Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Kevin Keane Response: Allegory of the Cave

Plato’s Allegory of the Cave creates an image that separates human beings into two kinds of people, those who want to be enlightening to the world around them and those who are not ready to see the world for all that it is. In the Allegory, there are various levels of reality that emerge, the prisoner’s reality and the reality of the ones responsible for the imprisoning them. Different question arise as the conversation between Socrates and Glaucon progresses and one can make sense of the Allegory’s intention.

The two realities cannot be thought of as right or wrong rather one being a level of higher intelligence. The prisoner that is set free can then be seen as chosen with a sort of divinity. He is blessed with the ability to see the world around him for more then what he thought existed. Not all of the prisoners are ready to except the higher reality, what they know is reality to them. The chosen prisoner was ready to accept reality further than what he had known his whole life.

The way that I was able to relate this concept to modern life was through the political system in our world today. Censorship in the media came to mind in that as a society we are shown what we are allowed to be seen, more specifically the Chinese censorship of the internet. An article on the New York Times website explains how they blocked photo sharing sites, one being flickr. Even YouTube, Wikipedia, and Myspace were part of these restrictions.

Just as the prisoners necks were chained to the wall so that they could only see what they were told to see, the Chinese government is attempting to do the same. With the internet expanding at such an exponential rate we are being released from the confines of our direct reality around us to a global reality. Recently through the ever growing social networks the Chinese censorship is being broken more and more frequently and the idea that this lesser reality can be maintained is slowly fading away.

Link: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/04/world/asia/04iht-wall.1.9716090.html

Kevin Keane Response: Sourcing Inspiration

This reading, Sourcing Inspiration, encouraged me to change the way I look at a work of art. The three essays that are included in this piece explain why one must understand the environment around the piece to truly understand the piece. The reading states that some artistic creativity is stimulated by various external stimuli. With others it can take form in sudden impulses that can manifest very suddenly. A third source of inspiration can be simple derived from human emotion.
I wanted to analyze my own source of inspiration after reading the essays about three artists that are inspired in these various ways. Jan Harrison’s inspiration is intrinsic and impulsive. Her work develops from her subconscious. She says that she is purposely not knowledgeable about ancient mythology so that her myths come from herself. Pipilotti Rist’s work develops from human emotions. One emotion that is apparent in much of her works is her vision of love. Julian LeVerdiere’s, unlike the others, work evolves continuously until it reaches completion. Leverdiere finds inspiration is gaps in history books and events that inspire him. All of these different sources of inspiration have an obvious effect on the final creation of each artist.
My inspiration is much like Jan Harrison’s in that I am very impulsive. My ideas are abrupt and usually come from a visual stimulation. In the past I have found it helpful to write down my ideas to have record of the idea and then build off the concept a few days later. As with the artist that were included in this reading, my ideas are influenced heavily by the world around me.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Artist Statement: Kevin Keane

My name is Kevin Keane and I am a senior digital arts major. I have always liked working with computers which had a key role in shaping my artwork into what it is today. As a digital artist I like using Photoshop and Illustrator. Digital photography is a medium that I became fond of during my college experience. I try to combine these qualities to create my work.
This semester I would like to further develop my work so that I have my own unique aesthetic. I would also like to start working on websites more than I have in the past. I have always liked working with html but after taking a few classes that allowed me to dig deeper into computer programming I have grown more comfortable with web design.