Sketchbooks at a Glance

The first year of the Diploma Programme for Visual Arts students is designed for much risk taking through experimentation and introduction of various media. Anya’s very first unit of study was based on two-dimensional dry media and her choice was to work with graphite on paper. In this first attempt to demonstrate skill development and the exploration of artists, Anya focused her attention on Grant Wood and the easily recognized piece titled American Gothic.

Her aim was to modernize a widely-recognized work of art. This piece happens to be selected from 20th Century Armican Art History. As you can see here Anya chose to emphasize the popularity of drinking coffee and to suggest through her art the impact culture is having on the environment.

If you read Anya’s artist statement you will come to the words, “I am determined to use my passion and natural sense of aesthetics for art to do something different; most importantly do something I love, as art is a fearless occupation.” These words come to practice as she engages with the content and typical challenges that are common in the visual arts class. It was most recently that she demonstrated this, “passion” with her enthusiastic approach to a new assignment. As she very expressively interacted with her classmates, Anya visibly conveyed excitement about her work in progress. She began discussing, considering, and responding to critique focused on her work. She took the ideas from a two-dimensional piece and naturally carried this resolved work of art into the initial design of a developing piece. Images were first discussed, then doodled, flipped, and arranged to help visualize something new.

Suddenly her doodles and practice with acrylic painting techniques were being applied to her earlier work. You can see in the image below a landscape when flipped upside down becomes the meandering lines almost identical to the earlier coffee tree roots growing from a Starbucks cup.

This discussion and natural “fit” is just the kind of thought process which will deliver positive results when considering a DP Visual Arts Students’ curatorial rationale and final exhibition.

Anya’s Non-Objective; Acrylic Painting assignment suddenly became a collage painting that expresses the chaos and order that seems to permeate the learning process. The flexibility of art assignments allows for Anya’s inclusion of representational images and the landscape to compliment her chaos and order expression through non-objective art. This dark and light diptych piece titled Chaos fit perfectly and helped to shape our robust second critique.