Miss Amber May

Digital Approaches to Fine Art

What happens in Japan…

October 2nd, 2013






Matt Siber

September 27th, 2013

Matt Siber is a gallery artist from Brookline,MA and a professor at Columbia College Chicago and The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Siber specializes in photography, digital imaging, sculpture, video, and installation. He works primarily with forms of advertisement, as seen by his billboard vinyls and logo projects, and he turns them away from their original disclosures to create his own distinct messages. His art is less about the content of the  advertisements and more about their “scale and materiality.” For example, in his billboard vinyls he explains that his goal was to “disarm the messaging system” and focus on the ad’s aesthetic structure. He transforms the billboard from a lackluster two-dimensional framework to a three-dimensional, interactive form with a visual appeal through scale and form (the drapery appearance.) By pulling away from the fact that it’s a flat billboard ad, he’s able to use these new features to tell different messages about the structure itself. Siber replicates this concept in his other project called Floating Logos where he digitally removes the support systems of various signs. He explains that the project aims to make the audience focus on the structures they take for granted every day; “to draw attention to this often overlooked form of advertising.”

I found his billboard vinyls to be strangely interesting. I mean, the public sees billboards every day, but never up close, so by having them directly in front of us in such an inviting  manner, it’s like we’re finally able to touch what is usually out of our reach. I also enjoyed his floating logo series because he finds a way to make common signage aesthetically pleasing. The one below was my favorite because of the way it puts Jesus on an invisible, floating pedestal, making an allusion to his omnipotence reigning literally over the Earth. I think Siber, as with the rest of the artist we’ve studied so far, creates these images to further challenge what we know as “art” by having his elements be everyday objects.

Jenny Holzer

September 22nd, 2013

Jenny Holzer, a conceptual artist from New York, creates an array of fantastic spectacles using only a projector and a building or a medium by which the light can project. Over the past 30 years, Holzer has created hundreds of text-based projections on buildings and monuments including the World Trade Center and the Venice Biennale. In 1990 she was awarded the Leone d’Oro and in 1996 the Crystal Award for the excellence in her work. Holzer’s designs are simple; she takes some text in a projector and shines them on public buildings. One would think that was it, right? Well, what makes these projections breathtaking is not only the way they scale their entire canvases, but also because the projected message takes into account the symbolism of the actual architecture. For example, in Holzer’s projection on the Twin Towers below, the building ends up being apart of the artwork and it helps further the projection’s message!

Image: http://boingboing.net/2011/09/07/times-10-years-after-911-issue.html

Jenny Holzer’s works make me think of futuristic graffiti, and the amount of thought put into such an easy concept stuns me. However, works like these again make me ask myself  “what IS art?” since anyone can shine words on a building. I think art is not the work itself, but the thought behind it and the idea that the artist wants to convey.

“My Little Scanogram”

September 12th, 2013



My Little Scannogram



Original scan

Roger Sayre

September 4th, 2013

Aeosop’s Dog- Roger Sayre

Roger Sayre is a professor and  artist who has swept crowds off their feet with the creative use of light and shadow. Sayre instructs at Pace University and has been featured in dozens of exhibitions across the country. In the image above, Aeosop’s Dog, Sayre hangs tennis balls and biscuits from a metal gate in front of a light source, thus casting a shadow of a dog staring at the treats in front of it. In some of his other works, such as The Flight Series, he uses light as an aid to create patterns on paper. The use of photographic chemicals helps predict how much light was absorbed through the paper; the darker the area, the more light the area was exposed to. Sayre’s style is sort of similar to Man Ray’s because it uses light as the main source. The light gives the pieces life.


When I saw Aeosop’s Dog, I began wondering how long it couldve taken Sayre to get the biscuits just right to make the shadow. As a person who cant even make shadow hand puppets, I would’ve gotten frustrated to no end if I had the task of creating something as elaborate as a dog! The Flight Series reminded me a lot of Man Ray’s rayograms scanograms because the final products look like photographs. Sitting is also similar because of the use of an old fashioned camera to create one-hour exposures. Overall I can see why Mr. Sayre is an art professor at an upscale university, he seems like a very bright man.

The insanity of Jeff Baij and the surrealism of Man Ray

August 28th, 2013


I didn’t think dirty dishes could be art…but apparently to Jeff Baij they are masterpieces. Most of the artist’s website is composed of images of randomness that appear to have no meaning (and frankly, I don’t believe there is any meaning to them.) On his bio page, he’s collected negative testimonials from his visitors, most of them saying how horrible his art and his visions are. Aside from dishes, Baij’s art consists of GIFs, videos, photomashups, Pokemon, graphic photo captions, and even scanned drawings.

I personally think Jeff Baij’s art is tasteless, insubstantial, and completely meaningless…yet I cant stop looking at his archive! Despite the vagueness of his work, I enjoy it BECAUSE it’s totally random! Since I am a loyal Tumblr user, I’m pretty used to scrolling past weird images and videos containing pointless information , so Baij’s work sort of reminds me of the things I see everyday in the strange world of the internet. If there is any meaning to his pieces, I’m guessing he’s trying to demonstrate how art is subjective and it is in the eye of the beholder. I’m led to believe this because of the way he displays his audience’s words of disapproval. Actually, Baij reminds me alot of Marcel Duchamp whom also poked fun at the idea that art is subjective. “BEHOLD! A urinal! A true masterpiece.”

Jeff Baij Website: http://www.jeffbaij.com/


And now let’s do a quick 180 to talk about Man Ray…


NO! Not “Manray” from Spongebob, Man Ray the surrealist photographer! According to his archive site, he was one of  “the most versatile and inventive artists of this century.” While he was alive, Ray created photographs, paintings, drawings, and objects sometimes for movie props. Despite his many talents, he was widely recognized for his fashion and portrait photography. He was also known for his photograms, which were photos created without the use of a camera.

I found this man to be not as strange as Baij, but strange enough that I could see why he was a surrealist. Also unlike Baij, it is much more clear in Ray’s pieces what the main message is; making his works appear more like the traditional art we’re familiar with. I like how he thought outside the box when it came to art, but not so freakishly out of the box that it’d look like it was created by someone fresh out of a mental asylum. (sorry Baij!)

Day 1: “Tropical Toast”

August 28th, 2013


What in the world is Digital Art and how should we approach it??

August 27th, 2013

Before we can even think about touching Photoshop, we have to have some idea of what digital art is. I myself don’t have a clear definition because the term itself could have many meanings. It could refer to pieces made with graphic design software, pieces made as a result of computer generation, or even scanned photographs. My definition of digital art is any sort of visual or audio artwork created by or transformed by an electronic device; not limited to computers, phones, cameras, ect.

Since the word “art” is a broad and subjective term, people have argued continuously about what should and shouldn’t be considered art. These arguments have intensified since the introduction of computer design a few decades ago.  Some say that simple audio, video, or computations themselves cant be digital art unless they are apart of a larger work, while others say that anything that a computer spews is in no way a work of art. Here’s some food for thought though. In my electronic literature course, we were disscussing tthe difference between normal literature and electronic literature. We established that literature is something that can only be read in a linear fashion (this includes ebooks on the computer.) Electronic literature, however, uses the electronic medium to tell the story so that it becomes something that cant be read in the traditional linear fashion (these stories are limited to this medium only; computers can do what books cant!) So with that thought in mind, why is art and digital art considered 2 different things? Just like we cant scan a textbook to a computer and call it electronic literature, we can’t scan an artwork to a computer and call it digital art! Digital art is limited to it’s digital medium. Hopefully this new form of art will gain more acceptance as the years go on.






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