Jung at Heart

Jung at Heart

Generally when a work is purported to be deep you can assume whatever’s said is somewhat disingenuous in that it is more likely to be justification for the asking price rather than an essential part of the composition. Maybe it worked differently in the past; when supplies were expensive and output was low, when you had to buy and mix you own pigments and painstakingly reach for realism, maybe then artists took their time and thought thematically as well as compositionally.

Artist today, and probably in the past, as a group and in general don’t sit down think of a theme or message and work from there; because it’s not a helpful place to start. What artist generally do is I want to paint ‘X’, and in some cases, I want to say ‘y’, but the form, follows function (x follows y). These stories artists make up about their work is for the buyer/ the consumer. While a painter needs to paint for the audience, if they’re to have a unique voice, then they will need to predominantly paint for themself.

All of this is to say that while Jung is in the title seems like an easy shortcut to give this work substance that it doesn’t need. The image works well. It’s interesting because of the use of color, texture, and geometry. The artist almost certainly didn’t compose this with Jungian symbols in mind and it would be shocking if they were well versed in Jungian psychology at all. It’s ill advised to take the shortcut of association to provide a piece meaning. At the same time this type of posturing pervades the art world and makes its participants all the more insufferable. The image works, it’s strong as a design and within the context of apparel. It’s beneath the work to reference Jung. The image doesn’t need it.

Design by: OrdinaryFox
Price:  $20.00 @ Threadless
Colors: Grey, Dark Grey

Shapes & Nightmares

Shapes & Nightmares

Art criticism, art interpretation invariable looks for meaning in order to justify its own existence, but sometimes meaning follows creation, and sometimes meaning is absent altogether until someone asks for it.

Artists work in form, by intuition, and under a vague framework; there are any number of ways within modern art to arrive at a finished piece. As a viewer, or a critic, there is this idea that a narrative or principle underlies every work of art. While this is possible, were one to ask an artist whether a concept, led to a series of motifs, and finally a finished piece of work, few artists would want or be able to claim the linear and hierarchical process of thought necessary to produce such a work. It’s possible to render a narrative within this image. Is it likely that the artist had a narrative, a message in mind while creating this work? Not at all. The majority of art is about visual ideas, inspiration i.e. what feels “right” to the artist, and not about overarching themes.

Aesthetically this image works well in terms of its use of color/ value, the balance of the shapes, its use of detail and obfuscation. It’s possible that the artist had something deep in mind in creating this piece, but only those who aren’t and haven’t ever actively engaged in making art as a compulsion would bet that form followed function.

Design by: OrdinaryFox
Price:  $24.00 @ Threadless
Colors: Grey/ “heather White”