Artist Intention

When viewing artwork, I tend to search for the artists’ message within the piece. In doing this, I neglect the thought of the process behind creating the piece. Garth Freeman helped me realize the importance of the creation process with the print activity done in class. Our class separated into groups and created prints, which is the first time I have done this. At first, I was not too excited for this activity because I do not think of myself as an artist. By the end of the class, I started to think more about how an artist gets to their final piece of artwork.

Creating prints with my peers made me aware of how art can turn out different than what it was intended to be, but better than the original idea. For example, my group decided we were going to trace an outline of a magazine page, which was a house surrounded by trees and land in the background, and add red lines coming out of the house to symbolize Du Bois talking about the birth of his son. When we created the print of this piece, the image started showing things like figure outlines of people which was definitely unintended. I remember after seeing this, we were more excited and motivated to keep adding to the painting to look at how each of the prints would come out. With each print, the image changed into something different, either adding or taking away from the image, but regardless presenting a different print and meaning than what we initially intended. By the end of this activity, we started adding colors to our painting to see how the print would appear. We were then asked to talk about this activity with the people around us and explain what we got from it.

This activity actively showed me that what you create with art is not always what you will present at the end of the process. When I look at art, I assume that the piece in front of me is the initial message the artist intended for the audience. Now, I am starting to realize that some art can simply be a beautiful mistake. By beautiful mistake I am referring to obstacles the artists face during the process that turn out to make the piece into something the artist had not imagined. Another assumption I make is that there is a deep rooted meeting behind each piece of art. This assumption was proved wrong throughout the exercise as my group and I started putting colors together just for fun. Although we had no meaning behind these prints, we were still willing to have them shown because we were impressed with the way it turned out. Each activity we participate in for our Steve Prince class forces me to look at art through another lense. I am excited to see where the rest of this class takes me.


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