food for thought

  1. The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls. Pablo Picasso
  2. Art is not what you see, but what you make others see. Edgar Degas
  3. No great artist ever sees things as they really are. If he did, he would cease to be an artist. Oscar Wilde
  4. To send light into the darkness of men's hearts - such is the duty of the artist. Schumann
  5. The art of art, the glory of expression and the sunshine of the light of letters, is simplicity. Walt Whitman

May 26, 2022


- are promotional materials which offer exact information about an exhibition (the exhibiting artists - some information about them); place (the exact location/even a map sometimes); time (the opening day,  the display period, daily visiting schedule; visiting fees; contact details); they usually offer some visuals of the exhibited works to arouse the curiosity of the public

- the card also functions as an invitation to the opening day; it may use the exhibition poster as visual information



- usually published by organizers of exhibitions (museums, galleries) under the form of brochures

Communicative purpose: to illustrate the most representative aspects of the exhibitions

-offers color reproductions of the most representative works; short critical essays, or fragments, or quotations to help the public better understand the show as a whole and some works in particular

- is usually prefaced by the curator of the exhibition

Task: Review a catalog you've seen/read recently.

Deadline: June 3


- are very short texts written by the curators, or by the museum staff, sometimes by the artists themselves, to inform the viewers about the exhibited works, by providing such details as the title of the work, the medium/media, its dimensions, the artist's name, and very short biographical data, the date the work was finished, the name of the owner or collector, specific technique/s 

Task: Think about five of your most recent works and try to "produce" five gallery labels for them.

Deadline: June 3rd.

13. THE ARTNEWS (the news report)

- a journalistic genre
communicative purposes:
  • to offer information to the readers "as accurately and dispassionately as possible"(Vijay Bhatia: 1993: Analysing Genre: Language Use in Professional Settings: 161)
  • to announce an artistic event / "breaking news"
  • to define the context
  • to show cause-effect relationships
  • to report comments, and different viewpoints
  • to forecast (give expectations) future developments
media: art magazines, journals, newspapers that also have an art section, the Internet

Task: bring your own piece of artnews as a comment (no more than 10 lines).

Deadline: June 3

May 12, 2022

12. The Home Page (The Website/The Personal Web Page)

The communicative purposes of the artist’s personal home page include
·         informing the public about the artist’s practice(s), experience, creative endeavors,
·         self-promoting,  advertising for own exhibitions, works, and blog,
·          marketing oneself (with the final business goal of selling works),
·         increasing visibility in the art world, creating an online identity as an artist (as opposed to being part of a network, like in the case of the services of social networking; of course, the artist may well choose to be part of these, too),
·          establishing contact with possible buyers (either directly or through the galleries representing the artists).

NOTE: the homepage is the first page (a kind of cover page) of the website. The site's web pages are accessed by clicking the provided menu buttons.

the moves

M1. Identifying the artist (through his/her name, and sometimes the type: e.g. painter, sculptor, etc.)  
M2. Introducing the contents list of the site (through a navigation menu) 
M.3.  Biography + credentials (as very short biographical details and a short text relevant for the type of art s/he creates; sometimes even an artist statement may be offered; also present is the list of exhibitions and awards)
M.4. Current and upcoming events (advertising for on-going and future exhibitions or other events, by also offering exact information about location and time) 
M.5. “Bibliography” (actually a number of texts written by critics about the artist’s works and exhibitions; sometimes there may also be offered some exhibition catalogs; seldom, there are even texts produced by the artist) 
M.6. Online gallery +/- shop (images of the works produced by the artist +/- accompanying texts describing them, their location, the exhibition where they were displayed; when the artist uses the site as an online shop as well, the facility of buying the work are also offered here, or, in the case of represented artists, there may be a link to the site of the representing gallery) 
M.7. Establishing contact (address, e-mail, links to the representing galleries).

The lexical and semantic particularities of the artist's personal page differ from those of the blog in the use of the third person, as opposed to the first, signaling a lack of a “conversation” with the audience; instead, the artists prefer to display the credentials here as a list of exhibitions and awards (the longer, the better), and the texts art critics wrote about them (of course, the one praising the works); very short texts are offered under the form of exhibition labels, accompanying the images and informing about the work of art shown in that image.

            In conclusion, the artist’s personal page is both an informative and an advertising genre.

Task: Why should artists have their own websites/home pages? 
Deadline: May 25, 2022

11. The Artist's Blog

Definitions of weblogs (blogs)

  • “a hierarchy of text, images, media objects and data, arranged chronologically, that can be viewed in an HTML browser” (Harvard dictionary)
  • “a discussion or informational site published on the World Wide Web and consisting of discrete entries (‘posts’) typically displayed in reverse chronological order” (Wikipedia)
  • a journal that is frequently updated and intended for general public consumption; informal; grouped by date; with links to older posts; informative and/or inspiring; frequently linked to other sites; addictive for bloggers (adapted from Blogger Forum)
  • “a meandering, blatantly uninteresting online diary that gives the author the illusion that people are interested in their stupid pathetic life” (Urban Dictionary)

Previous research:

Susan Herring (Indiana University, 2004)
Neither fundamentally new, nor unique genre
Appeared in 1996 as a format, and 1997 as weblog (even 1991)
A bridge between the multimedia HTML documents and text-based computer-mediated communication (CMC)
A hybrid genre with multiple sources
Made possible by free software (Blogger, Wordpress)
Exponentially increasing in number (from 2.1 millions in 2004 to 181 millions at the end of 2011, our note)
Classification: 4 main types (personal journals—70%; filters = reviewing other blogs—12%; k-logs= offering information on certain subjects, and mixed)
Generic features: archives, badges, images, comments, links, calendar, guest book; frequency of posting cca. 5 days; reverse chronological order
Miller & Shepherd (North Carolina Univ.): the social function of blogs = the need to establish relations between selves
Herring & al. (2006): gender  and age study of weblogs (women and teenagers are active bloggers)
Laurie McNeill ( Univ. of Michigan, 2005): the journey of the written diary to the new web genre; the community of “netizens
Jan Schmidt  (Bamberg Univ. Germany, 2007) compares the different uses of the blog format
Cornelius Puschmann  (Humboldt Univ. of Berlin, 2009) focuses on corporate blogs; in his 2010 published Ph.D. thesis he compares personal and corporate blogs; the supergenre” of  the personal blog; “the genre of the people”; “the blog prototype”

Art blog vs. artist's blog

Art blog vs. artist’s blog: art blogs may be written by other persons than artists (even institutions) and refer to art more or less in general; artist’s blogs are written by  artists themselves and refer to art in particular; art, here = visual art

An occupational-type of blog: occupations may include professional activities as well; art may or may not be the profession of the artist, but it certainly is his/her occupation; a “professional” blog may suggest that there are other blogs that could be negatively tagged as “unprofessional” 

Communicative Purposes:

 Keeping up-to-date with the art world (artists as readers and writers of blogs; their audiences)
Keeping in touch with the latest successful practices in your own field
Establishing oneself as an expert in the field (with possible professional and market benefits)
Marketing oneself (a cheap way of displaying own art and gaining public)
Advertising oneself (cheaply and efficiently)
Advertising another personal website (dedicated to sales)
Selling own works directly (“buy now” button)
Creating a successful artistic practice = creating art, showing it, telling people about it, interacting with the public and fellow artists; blogging as part of the practice
Arousing and maintaining interest in own art and practice (through frequent posts and good content)
Increase visibility in the art world (the networking of blogs, blogrolls, links)
Sharing own experience(s) and techniques
Getting to know oneself better (in-depth writing and thinking)
Recording thoughts, experiences, and practices (a kind of personal history)
Communicating with audiences (comments and replies)
Getting feedback (to keep, change, better market own art)
Adding to other writings about art in different media


The software structure is usually maintained with some alterations; web-design graphic artists create their own blog designs
The titles (not always the same as the URL) tend to contain the artist’s name; sometimes they offer information about the artist (“Belinda Joynes: Artist, imaginarian and daydream believer”, “Kelly Kilmer. Artist and Instructor”), sometimes they try to be as catchy as possible (“The haunted hollow tree”, “ Artsy fartsy life”, “Notes from the Voodoo Café”)
Most of the blogs are independent; very few are part of other websites or homepages
        •Information about the artists is provided in almost all of the 30 blogs (more or less overtly), mainly through the “About” button (sincerity, authenticity)
       •Credentials and assuming some degree of expertise – present in the great majority of the blogs
       •Information about the intended content of the blog is offered in more than a half

The life expanse of the blogs (from 3-5 years to 8-9 years) and the frequency of posting (from once to six-eight times a month) prove that blogging is perceived by their authors as part of their art practice
All of the typical macro features of the blog are present (reverse chronological order, archives, blogrolls, badges, tags/labels, sharing tools, statistics of visitors) to a great extent, proving that the artist’s blog is a sub-type of the blog prototype
The intensive use of images (photographs, drawings, sketches) and other visuals (videos) is a particularity of the artist’s blog, very consistent with the nature of art itself  


Headers: title of the post (reflecting the work/event) + information about the date of post + reverse chronology
Footers: author + exact time of posting + tags + sharing tools + comments     ( = a typical blog microfeature, re-creating a conversation type of discourse)
Links: IntraLinks (to own posts) +/- hyperlinks (to other blogs/sites)
Intensive use of images
Texts/words are used to explain the process of creation, the progress of a work, are complementary to images

Artist blog types:

Mixed = journal entries + tutorials + reviews + advertorials + news

Filter = review of exhibitions and other blogs

Other = a “blogazine” (blog + magazine + forum + TV section + newsletter)

Discourse particularities:

Register: none of them was formal; they tend to range from neutral to different degrees of familiarity (consistent with the communicative purposes)
Modes of discourse: all of them, with a prevalence of the narrative mode (personal experience, descriptive narrative of the process of creation, of work-in-progress, reporting events); descriptions of the type “recipe-giving”; describing a work of art; expository and argumentative – mainly in the reviewing type of blogs
Discourse strategies: analyzing works (describing + interpreting + evaluating), reviewing, recipe-giving, labeling, story-telling, commenting, confessing, reporting, interviewing (taken from journalism), quoting, paraphrasing, acknowledging sources as footnotes (taken from scientific writing), monologuing
Rhetorical devices: metaphors, similes, hyperboles, rhetorical questions, repetitions, colloquialism, humor, (self-) irony, imprecation
Morphological features:
The 1st person pronoun “I”, expressing subjectivity is used to give the feeling of authenticity; in the relationship with
The 2nd person pronoun “you”- to re-create an “authentic” speech situation; the reader is part of the whole process of creation, actively involved
Very few cases of the 3rd person pronoun (with self-reference), trying to suggest some detachment and objectivity
Qualifiers are largely used (some less formal superlatives)
Tenses: mainly past (for narratives); present (for descriptions); future (e.g. for plans to develop certain themes, to use a new technique, etc)
Interjections (colloquialism)
Text entries:
 A relatively small number of paragraphs, coherently sequenced, accompanied by many images
Rather short (some exceptions range from no text at all to very large texts)
Special typing (upper case in some words to stress upon)
Unusual spelling (“little birdie in da house”, “y’all”)
Internet slang /Acronyms (XOXO=hugs and kisses; X=kiss; O = hug; XX = two kisses; LOL = laughing out loud, OMG = oh, my god!; DIY = do-it-yourself)
Repetitions of some letters (“Yiiiiii!”), suggesting some emotional state
Emoticons: J - smiley face; =)) - laugh;  L - sad face

for further reference, please follow:

Why should artists blog?

Task1: Answer the above question, after following the link (click on the question).

one more tip: (you need to click)

Deadline: May 25
g work of art, event

May 05, 2022

10. The designer's concept statement

While artist’s statement refers to works already done (or, to artists’ works in general), the designer’s concept statement proposes future works, which will only become reality if the propositions are accepted by the customers
Note the use of the future tense and conditionals
Also starts from more general philosophies/aesthetics, sources of inspiration, becoming very specific to fit the exact customer project
Presupposes a good knowledge of the customer’s interests, activity (previous research/documentation)

Task 1: What elements do the above statements contain?
Task 2: Write a design(er) concept statement for a project you are currently working on.

Deadline: May 11, 2022