Thursday, June 4, 2015

Cartoons at the Luce Center

I was able to make it yesterday for the weekly drawing session at the Luce Center in American Gallery of Art/Portrait Gallery.  I enjoy it whenever I do make it.   One of the interns usually makes an assignment.  The assignments can be very diverse, but always focus on using the art in the center as the subject.  We have made drawings showing perspective, dimensions, energy and all sorts of things.  I am probably not describing it very well, but this is a center that has a lot of art and so plenty of material.

Today, I arrived hoping for some classic drawing experience, but that was not to be.  The challenge was to create a cartoon with a story, based on something in the exhibits.  

I have been working from items in  a particular case in the exhibits to do my challenges.  It is some random items from the archives of Nam June Paik.  They include both his works of art and materials he wanted to have on hand to create art.  They are totally random to me, but had meaning to him. The case display is relatively small--about 12 feet wide, 8 feet tall, and 3 feet deep.  Plus, everything is behind glass....but I love it.

I wasn't particularly inspired by the challenge, but trusted the process.  I noticed that a small statue of Beethoven is close to a large bust of Elvis.  I got to work on Elvis, but still didn't have an idea for a story.  I wanted to make it cartoonish.

My first drawing was Elvis (above). It doesn't look at all like the bust, actually.  Next to that bust, is a small robot.  I looked it up on-line and found out it was a lamp.  It seemed like the lamp and Elvis could have had a conversation, but Beethoven kept interesting me.  Eventually, I decided on conversations between modern items in the case and Beethoven.  What emerged is silly, and that is what it was meant to be.  Elvis announces he is The King.

Beethoven responds, "...that is not my kind of music"   Above is my rather crude cartoon of the Beethoven figurine.

The Robot Lamp claims that it can light up the room,

And the same Beethoven (I did him on a separate sheet of paper so I could move him along the strip and not have to redraw him) responds that the lamp is not beautiful.

I had time for another drawing, which is an old Sony TV that Paik had identified as "12" with a strip of masking tape.

The TV brags about bringing the world to you.  Beethoven responds that he just wants a simple, beautiful life.

All this is rather silly, but it was fun at the end when we got to see how each person approached the assignment.  We had two totally new sketchers, with about 15 participating.  I love to meet people who haven't sketched and then just do it.

Apologies for the quality of the photos.  I have a new computer and therefore new referred to as apps.   I am having trouble getting used to it, but I think it will be good once I learn the tricks.  The paper was ecru, so that is why it looks a little yellowish.

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