What is Conceptual Art?
This is a piece of Conceptual Art. Conceptual Art is Art in which the Idea or Concept is the most important aspect of the work. One its founders Sol LeWitt (1928-2007) of 1960’s, founded one of its principals in which Art follows a set of instructions that may be constructed by anyone following a set of written instructions, similar to baking a cake. Another aspect of Conceptual Art is the use of words or language to present a visual aspect in the work. I have combined both these aspect in this work.
What does Muted Colours mean to the Artist?
The Artist typically likes simplified Primary Colours of Blue, Red & Yellow, and White, taken directly out of the tube (Heavy Body), or pre-installed colours (in Adobe computer software), which can be recreated by anyone, as in Conceptual Art, and these colours are principal colours in Televisions screens. However, another aspect of the Artist Practice is Contrasts, such contrast between yin & yang, light and dark, or as in this work, Heavy Body and Muted colours. For the Artist Muted Colours means opposite of Dark Heavy Body Colours, means Light Muted Colours. The Artist has combined both in this work, working from Dark in the Centre to Light Muted at the Edges.
What Muted Colours have you used in this work?
The Muted Bands of alternating colours, from left to right, grey, blue, violet, pink, green then back in reverse order, back to blue, thus follows sequence, known as Conceptual Art. From the horizontal centre line of the work (if the work folded in half vertically) the colours follow a sequence, from the Heavy Body colours slowly graduating to the Far ends of the page to Muted Colours. This is transition from Dark to Light, Heavy Body to Muted. Text is superimposed over this band of colours, in Muted Colours, making text, difficult to read, invisible or hidden.
What is the Artwork about?
This work has been inspired by the swimming events at the Olympics Games, in particular that of the Butterfly Final, and that of the Team USA and Team GB. (See previous version link at bottom of page)
This has been inspired by the swimming events at the Olympics & Paralympic Games. Lanes #1 to 4 incl. depict Olympic Game winners, while Lanes #5-8 depict Paralympic Game winners. In particular that of the Butterfly swimmers, and other swimming and water events.
Olympic Gold medal winners, Michael Phelps (in the work indicated by initials MP, on upper lane #1). Katie Ledecky (indicated by initials KL, upper lane #2). Team GB Gold medal winners, Adam Peaty (indicated by AP, bottom lane #1), next Helen Glover (indicated by initials HG, in next bottom lane #2).
Paralympics Gold winners, Team USA, Bradley Snyder (indicated by initials BS, top lane #5), McKenzie Coan (indicated by initials, MC, top lane #6), Team GB, Ollie Hynd (indicated by OH, bottom lane #5), Bethany Firth (indicated by initials BF, bottom lane #6), see below for full list.
The background contains hidden text behind, forming a playable word search of the Olympics Games events, with either 3, 4, 5, 6 or 8 Letter words, similar to previous works.
Why are there Butterflies in the work?
Butterflies are a current trend at the moment, in the Art Market, with Damien Hirst producing a series of Butterfly works. However, in this work, I have taken the Butterflies out of context, to represent the swimmers, and given it the symbolic colours of the Stars and Stripes Flag of USA, and contrast of the Union Jack of Team GB.
The Butterflies have been arranged in a standard size Olympic Pool with 8 Lines, with boundaries marked by Green, Blue and Yellow vertical lines. The upper half contains an 8 by 8 grid with Team USA Butterfly, opposite this, similarly on lower half with a 8 by 8 grid with Team GB Butterfly swimmers. I am suggesting that the two Teams are competing against each other, in a Relay or Medley in the Olympics, like pawns on an elongated Chess Board (Chess Board also has 8 by 8 grid sqaures)
Binary Codes are used in Computers? Why have you used Binary Code in this work?
Within my work I am interested in hidden massages, and within this work there’s a hidden message in Binary Code. From the Top far Left lane, the Butterflies Spells the Letter “T” vertically downwards, 01010100, with the 8 Lanes Spell words “TEAM USA!” with Stars & Stripes Butterflies, similarly the lower half lanes Spells words “TEAMGBGB” (Inverted) indicated by Union Jack Butterflies. The image is reversible, chose which Team you prefer, to be Displayed Up!
With my previous works, I am interested in codes and hidden messages. Within this work, I have divided the Butterfly which has an outline of 360’ into 26 equal segments to represent the 26 Letters of the Alphabet (see image for rotated through 180’ to represent the Letter M). The Butterfly has been rotated to spell the Letter "M" the Christian name of the swimmer.
Similarly, there is another hidden message. In the work, I am interested in transparency, the interaction between the body, and water, thus, diving into the water, below the water line, and coming up for air, creates different transparencies, when seen above as an aerial view. I have recreated this by using the transparency command on Adobe Illustrator, and assigning each letter a different transparency percentage (ratio of the body to that of water), thus surname letter "P" would be 80% of the Butterfly, and 20% of water showing.
List of Olympic Team USA (Top Lane #1-4) MP, KL, SM, RM
List of Paralympics Team USA (Top Lanes #5-8) BS, MC, RP, RM
List of Olympic Team GB (Bottom Lane #1-4) AP, HG, LH, SC
List of Paralympics Team GB (Bottom Lane #5-8) OH, BF, AM, HR
Why did you make a Digital work, then a Painting version?
I predominately work in Digital (New Media) as it’s the latest technology as opposed to more traditional forms of Fine Art, such as Drawing, painting and printmaking. By using Digital work, I am able to change modify the colours, positions of shapes, text etc easily, and see which colours work best, by using complimentary colours. Once I’m happy with this, I scale up this work to make a larger version of a Painting by using Oil or Acrylic Paints etc. For Acrylic Paints I have started to use the Heavy Body by Liquitex.
Previous version: Rio 2016 Olympic Games: Swim like a Butterfly!! Team GB v Team USA!
Digital Print on Paper