Art Quote for the Day

IMG_3003Media are things that transform thought into action.  All things when moved from the domain of thought to the physical domain exist in time, place, substance, and movement.  Every medium therefore consists of these four qualities.  The basic character of each medium is determined by the degree to which each quality is exploited . It is  important to note that every medium has infinite potential in each category – time, place, substance and movement. And it is WE who choose to manifest any one or more of its potential qualities and conversely to delimit the active expressive presence of the others.

Thought of in this way, the most humble media exhibit infinite potential.  To illustate this point, let’s take the humblest of all media, the cheap and ubiquitous crayon.  Instead of using crayons conventionally to make a picture of a house, a tree, or what have you, we can exploit two rarely used dimensions of crayons, time and space.  We can denude the crayons of their wrappers, exposing cylinders of color.  Suppose we do this to about one hundred crayons, the cost of about one tube of Windor & Newton Rose Madder.. Let’s suspend these miniature cylinders of color from various lengths of thread, tying each end to an overhead grill.  We now have color cylinders in space whose intervals, hues, tones, and values we can arrange to fit our mood or theme.

Suppose we now have a small fan to gently blow through and animate the suspended colored cylinders.  Now, if we want to create a denser, more complex aesthetic environment, we can put in several light sources, each of a different color.  Positioned at various angles, they shine throught the oscillating rain of colored cylinders, casting bands of sifting colors on the surrounding walls.

Why not take this exploitation of the humble  crayon’s potential still further? Suppose we beat a simple rhythm to the movement of the crayons and the shadows and light they project. If still more drama is needed for our intentions, we can stand between the suspended crayons and the wall upon which the light from the bulbs is falling and move to what we see, what we hear, and what we feel.  Voila – the crayon transformed.

No More Secondhand Art – Awakening the Artist Within by Peter London