Paintings by Dianne Mize

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Staging Expression?

In the June issue of The Artist's Magazine appears an article entitled "Portraits With Universal Appeal."   As I understand it, the artist stages his models so that the pose will provoke "...memories that trigger a variety of emotions."  While photographing his models he will give instructions such as "Look down and think of something sad..." or "Look up as if you're looking at God."  Or (and this one really got my goat) "Try to look as if you're attempting to see something a long way off."  (All this reminds me of Hyacinth Bucket in all her staging attempts to appear elite--"Now Richard, look as if you're greeting the Queen.")

But can we really stage a universal expression?  Or can we really create universal appeal by doing a painting with the intent of it having universal appeal ?  And what is universal appeal anyway?  In fact, why should the intent be for our work to have appeal of any kind?  Are we fashion designers or are we artists following an inner voice whether or not what we say has appeal?

Just a few thoughts to get the day started...

Have a safe and happy Tuesday.

1 comment:

Sharon Wright said...

Speaking only for myself, I paint what appeals to me, and, judging by sales, that is definitely not universal. I do, however, know people who paint to a formula of tried and tested mediums, subjects, styles because they have sold the same previously!
Made me giggle about Hyacinth Bucket, though, know just what you mean.