Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Post, the thirteenth -- Norman Rockwell

it would be difficult to argue that Norman Rockwell wasn't an important artist.

he made the cover images for the Saturday Evening Post for almost 50 years and had a huge influence on the hyper-realist art movement.

his style of staging a scene to photograph and then making a painting or drawing from it is so Simulations; on page 38 Baudrillard says "Of the same order as the impossibility of rediscovering an absolute level of the real. is the impossibility of staging an illusion.  Illusion is no longer possible, because the real is no longer possible."

it's interesting because i don't even think that Rockwell was trying to stage an illusion, i think that he was trying to stage the real.

"After the prom" 1957
this is an example of a Rockwell work that was done after a staged photograph.

another thing that he was known for was his realistic portraits. 

there is a portrait of JFK that is just dripping in nostalgia and that's really not so different from the rest of Rockwell's work.

he seems to be a master of nostalgia.

John F Kennedy, 1960
"Rameses means nothing to us: only the mummy is of inestimable worth since it is what guarantees that accumulation means something.  Our entire linear and accumulative culture would collapse if we could not stockpile the past in plain view" (pg 19).

i think that the way Rockwell most relates to Simulations is with his "Triple self portrait".

in this piece, Rockwell is painting himself looking in a mirror painting himself.

is there any 'real' in that??

Rockwell really makes you question what's going on and what everything means especially with this work.

"Triple self portrait" 1960


1 comment:

  1. Yes! Nostalgia is the first thing I think of when I think of Rockwell's work. I think he creates nostalgia where there wasn't any before, simply with the emotional tone of his paintings, which is what makes them different from the photos he uses for reference. But all those layers of perception are so enticing to me, they're all so prominent that it feels like he's just boosting the realness to 300% rather than making something less real.