Wk. 13 Art Experience. Art Care Package


The art care package was something that I found to be quite interesting. The idea of giving away my art seemed interesting, so I decided to do a couple quick drawings to send to others. Compiling that among other things was not terribly difficult, but it was a bit challenging deciding what I wanted to give away. Along the lines of sending somebody one of these compared to a snapchat, I feel like this is much more personal. A snapchat fades away, but personal belongings are possible to touch. I think in terms of being personal, a snapchat is defined for a single person or specific audience. On the other hand, we likely do not know the person we’re sending the care package to. In the case of these belongings being ephemera, I believe there is value in them. Yes, they not be the oldest now, but they’re the kind of things that we will likely look back on in a couple of years and be happy that we have them. The art that people send in these care packages have a different kind of value. It may be of the quality that some would expect to see in a museum, but holds a different place since it was never displayed in one. Though it may not have been seen by many people, I find it more valuable since it has a kind of unknown side and value to it. When it comes to the idea of sending the package itself, the whole concept of the package taking time to get there is kind of cool. It feels more personal to receive something in the mail compared to over the internet. Though it can be nice to receive a photo or message on the computer, the idea of it being hand written and put through the mail is more genuine.On the other side of the fence, sometimes fast can be better. In many occurrences, things that are received nearly instantly are some of the most genuine. Such as a video for instance. A video can be sent in a box as a dvd, but also through a phone. A lot of times it may be easier for the recipient since they may not necessarily have something to play the hard copy with. Lastly, in terms of love being created through this package, I think it is very possible. You can sometimes emit love with a package by maybe decorating the box, and things inside very personally. All in all, this project was the most fun I’ve had with all of these art assignments. I hope whoever takes this class in the future has the opportunity do participate in a project as fun as this.


Wk. 13 Artist Conversation. Ihab Ali

Artist: Ihab Ali

Exhibition: Eye Witness

Media:Property Lights, burlap, dry wall, 2 by 4s.

Gallery: Marilyn Werby Gallery

Instagram: @ihabali

Ihab is an undergraduate student here at CSULB. He is currently working toward a BFA in Cerramics. He’s on his third year here, and says he really likes it thus far. Ihab became interested in art at the University of Georgia. He said a fascination with contemporary art is what drove him to start creating his own. As a whole his main objective is to deliver a theme to an audience with the entirety of his attraction. He said that he considers his own work to be folk. On another note, his goal is to be an activist as well. He feels that art is a way to express the ideas of activism as well as aesthetics.

In its entirety, this exhibit was really quite a sight. It used very dim lighting, as well as drywall, bullet holes, fake blood, and old tv’s with static on the screen to exemplify a post terror stricken middle eastern building. It almost felt like a maze in which people were going to jump out from behind barriers and scare you. Mostly everything in there had a very dark feel to it. The lighting was almost a brownish yellow which gave the few well lit parts of it a unsettling vibe, as well as a completely dark room illuminated by only a TV’s static. The line texture was relatively straight for the most part, and everything in there seemed quite symmetrical. The only things that didn’t seem clean cut were the bullet holes, as well as the bloodstains.

When speaking with Ihab, it was clear to see that the reason for creating this exhibit was that he wanted to prove a point. Growing up in Syria must have exposed him to some quite frighting things, and in result caused him to create an exhibit such as this. He did say that his goal was to be an activist with his art, and I believe he really hit the nail on the head with this one. Ihab really wanted to explore how terrible the atrocities of terrorism are, and believed it would be a good thing to place those who viewed his work directly in the middle of it.

In its entirety, I thought Ihab’s Eye Witness exhibit was quite eye opening. It really forced people to take a deeper look as to what it would be like to live in a war torn city such as Baghdad. Ihab’s ideas as well as my own were quite alike. Though he wanted to be an activist with his art, I feel as if I am somewhat of an activist through the way that i interact with others. So essentially, much of what he said went along with my own ideas. It was fascinating since the way in which he forced viewers to be a part of his exhibit is kind of a why in which I find myself associating with other people. I have this tendency to expose others to problems they have without telling them directly. The goal is to take an action that will not make them seem uneasy, but make them think. All in all, I thought Ihab’s exhibit was quite enthralling. I can see how many would be left feeling uneasy about it, but i feel as if it is a good kind of uneasy. Pertaining to that, it is the type that opens the eyes of others about what is happening places other than here. In terms of resonance, it really stuck with me. I had never been in an art exhibit such as this. It was quite heavy, and really made me feel like I was in the middle of the action.

Wk. 13 Student Conversation wit Greg Plantenga

image1This week I was approached by a fairly tall individual named Greg. I was in the Dutzi Gallery looking at art, and he happened to be the only other in there. Naturally, we began to talk about what our common interests were. He spoke a lot about how much music he enjoys playing. He happens to be kind of a music appreciator like myself. He plays mainly drums, percussion, guitar, and some keyboard. Greg is from the bay area near san francisco, and originally came down here for the music scene. He’s a marketing major who enjoys talking with others, as well as creating art. Greg’s original plan was to major in music, but he finds it more practical to work on Marketing since he believes it will be easier for him to get his foot in the door that way. He’s on his second year in the marketing major, and believes its kind of fun. For the most part, he plays a lot of classical and rag time music. I like your style, man. Keep it up.

Wk. 12 Artist Conversation with Tiffany Le

Artist: Tiffany Le
Exhibition: Tàu
Media: Canvas, Water color paintings, Paper, Charcoal
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Dutzi Gallery
Website: http://www.letealeaf.com
Instagram: @letealeaf 

Tiffany is currently a graduate student here at CSULB. She completed her bachelor’s degree, and decided to go on to the masters program. Pertaining to that, she happens to be almost finished since she will be graduating in May. Tiffany is currently in the Painting and Drawing program here and absolutely loves it. A lot of Tiffany’s work explores boat imagery. Many things involved include views of water, and paper boats. She made a lot of the art to reflect on trauma during the Vietnam war, and pertaining to the fact that both of her parents escaped from there during that timeframe. She spoke of how her family always was very secretive about it, and had to do some digging to finally figure out exactly what had happened. When it comes to other interests that Tiffany has, she spoke of Kenbo. She loves doing it, but doesn’t find herself with enough time to do so now days.

Tiffany’s work in this exhibit was very edgy, yet subtle. It primarily was a lot of drawings of water that somewhat reminded me of waves. Also, there were many paper boats with fancy drawings on and around them. It seemed that she primarily used watercolor, and pens to do a lot of this drawing. She also used paper it seemed to create the boats. The nature of these drawing came off as very warming since there were a lot of what people would call warm colors incorporated. On the same note, many of these drawings had little or no straight lines. The way that these came off because of this was almost enthralling.

As a whole, speaking to Tiffany was quite an experience. She spoke about how she created this exhibit based around the idea of escaping from Vietnam. Many years ago, Tiffany’s parents were Vietnamese locals. After the war broke out, life became too hectic and they needed to find a way out. Her father had to try seven times before he was finally able to escape. She based the center piece around the idea of many small things gathering to join a larger being. This takes place in the form of the many small boats surrounding the larger one. It makes sense to me because this is like the many boats escaping Vietnam, and heading to a bigger boat to make a greater journey. I can tell that she was thinking mainly about the idea of the ocean since a lot of her work symbolized that.

For me, this exhibit was quite gripping. It really left me with an idea of warmth, as well as a feeling of interest. Since I was small, I’ve always been fascinated with Asian artwork. So having the opportunity to visit an exhibit such as this as a part of school was simply amazing. Tiffany’s ideas here were remarkable, in my own opinion. I like how she created art that actually had a backstory behind it. The fact that she was able to piece together something so beautiful from a piece of history that is known for its violence is absolutely astonishing. Also, the fact that her ideas were many alike my own kind of put me in a steady headspace before viewing the exhibit. Great job, Tiffany. I hope to hear of more of your work in the futureimage1image2image3


Wk. 12 Location Based Gaming (Geocaching)

image6image5image4image2image3image1This week, we had an interesting experience to undertake. This game of geocaching in which people embark on a hunt to find a small treasure canister hidden somewhere we may pass by every day. In terms of the creating one aspect of this project, it was not so difficult. All I did was take an Altoid container, spray paint it silver, and put it in a crevasse between some metal pipes. In terms of the finding one section of the experience, I cant really say i had a good time. I went to an initial one, spent like an hr looking for it and couldn’t find it. Next, I went to another and spent probably another hour looking for it and couldn’t find it either. The third one was a successful find, but after comparing the coordinates given on the website to the coordinates in which I found it at, I was appalled. This project was fun, but one piece that I realized is that there is really nothing that stops anybody from taking the cache itself. Hence, there is not much of a way of knowing if you’re fishing in a fish free river. In terms of the word Muggles, it can be expanded to those who are less enlightened in knowledge about something than others. The term can kind of apply to everything that takes some experience to notice the smaller details in. I can compare this to working in a restaurant. For instance somebody who has worked at a restaurant previously may notice how busy their waiter is besides dealing with them, and somebody who has not may only focus on the fact that their food is running a bit behind. When it comes to mapping feelings and emotion onto the geography of a place, I find that difficult. I relate feelings that a place creates to the current level of light, what kind of light, the amount of sound, and how busy it is. Each of those change very frequently in most of my favorite places, so I’m not sure if the geography alone can map any of my feelings or emotions. Maybe for others it can, but I tend to be a very precise person which doesn’t allow a physical feature to do something mentally for me. There is more that goes into it besides the thing(s) itself.

The coordinates of my geocache is

N 33 degrees 51.277
W 118degrees 23.569

Wk. 12 Student conversation with Jayson Fields

image1-1This week, I spoke with Jason. At first the conversation felt kind of forced, but quickly digressed into a more natural state. He told me of how he was on the club team for volleyball here at CSULB, and a bit about their career. As you may or may not have known, the volleyball team here went to nationals and had quite a journey getting there. We spoke a bit about what each of our majors are like. Jason is an athletic training major here, and absolutely loves it. He tends to do a good amount of working out, and running in his free time. When it comes to leisurely activities, he enjoys watching football and basketball.  We decided to ask each other one weird question. Or actually, i kind of initiated that idea. In result, I asked him what his weirdest fear was. He said he was afraid of the ocean. I needed to know why, and he said it was a fear of drowning. A lot of people would find that odd, but I totally understand. As somebody who paddles out in 5+ foot surf, it can be no joke out there. All in all, i enjoyed talking with you, Jayson. Keep on doing what you’re good at, because you sound like its making you happy.

Wk. 11 Turning Pages with Marta Troya

IMG_20160407_112439467IMG_20160407_111531914IMG_20160407_115357162Instead of the usual student art gallery visits, the visiting artist Marta set up an interactive art experience. We visited the library and first picked out books and read them on the bottom floor. It was fascinating because the bottom floor of the library had no space for people to sit down and read. Hence, we all sat in the middle of the waiting section for the computers. It was actually quite interesting being asked to leave since they were telling us to not read in a library. Next we went to the bookstore and were told to go to one activity in which we would spend the next few minutes just sort of experiencing it. When it comes to documenting an experience that is as ephemeral as this, I would say that the best approaches would be photography or writing. In terms of words and pictures capturing an experience, I believe it is the second best way to convey the message to somebody else who was not there. The first would be a video. On that same note, I think that the way a photo is taken does say a lot about how the image is conveyed. It has a lot to do with the emotion the person in the photo is feeling at the time. In terms of the idea of taking photos to document an experience, I believe it may take you out of it a bit. Yes, there are opportunities within the experience to take photos. The kinds of points in which the conversation may come to a break, or you’ve been at the same place for a moment and realize the group may not be vacating for a bit. Though some say this may take you out of the moment a bit, sometimes the moment itself is created by the person with the camera. I feel that there is no distance between the photographer and the event pertaining to my belief of there being a certain place the photographer holds in terms of being part of the event. In their entirety, the experiences of not taking photos in the library compared to the bookstore was something quite different. It felt like we were not in class at all since there was no required photo evidence from each student. I really enjoyed that feeling since it was not something I’de ever undergone in a work environment prior. This activity was quite fascinating in the sense that it really allowed me to look at more places for what they are. I’ve always been kind of an existential, everything is subjective kind of person, but this day for some reason made me see it on a deeper level. I was able to understand exactly how odd it seemed to not be able to read books in a library. I get it that reading in the computer lab waiting area is an issue, but aren’t those waiting for the computers going to be doing something to pass the time as well? As a whole, this activity was a lot of fun. I definitely would love to do something like this again in the near future.