Wordy Wednesdays

On Wednesdays, we look at artist statements and discuss the best vocabulary to describe an artwork. Today’s piece is by Matteo Mauro of London, U.K., called Visual Sound, Fictional Landscapes.

This is his artist statement from the Artist A Day website:
Matteo Mauro, London based artist and designer. He observes and explores the world with the eyes of an artist, seeking new, fresh solutions, as well as the old, in this infinite mediation between reality and dreams, which we call art. His drawing and creative techniques mix analogical and digital tools to generate artworks of a distinct contemporary sensibility.

First, let’s consider the title: Visual Sound, Fictional Landscapes.  The artist catches our attention by using an unusual adjective “visual” to describe sound.  Normally we use visual to describe something we see, not something we hear. This juxtaposition of words is a good way to create interest for a piece.

Next, let’s look at sentence 2: He observes and explores the world with the eyes of an artist, seeking new, fresh solutions, as well as the old, in this infinite mediation between reality and dreams, which we call art.

Remember, since an artist statement is short, you need to choose the very best words to get your message across.  Do you know the difference between observes and explores? The phrase with the eyes of an artist is a descriptive way to say that he is looking for artistry in everything he sees.  The second part of that sentence is quite complex: in this infinite mediation between reality and dreams, which we call art.  Infinite means it doesn’t end, and mediation is like balance, so he thinks art is a balance between reality and dreams.

Finally, let’s try sentence 3: His drawing and creative techniques mix analogical and digital tools to generate artworks of a distinct contemporary sensibility.

This sentence is more difficult to understand.  In the first part, he’s talking about his artmaking process and describing the techniques he uses.  I think he means to say that he mixes analog and digital tools to make his artwork.  Analog is the adjective we use to describe the opposite of digital, like traditional watches with two hands.  I think this is what he means, but he uses analogical, which means relating to, or based on an analogy.  This word doesn’t really make sense in this sentence, which is why I think it’s a mistake.  This is why it’s very important to make sure you use the correct vocabulary to describe your work.  You don’t want your audience to be confused.

In the second part, he describes the artworks he makes as having a distinct contemporary sensibility.  Distinct means different from everything else, contemporary means current, and sensibility means the feeling something gives you.  So another way to say this could be that his work feels uniquely current or up-to-date.

I’ve chosen 5 words or phrases for you to focus on today.  They are in bold.  If you don’t know them, look up the meaning, synonyms, antonyms, and other forms of these words. You can find links to Merriam-Webster dictionary sites at the bottom of this page.

What do you think of this piece and the artist statement?  Do you agree with my comments?  Do you have questions about the vocabulary?  Do you want to suggest a piece for me to discuss next week?  Leave a comment below!

To see the original post at Artist A Day, click the link below:
https://www.artistaday.com/?p=58752

 

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Jessica

I help artists and designers with their English so they can focus on being creative and changing the world.

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