Interactive Design Gallery 1

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On April 10, Alfred University hosted an architecture based gallery by the name of “Abject Architect: Landscape Survey 1”, created by the architect, Lea McCormick Griggs. Architecture was the primary form of art utilized here, with a few photographs of tables also being shown. The term “abject”, meaning without pride or dignity, sends the message that the architect intends to show off her work for the sake of what it can do for other people for it’s own sake rather than what it was meant to be for the artist behind it.

One piece that caught my attention, named A Mountain “that Cannot Not Exist”, did so by providing a sort of gradient using solid squares of a size which, one would not normally use to give a sense of disintegration of shape. Additionally, a mound of unrefined earth is placed at the bottom of it, in a way giving it a sense of ascension, saying that earth starts off at a point, but there is a limit to how much can be done with it in its natural state. However, with refinement, it can travel upward, but lose parts of itself on the way up, with the mountain “ceasing to exist” more the higher it rises. The difference between the earthy brown of the mound and the milky-white, heavenly color of the squares almost gives a sense of the piece being “purified”, and “too good for the lower level” in its heavenly ascension.

The color white is a recurring color in McCormick’s work in this gallery, and it has different meanings in each craft. This speaks to me in the form of Twin Stem Vase, where in lieu of a theme of ascension, the size of the vases gives a sense of innocence and petiteness. This can help to realize that color itself can have an effect on the size and weight, and of how it is grasped. It can be inferred that the objective of these vases is to be shrunk down, and combined with the shape and dimensions of the vase, this can ring quite true.

Upon visiting this gallery, I feel it can greatly assist me in my construction of 3D models, both in programs such as Maya, and in physical manifestations. The increased sense of depth coming from aspects such as atmosphere and shadows are something that cannot be easily replicated by viewing it on a screen. The sheer size and magnitude of a piece alone determines whether or not it can overwhelm the viewer, or be analyzed from an overhead perspective. If I were to project an image, or just make one on my own, what matters is not only the size of the content, but how it responds in relation to the content around it. This is known as balance, and balance is a key aspect of creating art; it determines how things in a scene or webpage clash or compliment, and can help me in terms of design elements in webpages I create in the future.

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