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Words of Maggs

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Colors, Love, and Numbers

 

 

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One-pager created by Maggie Saucedo

 

“All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others.” This is a quote written by George Orwell in one of his famous books, Animal Farm. There are multiple examples in the book where this is true. The quote and idea behind the quote itself is ironic. Equality is defined as being the same, so how can animals be the same but not treated the same or thought of the same? More importantly, how is this the same for humans? All humans are equal but how and why are most treated less equal than others?

It’s nothing new that some humans are treated as if they’re less than others. How we’re treated can be seen through the example of race. For some reason people of color are seen as less than say whites. Specifically, white men hold most powerful positions and are seen and treated superior to anyone of African American descent, Hispanic descent, etc. This has been the norm for centuries and even millenniums. The “Why?” can be a difficult question. It might be because of ancient history when white men owned all the land and all the slaves that worked on their land and this stereotypes just stuck. It can be because caucasian human beings are seen as smarter and more reliable than people of color because people of color originate from countries other than the United States, less developed than the United States or just simply “not the United States”. If all humans are equal, why is skin color a definitive factor in the way we see people?

Being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender hasn’t been seen as “okay”. It’s only been in recent years that people have started to speak up about this inequality and real rights have been established. People who love differently than what’s “normal” is another example of how humans are treated unequally. As for the why, there are multiple explanations. One can argue that it’s because of religion. A major religion around the world is Christianity. Although it wasn’t the first religion to come across the earth, it is currently is the most common in the world. A stereotype has been linked to this major religion that they frown upon people who are attracted to the same sex. This in itself has caused a worldwide stereotype that people of the LGBT community are disgusting, shouldn’t be the way they are, and in general make the majority of people uncomfortable. The ironic thing is that, aren’t most religions supposed to be accepting of everyone? Everyone should be kind to each other because that’s what gets you to heaven or eternal life near whatever God you believe in? It’s a trend all across the board that most people in power and people that lead others aren’t any other sexuality than heterosexual, and if they are then they keep it to themselves. If all humans are equal, why does an invisible personal feeling make one less human or less equal?

Youth. Youth can be something some are jealous of, but none the less, youth is used as an excuse to condemn a young person as less intelligent than someone of age. It’s true that adults are older and might have more experience in life than younger people. However just because someone is under 18 or even under 25 does not mean that their experiences and knowledge are less reliable or not as real. Some older adults and just human beings in general use this stereotype that people of youth are reckless, ignorant and have no idea what they’re doing. There are people, young and old who fit this description perfectly but that shouldn’t be a stereotype for all. Youth voices matter, their ideas matter, their opinions, and experiences matter because we live in the world that is changing and the youth are those that are going to live in the evolutionary and revolutionary world. To make changes for the greater good later in life you need the ideas of the people that will grow up in those environments. If all humans are equal, why is a number a characteristic used as an excuse to value them less?

If all humans are equal, why is skin color a definitive factor in the way we see people? If all human equal, why does an invisible, personal feeling make one less human or less equal? If all humans are equal, why is a number a characteristic used as an excuse to value them less? The answer is simple. It’s because some humans are just more equal than others. They obtain this power that the majority of others do not have and they use it. The use it to take it away from other, to manipulate others and to silence others. They use it for control, all because of stereotypes that are considered “normal,” “right,” or “justified.” Just like the animals in Animal Farm, where equality is promised and then denied; all humans should be treated equal but most are denied that right.

The Kite – Last OPTICC

The Kite

This piece of art is important and representative of its time period because during this time in this specific place of Egypt and North Africa, European colonization was present and had a strong influence. This is important to be seen because it was recently when this was painted and the time it represents was recent as well. Knowing this and understand this work can give a better understand to how imperialism and colonization was like and is and how its effects have affect the present day.

Overview: In this painting there aren’t a huge variety of colors. There are a total of seven different colors in this whole painting. Red, blue, green, yellow, brown, black and tan which is the color of the background. There is a sun in the top right corner and a kite in the top left. The sun is yellow and the kite incorporates blue and red with an outline of black. Holding the string of the kite is a girl. Her face isn’t shown so we just see her back and short hair as she runs away. She’s wearing a dress with brown triangle patterns on it. She also has her hands up. The girl seems to be running to a house that is also in the painting. The house is mostly dark brown. The doors seem to be opening. There is also three windows, one of the windows is completely colored green. The ground on which the house is one and where the girl is running on is a solid blue.

 

Parts: The sun in the top right is painted yellow. There are no outlines of it. It is painted to appear as if its radiating to the rest of the painting. The kite is in top left corner and divided into four parts. Two sections of the kite are red and the others are red. Coming off the left corner of the kite are multiple red and blue strings. The strings are dark red and blues at the top but at the ends turn the color of the sun. The girl is definitely the focus of the pieces. She’s painted in perspective to be taller than the building and to be seen as running or walking toward the building. She has her arms raised above her. One is holding the kite and one is open. Her hair is short and she seems to be wearing a dress. The colors that she are made of are dark and her arms and legs seem to be colored the dark brown. It’s unclear if she is excited about flying the kite or excited about going into the house.

Title: The title of the piece is “The Kite.” This puts more emphasis on the kite so the kite could possibly represent something and be important to the girl in the painting or important to the events that the artist was trying to represent.

Interpretation: The intent of this work is to show freedom and favor for anticolonialism. It shows what seems to be a young girl, a sun, a kite and a house.The sun radiating to the whole pieces represents a sense of calm while the kite flying high in the sky represents freedom. A kite can fly as high as it can and move in any direction but is still held under control by a string. The freedom of the kite can represent the nationalism that North Africa is feeling at this time while the string can represent the fact that they’re still true to their roots. Also the girls hands in her hands also portrays a sense of freedom like when children run free and but their hands in the air. The fact that the girl is running toward the house or that the house is included can mean she enjoys where she is and she enjoys where she comes from. This can further be interpreted that she is content with her culture and her roots and isn’t going to let imperialism control that. The sun can also be seen as hope and power through this time.

Context: By the end of the nineteenth century, the whole of North Africa, from Egypt to Morocco, is in the rule of European colonization. Following World War I, North Africa is swept by nationalist and anticolonial movements. Artists and intellectuals struggle to define national culture in the face of their particular histories and colonial realities. The Egyptian national government supports art institutions and sends graduates of the school, both men and women, to study in Europe, making Egypt a regional group for artistic innovation and training. Learning and practicing art as a creative discourse among modern Egyptians finds its purpose at first in the nation’s reformist aspirations. Intellectuals and artists are seen as best qualified to define the new features of modern Egypt.

Conclusion: In conclusion, this oil painting is trying to convey a message of independence, self-government, self-determination; everything that imperialism isn’t for the country being imperialized. While some artists were defining the new features of modern Egypt, this piece was showing the foundation of the old in the new and that keeping the foundation of their roots is important no matter what is happening to them. This is important to our learning because we know how imperialism has many bad effects on the place being colonized but no only in some places doest it bring improvement in certain societies but also brings societies together to create a sense of nationalism.

Relief Block with Coat of Arms of Cholula – OPTICC 4

 

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This piece of art is important and representative of this time period because it represents what looks like a stone pyramid, Cholollan, Tollan and a catholic bell which are all important symbols of what happened in Mesoamerica when the Spanish took over.

Overview: The visual is a stone carving with traces of stucco. Its divided into four quadrants. Starting with the top left going clockwise is a simple stone pyramid with maybe something at the top but it’s hard to see. Going down there is a tower, possible the top of an entrance to something or a pyramid with the name, “Cholollan” on it. To the right of this is another interesting shape with patterns. It could maybe be a ship or trying to represent a building. Inside the word, “Tollan” is carved. Lastly going up is a bell with a cross on it. Over all its simple looking with dark grey stone. Most indentions are clearly visible.

Parts: Starting on the top left quadrant there is a pyramid that seems to be made out of stone. Each block looks to be trying to be the same size. Nothing is sticking out except for maybe something at the top to represent that its the top of something significant. There is nothing in the sky or in the background meaning they just wanted us to focus on the pyramid being shown. Going down there is an “s” looking symbol in a block on top of a longer base. In between the “s” symbol and the word are little bumps going across, probably of decoration. There is a word in call caps that spells out, “Cholollan”. The letters are carved deep and have details in the “lollan” portion. The first “L” and “O” have lines across them. The rest of the Ls have exaggerated beginnings and endings as do the “A” and “N”. Going to the right is another large symbol with a word inside. It’s a large and wide “U” looks shape with long and short pegs at the top. The long pegs are of course sticking out more. Under these are the same bumps as in the other portion, with exactly the same number of them. This Time the word is “Tollan” in all caps with again exaggerated beginnings and endings to the letters. Lastly is the top right quadrant. This simply has another square outline, mushroom looking border with a bell inside. The bell has a think christian cross in it. Like the letters the cross seems to have exaggerated beginnings and endings.

Title: The title of this art is, “Relief Block with Coat of Arms of Cholula.” It tells us that it is a relief block which is now used with ink but back then probably used with carving stone or maybe molding clay as well. “Coat of Arms of Cholula” tells us that this is a distinctive heraldic bearing or shield of Cholula. Cholula is not only a hot sauce but was also a major center contemporaneous with Teotihuacan and seems to have avoided, at least partially, that city’s fate of violent destruction at the end of the Mesoamerican Classic period.

Interpretation: During this time a Spanish man, Cortes led a conquest on Tenochtitlán and other places in Mexico spreading disease and causing mayhem. The front of this block, divided into quadrants, features four pictures. In the lower section are the Aztec names for what seem to be the towns of Cholollan and Tollan. Cholollan in Aztec times was called tlachihualtepetl, meaning “hand-made hill,” a reference to the ancient man-made pyramid at the site. The identifying glyph is a mound with a trumpet inscribed on it. The picture, Tollan, meaning “place of the reeds,” is a “lake” with stylized reeds growing from it. It is possible that the two upper symbols represent early colonial versions of the place names. Cholollan as in the hill with a cross atop standing for the church the Spaniards built on the pyramid, and Tollan as a bell tower incised with a small cross on the bell. So the bottom could be the names of the top cities, which are placed in the Aztec empire.

Context: At this time in history Columbus found the already inhabited Americas. Later Cortes led a Spanish conquest on their land consisting of slaughters, rape and over control of Aztec cities. During his march through Mexico, he encountered a group of natives called the Tlaxcalans, who were enemies of the Aztecs. They became an important ally for Cortés during his siege of Tenochtitlán, the Aztec capital city. Smallpox helped in the conquest of Tenochtitlán.

Conclusion: As a whole I think this piece is just representing different but also key parts or places of the Aztec empire. Its important to what we are studying because the Spanish conquest had a major affect on the people, land and future of Mesoamerica. Through this piece we are able to see what they wanted to remember or what they thought was important to their empire. The Aztecs, like other Mesoamerican peoples before them, devised a form of writing to record important events and other aspects of their culture. We are able to learn what it was like through pieces like this one. Over all this is an Aztec stone sculpture that is divided into different parts representing four different places or maybe just two with the names on the bottom and a symbol to represent it on the top.

Malinche Pinche

Malinche was a girl who was forced into a lifestyle of a slave and later on a translator. She didn’t have a say in whether or not she could be a translator for Cortes but she did have a choice to cooperate. Malinche turned into a traitor when she realized she could stop the killing and enslavement of the Aztecs but did not. A traitor is, “A person who betrays a friend, country, principle, etc.”

Cortes decided to move on and slaughter the inhabitants of Cholula, Malinche knew his plans and on pg. 92 it was told, “Malinalli wished she could have relied on the lightness of butterflies that migrated on time, flown through the high skies, far above the clouds, where she would not have to hear the weeping and lamenting, where you could not distinguish the mutilated corpses, the rivers of blood, the smell of death.”  This is where she starts to realize what Cortes is doing and starts connecting the pieces that she is part of his conquest. His conquest which consisted of killing and suffering. Im sure this is something she knows is wrong and the fact that it should not be happening.

Later in the book she has a nightmare about the massacre of the Great Temple. In her dream and after she awakens she analyzes what it means. On page 137 it’s described as, “Malinalli’s heartbeat grew faster as sarrow ran through her veins. To calm herself, she closed her eyes and tried to think of nothing. She did not want to see the sign of calamity.”  They key word here is “sorrow” and the key phrase is“tried to think of nothing”. Both of these have a direct correlation with emotion. Sorrow is more of a feeling caused by deep distress. When you try to think of nothing it’s usually because you don’t want to think of something. This something is usually something agonizing or distressful. Unconsciously in her mind and in her heart she recognized how much pain and agony actually went on in this event. At this point she knows that Cortes is uncaring and brutal to innocent people.

Reading this text I was actually in awe of how supportive some evidence was to categorizes Malinche as a traitor. She clearly states the fact that she is one of the causes of so much destruction and pain. “The tongue was the cause of everything. Malinalli had destroyed Montezuma’s empire with her tongue. Thanks to her words, Cortes had made allies that ensured his conquest.” (pg. 158).  If this doesn’t say it than I don’t know what does. She was the tongue. She was the make it or break it factor in this portion of history. She understood that she was a necessary factor to what happened to the people in the Americas.

The definition of betrayal is, “To expose to danger by treacherously giving information to an enemy.” This was her whole purpose. Even at time not giving but enabling Cortes and the spanish to have it. Betrayal is in the definition of traitor and betray is exactly what she did. She was forced to be someone and something she didn’t want to be. She was forced to be a part of something gruesome and destructful but she didn’t have to force others to be a part of it.

Creation of Adam – OPTICC 3

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The most famous section of the Sistine Chapel ceiling is Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam.  This scene is located next to the Creation of Eve, which is the panel at the center of the room. Adam is one the left while God is on the right.

OverviewIn this painting there aren’t many bright colors. Its all skin tone colors. Adam is laying on a rock with his body concaving with his hand stretched out whereas God’s is convex and his arm is reaching out toward Adam. God is shown inside a floating nebulous form made up of  pink drapery and other figures.  The form is supported on angels who fly without wings, but whose flight is made clear by the drapery which whips out from underneath them. God is depicted as an elderly, yet muscular man with grey hair and a long beard. Adam is more or less unenthusiastic toward God reaching out to him. His head position and body position support the idea that he doesn’t seem too grateful for what God is giving.

Parts: One of the major parts of this piece is the hands. God’s hand is reaching out and wants to touch Adam or almost give him something and Adam’s hand is almost reluctant. Even without the rest of the image, just the hands give you an idea or what could be happening and how they are portrayed feeling it. Its obvious the two of them aren’t on the same level or mind set of willingness or want for what might happen or what is being offered. Another important part is their positions. Neither is in the middle and they almost seem to be they same size but Adam’s body language is almost like he almost expects this of God. That he expects him to be giving him something and could almost be saying, “Yes yes just give it to me”. While Adam is like this God is persistent looking and extended in a way that says he wants to give something to Adam and is confident about it and almost longs to do so. The general coloring sets the mood of interaction of a Human and a God. It also shows similarities between them by making them the same color.

Title: The title is Creation of Adam. In the art God isn’t really physically producing him which tells us that God could be trying to give Adam something that creates him or creates qualities of what “man” should be like and have. Creation is to make and in this gave give life to or just giving something to help contribute to something new. It says that this visual portrays giving and receiving.

Interpretation: Screen Shot 2015-12-09 at 10.41.17 PM.pngGod is surrounded by various angles and a women and together they are encompassed by a drape or cloth of pink. If you look at it in a general sense you can see that this nebula of heavenly creatures looks like a brain. It is actually a pretty good representation of the brain and the neurologic structure. These are just simple lines outlining the structure but looking closer at the painting you could probably find more similarities. So because this is a brain and God is part of it, it seems that God is giving knowledge to Adam. As well as knowledge this could be wisdom or even just intellect. And God is trying to hard to touch Adam with this an give it to me but however all Adam seems to be doing is enthusiastic receiving it. God’s face almost looks in distress because he is straining himself to give intellect to someone who is interested in receiving it.

Context: Michelangelo’s work was created at a time when scholars and statesmen as well as artists were adopting humanist ideals. At the core of Humanism was the study of Greek and Roman arts and sciences. By applying the lessons learned from the ancients within the context of Christianity, it was believed that the great civilizations of the past could be not merely imitated, but also surpassed. For artists like Michelangelo, this meant modeling Christian subjects on the idealized nudes of classical antiquity.

Conclusion: It is important and interesting to see, point out and understand the neurological structure in the painting, and also to see that the larger image encompassing God is compatible with a brain. Michelangelo portrays that what God is giving to Adam is the intellect, and thus man is able to “plan the best and highest” and to “try all things received”. It’s also impressive he did this on a ceiling looking up.

3rd six weeks readin

I’ve finished, The Ballard of the Sad Cafe, Siddhartha, Prisoner of Heaven, Vacation, Everfound, and am currently reading The Wind up Bird Chronicles. My favorites were, Everfound, and The Prisoner of Heaven. Those were the most interesting and descriptive. But I think the book I’m reading now is out beating all of them.

Neuroanatomic Structure – Creation of Adam – Michelangelo

Surrounded by angels

Engulfed by air

 

Adam is not an angel

He knows no prayer

 

God,

Untouchable; remote from man.

 

Adam,

Receiving a throat from God.

 

Their bodies and their feet.

They are all together in pink.

 

They are a brain.

This is the intellect.

 

So

 

Surrounded by angels.

Encompassed by silk.

 

God giving.

Adam receiving.

 

To the man on the rock,

From the man in the sky.

 

Flowing out is the intellect,

That will soon multiply.

  

Windmill Comic of Power (plus Artist Statement)

I have created a comic in a windmill structure. The over piece represents the conversation between Creon and Haemon in the play Antigone and reflects on both of the character’s personality. Each page either represents Creon and Haemon. Creon is represented by a male like he is in the play, but I decided to represent Haemon with familiar female and different pictures from her life. The male was asked to pose for his pictures while my female’s pictures were collected over time. Each image was placed in a certain order to represent the conversation.

My comic is meant to be read in a humorous way. Some pictures I used are also funny, along with the dialogue said. My dialogue is a condensed version of the actual dialogue between Creon and his son Haemon in the play Antigone. Each person’s words consist of slag aspects. Their text is in comic speech bubbles to go along with my genre of work. Each picture is glued to one side of the paper. The pictures to represent Creon have a black background and the ones to represent Haemon have a light blue background. The whole piece is glued to a circular board which allow the spectator to be able to pick it up to read the text and view each image.

What influenced me the most was my past pieces. All the pieces I’ve done before have been serious and/or emotionally sophisticated; I wanted to try something different this time by incorporating humor as well as using images rather than words. I traditionally keep to written form of work but decided to take a step outside the box and try something new.

The message I’m trying to convey and help to understand is yes power is an important subject and yes it’s sophisticated but that doesn’t mean any and all things sophisticated have to be explained, shown or represented in the same way. Sometimes to understand our brains need a break from serious words and be convinced by something like a comic that makes you laugh or pictures that allow the looker to make out their own interpretations to understand better. Another message about power itself is that yes most often the person in charge has the most power, in this case the king Creon, but it doesn’t meant that that power cannot be challenged. And most often when it is challenge it does make a difference is a way only the possessor of power knows or feels. The threatening feeling of power can consciously or unconsciously affect the structure of power from that point on.

I’m showing this power shift through a conversation of Haemon and Creon that is an important part of the play Antigone. I believe this conversation in Antigone Is an actual power shift itself in the play. My piece is a condensed, humorous version of it. In this piece Haemon is challenging Creon’s power and in a way Creon feels this as a threat because he is starting to realize is power is being challenged and many people are starting to question him and his decisions.

Relief with Saint Peter Martyr and Three Donors – OPTICC 2

This work of art is important and relevant to this time period because its portraying Saint Peter Martyr. His family belonged to a religious sect called the Cathars meaning “pure ones”, which were popular in the region of Verona at that time. The Cathars were perceived as dangerous as they spread the word that Rome had betrayed and corrupted the original purity of the message of Christianity.

Overview: This piece is called a Relief which is type of sculpture technique. There are several layers of borders that surround the core of the art piece. The main part consists of a man which is Saint Peter Martyr extending his two hands on two out of the three kneeling donors. The donors and Saint peter are looking to their right. They all seem to be wearing some kind of gown or cloak. The three donors have their hands together in front of their chest and their bodies are turned the same way they are looking. The middle donor has their hands crossed in front of them and not in a praying position. Behind them seems to be some type of curtain.

Parts: The elements in this art like the kneeling nobles, the direction of which each individual is looking and the fact that St. Peter Martyr has his hands over an on two of the nobles really seems to display the influence and emphasis on religion at this time and why it’s important for something like a tomb. The kneeling nobels support the idea that religion is important and should be respected and to some people held very highly. Keeling is a sign of respect as well as a sign of focus for what they are kneeling for/to. The fact that they’re all looking in the same direction symbolizes unity which is something religion can implicate. Looking in the same direction also gives off an almost unconscious agreement of harmony and consensus. Hands on top of the outer novels by St. peter again displays community because with that position they are all connected also showing protection and safety within them.

Using white marble, a relief technique and black dots on the eyes as just some principle designs contribute to the illustration a great amount. It represents how how sophisticated religion was seen as. Using marble and a relief technique is an advanced time consuming, detailed oriented approach which suggests that the artist thought that the message he was trying to convey and project was important and influential. The detailed dots on they eyes don’t give the characters a ghostly looking appearance, rather they give them an appearance of an actual human experiencing reality and displaying entity.

Title: The title is Relief with Saint Peter Martyr and Three Donors, The Cloisters Collection. This tells us exactly who kneeling people and exactly who the hand standing above them are. It also tells us that this wasn’t just a piece by itself but goes along with other pieces in this collection.

Interpretation: What is happening in this piece is a little hard to interpret I think without the other panels and without knowing whose tomb or grave that was placed on. But to have such a detailed piece on place on a tomb I would imagine that the person had a great impact on people. I believe St. Peter and his three kneeling novels are maybe looking to God and praying to him for help or for unity. The palm of martyrdom in his right hand represents the victory of martyrs, or the victory of spirit over the flesh so in this case could be indicating that St. Peter martyrdom was a victory as was the death of the person in the tomb or grave. The kneeling and identical positions and looks in the same direction could be a sign of respect and honor for the person as well.

Context: At this time around 1340 England has gained control over the english channel; right after they unsuccessfully tried to invade northern France. Giovanni Boccaccio also completes Il Filostrato, which is actual a poem written about a book.

Conclusion: Overall the piece portrays sophistication and advances in design and concept. Its appearances is clean and smooth. The white marble adds elegance. The details in the art elements and design principles like the borders, relief technique and detailed eyes contribute to the message of culture and religion. It’s obvious that these were important aspects and characteristics of people, settings and society in Medieval Middle ages. As a whole this piece is a success in convincing anyone viewing, consciously or unconsciously that this theme and message was held to a high standard during this time. Giovanni di Balduccio uses symbolism and visual guides to show the viewers an ample amount of information to tell Saint Peter Martyr’s story in a small amount of space as well as revealing the importance of using a tomb as a honorary monument at this time.

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