The Godfather of Fashion: The Life and Legacy of Karl Lagerfeld

On the 19thFebruary 2019, the fashion world was shocked when news broke that the legendary Karl Lagerfeld had died from complications of pancreatic cancer. Lagerfeld’s death caused a great deal of upset and anguish amongst the fashion industry, due to the fact that he was such an influential figure in modern fashion. It was so beautiful to see designers, creative directors, fashion editors and models alike coming together to grieve the loss of such a well-known figure and sharing stories on the way in which he had impacted and changed their lives.

The German designer’s entrance into the fashion industry began when he entered and won a coat design competition in 1955, sponsored by the International Wool Secretariat. Soon after this, he was hired by Pierre Balmain and worked as his assistant then apprentice for three years. It was under Balmain that Lagerfeld was able to attain some of the skills that would help propel his career in the fashion industry and help him to become the celebrated icon that he was. After working with Balmain, Lagerfeld became the artistic director for the French brand Jean Patou in 1958. Here he designed 10 couture collections spanning over a 5-year tenure and honed his talent as a craftsman and couturier.

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Karl Lagerfeld with Gitta Shilling at Jean Patou, 1959

In 1964, he went to Rome to study art history and work for Tiziano, whilst freelancing for an array of brands including Chloé, Valentino, Charles Jourdan and Valentino. During all this time, Lagerfeld remained a relatively unknown figure, except to those who possessed vast knowledge about the fashion industry. It wasn’t until 1967 when he was hired by Fendi that Lagerfeld began to gain critical acclaim. He was initially hired to modernise the brand’s fur line but due to his ground-breaking designs. Lagerfeld remained at Fendi until he died.

The height of Lagerfeld’s fame came when he was hired by Chanel in the 1980s. It was a decade after the death of the brand’s founder, Coco Chanel, and it was considered to be a near dead brand due to lack of a cohesive creative vision.

Lagerfeld’s work at Chanel had an undeniable impact on the fashion industry. Coco Chanel believed in the empowerment of women through clothing and was a revolutionary in her own right as she was able to create clothes that were both feminine, liberating and inspiring. Lagerfeld is known to have said: “what I do, Coco would have hated. The label has an image and it’s up to me to update it. I do what she never did. I had to find my mark. I had to go from what Chanel was to what it should be.”

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Fendi, Autumn/Winter, 2014

He believed that the highly effeminate and ladylike image that Chanel had at the time was not applicable to the modern fashion climate. Instead, he wanted to experiment with fabrics and styles and, create a more sensual and slightly provocative version of this established fashion house. The most iconic change to Chanel under Lagerfeld was the creation of the now famous interlocked “CC” logo, as a representation of the founder’s name. In addition, Lagerfeld was able to stay ahead of trends, making striking desjgns whilst keeping an element of the traditional Chanel, through his use of tweed and pearls. For me, his incorporation of classic Chanel designs during the grunge movement in the 90s was inspired and something very few designers were able to execute with such finesse; a true testament to his creative genius.

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Chanel, Spring/Summer, 1994

Lagerfeld also redefined fashion shows by creating the most extravagant, creative and impressive shows possible. Every season, he never failed to transform Paris’ Grand Palais to match his unique vision, be it a carousel, a decadent buffet or a man-made street with peaceful protest. My personal favourite was the Chanel supermarket for their Fall/Winter 2014 show, where he recreated a traditional market embellished with the brand’s monogram.

The most recent Autumn/Winter show, which fell after his unfortunate death, was one of his most astounding, creative and well executed shows to date. The show’s alpine theme served as a magical and ethereal backdrop for the elaborate designs which highlighted the glamour and chicness of “chalet life.” The show’s finale saw many models shedding tears, mourning the loss of such a loved figure. Although he was not there, his presence was certainly felt.

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Chanel, Autumn/Winter, 2019

For me and many other fashion lovers, Karl Lagerfeld’s influence on the industry is undeniable. He was outspoken, eccentric and insanely talented. One could even argue that he was a jack of all trades, as he dabbled in not only design but creative direction and even photography. I was first blown away by his immense talent when I saw his Little Black Jacket exhibition at the Saatchi in 2012. Here, he displayed 100s of black and white photographs, taken by him, of his favourite muses dressed in this iconic jacket. What I found particularly beautiful was the diversity of the photographs, although all models wore the same jacket, the effect and style of each differed greatly, which is a reflection of his range and talent.

Like with many great couturiers before him, Lagerfeld’s death was met with great sadness and also uncertainty about what the future of the most famous fashion brand was. I do believe that his impact will be long lasting and it is safe to say that no one will ever forget the flamboyant German man with white hair and sunglasses. Before his death, Lagerfeld said, “I would like to be a one-man multinational fashion phenomenon”. Without a doubt, he will be remembered as such.

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Georgia May Jagger, Little Black Jacket Exhibition, 2012

“L’Impressionnisme est le journal de l’âme.”

The title of this piece is a quote from artist Henri Matisse, which means “Impressionism is the newspaper of the soul.” In the same way that newspapers report events from a political standpoint, impressionists do it from a personal one.

Impressionism is a 19th Century artistic movement that was born and bred in the French capital city, Paris. The term “Impressionist” was coined by reporter Louis Leroy, after an exhibition containing Claude Monet’s “Impression, Sunrise.” For Leroy, the work lacked substance and depth, giving away only an “Impression” of the intended subject matter. It is interesting to think that something that was meant as an insult was transformed as a means of identifying one of the most famous and influential movements in art history, and my personal favourite.

The middle of the 19th century was a time of much change and unrest in France. With constant shifts in power, the most dominant and consistent force of power was the Académie des Beaux-Arts. This was an esteemed artistic institution that dictated the rules contemporary artists were expected to follow. The standards set were often consistent with traditional French painting, with predominantly historical and religious subjects

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Édouard Manet, A Bar at the Folies-Bergère, 1882

that were expected to be highly stylised and idealised. As well as enforcing said rules, the Académie held an annual art show, the Salon de Paris, in which artists could exhibit their work and win prizes, commissions and ultimately fame and prestige.

 

The Impressionists, on the other hand, cared less about the notoriety of being a conventionally established artist but focused instead on creating works motivated by personal feelings and experiences. One of their main influences was poet Charles Baudelaire, who in his work “The Painter of Modern Life” encouraged modern artists to create works with more realistic and personal subjects. As a result, they were more inclined to paint landscapes and contemporary life rather than follow in line with their contemporaries at the Académie.

Due to the modernisation and expansion of Paris, brought about by Emperor Napoleon III and carried out by architect Georges-Eugène Haussmann, there was increasing poverty, illness, and general unease amongst its modern citizens. The city was growing in size and wealth, and its entertainment industry blooming, and while the bourgeois were profiting from these improvements, those who were less educated and well off did not reap such benefits. Also, the growing size of the city emphasised the disconnect between its citizens and heightened the rising feeling of depression and isolation. Parisians would often take advantage of lavish clubs, inexpensive prostitutes and an obscene amount of absinthe to mask their sadness.

With this in mind, it is no surprise that the Impressionists felt contemporary life would make a much more interesting subject matter than historical or religious works. With an abundance of material in their everyday lives, it would be illogical not to take inspiration from it.

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Edgar Degas, L’Absinthe, 1875-76

Baudelaire also encouraged artists to act as “flâneurs” painting works “en plein air.” They would wander the city streets, with painting materials in hand, ready to capture any moment that inspired them.

Due to the lack of French paintings depicting contemporary subject matter, the Impressionists took inspiration from photography and, somewhat surprisingly, Japanese woodblock prints. The composition of these Japanese works was the primary influence for the Impressionists as they highlighted space and enlarged landscapes. The Impressionist style was characterised by loose brushwork, with the paint being applied impasto (the paint was layered on very thick, creating the illusion of depth).

In hindsight, the Impressionist influence on modern art is undeniable, with artists like Monet, Manet, Degas and Cezanne becoming some of the more revered and celebrated names in the art world. However, like with most artists, this fame was posthumous, and the majority of these painters were unable to reap the rewards of their talent while they were alive. They were rejected continuously from the Salon de Paris. However, it got to the point where there was enough independent work that needed to be exhibited, and the Salon des Refusés was created. Here, some of the most famous impressionist paintings were displayed, and at some point, it even garnered more attention than the traditional Salon de Paris.

The reason for my love of Impressionists is their confidence, independence and creative rebellion. This was a group of artists who were in the midst of one of the most unstable periods in French history and were not confined by societal norms and expectations and were more inclined to create works that they were passionate about. They possessed

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Édouard Manet, Olympia, 1863

immense talent in accurately portraying the contemporary climate and established a precedent for using art as a means of social commentary, something very few artists before them had done.

 

A Year in Review: Fashion Milestones of 2018

It’s safe to say that 2018 was a pretty strange ass year, dominated by Trump’s tyranny, Brexit and Mark Zuckerberg’s robot-like disposition at congressional hearings. On the other hand, a lot of positive things came out of 2018, like the “Me-Too” movement which set out to expose sexual predators, Saudi women being given the right to drive and, my personal favourite, a black American woman marrying into the British royal family. With this in mind, it is important to think of events, both good and bad, that excited, shocked and disappointed the fashion world as a whole. So, in this post I picked what I think were the three most important events of the 2018 fashion calendar.

  1. Edward Enninful’s British Vogue

After his confirmation as editor-in-chief in April 2017, Enninful released his inaugural magazine in December of 2017. This cover, with model Adwoa Aboah on the cover set the precedent for what could be expected from the new and improved magazine in the New Year. When I was younger and developing my interest in the fashion industry, Vogue was my go to magazine. However, after a while, I felt that it became less and less interesting and appealing as the style of writing and the content seemed to become less relatable. My interest was once again sparked when I saw that a West African man was set to head the most prestigious fashion magazine in the world. What I find most appealing about Enninful’s Vogue is his ability to pay homage and respect to the magazines heritage whilst simultaneously appealing to the younger generation. As I see it, Enninful has perfectly united the dichotomy between the older and newer readers. With the inclusion of a more racially diverse set of models, mentions of up and coming designers and a stronger online presence, Enninful was able to attract the youth, such as myself. One of my favourite issues was the May issue, where young models from different Ethnic backgrounds graced the double spread cover. It was highly inspired and the epitome of the sort of inclusion I wish was seen across the board in the fashion industry. I give Enninful an 11/10 in his first year as editor-in-chief, and I can’t wait to see what else he has planned for his tenure.

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British Vogue, September 2018 Issue
  1. Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton

When it was announced that Kim Jones would be stepping down as artistic director of Louis Vuitton menswear, there was much speculation and buzz as to who would take his place under the prestigious fashion house. In March 2018, the public learned that Virgil Abloh would be the new artistic director and this news was met with both shock and praise. Abloh, who, like many modern designers had no traditional fashion education, and was rather trained an architect. He made his start in the fashion industry by interning at Fendi with his close friend, Kanye West. He then went on to establish his first brand, Pyrex Vision, which he described as a couture streetwear brand. After this came the reason for his mainstream success and fame, Off-White which is seen as a high-end streetwear brand. This brand put Abloh on the map, essentially making him the leading figure in expensive streetwear. For this reason, I found it interesting and almost shocking that LV would choose Abloh to lead such a prestigious brand. I think they were inspired by the changing climate of the fashion industry, with more and more high-end brands being influenced by streetwear. His appointment did ensure his place amongst a small and elite group of African designers who headed high fashion brands, with the likes of Ozwald Boateng and Olivier Rousteing. His inaugural show fell during Spring/Summer 2019 Menswear Paris fashion week and it was a momentous occasion to say the least. Held in the gardens of the Palais-Royale, the collection as displayed on a sprawling rainbow catwalk, with many items based on the Wizard of Oz, a story that closely resembles Abloh’s rise to stardom. Despite my personal belief that Abloh doesn’t possess the talent or skill to head the menswear sector of such an established brand, it goes without saying that his appointment is a huge milestone for the black community. It will be interesting to see how far Abloh will go with Louis Vuitton and what he has in store for the rest of his seasons as artistic director.

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Louis Vuitton Menswear, Spring/Summer 2019, Paris
  1. Hedi Slimane’s Disastrous Debut

Like with many unexpected changes in the fashion world, the news that after a decade as creative director of French fashion house, Céline, Phoebe Philo would be stepping down from her role was met with much upset. There was equally a certain level of excitement in anticipation as to who would replace the celebrated designer. In January 2018, it was announced that Hedi Slimane, who had previously worked at Dior Homme and Saint Laurent, would assume the role of creative director. Now, I was super excited for Slimane’s tenure because I loved his work under Dior Homme. I felt as though his stint was a testament to his craftsmanship and talent as a designer, as menswear is a hard sector to master. His work was sleek, simple and classic, so one would hope that he would apply the same to his work at Céline, right? Well, when his inaugural Spring/Summer 2019 collection was displayed in Paris, it was met with immense outrage from the fashion community. Slimane had said prior to the show that his style significantly differed that of Philo’s and as a result, his clothes would be quite different. However, even with this in mind, no one could anticipate the complete desecration of the precedent set by Philo. Essentially, Slimane recreated his 80s-style disco clothing that we saw while he was at Saint Laurent and while it worked at the time for that brand, it was certainly not applicable here. Some argue that the main reason Slimane’s collection was such a disastrous failure was because he is a man, and as a result is unable to appropriately create practical but chic clothing for a female clientele.

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Celine, Spring/Summer 2019, Paris

With all this in mind, it’s evident that 2018 was a monumental year in the fashion industry, considering that this is only a fraction of the important events that took place last year. What I think is most important for us to take away from these events is the rapidly changing climate of the fashion industry. There is much modernisation and development to the sort of content that we see every day in fashion and it is inspiring but also emphasises how much more needs to be done in order for the fashion industry to be as relatable and accessible as possible.

Donna prudente, donna eccellente: The Representation of the Female Form in Italian Renaissance art.

“Donna prudente, donna eccellente” an Italian folk saying which translates as “A prudent woman is a good woman.”, and one of many quotes originating in the Renaissance that encapsulates the obsession with depictions of women that is emblematic of the era.

The “Renaissance” is a French word, meaning rebirth, and is used to define a period from the 14thCentury to the 17thCentury, a time of cultural revival and renewed interest in classical antiquity. This rebirth touched multiple sectors of society, namely Literature, Philosophy, Science, Music and most importantly, for the purposes of this post, Art and Architecture. This occurred in a time of growing wealth throughout Italy, particularly in the Catholic Church, and saw more and more works of art being commissioned not only by independent patrons but by Popes throughout the centuries, thus heightening the status of artists of the age.  Unsurprisingly, however, despite the profound socio-economic transformation, women encountered a negligible improvement in autonomy and independence, and were often seen as extensions of their male relations – be they fathers or husbands. More on that in a moment.

Back to the Renaissance, with its style which saw stylists and artists strive for perfection, or as close to it as is humanly possible. Artists like Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo da Vinci led this movement by creating highly idealised works of awe-inspiring beauty, whilst simultaneously making use of mathematical precision.

This obsession with both stylistic and realistic perfection was most visible in the Renaissance depictions of women, among which the three most common representations of women were women of court, the Virgin Mary and mythical women.

In the most obvious case of life imitating art, women at the time were essentially expected to emulate and imitate the practically perfect representation of them seen in artworks. And as the vast majority of artists at the time were men, this therefore affected their female renditions, with their works often being a projection of their own fantasy of the female form.

Consequently, there appeared a dichotomy between the different depictions of women in art works: some were sexualised and objectified – often depicted in the nude – while others were idealised in their facial features.

  • Contemporary Women

Due to the growing wealth and status of many families at the time, particularity those in Florence, they were more and more inclined to commission portraits of their family members which would encapsulate said wealth and status. It was not uncommon to include all members of their family and the court, and thus the female members of the family. Women of the court fell into one of two categories: wife and mother or daughter, or potential wife. Despite this distinction, both groups of women were expected to be represented in almost the same way, though in the depictions of the wives it was important to highlight their fertility and beauty. All the same, while men were portrayed as most puissant and intellectual, women were used as symbols of wealth as they were often clothed in heavily adorned dress, emphasising the status of their family. Furthermore, it was not uncommon for women to be depicted with children or animals, by way of highlighting their maternal traits and ability to care for others. For the daughters of the court, it was essential for them to be as beautiful and desirable as possible for potential suitors, hence why their facial features were highly idealised.

 

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Bronzino, Portrait of Eleanor of Toledo. 1545 & Leonardo da Vinci, Lady with an Ermine, 1489-90

 

  • The Virgin Mary

The Virgin Mary, often called the Madonna, was another popular subject for Renaissance artists arising from the fact that the majority of works commissioned at the time were done by the Vatican. The Madonna was a symbol of purity, faith and maternity – characteristics expected of women at the time. Despite being held to such a high standard, her existence is in itself paradoxical as for contemporary women, the “Immaculate Conception” was an unattainable goal set for them by patriarchs.

 

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Raphael, Madonna del Cardellino, 1505-06 & Titian, The Aldobrandini Madonna, 1532
  • Mythical Women

Lastly, we have the representation of mythical female figures, with Venus as the most popularly. As the most represented mythical goddess of love and beauty, her rendition is (unsurprisingly) often in the nude, and she is portrayed as a submissive object that is worthy of admiration and desire. This objectification of the female mythical nude represents not only innocuous male fantasy but is yet another form of patriarchal oppression in how it sets unrealistic expectations for the female spectators of who view the works.

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Botticelli, The Birth of Venus, 1484-86 & Titian, Venus of Urbino, 1534

All in all, these different representations give us an insight into the way people thought of women at the time. Unlike the modern, not all women were objectified and sexualised. Although they were merely extensions of their male relations, women of the court were able to maintain their dignity and purity in a way that mythical women were not able to. These were highly sexualised and served as fulfilment for male fantasies, as male artists chose not to portray real women in the nude in order to restrict women by suggesting that their only realistic aspiration was one of incredibly wealthy and beautiful women.

Stefano & Domenico: back on their bullshit

Recently, Italian fashion house – Dolce and Gabbana – found itself in the midst of yet another controversy after releasing highly offensive and racist videos. The videos, which featured an Asian model struggling to eat Italian food with chopsticks, were released as a supposed “Tribute to China” and were meant to promote their upcoming show in Shanghai.  After being posted, the videos sparked public outrage as they perpetuated the antiquated stereotype that the Chinese lacked refinement and are so unintelligent that they were unaware of how to eat foreign foods. What is particularly interesting is the fact that the Chinese audience themselves were in fact the target audience, so I am curious as to how the designers thought the videos would play out.

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#DGlovesChina ? More like #DGdesperateforthatChineseRMB lol.  In a bid to further appeal to luxury's covetable Chinese consumers, @dolcegabbana released some hella offensive “instructional” videos on the usage of chopsticks.  Pandering at it's finest, but taken up a notch by painting their target demographic as a tired and false stereotype of a people lacking refinement/culture to understand how to eat foreign foods and an over-the-top embellishment of cliché ambient music, comical pronunciations of foreign names/words, and Chinese subtitles (English added by us), which begs the question—who is this video actually for?  It attempts to target China, but instead mocks them with a parodied vision of what modern China is not…a gag for amusement. Dolce & Gabbana have already removed the videos from their Chinese social media channels, but not Instagram.  Stefano Gabbana has been on a much-needed social media cleanse (up until November 2nd), so maybe he kept himself busy by meddling with the marketing department for this series. Who wants to bet the XL cannoli “size” innuendos were his idea? Lmao. • #dolceandgabbana #altamoda #rtw #dgmillennials #stefanogabbana #shanghai #chinese #italian #cannoli #meme #wtf #dumb #lame #chopsticks #foodie #tutorial #cuisine #italianfood #asianmodel #asian #chinesefood #dietprada

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To add further fuel to the fire, screenshots of Stefano Gabbana’s Instagram DM conversations were leaked. Here, Stefano was seen insulting the Chinese and referring to China as a “country of shit” [sic.] and accusing them of feeling “inferior” due to the negative reaction that the video garnered. These are just some of the examples of some of the highly distasteful comments that were made by Stefano in the messages. Such behaviour did not come as a shock to anyone who has followed Stefano’s erratic and outlandish attitude over the years, he attempted to cover his tracks by saying that his Instagram was hacked and that the messages were, in fact, not sent by him.

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Messages from Stefano Gabbana that “were not sent by him”

After this series of unfortunate events, Dolce and Gabbana’s Chinese customers began a revolt of sorts; people were seen burning or discarding of items that were made by the fashion house in question. The reaction and uproar was probably the most satisfying aspect of the entire situation and of course, the designers were forced to cancel their show (probably because it would’ve been empty ASF and they would’ve been incredibly embarrassed.)

Although what happened was incredibly disrespectful, as I said before, this is not Stefano’s first brush with controversy. The designer has a habit of being a bit too honest on certain occasions and has almost become an Instagram troll. So, for the sake of fully understanding Stefano’s outlandish behaviour, here is a brief timeline of moments where Stefano (and sometimes Dolce) took things to far:

  • In 2015, despite being two gay men themselves, Domenico and Stefano stated in an interview that they were against same sex parenting and did not support gay adoptions, going so far as to say that the only real family was the traditional one. The later stated they were anti-IVF, which only made matters worse for them.
  • In 2017, Stefano demonstrated public support for First Lady Melania Trump and in addition to dressing her, he went as far as identifying her and a “#DGWOMAN”
  • In March 2018, Stefano commented on an Instagram post of Selena Gomez, saying “è proprio brutta” which is the Italian for “she’s so ugly.” This unwarranted attack resulted in Selena’s fans calling him a cyber bully; which Stefano brushed off, letting them know he did not care what they thought.
  • In September 2018, Stefano came at Italian blogger Chiara Ferragni, calling her Dior wedding gown “cheap”. Quite frankly, I think he was just jealous that Ferragni chose to wear something designed by Maria Grazia Chuiri, rather than their something from his brand.

After all of this, it is safe to say that the designers are very questionable characters who are not afraid to speak their mind, even though no one asked or particularly cares. Dolce and Gabbana used to be one of my favourite brands because I thought their designs and attention to detail were one in a million. My favourite show of theirs was their Fall 2015 ready to wear collection where female models were accompanied by babies or children in matching outfits.

Now, as well as the unpredictable nature of its designers, the brand has become obsessed with pop culture to the point where they almost abuse it as a way to make more money. To make matters worse, after their most recent racist scandal, the two staged an outlandish show for their Alta Moda show in Milan, which bore an uncanny resemblance to the Dior Couture Fall 2012 collection under Raf Simons.

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Dolce and Gabbana Haute Couture 2018 vs. Dior Haute Couture 2012

Is This Art? Understanding Art 101

Ok so imagine this: you and your friends feel like satisfying a cultural craving so naturally, you decide to go to an art gallery for an exhibition that is supposedly “ground-breaking” and “life changing”. When you get there, you find yourselves in a state of confusion because you have no idea what you’re looking at and, quite frankly, you’ve got no idea where to even start. We’ve all been there and there’s nothing wrong with it because honestly, art is incredibly complex and trying to figure it out with minimal knowledge is practically impossible. Luckily for us, it’s highly subjective and, more often than not artists present works in their chosen medium – be it painting, sculpture or architecture – and want us the viewer to come up with our individual interpretations. However, it is important to have some background information on the work that can help in decoding it. So, here are my 3 tips to understanding art and thereby appreciating it.

1. Read the gallery panel

Often, you’ll find that there is a short paragraph written on the wall next to the work of art that you’re looking at, and I have found that reading it can be helpful. They are short and easy to understand, and practically perfect for anyone who is not well informed on art and is looking for a quick and simple explanation. If various works of art have been curated as part of a group exhibition, the panels are meant to be read in the order in which the exhibition is to be seen. The panels will usually start with some background information on the artist and perhaps the style in which he or she is working which is vital in understanding their work as they are often motivated by personal experiences. It might also give you some details about the work itself and perhaps some historical facts. What’s great about these panels is, being so short, they make sure not to give too much away so that you can not only come to your own conclusion but also decide to do some personal research after your interest has been sparked.

 

 

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Claude Monet, Impression Sunrise, 1872

2. Examine/analyse the work

After having read a short explanation written by a curator, it’s now your turn to try and come up with your own interpretation of the work in front of you. As much as art gives you the freedom to come to a personal conclusion, there IS indeed a wrong answer, so do not try to think up some overly complex crap; it ain’t cute. Work with what has been given to you in the panel and use it almost as a stepping stone or a base for your interpretation. One thing that irritates me is when people look at a work of art for 3 seconds and complain about how they don’t understand it, or say things like “I just don’t get how this is art.” First of all honey, how do you expect to understand something you barely looked at?? Make sure to spend AT LEAST 5-10 minutes in front of a work and take in all aspects: colour, shapes, composition and figures (if there are any.) By examining as much of the work as possible, it is not only easier for you to come up with an interpretation but you also start to admire it more. Remember, someone put in countless hours to create something and the least you can do is give them a fraction of that time and effort and appreciate their work!

 

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Roy Lichtenstein, Drowning Girl, 1963

3.Find what works for you and learn more about it

When trying to develop an interest in art, it’s important to remember that you won’t like everything. It’s almost like trial and error because you have to explore different movements and find which ones work for you. For example, I am a big fan of the High Renaissance and Impressionism and they are probably my two favourite art movements. On the other hand, I HATE the Pre-Raphaelites and I’m not a huge fan of the Baroque movement (Obviously, I have my reasons for this and will probably go into greater detail in later posts). After finding a movement that you think you might like, look closely at individual artists because the movement as a whole may be appealing, but your feeling towards the artists themselves may differ. Again, I really enjoy Roy Lichtenstein’s pop art but I despise (and I mean really DESPISE) Andy Warhol and his work. Also, do not be scared to go against the norm, as just because something is generally well received does not mean it is for you. As I said, I am not a fan of Andy Warhol and other mainstream artists like Damien Hirst  – sometimes, even Pablo Picasso.

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Raphael, The Transfiguration, 1516-20

Gaining knowledge on the art world is not something that’ll happen overnight. It goes without saying that there are crazy amounts of artwork that are out there and it is impossible to learn about all of them, but you can try your best! It takes time and dedication and if it’s really something you’re interested in, it won’t even feel like work!