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ARHS 3620 Week Four Notes

by: Catie Cullen

ARHS 3620 Week Four Notes ARHS 3620

Marketplace > Tulane University > Art History > ARHS 3620 > ARHS 3620 Week Four Notes
Catie Cullen

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About this Document

Here are the class lecture notes from Week Four of ARHS 3620 with Professor Plante. Included are topics such as Helen Frankenthaler, Morris Louis, and Neo-Dadaism with Rauschenberg and Duchamp.
Contemporary Art 1950 -
Michael Plante
Class Notes
week, four, class, notes, arhs, Art, history
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Catie Cullen on Monday September 26, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ARHS 3620 at Tulane University taught by Michael Plante in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 9 views. For similar materials see Contemporary Art 1950 - in Art History at Tulane University.


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Date Created: 09/26/16
ARHS 3620 – Contemporary Art since 1950 Week Four Notes Class Notes  Helen Frankenthaler o Mountain and Sea, 1952  Invented Soak-Stain technique by reducing color to a thin wash and dumping on the painting  Like Pollock, she was painting on the floor, stepping into the painting as she painted  Compared and contrasted in gendered terms: if Pollock's techniques are to male ejaculation, Frankenthaler's techniques are to female menstruation  Still process-based  Never showed this painting, remained in her studio for years although it became incredibly important in the 50s  Greenberg loved Soak-Stain because it reduced the very theatrical aspect of other paintings at the time; it was purely a painting, totally geared towards eyesight o Sunspot, 1954 an Shatter, 1953  Later in the 50s, her paintings got "harder"  No more pastels, more golds and browns and blacks  Sunspot: pours paint in the middle, then draws it outwards with brushes; very gestural o Basque Beach, 1958  Around this time, she had her first exhibition – around 1957  Back to pastel colors, blues and yellows  Drawing is visible, combined with the soak-stain technique  Critiqued by critics for being too feminine or too girly  Morris Louis o Taken to see Frankenthaler's work and two years later began experimenting with soak- stain technique o Longitude, 1954 and Convergent, 1954  Not very interesting, but possible to see what he is working towards through his use of the soak-stain technique o Blue Veil, 1958  In order to make this massive painting, he put the canvas on the floor  Very diluted, liquid paint  Poured the paint along the edge of the canvas, then lifts up the canvas so the paint runs down  Amazing variation of color as paint mixes as it glides down the painting  Technically Soak-Stain, but "more stain than soak" because he doesn't allow the paint to puddle or pool o Salient, 1954 and Saraband, 1959  Different color palette, more yellows and reds  Radiance  This type of painting is called a "veil"  Gives color without drawing, totally flat; no depth, everything is on the surface  Purely optical experience, colors over white on a massive canvas  No one could pour like Louis could pour, although they tried o Point of Tranquility, 1959  Starts in the middle and stains outwards, calls this type of painting a "floral" because it looks like a flower  Expressionism, thick paint, emotion are let go and a purely optical experience is accepted  This group of painters painted themselves into a corner because there wasn't many places to go; your eyes are dazzled, but what about your mind or body? o Contemporaneously, another group of artists went a whole different way  Robert Rauschenberg o One of two artists that rebelled against expressionism in a totally different way o From Port Arthur, TX and served in WWII  When he returned from war, he qualified to GI Benefit, which was a stipend of $90/month and 4 years of college education paid by the government o Neo-Dada: anti-aesthetic and anti-beauty  Dadaism: a European art movement that came out of WWI that was very untraditional in its materials and very anti-aesthetic by working against beauty o Female Figure, 1950  Taking a light sensitive chemical coated piece of canvas and had his wife, Susan Weil lay on it  Significant because it is the return of the figure and subject matter o White Painting, 1951 (many with the same name)  Each painting has multiple different panels; sometimes one panel, two, three, or four  The juxtaposition of the panels made lines; lighting was very important and was set up so that when people walked up to look at the paintings, they would see their shadows  Idea: The room was the art, the painting reflected it  Ambient sound is just as beautiful, just as valid as anything a piano could play o Untitled (Horizontal Black Painting), 1953 and Untitled (Vertical Black Painting), 1952  Examples of his 'black paintings'  Does collage work and then paints over it with black enamel paint  Trying to position himself with respect to abstract expressionism  He loves it but hates it, wants to be a part of the movement but cannot be o Untitled (glossy black), 1953 and Untitled, 1953  No one wanted the black paintings, so he changes his color again o Red Painting, 1953 and Red Import, 1954  Uses the red paint to unify the collage elements  Using tons of fabric in his pieces, the cloth of the collage elements match the cloth of the canvas  Pre-made fabric is standing as part of the painting  Big swaths of gestural drippy paint o Yoicks, 1954  In the midst of the dominance of abstract expressionism  Took mass-produced industrial fabric (generic) combined with brushwork (personal)  Really struggling with who he is an artist  Very unhappy marriage  Love/hate relationship with abstract expressionism o Erased de Kooning Drawing, 1953  Reassigned the authorship of the original de Kooning drawing  Over the course of a month, he completely destroyed a de Kooning painting  Can't get past de Kooning, so he gets rid of him  He didn't just erase it and get rid of it; he carefully titled and dated it, put it into a nice frame o Charlene, 1954  Very large painting  T-shirts, fabrics, stamps, art postcards, umbrellas, posters, and lots of paint: very varied medium o Rebus, 1955  Rebus = riddle  Wood panels that are hinged together, applied with found collage materials, political poster, Boticelli's The Birth of Venus,  Combines o Bed, 1955  Combine image about Rauschenberg coming to terms with his gay/homosexual identity  Critics found this image violent and upsetting  Figurative in its absence – all about the person who slept in that bed, although the bed is empty o Shadows, memories of his presence in the bed  1953: Rauschenberg decided he was gay; at this time, you could be arrested for going into a gay bar and your name would be published in the NY Times  Coded message in Bed: those who knew Rauschenberg was gay, they understood the painting; there is a drawing on the pillow that was done by his lover Cy Twombley  Coded image: image where the information is available only to some viewers and not others  Identifying Rauschenberg's gay identity; majority of viewers wouldn't know but some would o Short Circuit, 1955  The paranoia that builds up in the 1950s for homosexual men and communists/subversives makes a lot of people try to hide things, and that is not very conducive to abstract expressionism  Wooden panels, painted canvas, collage elements, piece of lace draping the bottom of the canvas  Return of subject matter but the subject matter is not always clear  The painting of the flag inside the closet is by Jasper Johns, and the painting inside the other closet is his ex-wife o Odalisk, 1955-58  Big, tall wooden box; collaged and painted on three of the four sides; stuffed rooster on top; held up by a foot standing on a pillow on a base  Nude female figure, chicken in French is a slang term for a prostitute  Title is a nod to Odalisque with Slave by Ingres, which is a painting of a sex slave in a Turkish harem combined with obelisk o Factum I, 1957 and Factum II, 1957  The two paintings are practically the same  The process and planning that goes into painting: perhaps abstract expressionism is wrong and painting doesn't have to be emotional and spontaneous  Artisanal element to artist o Canyon, 1950  Materials: postcards, fabric, paint, photo of Rauschenberg's son Christopher, stuffed painted bald eagle protruding from the painting, pillow suspended by a rope hanging from the painting  Rauschenberg making a joke through this painting by alluding to Rembrandt's Ganymede in the Talons of Zeus  Naked picture of Christopher is Ganymede, stuffed eagle is Zeus, pillow hanging is the baby's buttocks  Somewhat coded because you need to know the Rembrandt to understand Canyon o Monogram, 1959  Goats are known to be sexually active, the tire relates to an orifice: the goat got so excited that he fell in o Dante's Inferno #25, 1959-60 and Dante's Inferno #31, 1959-60  Classified as a drawing because it is done on paper, although there is paint  The content and subject matter doesn't matter; rather the process and medium matters more  Rauschenberg learned how to transfer magazine images to paper, and their imperfect transfers have a great aesthetic to them  Jasper Johns o Robert Rauschenberg's lover, also sought to return to subject matter and move away from the dominance of abstractionism  Their art looks nothing alike, but their partnership  "For five years, I painted only for Jasper." - R. Rauschenberg o By the early 60s, people were being to suspect that they were together so they broke up and went our separate ways  So paranoid that people would find out they were gay  If people knew, it could destroy their career  Marcel Duchamp o Master of Dada movement in America and in France; loved young artists o Emigrated to US during WWI (1915) and got the brilliant conception about authorship and authenticity, originality  Readymades: was shocked to see that in America, clothes came "readymade" rather than having to go to the tailor  Altered items slightly and called it art o Fountain, 1917 and In Advance of the Broken Arm, 1917  By signing a snow shovel that he thought it was beautiful, he created a piece of art  Took it out of the world of utilitarian usefulness and gave it an art use  Installation is key, because it can't go back in front of a hardware store or it will just be a shovel o Suspended in midair; if the shovel can't touch the ground, it is not a shovel  Turned a urinal on its side, and used a pseudonym to sign and date it o LHOOQ, 1919  Defaced the Mona Lisa by using a cheap postcard and drawing a mustache and beard on the Mona Lisa  Clearly Dada because it rejects beauty; art shouldn't be for the eyes alone, but rather Duchamp wanted to stimulate the eyes  Pronounce the letters in French - LHOOQ  "Elle a chaud au cul" - "She's got a hot ass"  Juvenile, irreverent, anti-aesthetic


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