Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Spring Semester Week 2

I thought I'd post some progress images of the painting i have going in my Life Painting class with Al Gury. These two pictures show what I was able to get done in the two sessions I had this week. i have two more sessions next week and then we are off to a new model and pose.
What I'm mainly going for here is the play of light across the figure since I won't have time to go super into detail as we don't have that long a pose. Now that the whole canvas is covered and I have the main light and shadow masses stated I can start to refine the painting more.

School is going by quickly and I am finishing the second full week. My painting of Alina, the girl on the sofa which you can see earlier on the blog--didn't make it into the spring show at school, but I did get great news last week about a show of my work, so you have to take the good and the bad and realize that shows that reject your work doesn't mean that the work is bad. Who knows what judges look at, or what their own tastes or prejudices are. I often don't agree with the tastes of the judges and the work chosen at the school shows. Their is now maybe more than before a scism between the figurative and non-figurative camps within the school. There is a push I think to make PAFA more like other art school and less traditional, which I strongly disagree with. The introduction of PAFA's own BFA has attributed to this issue in my opinion. The whole point of PAFA is tradition! Let other art schools take the reigns of the last 60 years of crappy art education and shit on drawing and painting in the quest for the triumph of the idea over craft school of art.


Rich said...

As a product of the type of art school that elevated the idea over the craft here in the UK, I am still (twenty years later)trying to make up for those lost years and the lack of traditional teaching in my education years. I hope that your school can maintain a strong traditional focus in it's teaching methods, There are still a lot of places where those particular skills are appropriate and in demand and a dwindling amount of places where those skills can be acquired. Your work on this site is an inspiration. Thank you.

Mike Manley said...

Rich, I too was in that type of school 20 years back, and that lead me to quit then.

There luckily are many, many people who feel as I do at school, including teachers. the battle will come though as the board of directors I think wants to be concerned with making more profit--which indeed the school should be concerned about---but not at the expense of the core principles. This will be a fight--a long term fight.
If you make PAFA like most art schools you destroy what is unique about it and why most of us want to attend it over Uarts, Moore and many other art schools in Philly--or the US for that matter.

I've had teachers say idiotic things like "the more I tell you the less you learn."

WTF! I guess my 22 grand a year should be tossed to the winds then and I can just stay home. There are clearly two sides here, the camp where we want to keep the traditions as a sound base that gives you skills to move off in any direction, and the camp that sees rules as some sort of restriction, a joke, or regulator. I think this make bad and weak artists, hell just look at the art of the 19th century compared to the 20th. The bulk is undeciplined!

There are still great artist being produced, but far less skilled artist IMHO. And much knowledge was lost in the rush of the critics/institutions/and artists to toss the rules and the 19th century under the bus. The institutions to me are the worst in that they want it both ways--rake millions of the classics and then shit up the place with the bulk of what we call modern art.