Plaza Classroom 188
|Friday, March 23rd|
"Bearing Witness": The Role of Art in Post-Conflict Reconciliation
Meghan J. Doyle, Pepperdine University
3:45 PM - 4:00 PM
Conflicts throughout the centuries have provided endless fodder for the treatises of historians, politicians, sociologists, and negotiators, who are intent on analyzing geopolitical impact, psychological responses, and mediation techniques. Less frequently, however, have researchers studied the artistic reaction to violent social upheaval, a course of inquiry of critical importance in light of today’s unstable global climate. Using recent conflict in Northern Ireland as the crux of my research, I have uncovered numerous arts approaches to reconciliation processes that prove applicable across time and space. The oeuvre of one contemporary artist in particular, Rita Duffy (1959–), reveals a gradual progression of healing, stages of which appear in the artistic production of many tumultuous periods, from the Greco-Persian wars to tension between Protestant Reformers and Catholic Counter-Reformers to the social justice initiatives of the 20th century. Most important to this project is ensuring the relevance of my work to current situations that could benefit from such practices, as informed by the conflict art of the past. Through this investigation, I ultimately argue for the power of art in the face of divisive circumstances, a conclusion supported by successful outcomes in Northern Ireland. Thus, I paint artists as uniquely situated to lead others in a process of reconciliation after having come to terms with their personal experience of conflict through visual means. These practitioners mount a formidable force when they collectively concentrate their creative capacities toward lasting peace through the process of art.
#MeToo in Ancient Greek Art: Analyzing the Language Used to Describe Ancient Greek Images of Assault Against Women in Art History Textbooks
4:00 PM - 4:15 PM
Art history textbooks including Classical Greek art are rife with images of women in situations of sexual and other forms of physical violence and assault. In this study, I analyze the language used to describe these works of art in art history textbooks. While understanding of these artworks would benefit greatly from both formal and contextual analysis, most descriptions of these works focus on the formal elements of line, color, and composition, as well as the artistic prowess of the individual artist, while virtually ignoring the historical context that informs the subject matter of these works. This has the effect of normalizing these violent assaults against women. In light of the prominence of sexual assault and violence against women across college campuses in the United States, in addition to the current #MeToo movement, it is essential for us to reconsider the language used to describe such works while also emphasizing the context from which such works arise—in this case, a well-documented patriarchal society that glorified passive women and, sometimes, acts of violence against them. Only in this way can we continue to teach about these art historically important works without inadvertently normalizing the violence depicted.
Jane Yi, Pepperdine University
4:15 PM - 4:30 PM
During the Fall 2017 semester, my colleague, Mai-ly Nguyen, and I took on the task of learning Processing, a flexible software sketchbook and environment for the visual arts. Through its Java framework for data visualization and sensor-driven applications, our goal was to create pieces that embody and represent organic and natural movement. This video is a compilation of the numerous files we created and arranged together.
As we started to learn Processing, we realized that the files we had created in order to practice our visual literacy delivered a theme of fluid and geometric movement. We continued that theme while incorporating our instincts as coders to produce visuals that encompassed both structure and aesthetic.
After creating a foundation for our collection, we also looked to other Processing users for inspiration. We chose a few pieces that conversed with our own, and modified them to fit our style. None of our pieces contain color in order to draw attention to the movement in each piece, and how it correlates and creates conversation with the following pieces.
This journey was one of the best learning experiences that Mai-ly and I experienced, as we are both students of computer science and digital arts. Processing helped us build a bridge between the technical aspects of coding and the creative elements of creating art.
4:30 PM - 4:45 PM
Alien Lands has been an academic year-long study and cross-media art endeavor, researching the history of palm trees in Los Angeles and documenting their current presence. I photographed and made videos of the palm trees in Los Angeles and ended the project with a ceremonial installation/performance, grieving the colonial history and unsustainability of palm trees by ironically commemorating them. This body of work is meant to provoke discussion of palm trees' iconicization, their ubiquitous invisibility in our environment, their colonial history, and their likely nonexistent future.
Defining Wang Su and Xinluo School Through the Studying of Figure Paintings
4:45 PM - 5:00 PM
The topic of my research is the Chinese artist, Wang Su (1794-1877) and the Xinluo School, which dated to the 17 th to 19 th centuries. While scholars have discussed both the Yangzhou School at the beginning of the Qing dynasty (1644-1912) and the Shanghai School at the end, there is a gap between these two schools. Wang Su and some of his contemporaries deserve more attention because they offer an alternative way for defining artists in the Qing dynasty. By categorizing these artists’ stylistic features, one actually can connect Yangzhou School and Shanghai School and so allow for a more comprehensive and coherent understanding of the history of Qing Dynasty art, which closely related to the politics at that time.
Wang Su is the main subject of my research, and I study his connection with the Xinluo School, which is founded by Hua Yan. Specifically, I will analyze figure paintings by these artists to address the connection between their styles, which will create a lineage of Xinluo School, and explain some possible causes for the lack of clear classification of that time. For example, I examine Wang Su’s painting of the legendary figure, Zhong Kui, and compare and contrast it with paintings by Hua Yan and Ni Tian in order to demonstrate the relationship among their styles, which can be considered as a development of Xinluo School. This study will illuminate a critical juncture of Chinese art during the Qing dynasty.
5:00 PM - 5:15 PM
In my presentation I will be using a method titled the, "Color Candy Experiment," to parallel the impact of contextual reactions in narrative cinema. Further, I will use a modern cinematic example to demonstrate the different forms of contextual reactions that are possible through the manipulation of dramatic chemistry, and will explain the impact of potentially calculating and understanding this currently unexplored field in narrative.