Deconstruction of classical art.
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Derrida: Deconstructing the Classics

Prior to turn of the 20th century, the traditional aspects and traits that were thought to make a piece a work of art were primarily academic. The best pieces of art were ones that displayed impeccable execution of technique and theory. Things like brushwork/linework, realism, setting, and story were all heavily emphasized.

When Derrida talks about humanity's common perception of what makes a work of art, I believe he is referring to our innate connection to art that replicates the visual aesthetics of reality. Realism, in the context of art, is both comforting and attractive because it brings a sense of familiarity and understanding, without pushing the mental schemas of our mind that defines visual/aesthetic beauty. In earlier times, appreciation for the art of the classical realist masters was universal. Upbringing or class had no say in the matter, as this was a time when the langauge of art was at its most empirical. It was an every day part of life for everyone.

The art world has come a long way since, transforming into a completely different vehicle of expression. Beauty, in the most basic way that we understand it, was no longer the primary goal. Modern art movements like Cubism, Post-Modernism, and Surrealism found ways to inject meaning into their work that went beyond the visual plane. Yet, this new world of art, where the statement mattered more then the picture, ended up losing it's universal appeal quite quickly, drowning your average layman in unfarmiliar terminology and theory. "It's a urinal someone ripped out of a bathroom...What the heck makes this a work of art?"

In this project, we seek to merge the past with the present. In the spirit of Jaques Derrida, we will deconstruct the common perception of beauty that is found in the works of old by applying modernist techniques through computer manipulation and visualization. Enjoy!