© 2019 by Merle Luhaäär

Mythological pop

September 16, 2016

As I was developing my art portfolio and making the research to place my work into the contemporary art context I pointed out certain similarities between my creative practise and pop art texts and came across something quite intriguing - the phenomenon of reception of pop art. Weather it’s a pop artist’s Instagram photo or Andy Warhol’s screen print - the magic is that the viewer instantly gets the meaning of it: we look at the work of pop art and suddenly we ‘know’ exactly what it is we are looking at.  When we are observing an unfamiliar contemporary artwork (not pop art text) there are usually plural interpretations and interpreting tends to be quite a time consuming process. First of all, we get the general impression and then, step by step, we go deeper and gather more detailed information by logically describing and analysing the artwork and it’s cultural, social etc. context, as much as we are familiar with it. This made me think about mythological or ‘mythical’ thinking, researched by Ernst Cassirer, Claude Levi-Strauss,  Roland Barthes, Juri Lotman, Boriss Uspenski, Boriss Malinowski and other theorists, where an image and the meaning of the image are identified as one and the same, so decoding of this image through assimilation process happens instantly without intrusion of logical interpretation.

 

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