As you may have seen in my previous post regarding my Artist Statement Draft, below I have my complete FINAL Artist Statement for Intro Seminar (which I think is a vast improvement from my draft simply because I focused on a few core ideas without making the entire statement superficial). I have titled my Final Artist Statement “Argus” to purposefully refer to three figures in Greek mythology and legend: Argus, the hundred-eyed giant who, like me, can see and analyze things, events, and ideas with precision (most of the time), and see things from several perspectives and directions as well as the possibilities that can be derived from these perspectives, Argus, the faithful dog of Odysseus, who like me is faithful to his desires to explore certain themes and topics, and faithful to his bohemian, heroic self, and Argus, the shipbuilder who built the Argo in the adventure of Jason and the Argonauts, who like me is an inventor and person that constructs worlds, stories, and artistic pieces as vessels for my messages, my ideas, and my feelings for the future and the now.
Below is my Artist Statement copied straight from Google Docs:
Intro Seminar 1: Avatar
December 12, 2016
As an artist, I work with both digital and real-life forms in order to express meanings, ideas, and concepts– sometimes in intricate, complex ways through my detailed drawings and illustrations on paper, or through simple, minimalist ways through my design work in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign. With my materials, I have created entire worlds, and have made what I consider to be my best projects– book covers and posters with subtle meanings, as well as illustrations that convey sophisticated and fascinating philosophical ideas and constructs that satirize and comment on problems in our society and within ourselves– problems such as human greed and selfishness, political corruption, war, poverty, race and gender stereotypes, and, worst of all, religious fanaticism. Because I am passionate about what I do, and admire the possibilities that can be found in sheets of paper or in the limitless tools provided to me in a design program, I look forward in the future to working more on my illustrations and my minimalist creations in order to address our need as a species to unite in peace, not separate in conflict– and our need to look towards ourselves as builders of friendships– not foe-ships, like Argus the shipbuilder and his Argo, which carried Jason and the Argonauts on the quest of the Golden Fleece– a mythical work of art in it of itself.
Just as language and, ultimately, how we express and describe concepts and physical objects in the world around us defines, and thus, creates our reality, so have I imagined and created worlds through my art, whether expressed simply and in purely abstract terms or in intricate illustrations. Like Manifestos declare some sort of philosophy or system of guidance, usually in opposition to an existing form of government or authority, so have my artistic pieces stood strong, opposed to the status quo, challenging norms rather than enforcing or facilitating them, and creating new worlds out of old ones through new forms of expression and original ideas. Taking this into account, as an artist I want to further and deepen my understanding of social and philosophical issues in our society and within ourselves that I can then weave into works of fiction, whether visual or textual, as Vonnegut would, in order to bring about “diaphanous worlds” that are mere reflections of what our world could one day become– worlds in our grasp if we learn to be loyal to ourselves and one another like Argus, Odysseus’s dog.
Experientially and autobiographically, I was moved and influenced greatly in my creative process, my goals, and in my material choices when I saw Star Wars and similar sci-fi films for the first time as a child. The epic scope and transcendental philosophies present in franchises such as Star Wars and Star Trek— and the complexity of each franchise’s respective universe has influenced the development of my own narratives whose aspects seep into my visual artwork, my design work, and my writing, and has influenced my interests in ideas of peace and justice, and in scenarios of political and social conflict. In addition, just as sci-fi films of the past and now have had embedded within themselves criticisms and commentaries about contemporary society, so will my future work have embedded social commentaries that make use of my ideals and further them towards full realization, with some satirization, representation, and metaphorization along the way. And just like Argus the giant, I see a hundred possibilities within my future work.