We already had a lecture from Chloe Brown a few months a go and she was equally as interesting as before, however I found this lecture and topic a lot more intense and interesting than the last lecture we had with her.
First off she did warn us that this lecture will graphic and full of disturbing images – however I found the lecture rather timid, I was expecting gore and really disturbing stuff but it was all below my expectations, sure some were very disturbing but not as disturbing as I originally thought.
After the warning, she shown us some paintings now, I’m not a huge fan of paintings however these specific ones really interested me. “The Graham Children” (By William Hograth) shows 4 young children all smiling and looking happy in a average rich home, however under close inspection, there are loads of hints of Death in this painting – this is due to the fact that one of the children (The youngest) in this painting passed away, once she stated that and said that there were hints in the piece, everything became clear – the cat in the background was waiting for the right time to kill the bird, on the top of the clock there was a golden Grim Reaper statue and by the girl who passed away was a basket full of cherries which represents death at an early age – VERY clever work, really found it interesting. She shown us these masks that were made for the dead as well and you had to be really rich to get one made, people used to build masks around the faces of the dead and give them to the moaners, this concept is really beautiful although at the same time a little creepy in my opinion. She shown another thing which sparked a lot of conversation in the seminar, it was the piece “Helena 2000” and what it was was some goldfish in a blender, the blender had one bright yellow button so it was like you were playing God – you decide if the fish should die or live, so many people were saying that they would press it and loads more people were saying they wouldn’t be able to live with themselves if they did, so many mixed reactions it was quite heated over a small art piece – incredible. I personally said I wouldn’t press the button, however I would press it if the fish was going to get flushed if it remained alive, giving it a quick and painless death rather than a slow flushing death. Another piece that got everyone discussing was a piece by “Guillermo Vargas”, I use the term “Piece” loosely. Guillermo Vargas exhibited a dog obviously starving to death tied to a rope in the gallery, with the words “You are what you read” spelled out in dog food on the wall, this did disgust me and made me wish I was there – me along with loads of others stated we would of scraped the food off of the wall and gave it to the dog, I didn’t like the fact that noone stepped in and done that – I’ve heard people say that there are loads of stray dogs out there which are starving to death, which is true but taking away its right to rummage through garbage and put it in a gallery tied up with no way of feeding itself is just cruel. On a bit of a brighter note, she shown this artist called Richard Mosse who done some video with a Infra-red lens, turning the grass bright pink and the rest of the landscape in a sunset like setting, it looked absolutely beautiful and looked like some kind of fantasy world, I would love to see more pieces like that. Chloe shown us other pieces of art that linked to death, some of bubbles in a room which is made from the wash water from a morgue and even a air conditioned room with the air from a morgue so its like you’re breathing in the dead, some really interesting pieces and a very interesting lecture and I look forward to our next lecture with her.