social realism artworks
Post on 28-Oct-2014
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SEMIOTIC Title Artist Medium Size American Gothic (1930) Grant Wood Oil on Beaverboard 74.3 cm x 62.4 cm (29 1/4 in x 24 1/2 in) Location Art Institute of Chicago Chicago, Illinois, USA Price No Available Price Elements Line Curved lines, straight lines Value Light colors in background, dark colors in clothing Light/Shadow Shadows seen between the mans shirt and the pitchfork Texture Smooth Volume Flat Space Two-Dimensional Shape Elongated and arched shapes Color Shades of white in the house, black, white and maroon on their clothing
ICONIC Subject The artist used a house with a design common in his native Iowa which used Gothic pointed arch windows which were trademarks of the architecture of the houses there. Then the artists sister and his dentist were made as the subjects of the painting. The man wore a black coat and a shirt with a design resembling the pitchfork that he was holding.
CONTENT The painting American Gothic symbolizes life in rural America and is one of the greatest icons of American Art. It shows how the people in the rural areas lived and how they value hard work and their faith. The painting, depending on ones interpretation, may consider it as a celebration of the American rural spirit or may consider it as a mild irony such that it shows also the cynicism of the people depicted in the stubborn look of the old man and the tough girl image of the woman.
Type of Subject
Portraits Source of Subject Everyday Rural Life
SEMIOTIC Title Artist Medium Size Echo of a Scream (1937) David Alfaro Siqueiros Enamel on wood 121.9 cm x 91.4 cm (48 in x 36 in) Location Museum of Modern Art New York, NY, USA Price No Available Price Elements Line Straight, Curved, Pointed Value Combination of dark hues Light/Shadow Absence of light all over Texture Rough Volume Heavy, deep hiding Space Two-Dimensional Shape Irregular Shapes Color Strong, dark colors
ICONIC Subject The painting depicted a crying baby and a shadow of the baby at the back. The shadow of the baby was enlarged and the real baby sat on the ground with debris brought by a war scattered all over the place.
CONTENT The painting shows the horrors war can bring to the people especially to the innocent ones. The baby symbolizes the massive trauma that war brings to the lives of the people. The echo of the babys cry, represented by the enlarged shadow, symbolizes the persistent calls to condemn and discourage war as a human practice.
Type of Subject History Source of Subject Current events at the time of the painting
The debris that scattered in the place where the baby sat symbolize the damage to property and livelihood which will result into a humanitarian disaster.
SEMIOTIC Title The Migration of the Negro, panel # 49 (1940-41) Artist Jacob Lawrence Medium Casein Tempera on Hardboard Size 45.72cm x 30.48 cm (18 x 12) Location The Phillips Collection Washington, DC, USA Price No Available Price Elements Line Straight Value Distinction between light and dark colors shown in the peoples faces Light/Shadow Light is still Texture Rough, air bubbles present Volume Flat Perspective Two-dimensional Space Quadrilaterals and elongated heads Color Gray background with colors of clothing ranging from orange to bluish green to black and yellow in the cordon
ICONIC Subject The subjects on the compilation are the African-Americans. Specifically on this said panel, it depicted a small diner where the Whites and the African-Americans eat with a cordon separating the two groups. The white people, who sat on the left side of the diner, didnt mind the African Americans on their right because of the cordon separating them. The AfricanAmericans meanwhile sat on the right side because of the segregation policies. Type of Subject Historical Source of Subject History
CONTENT This is one of the paintings found on the 60-panel collection of Jacob Lawrences paintings entitled the Migration of the Negro. The paintings show the summary of the migration of the African-Americans from the southern parts of the United States to the northern parts such as New York City to search for a new life. Specifically for this panel, numbered no. 49, it showed how the African-Americans faced the challenges that discrimination brings to them. It also showed how the practice of segregation by the whites became a norm as a form of discrimination.
SEMIOTIC Title Artist Medium Size Location Price Line
Welcome Home (1946) Jack Levine Oil on Canvas 101.4 cm x 152.2 cm (39 15/16 in x 59 15/16 in) Brooklyn Museum Brooklyn, New York, USA No Available Price Elements
Diagonal, intersecting lines present Value Arrangement of colors and strokes are scattered Light/Shadow Light distributed evenly on Type of Subject all directions Texture Uneven texture Historical Satire Volume Faces of persons have prominent distortions Space Two-dimensional Source of Subject Shape Elongated and irregular shapes of faces, regular shapes present in fixtures Use of bright colors such as yellow on most part, dark colors on clothing
ICONIC Subject The painting depicted a decorated general who was given a party by the elites. The general was portrayed to have eaten a lot and was joined by a bored socialite and two businessmen in the table where the newly-arrived general ate. The general also put some salt onto the celery that he was eating and there was also a waiter depicted in the painting, who served some wine to the businessman who was on the generals side.
CONTENT The painting criticized the power of the military and the capitalists through the use of satirical images.. It showed their excesses especially to the general whose jaw on one side was elongated due to the food in his mouth. It also showed the indifference that the subjects towards one another and was manifested in the socialites actions and behavior. It was exhibited in Moscow, Russia in 1959 and stirred a controversy and even then US President Dwight Eisenhower gave a comment with regards to the painting which compared the painting to a lampoon. Levine said that the general was a big slob who is a vice-president of a bank and a president of the Chamber of Commerce and was only in the Army recently and the socialite was the generals wife.
Current Events during the time of painting
SEMIOTIC Title Migrant Mother, Nipomo Valley (1936) Artist Dorothea Lange Medium Film Negative Gelatin Silver Print (Photo) Size 10.2 cm x 12.7 cm (4 in x 5 in) (film negative) Location FSA/OWI Collection, Library of Congress Washington, DC, USA Price No Available Price Elements Line Diagonal, Straight Value Bright middle portions, Light/Shadow Light was focused on subjects Texture Glossy Volume Flat Perspective Two-Dimensional Shape Triangular pattern found between the subjects Color Black and White
ICONIC Subject The picture showed a 32-year old woman in the middle who worked in a farm in Nipomo Valley in California together with two of her seven children on her sides. The woman, who was positioned at the center, placed her hands near her face as the photograph was taken in their tent. The two children on her side hid their faces on their mothers shoulder.
CONTENT The photograph Migrant Mother is one of the most enduring symbolisms of the Great Depression, which defined the very existence of the people during that era and beyond and has made a lasting mark to the nations history. The woman in the photo is Florence Owens Thompson, who was a peasant who moved to California to search for food during the Great Depression and was put to a standstill after the peas that they planted there were destroyed by rain. The identity of the woman in the iconic photograph was unknown until a few years after Langes death.
Type of Subject Portraits Source of Subject Current Events of that time
SEMIOTIC Title Artist Medium Size Location Price Nighthawks (1942) Edward Hopper Oil on Canvas 84.1 cm X 152.4 cm (33 1/8 X 60) Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA $ 3,000 (purchase price in 1942) Elements Diagonal, curved High contrast between interiors and exteriors
ICONIC In Hoppers signature painting, he depicted a diner in New York City as the setting and put in three customers and the counterman as the subjects of the painting. The man and the woman sat on the portion of the counter wherein their faces can be seen by the audience while the other man sat on the portion where his back can only be seen. The counterman meanwhile, was in motion and was looking to the two people in front of him. Between these four people shown in the painting, there was an air of distance between them. Type of Subject
CONTENT The painting Nighthawks symbolize the loneliness and apathy of the people towards their fellowmen. It also depicted the loneliness and isolation that the city may bring to a person to his or her life. The open gaps that were prevalent in the diner and the city street shows the feeling of distance that manifests in the interaction of the subjects towards one another. Although Hopper rejected the interpretations of art critics regarding to his work, the common notion that the painting depicts indifference and apathy of the city dwellers still remained.
Light/Shadow Light was concentrated to the diners interiors, forms shadows to the outside Texture Volume Space Shape Color Smooth Flat Two-dimensional Angular, imposing shapes Cream interiors to dark green
Cityscape Source of Subject Everyday Life
SEMIOTIC Title Pioneers and Early Settlers, part of The Social History of Missouri (1936) Artist Thomas Hart Benton Medium Egg Tempera Size No Available Size Location Missouri State Capitol Jefferson City, Missouri, USA Price $ 10 Million (2003 values) Elements Line Lines are fluid Value Contrast between colors are balanced Light/Shadow Light is distri