Finishes up this project! really happy with how it came out. It worked most of the way I was hoping it would.
These articles provided a really interesting image into the idea of the relationship between art and war. Depiction of war can be a tricky subject. Art can be commissioned by a country or group to make the outcome as well as the actions of their side seem essential and heroic. In these situations, art can be used in a very dangerous way to skew the public perception of the situation. It often glorifies and idealizes what happens, not providing a true image into the damage that war causes both on a personal social level, as well as an economic governmental level.
On the other side, it is important that art about war is tasteful and respectful, while still showing the damage caused. Art can be exploitative, taking advantage of heightened emotions and stress to profit. It can also be to forward or explicit, showing images or sharing ideas while many are still dealing with grief or trauma. Unfortunately, like mentioned in the article, art can be abused, providing a platform for some harmful and radical groups like to promote their ideas, and share graphic work for scare tactics under the moniker of it being "warfare art". There is an important balance to be held, a sense of respect and understanding which is needed, when creating art related to war.
I really liked in these articles that both focused on figuring out what is important to portray in art about war. For some, the emotional toll and effect of the war is what is important to display, others are more moved by the physical pain and injury. Overall, I think both are acceptable forms of expression, what is important to one person is different than that for someone else. I take more offense with governments and countries trying to hide and alter the history of what has occurred, trying to hide the actions they've made, trying to repaint a different story.
There was a quote from the second article, "When Modern Art Met Modern Warfare," which really stood out to me. "Conflict is not a short term impart- it's very very long. And it makes a deep impact on people, places, and the way we live. This exhibition is about both remembering and forgetting." ( Simon Baker) I feel that often with war, we go and get rid or solve the immediate problem, but fail to fix the new problems created by fighting. With art about war, it's important that it tells or shows a true depiction of what has occurred. For many in recovery, lack of understanding of the experience of war and the pain felt afterward isolates the from most of society. The war "ends!" but the pain and memories of it still remain. Art can serve as a great medium, both for people who experienced the war firsthand to help cope and recover, and for artists to help share those experiences and events to the public.
Charlotte Wilmouth, born and raised in Richmond, VA. This site is for my work and things which inspire me to try something new. This is a blog for my art.