30 September, 2010
An Inspirationalist Manifesto. By Dustin Nowlin
Mandatory Propaganda- Any form of advertising, solicitation, or covert marketing, presented or present within or before the viewing of art. It is evident that in today’s early 21st century experience that no film, entertainment and/or intellectual property can be consumed without a mandatory or obligatory message of propaganda delivered before the property is seen or packaged within the arts.
The visual arts is of no exception. Long after the flirtation with advertising and product placement of Pop Art. The Art world has to reflect the world of today within its interests, and question today’s policies to furthest extent of its curiosities. Therefore the arts have to challenge the viewer to question a lifestyle of Google, Walmart, social networks, commercial interruptions, billboards, pop ups, and the endless stream of useless information, drilled into the minds of millions around the world at the speed of light. Effecting everything from critical thinking to the very way we see art and the world around us. In the field of the visual arts we must find a way to not only combat what is possibly an approaching threat to what is usually a individualistic endeavor, and not a corporate one. But also to embrace and use the polarity of appealing to the general public in a board form of visual motif, design or theme.
The visual motif of the word “NEW” has a power far beyond language and strikes the viewer, bringing their attention to whatever the message or product is. New can refer to the freshness or release of a product, New can also stand for the update of a current issue, product or development. All of which considered, “new” is a tool used to attract the attention of an audience in order to spur movement. In the case of art, it can theoretically be used to charge inspiration within a viewer when used in the right context. In this regard “new” can refer to various visual content and narrative subject matter. And when used multiple times within a narrative, each time that it is used the meaning directs and varies throughout the context, offering an open to interpretation viewpoint but also allotting to the different aspects of the subject, the artist is attempting to depict.
For example when I used this visual device for the painting “Science” its primary goal is to, at first, draw the viewers attention, describing the works timely relevance but also to discuss the many issues within the function of the the paintings main topic, religion. This tool works similarly in many of the other works, to illustrate variable questioning of the logic within the subject matter and the main focus of the piece. In “Jonquil” the mandatory propaganda is used to attract the viewer into a personal scenario, while question the overall narrative of love, the idea of love and love unrequited. But it also like many other times the device is used points out the fact that these cognitive issues are not in fact “new” to the history of mankind. These are subjects dealt with over time, time and time again. Leaving the viewer with a sense of optimism that all of these tyrannical social disorders we face are indeed not “new”, and furthermore if we have the power to recognize these issues, we have the power to change them.
Therefore, each time the visual motif, “new” is used, multiple times in an arrangement, every single manifestation of the word beckons a differing connotation of the word and its meaning or reference to a subject matter. For instance in the painting known as Science, “New” refers mainly to religion but in further analysis is can also pertain to the layers and various branches of sectarianism. Here this device may also reflect the many brands of propaganda and religion used by people in power in order to sell a certain rhetoric in a given time, this of course refers to the juxtaposition of the device, surrounding a noisy television under the element of gold below the spiraling Sun. “New” is scribed differently each time within this arrangement, asking the viewer to explore what they are seeing, some are written very straight and bold, and some are crossed out denoting the mistakes throughout history and the permanence of human error. ....
27 September, 2010
My last trip to the east coast included a visit to Saved Tattoo in Williamsburg in order to complete the half sleeve I'd gotten started by the phenomenal Chris O'Donnell, after which my friend Steve Szep and I went the next day to do a little hiking through The Mills Reservation, in Northern New Jersey. Here are some of the pictures i procured, hope you enjoy! Oh, and special thanks to my buddies Steve Szep and Corey Donohue for his hospitality. And Thanks Again, to Chris and the entire crew at Saved for their graciousness.
14 September, 2010
10 September, 2010
The Cleveland Housing Project
Drawing upon and transforming the abundance of abandoned and condemned homes for both their raw material and point of departure. What is once an emblem of the American dream and the standard form the modern American living condition becomes a symbol of the present state of the human living situation, while questioning it methods and by extension, its role in modern society.
Class, mortgage, taxes, abandonment, environmental efficiency, credit, and many other aspects relating to the current housing crisis of our time are present with each vigorously applied brushstroke of the word “NEW” emblazoned on over 50 abandoned, condemned and decrypted homes across the entire metropolitan area of Cleveland, OH. A city within the state of Ohio, which has the highest percentage of homeowners in foreclosure or with payments that are 90 days behind – a rate that is 65% higher than the national average”, According to Paul Poston, Neighbor Works Director for the Great Lakes district.
Numerous houses from Cleveland’s east and west side were selected to bare the cross of having the ambiguous bulletin painted across their desolate faces. The Artist transcends the work from the canvas in order to point out the flaws in the object of the abandoned pilgrimage while also leaving behind optimistic hints of hope. The word "NEW" reflects the theory of Mandatory Propaganda* and the laws of renewal, which guarantee the impermanence of all things, problems, housing, status, humanity, etc. Phrases such as “no copper”, “no drugs” and “keep Cleveland beautiful” are boldly scribed on the front of these structures, each one particularly chosen for its “mass communicative ability” and unique conditional appeal.
The ghostly remnants of a characters existence encircle each of these deserted structures, based out of the heart of middle class America resulting in a conscience illustration of the challenges Americans and others world wide have to face in an age of uncertainty. This observation is taken while not to obliterate the past history and present characteristics of what was at some point known to someone simply as home.
07 September, 2010
I know, I know friends I haven't been posting as of lately a lot of things have been going on since my transition into a new work schedule, but I'm back and with many new projects to share with you over the coming weeks. I also plan to use this page to share more thoughts about the arts and my humble experiences as a practitioner of tattooing. But alas here's a piece I painted as a gift for my friend and fellow practitioner Jarret Ward back in late July. Talk soon.