Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Everything is a Remix: Copyright laws and what that means for artists/ designers (or anyone really)

         There was this really cool, interesting, very informative video/documentary? about Copyright laws and how that applies to basically everything. It's called "Everything is a Remix" and it proves the one thing that most people don't really want to admit. Everything thats created, invented, or made is at the end, a derivative of something else. Even that derivative was influenced by something else that came before it, and so on.
          "Creation Requires Influence" is the quote that justifies this. Its pretty much impossible to creative something without any form of "copying" modifying or sampling. Even todays most successful artists, designers, entrepreneurs, engineers, inventors, etc have been guilty of doing this at least one if not throughout their whole career. There is a huge difference between influence, and straight up copying someone else's work and calling it our own.
            Based on this, there are two "remixes" that come to my mind.
First is the popular Nicki Minaj song "anaconda" which uses a samples of "Baby Got Back" throughout the whole song. Minaj rapes her verses, while the sample music is used as a template:


          Another example of a "remix", which I personally thing is a straight out theft of art work is Jeff Koons's "Dr. Dunkenstein" from his series "Equilibrium", a Nike poster from the 1970s of former Utah Jazz player Darrel Griffith. This poster came from another artist who came up with, and photographed the concept for the poster. All Koons did was frame it and called it his art. Unfortunately I have not found the original artist for the Nike Campaign.

             Copyright laws have both pros and cons. While the intention of these laws are to protect the works of these creators, a lot tend to be extremely vague and therefore easier to sue and get money from basically anyone. They breach the nature of the internet and its foundations, like fanwork, which is a giant culture of the online world. Anyone who creates fan art or fan fiction can easily be sued. Same goes to basically anything with any amount of copyrighted images, songs, even mentions.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Activist art: Research

    For my Digital Research project, I have decided to my project on the topic of Activist art and its relation to Civil Rights movement into present day.
     As an artist myself, I aspire to make work that deals with social issues and my experiences dealing with sexism, racism, and classism. My main mission as an artist is to tell my stories, as they are just as important as anyone else's, despite being a woman and an Latina. I want to prompt social change with my art, have young girls look at it being able to relate but feel empowered that they can one day do the same in any form, despite what they may encounter from others, being told that they will never be strong enough to make a change.  I've encountered the same growing up from my teachers and even my family as well as other adults.
    I have gained a lot since deciding to pursue art. I have been able to discuss things that I have gone though, that I have been scared from, that still hurt me to this day though making paintings and drawings and prints. Even if its just a painting of an emotion or a bunch of emotions from having them locked away to being able to bring out into the world in a visual form is a powerful  experience. I have surprised myself from how far  I am willing to go to get my point across. Those are the pieces I am most proud of.
    A lot of inspiration comes from looking at Activist art. More specifically Feminist art and art by   Women of color or Artists from different countries that have experienced far damaging events and experiences in their lifetime, based on historical circumstances or societal situations. Their work is important and extremely powerful and becomes a part of history even to this day.

In beginning my research I came across this great resource website called theartstory.com which lists a number of art movements including the Feminist art movement. It details its history along with a list of prominent Feminist artists dating back to the 1950s to Contemporary Feminist artists as well as a lists a quotes about Feminist art and analysis of famous pieces. Upon looking at the list of Feminist artists found a Cuban artist named Ana Mendieta, a Multimedia artist active in the 60s though 70s whose worked focused on the violence inflicted on the female body. here are a few images of her works.

Another artist (and a personal favorite of mine) that I was able to find on the website was Kiki Smith a Sculptor whose work surrounded the ides of the female experience, also focusing on the female body.
here are some of her pieces

I look forward to doing some more research. I will probably focus on feminist art but be sure to round it out with art dealing with other issues such a queer art and art dealing with racism. It will definitely help me personally with my own body of work so I'm definitely excited about it.