On the 28/04/21 I wanted to finalise one of my prints for the printing workshop. As discussed with Srin last week, it was thought to include more of the black to frame the work. We spoke of censorship that comes with these ideas for print, see digital image below. Censored images means “to review something and to choose to remove or hide parts of it that are considered unacceptable” (Vocabulary, n.d.). As I discussed within my dissertation this year, “Censorship increases paranoia and curiosity. Censorship of images occurs when something is too sexual or disturbing; social media will censor it, warning the viewers before they see. The censored sign draws attention and due to the intensity of social media it develops us to have an overactive paranoia. It gives us a fear of missing out for example, if an individual’s account is private, we request to see what is hidden.” (Lockwood, 2021, p 22).
Barbara Kruger was a name mentioned in relation to text and bold block imagery of framing the print. I also thought of Kruger of her art being confrontational and bold in relation to the message and meaning, see below Untitled (Your Body Is A Battleground). As I have research Kruger for my dissertation I have an idea fog the way she work, using text to create a relationship to the image and text, to draw attention to the meaning and what she is trying to say. “Her works examine stereotypes and the behaviors of consumerism with text layered over mass-media images” (art net, n.d.). Kruger also uses red, white and black to captivate the audiences eye with bold text. “Personal pronouns like “you” and “I” are staples of Kruger’s practice, bringing the viewer into each piece. “Direct address has motored my work from the very beginning,” Kruger said” (The Broad, 2021), feels like a personal attack almost to follow the print/text. As said previously Craig Owen writes in The Discourse of Others, where Kruger is “making an equation … Between aesthetic reflection and the alienation of the gaze” (Owens, 1983, p184) and “is always gender specific” (Owens, 1983, p184).
“Untitled (Your body is a battleground) was produced by Kruger for the Women’s March on Washington in support of reproductive freedom.” (The Broad, 2021) Within the art “the woman’s face, disembodied, split in positive and negative exposures, and obscured by text, marks a stark divide. This image is simultaneously art and protest” (The Broad, 2021), she’s voicing her opinion and emotion through art protest, the spilt image feels uneasy and unusual. It makes you double take at the visual/split image. This is something I am working with with my print – the black box above the prints face feels as though there’s a half you can’t see. Leaves the viewer to questions and wonder why. This again introduces these ideas of censor ship.
Within my prints I am using pink, brown paper and black, they all compliment each other as well as the black allows the striking eye catching element on top, centralising the print for the gaze, see below. The text I have used is very factual yet opinionated, like Kruger, its raw and direct as to the imagery women have to play to due to pornography representation of women. See below. The black box really does take the work even towards looking like Kruger’s which is “concerned with not action, but gesture” (Owens, 1983, p192) and does, every time play to “the evil eye” (Owens, 1983, p195) of the observer.
As I have decided on the paper – the glossy brown print paper – I printed the black layer on top of black onto the print it suggests these ideas of censorship, but instead of the object being blocked/covered/blurred of the sight of the viewer, the eyes of the man appears to be. See below. Showing the mouth in the males breast almost feels confrontational, like you’re forced to look at it. This is the same with my projections, projecting so large in the studio space has this forced approach to look and observe the film and the consumption. The print does this but there is this same seriousness about the print as there is with the film work which is B&W, it plays with no playful colour, very straight to the point.
Reflection 30/04/21: The use of block shapes above the face reminded me of Naomi Uman’s Removed as I reflected, blocking out the women to be left as an object, instead, I am doing the reverse here.
It was really hard to align the layers – I eventually got it but there is a lot of prints that are slightly out of line like this below. The shine on the paper as well was through the colours is great, it adds the glamorised visual of a magazine type quality. I feel like the box/lines surrounding the image should be in line perfectly, not much more for error.