This piece is an attempt to confront the viewer with that reality that the internet, is in fact, a false sense of reality. I wanted to discuss how porn has made people believe fantastical ideas of how sex is, and are unprepared for real people and situations. I decided to have the said porn watcher (myself) be hit with reality in a satirical way by making real life issues shock the porn watcher in a way that porn pop ups do. I also wanted to discuss the sense of regret and reemergence into reality after the porn has ended, to further relate to viewers and have a flip of perspective. My peers gave me a good critique about how I can expand on this idea and how I can make it even more satirical and personal.
- Artist Statement: Group TherapyIn Integrative Studio, I used two different types of mediums, photo based media and sculpture. In the beginning of the year I used photography and film, but began to bridge this type of digital medium with sculpture in the middle of the semester, ending the year by making a hand crafted and constructed diorama. Sculpture has always connected with me, as it gives me an immersive form of expression. I hope to continue working with the medium despite my career path in illustration. Hopefully in years to come I can find ways to merge my two favorite mediums, to make work that is emotionally expressive and still fits in my artistic aesthetic. In Integrative Seminar, I read works for my final that showed the important effects of art on the human mind and society. Throughout seminar, we have discussed matters of how the human mind processes visual information and how these processes have meaning for an individual and society. I would like to further explore how the mind works and what I can discover about myself and my influences through art. Putting these types of discoveries into the world is another type of exploration, as I can see how people relate and react to my work, learning more about me and the world at large. In my work I try to express intense feelings that I find unexplainable, and even uncomfortable, in ways that make people laugh, feel with me, or reflect. I like confronting viewers with feelings that many times are not given attention, so viewers are given a moment of catharsis through my own exposition. Sometimes I mask these intense emotions with humor, to show the lightness of life and also the importance of laughing at yourself. I, Hayley Legon, am from Miami, FL and am currently studying illustration at Parsons School of Design in New York City. As an artist, I am influenced by my generation and how the people around me and I interact with the world through artistic choices, speech, and more.
- Seminar Focus: In seminar we read and discussed about the visual information that has purpose and meaning in our lives. We read texts alone, whether it be literature or video, and then had class discusses or exercises that either focused on literal interpretations of the text or reflective questioning. The most important concept I learned in Seminar was that symbols and signs have meaning to human’s only because of the processes the mind undergoes when reacting to said visual information.
- Studio Focus: In studio I experimented with new mediums such as performance art and meticulous sculpture making. Throughout the year I discovered that the exposition of the self is important for my art, but does not require actual imagery of the self to be intense and show my concept. In the beginning of the year, I was not a fan of detailed work, but as this semester has gone on, I have found important meaning in little details and the importance of creating a “feeling” or “vibe” in my work. I found my first set of projects, my diptychs, to be an exposition, but one focused on literal interpretation and aesthetics more than serious meaning. With my final project I have found a new direction to go in with my work: seeking connections with my viewers through the little things that aren’t traditionally given value.
Bridge 2: Objects Make you Cry, Objects Don’t Mean Shit
- For seminar, I found the key bridge assignment to be Bridge 4, as beginning research and exploring the Whitney Museum helped not only refine my research paper, but also gave me influence for my studio project. For studio, I found the key bridge assignments to be Bridge 2, as the open ended and eclectic assignment helped to get ideas out that would be refined further later in the semester. Bridge 4 was important as going to the Whitney Museum showed me professional examples of the emotions and concepts that I wanted to demonstrate in my final. Bridge 5, was the most important bridge for me as the final helped me to change my artistic practices and make a piece I am incredibly proud of. Monica Majoli, Tracey Emin, and Robert Mapplethorpe were big influences for me when discussing exposition and making imagery that is aesthetically interesting, shocking, and also relatable to the viewer. The Langer text was helpful for understanding the processes of the mind. The conceptual basis for my work this semester was about the importance of sharing emotions and thoughts in order to help one’s own wellbeing, and help the world at large to be more accepting and open. I wanted to make work that demonstrated serious moments for me, while still being relatable to a wider audience. The use of fabrics, woods, and metals for my final studio project was helpful in supporting my concept as the materials were familiar among most people and hold value and memories differently for each viewer.
Working Dimensions and Beginning of Project (April 15, 2017):
The topic I am researching in seminar is about how do not share their feelings and thoughts in order to maintain the perception that they are “strong”, but to these people’s demise, this type of isolation and facade is detrimental to their mental state and to their relationships with others.
The message I am exploring in Studio is that people choose to express themselves in isolated and comfortable spaces, rather than in public and with others. I have decided to share one of these moments alone that I had when I was younger, highlighting the tactical and emotionally comforting objects, in order to connect with the viewer and hopefully prompt their own emotional sharing.
My final project for studio will be a scale model of a room I once lived in for a short period. I will be constructing the room of the basic layout and color scheme of the room, but will alter the space to make most to all viewers feel a sense of comfort they can relate to. To show my mental state during the time I lived in this room, I will stitch, carve, and paint a short, poetic sentence I had written when living in the space into/on the objects I am creating. I will be using materials such as fabric, wood, metal, carpeting, and various other materials to construct a real life space. These materials are effective to support my content because they are materials we relate to, materials that hold memories for all people.
I have begun making the objects since April 9th, starting with the bed frame and mattress. I have decided to build the objects first before building the wooden box that will contain said objects as it will give me more flexibility and flow when working with feel rather than measurements. I have found that making these objects and touching them has already made me connect with the piece and feel the sense of comfort I am looking for. Next I will be making the duvet cover and begin stitching the words into it. I need to go to a fabric store and choose the right fabric to emulate the feelings I want.
For next week’s class I expect to have the bed finished and completely assembled, and hopefully begin working on the curtains that I will be constructing.
Construction of First Objects (April 22, 2018):
Since the last class, I finished the construction of the bed. I glued all the bed frame components together and created the duvet cover. I used an old wool vest from a thrift store to make the duvet and random fabric I found to make the lettering. At first I experimented with using other parts of the vest for the lettering (the blue letters), but found the material to stand-offish and quite hard to work with. I liked the look of the grey letters, but wanted them to be smaller, as I wanted the words to look like apart of the blanket, not another thing on top of it. The curtains were made of muslin. The dresser is a smaller part of a jewelry box I had when I was a kid.
I’m planning on fixing the bed frame a little, as it is very fragile and needs reinforcement.
My group today was happy with how my piece is turning out. They comforted me by saying that materials did not look arts and crafty like I feared and that my content was definitely coming through. One of my peers recommended I sand the dresser to make it all the dark wood.
By next class I expect to have the curtains and linoleum print finished, ad possibly the dresser. I will need to buy a few things for the curtains, but application of the materials will be easy. The linoleum stamp will hopefully be finished and test, possibly even having the wallpaper finished for class. The dresser is one of the most stressful objects in my room, as I am afraid of wood and of messing up of progress so far.
Continued Work (April 29, 2018):
Since the last class I have finished the construction of my dresser and tested different paints and papers for my wall paper. It was hard for me to find a color that was subtle but also noticeable with the paper I chose, but with various tests, I think I am on a good track to get exactly what I want. For next class I am planning on have the curtains, the wall paper, and hopefully the dresser completely finished. I will clean up the print before using it and test multiple colors before committing to a final.
Last Critique Before Final (May 6, 2018):
Sadly, for this class I did not get much done. I was injured over the weekend, so my mobility was limited. I started working on the final wallpaper though and it is beginning to look just how I wanted. I like the contrast between the different shades of deep red. With help from friends and class mates, I will finish the project with as much effort as I possibly can. For the final I have to finish the dresser, finish the curtains, create a small painting, add carpeting, finish the wallpaper, and then construct everything inside the wood box. This does seem like a lot, but I am excited to do the work and will have a lot of time this week do work on it since this is my last final. I hope my injury does not affect me too much, as this is one of my favorite projects I have worked on all year.
Final (May 13, 2018):
I learned a lot from this project, not only about artistic practices, but also about myself. I found that it is very important for me to connect with a viewer and make them feel exactly, or close to exactly, what I was feeling at the time or what I am trying to express. I found that I needed to push myself to create this connection, as to make myself feel intensely and also to create a sense of familiarity and comfortability with the viewer. This project was challenging for me as I have always strayed away from meticulous and detailed work as I get frustrated easily and give up, but this project was incredibly important to me and I found myself excited and fully invested in the challenge. The emotional connection with the work and my dedication to the viewer’s experience made me overcome these challenges. When I return to this project, or begin creating similar work, I will give myself more time to add all the details I wish I could have made and give it even more of my emotion. I was incredibly happy with this piece in the end, despite the difficult process; the process was cathartic for me and I could see through my classmates that my intention was achieved.
Outer Seed Shadow:
What does natural public space mean to a person? Is nature apart of a person’s identity or is it something we use for moments of reflection and relief?
What if this project was turned into an actual opera (abbreviated or full length)? Would the message still stand, or would it just become a piece of entertainment?
What if these piece became more performative? What if people were present in these landscapes? What if the acts they did were seen as disrespectful?
How could Carrion go even further to create this virtual space? How could he make it feel like the “inside of a computer”? Sound, smell ?
What is the importance of the paint in this project? What affect would have occurred if they had used real guns?
Is this a critique of our electricity and “light” use? Is this where we are headed if we don’t reform our technology use?
Is it important to highlight both the natural and unnatural sides of the cactus? What would happen if it only focused on one or the other? Would it require too much interference with the material itself?
What if the images were even brighter and bigger? Would people see this as an art installation or just apart of the ever present stimuli in their lives?
What is the effect on the viewer when these images show negative things in a beautiful way? Does the viewer romanticize these human interactions or truly see them for what they are?
La Edad de Indio:
How could Carrion further emphasize this idea of history repeating itself? Talk about other countries?
Pieces of Selected Piece:
- The details that jumped out at me the most were the colors. Every shape and color was comprised out of little colored dots that created an intensely colorful piece. The look in Felix’s eyes is very specific, it almost breaks the boundary of death and life. The set up of the scene, whether it be slightly staged or not is eccentric, lively, and truly shows the personality of Felix. The little details show the realness of the situation, such as the TV remote or the pack of Marlboro cigarettes to the left. These details show how Felix was just a human like the rest of us.
- My initial impression was that the photo was staged and that Felix looked as if he had been dead for some time. Learning the realness and immediacy of the piece definitely adds a sense of intensity, and almost disturbing nature to the piece.
The material used was inkjet on vinyl. The inkjet allowed for the vibrancy of colors and the vinyl allowed for the “professional” and clean aesthetic of the piece as to look at something to be taken seriously.
- The materials cohere by making an eye catching piece that looks clean and legitimate. The text in the bottom right corner is subtle but works with the piece as it looks like a time/date stamp on a film/disposable camera.
- This work related to the other items in the exhibit as it discusses a subject matter that most people try to ignore or erase due to what it reveals about society and the realities of life.
- Inkjet printing was developed in the 1950s and mass use of this type of printing started in the 1970s. Vinyl decals were first invented in France around 1750.
- The time period is important to understand and interpret the work, as during the 90s AIDS was widely disregarded and misunderstood. During this time many famous people were either diagnosed or died for HIV/AIDS.
- What were (and continue to be) the reactions to this piece that exploits such an intensely personal moment?
- Knowing how people react/ed to the work can help to understand the stigma around HIV/AIDS. This relates to my topics as it discusses how people react to private emotions and scenes in public areas. This work also supports connectivity between the viewer, subject, and the artist (as all are human and experience tragedy) in a way that I would like to explore.
- Are all private moments shocking to an outside viewer?
- This moment is naturally shocking as it includes a man that has died of a painful disease, but is this moment only seen for its shock value, or do viewers truly see the intense sadness of the moment? This helps to understand how the feelings are transmitted through the piece. This relates to my topic as it questions the best way to connect personal emotions with a viewer.
- How does the scale affect the impact on the viewer?
- This piece is of a large size, making the viewer unable to look away and feel as if they were inside this moment. The scale makes it easier for the viewer to look into the eyes of Felix. This relates to my topic as it shows a way to make a viewer totally submerged in a content/emotion.
Before “Felix Partz, June 5, 1994”, Bronson worked with both Felix Partz and Jorge Zontal on their underground magazine FILE from 1972-1989. This magazine, with its name a direct mockery of LIFE magazine, was the collectives early involvement with the punk movement and queer issues, such as AIDS activism. Bronson worked on a performance series with fellow artist Peter Hobbs after the death of both of his partners in 1994. The series “Queer Spirits” was a collection of ritualistic performances in five locations (Banff, New Orleans, Winnipeg, Governors Island, and Fire Island) that was emblematic of and included the queer communities of the specific cities.
Bronson through his works FILE, “Felix Partz, June 5, 1994”, and “Queer Spirits” becomes a voice for the suppressed, discriminated, and misunderstood queer community. With his first work FILE with his fellow partners showed a more radical perspective that focused on mass awareness (to the extent that they could) of queer issues. With the work I saw at the Whitney I witnessed a more personal and serious side to Bronson’s queer perspective, showing the reality of HIV/AIDS and demanding awareness of the disease. “Queer Spirits” on the other hand shows Bronson’s spiritual side, observing queer communities and showing them in a more fantastical way, emphasizing connections with nature and the importance of community.
I believe that Whitney chose “Felix Partz, June 5, 1994” for their exhibit because of its disturbing realness and “in your face” protest that the content and size demonstrate. The piece has a necessary harshness that is important for calling attention to serious issues, in this case HIV/AIDS. The piece does the cause and Felix justice on its own, no need for multiples or complicated staging, the stare from Felix’s emaciated face impacts the viewer with the perfect balance of sadness, disgust, and anger.
Thesis: Why are people uncomfortable with public mourning and public displays of emotion? Why are people more comfortable in private than in public?
- Are objects that give emotional pain the most meaningful to an individual?
- How do memories affect comfortability?
- What has the bed represented throughout history? Is it the ultimate private space?
- Native American cultures are known for their rituals that include collective emotional experiences that are supposed to be healing for individuals and the community at large.
- Are display of emotions has been altered in modern times do to the creation of social media. People are more likely to share online rather than in person do to the facade of being able to hide behind a screen.
- Emotion is woven into all societal institutions and is a root for people’s way of life and behaviors.
Research on Mediums:
I anticipate that I will have to research techniques for model making, in regards to many materials, such as wood, fabric, and metal. I will research embroidering styles as I am not sure if I want to hand sew or use a machine for my details on fabric.
**My sketches won’t upload onto the LP, they are in an e-mail sent to Bryan with their descriptions**
Notes after Whitney Group Discussion:
My group supported my idea of reconstructing a small version of my room. My group gave me many ideas on what Parsons resources I could use to make this piece, such as the embroidery machines or laser cuter. I had reservations about putting text on the carpet, but my group thought it would be really interesting and would not take away from the flow of the piece.
Mock-Up / Prototype:
The layout of my prototype is working and I will continue to use the measurements that I mapped out in my sketches. My classmates suggested that I start creating my objects first before the box that will contain the room, as they were concerned that I might be constrained by the measurements of the objects.
- What location did you visit for your visual research and what did you find?
- I visited the Met and found that the Greek sculptures, objects that immortalize people or events, all depict people with generally neutral facial expressions. This made me think of how people want to look stoic in such permanent pieces of art. This also made me think about how these neutral expressions could just be a product of how hard marble sculptures are to make.
- I visited my childhood room over spring break. I found objects that have accumulated in my room that have subtly given me a sense of comfortability in my little private space. I spent time with the objects I do not have at school and miss in somewhat of an unconscious way.
- How did the locations (museum/gallery/etc.) you visited expand/broaden/deepen your understanding of your topic? (this includes: visual, contextual, historical, material based, etc.)
- Visiting the Met broadened the historical perspective of my issue as it made me think beyond my experiences with emotion in modern society. It also made me think of materiality and what the image of a marble sculpture means in a public space.
- Visiting my childhood home made me think further into the idea of private spaces and how objects affect one’s sense of being comfortable.
- List the symbols, metaphors and visual references you put in your taxonomy and explain how/why they are relevant/important to your topic.
- The Bed –> The ultimate private space, physically and emotionally the most comfortable.
- The window –> Gives a person in private the perception of being in “public”, the ability to be comfortable and think beyond your location
- Small Personal Objects –> The objects we collect that unconsciously make us comfortable and are unconsciously given meaning.
- What did you learn from Monday’s peer review about your taxonomy that was new or helpful?
- My peers like the idea of keeping my final piece performative in some way in order to have that connection with the viewer that is vital to my concept.