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The paintings American Gothic and Rhythm

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Literature
Wordcount: 1922 words Published: 3rd May 2017

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The two paintings that took the nation for a quick surprise are American Gothic by: Grant Wood and Jack Pollock’s autumn Rhythm. Jack Pollock painting was created during the year of 1950. This painting was established as one of the most magnificent painting to ever sweep history. Grant Wood’s painting American Gothic was created in the 1930’s as one of the world’s most controversial paintings of all times. The two painting has revolutionized our society as a whole and art itself has never been the same. Jack Pollock was the leader of the originality of Abstract Expressionism which was studied during the 1930’s along with two other artists. Grant Wood was born February 13, 1891 and he died February 12, 1942. He was an American painter. He is best known for his paintings which depicted the rural American Midwest. Paul Jackson Pollock was born January 28, 1912 and died August 11, 1956. He was born in Cody, Wyoming. Together these two artists are remarkably to art world today.

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In Pollock’s painting, the rhythmic structure is where the painting received its name. The name was taken directly from the mural Scale Art of the Mexicans. Pollock studied other artist as a way to express primal human nature. This brought about the theories of the unaware. The principle of just actually painting heavily influenced Pollock’s painting. The elements and principles of design are all throughout this painting. He began the art piece with a sense of dripping instead of long or short brush strokes. The painting center focus was easily crafted because the techniques used were very simple. The canvas was placed upon the floor as he fantasized and imagined about his art work. Since he had an abundant space available for painting his gestural lines are also known. Sometimes he would pour paint, and then other times he simply drew small portions of paint. He still managed to maintain a rhythmic natural movement. He even inspired his coworkers to do the same .This is the authorized description of a large painting hanging in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Upon thousands of civilizations this painting posed for meditation upon this fundamental work of the 20th century. As an intentional act of painting, the object itself, the finished canvas, shows a remarkably restricted palette. There are no more than four colors black, white, tan and blue-gray on a field of raw canvas. The paint has been thinned to the consistency of ink and dripped onto the surface of the canvas in rhythmic movements yielding an allover pattern of whip lashings and dribbles. The effect of the painting is a web-like reconstruction of a map. There is an excitement and lightness of heart expressed in the lashing thicknesses and thinness of the drippings. Though expressly non-figurative, the painting evokes a leap through a park on a quick autumnal day. There is also kinetic energy implied within the painting. The movement is the form of the painting. The subject interprets inkblot designs in terms that reveal intellectual and emotional factors, we can easily project figures in a park amid the wind-gusted leaves. I believe Pollock intended for us to interpret his painting along these lines, by giving us such a suggestive title as a guide.

American Gothic remains one of the most famous paintings in the history of American art. It is a major example of Regionalism, a movement that aggressively opposed European theoretical art, which takes depictions of rural American subjects taken from a representational style. The painting has become part of American popular culture, and the two has been the subject of endless stories. Some people believe that Wood used this painting to ridicule the narrow-mindedness and repression that has been said to characterize Midwestern culture, an accusation he denied. The painting may also be read as a adoration of the moral asset of rural America or even as an unclear mixture of praise and satire. In order to understand the painting American Gothic, the first thing to do is to only observe the details, to gather what it is made of. It is straightforward picture with not anything tremendously out of the regular. The view is that of an elder man decisively holding a pitchfork, he is wearing glasses and customary 1930s farm clothes, overalls and a white shirt. The black coat that he is wearing over his farming attire is one aspect of the picture that is made to be luminous. To the right-side of the man is a middle-aged woman, she unlike the man is not looking at the viewer. Like the man, she is wearing traditional 1930s attire, and her dress is black as well, with a simple pattern of white dots repeating on the dress. Straight behind the two is a white house. The window that is in between their heads is gothic in method, unlike the other windows on the house. A red barn is over the shoulder on man. The woman obviously has a look of fret on her face, perhaps even fear. She remains reserved, standing firmly behind the man. The man’s posture is that of a sculpture, similar to the woman, he is reserved and has a protective and arrogant posture about him. The picture is detailed. For example the wrinkles in the man and woman’s face can be seen.The people in the painting represent spinster daughter not his wife, as so many people assume. The figures were portrayed by the artist’s dentist and sister. The man’s pitchfork symbolizing hard labor, and the flowers over the woman’s right shoulder suggesting domesticity. Many farmers were evicted from their farms, leaving them no choice, but to move to the city to join the rest of the unemployed trying to labor. Farming had been in drought since the 1920s and the drought seen in the country left many farmers no choice, but to dig up their families and leave. American Gothic can be interpreted as a man and woman facing the possibility of being forced from their land. Taking one glance from the man and it is evident that he has no intentions of leaving his farm. Behind him, the middle-aged woman looks to be not as confident as the man. She looks worried and is unfocused, for she is not looking at the viewer, but rather off in the distance, hoping for a positive change to come. The man simply looks as though he refuses to leave. The pitchfork is a powerful prop in this painting. The iconic image of the 20th century is exhibited through this painting.Overall, the details and observations of American Gothic are typical of 1930s rural America.

The portraits were painted around the time of the Great Depression and possibly war. In the context of that time period, the make-up of the painting point towards the significant events of that time. The balance in both paintings has achieved it s peek of equilibrium. Peace of mind in the art is exactly this type of balance. The format is made proportionate to magnificent paintings. These are listed as the following: line, value, shape, direction, color, and texture. The lines in Pollock’ painting were portrayed in circular motion as of the artist was being very creative. It is actually an illusion of depth. Value in this art would be considered the different colors in the drawing. In the picture, the eyes focus completely to the area of maximum contrast between the blue, yellow, green shades surrounding the art. The strong tonal contrasts between the areas cause attention to go immediately to the center of Pollock’s painting. In Grant wood’s painting, the abstract lines and marks in the twirl exhibit the centre of interest used to make the people are very different. In art, the tonal contrast is one of the most powerful tools. There are several shapes that are viewed in this image you have circle, square, and a main emphasis in the cone.. The square shape is exhibited through book that he holds. The reason why the main emphasis is the people in Grant wood’s painting. The direction of the lines travel in Pollock’s painting is oblique direction, which express motion and actions are taking place. There are several colors within this piece of art. The primary colors: yellow, blue and red are all in the art. The secondary color is green. The cool colors are blue and green; the warm colors are yellow and red. The colors bring a sense of life to the drawing. With the colors they exemplify way more than colors they express emotions. They are the effect on our eyes of light waves of differing wavelengths or frequencies. The blue can range from peace, tranquility, cold, unity, cleanliness, sky, water, and depression. The yellow can bring joy, happiness, imagination, hope, and hazard. The red symbolize excitement, energy, passion, desire, speed, strength, power, aggression, danger, and all things intense. The green means nature, environment, healthy, and renewal. The black symbolizes power, elegance, mystery, fear, unhappiness, depth, style, remorse, anger, and good technical color. The artist used all these colors to portray the emotions above. The last element I would like to describe is texture. The texture of the paper is smooth.

The principles of design that I will use are unity, harmony, contrast, and gradation. The gradation used in the drawing was how the artist went from warm to cool. The artist also used tone from dark to light produce an aerial perspective. Unity in the photograph is used when the water comes together as a larger twister around the character. The contrast used in the picture is located at the center of interest. The water express a little bit of chaos and confusion, but you can still tell that the emphasis is directed to the character. The harmony in painting is the visual satisfying effect of how the colors and shapes join together in such a way to show the true harmony in this drawing.

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As stated earlier, it appears that the pitchfork could not be pried out of his hands, and the man’s face adds more to the interpretation. I stand up and approach the canvas, understanding the wide field, noticing such incidentals as clumps of paint and heel prints on its splattered surface. The transparency of the process of the thrown paint on the canvas, allowed the picture to stand for itself. It gives the drip painting an extraordinary closeness, completely gazing the viewer. I imagine that Pollock’s detractors are not galled by the picture so much as by the claim that it is fine art. Though possible to complain at such painting, not from any lack of taste or sensitivity, but from a love for naturalistic tableau renderings, it is the confrontation with the apparently aimless chaos and the concomitant demand upon the viewer to surrender intellectual control, in order to freely empathize with the energetic color and movement, that are at the heart of the problem. The public is willing to surrender their change and suspend their disbelief to judgment their favorite movie heroes in yet another continuation, but they are still reluctant to allow themselves a quiet moment of inspection. This reaction allowed tuning in to the awe inspiring emotions which this consummate Abstract Expressionist painter took note of in his paintings. The reward is in straight examination of this impulsive product of thoughtful exploration. Amazingly to think that this vision the uncovering of the basic organization of change, of the insensible as the basic foundation of painting was revealed in 1950 and is still fresh and provocative even today.


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