This is a long post, be aware! Don’t say I didn’t warn you. (or you can just read the bolded paragraphs and skip the rest)
A lot of people have been asking me about the drawing behind this logo. It was actually a small portion of a 20”X30” drawing I did on illustration board with black marker about 4 years ago during my freshman year in college. It was the final project for an art class that required us to take into consideration of all the materials learned throughout the quarter and come up with a drawing, painting, or any form of art presentation.
Art critic John Berger, in his article “Ways of Seeing,” he depicts the idea of how important images are because they represent the act of seeing in the human nature. Berger discusses how images are more precise than literature by using the example of little children look at things before they can speak thus demonstrates the concept of “seeing comes before words.”
We, as human beings, are constantly observing and seeing things in our surroundings. The reason that people generate different analysis of a same image is because we are influenced by our past, knowledge, and beliefs. The idea of many of the original great art works no longer send out the sole message of the artist due to the enormous amount of replication all over the world.
Therefore, as a constant observer myself, I wanted to base my art work on Marcel Duchamp’s readymade idea combining it with one of my favorite artists Simon Evans’s text-based style and his concept of using everyday items to create imaginative illustrations.
One of Marcel Duchamp’s most famous readymades was called Fountain, which he took an ordinary standard urinal and signed by the artist with the pseudonym “R. Mutt.” This piece was submitted to include in an art exhibition of the Society of Independent Artists in New York. However, it was rejected and suppressed due to the lack uniqueness. It was said Fountain was “nothing but an ordinary object” and the urinal “violated the bounds of good taste.” Fountain was a direct challenge of the very ideals of art, and from this also sparked countless others to question, “What is good art? Duchamp’s readymade was groundbreaking because it opened the door to conceptual art even though some argue that whether it is art or not. However, Fountain outrageously subverted notions of art and creativity, and it was also the first time people could then begin to look at everyday objects anywhere around them and think of them as art.
I was fascinated and heavily influenced by Duchamp’s idea of turning everyday objects to some forms of art work. I wanted my work to be one of a kind and impossible to make any replication of it. My central concept is to recreate a “Alice in the Wonderland” scene and demonstrate the ideas of “starting from the roots,”“organic lifestyle,” and “back to the basics.” You can see that my drawings here are not just lines and circles, there are things such as ladybugs, fish, trees, ocean waves, ginkgo leaves, flowers, carrots, houses, balloons, bees, stars, and many many more! There is a giant flower in the middle and if you look closely, you will see that the leaves of the flower are ACTUAL LEAVES (that I collected outside my friend’s dorm)! The 2 leaves are my “readymade” component of this piece and they also represent the organic element and the nature.
As technology advances, people forget where they come from, the roots, and forget to appreciate what the world has to offer. Through this drawing, I hope that people will start living an organic lifestyle and find positive meaning in everyday life even in the tiniest or simplest form.
This drawing is my favorite piece of all my art works. So I pretty much use it everywhere.