Chap05shape and form - FIGURE 5.1 Without even looking at...

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F IGURE 5.1 Without even looking at the title, you can identify this familiar object because of the shapes used. In what way is this work “larger than life”? If you are not sure of the answer, review the credit line below. Compare and contrast this work to another sculpture by the same artist on page 261. Can you draw any conclusions about the theme of his work from these two pieces? Claes Oldenburg. Shoestring Potatoes Spilling from a Bag. 1966. Canvas, kapok, glue, and acrylic. 274.3 116.8 106.7 cm (108 46 42 ). Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Gift of T. B. Walker Foundation, 1966. 96 CHAPTER 5 Shape, Form, and Space
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Y ou live in a world filled with objects. Each has a shape; some have form—or depth —and all inhabit space. As art elements, shape, form, and space are closely related to one another. Learning to “read” the meaning of these elements as well as how to use them effectively in artworks is very important as an artist. In this chapter, you will: Compare and contrast the use of form and space in artworks. Create two- and three-dimensional works of art using direct observation and imagination. Interpret artistic decisions about using shapes, forms, and space in personal artworks. Up through the early twentieth century, the media of sculpting were fairly limited. Sculptors could choose from hard materials (marble, bronze) or softer ones (wood).Then a revolu- tion in art occurred.“Anything goes” became the battle cry of experi- mental artists. One such artist is Swedish-born American sculptor Claes Oldenburg (b.1929). Oldenburg is a member of the Pop Art school. His art, like that of other Pop Artists, used everyday objects from American culture as a theme. Like Figure 5.1, however, the works are so large that the viewer can’t help but notice them. Compare and Contrast. Look at Figure 2.1 on page 24.This work shares the theme of contemporary Pop Art. Like Figure 5.1, this work uses unconventional materials. In what way does it go even further in breaking the traditional “rules” of three-dimensional art? CHAPTER 5 Shape, Form, and Space 97
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LESSON 1 Shapes and Forms A ll objects are either shapes or forms. Rocks, puddles, flowers, shirts, houses, chairs, and paintings are all shapes and forms. The words shape and form are often used interchangeably in everyday language, but in the language of art, they have very different meanings. Shape A shape is a two-dimensional area that is defined in some way. A shape may have an outline or a boundary around it, or you may recognize it by its area. For instance, if you draw the outline of a square on a sheet of paper, you have created a shape. You could also create the same shape without an out- line by painting the area of the square red. You see many two-dimensional shapes every day. They are found in most designs, which in turn can be seen on many flat surfaces. Look for shapes on such things as floor coverings, fabrics, and wallpapers. Floors and walls are two-dimensional shapes; so are tabletops, book pages, posters, and billboards.
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