea of irrationality of Surrealism in embracing the liberation of the unconscious.

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Constructing Movements in Art and Design Week 5 – Constructivism and Suprematism

This week in Constellation we were looking into the workings of Constructivism and Suprematism, both of which are Russian avant-garde movements. I found both of these movements to be quite interesting in their ideas, the way that they explored the use of colour and materials. what was really good about this lecture was that we explored the main leader of each movements, comparing their work and seeing how the artwork of these two artist embodied the spirits of each movements.

Malevich, whose work was based mainly around colour, was the artist most associated with Suprematism. he explored the relationship between the world and objects; trying to emphasise the basics of picture making while literally adding things from the actual world. As Malevich became more interested in the basics of form and colour, his work started to become much more abstract. He played with the idea of the zero point of paintings, which is the point where the world if no longer visible with the artwork. within these works, colour reign supreme.

Taltin’s work was almost the opposite of Malevich. He worked with materials, exploring sculpture and the boundaries of frames.  His work was considered revolutionary, because before this point, sculpture was mainly bound up in the showing of the human figure, Tatlin challenged this and brought in sculpture that was based around abstraction. Constructivism focused on three main areas; Tectonics / Factura / Construction.

This is the first time I’ve looked at artwork specifically relating to sculpture, and I find it refreshing to export the world of sculpture I find it interesting that the types of materials used within Tatlin sculptures are hard an angular, industrial materials, which perhaps reflects the society and the culture in which they were created. it as a time of huge upheaval, and this was reflected in the work that was created,. as with all art movements it was relating to what was happening around it, pushing boundaries, thriving. I like constructivism because of the inventiveness of what they created and how they went against the norm.


Constructing Movements in Art and Design Week 4 – The Dada Manifesto

Before this lecture I had already looked at the essay questions for this constellation. I really like the look of ‘compare and contrast the aims of the artists associated with Dadaism and Surrealism’, and so I had already started reading up on Dada, which I was find really interesting. I was looking forward to this lecture because, although I already had my own thoughts and views on Dada, I was interested to see what the lecture would uncover to me. I found it really helpful when we looked at the society and times that was surrounding and influencing the ideas and outcomes of the Dada artists, and how they acted to reject nationalism in a socially engaged manner. Another thing I thought that was really interesting was how each different sect of Dada acted different, how some more politically overt than others and how some had a much more negative outlook.

This lecture was really interesting an helpful and I look forward to the one on surrealism and psychoanalysis, to help develop my essay.


Constructing Movements in Art and Design Week 3 – Futurism

I was looking forward to this lecture, after last week’s, and it didn’t disappoint. As a continuation of the time we’re looking at, this week we moved away from cubism to look at Futurism. I found this week really interesting because of the radical different between cubism from the week before, and the work, and ideas that were being put forwards by the futurists.

The futurists were an overtly political movement, with a desire look to the future, leaving behind the art of the past. Revelling in anything modern and mechanical, the futurists spread their manifestos through the use of newspapers to put their ideas in wide circulation, even from this early point the futurists were try to hit a wide audience. This group of artists were passionate about their work, so impassionate that they were almost hectic in their approach, ranting because they were so fuelled on their own ideas of art. Again we see the emergence of an Avant-garde movement.

The futurists up held the ideas of modernisation and industrialisation, especially with their sculptures and architecture, taking things back to only their necessary function, stripping away unnecessary decoration.  This impression was radically transforming the way in which people saw the world. Within Futurism we see the definition between what is considered art and what is considered life becoming weaker.

The workings of the futurists got more and more aggressive, they wanted their audience to become participants in their work so they purposely irritated and angered them to cause confrontation that they then wanted to spread out onto the streets of Italy. Futurism strove to literally transform everything, they made art that was centred around the discontinuity of the city, focusing on the energy and movement. The Futurists artists Marinetti inspired two movements which followed, Russian Constructivism and English Vorticism.

I found the thoughts and concepts of futurism quite interesting, how they were radically different and completely impassioned with their opinion of what art should be.