I am going to start by saying that I had so much fun creating my artwork for this week’s Untitled Drawing Club. Moving away from Sweden, our second last location is the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) located in Hobart, Tasmania. In the past I’ve had a wonderful guest blog on this location which I am linking to here. MONA is one of my favourite museums and I cannot wait to return one day. Until then, I took this week as an opportunity to delve deeper into one of the artworks on display that caught my attention when I last visited. A link to the Club and the artwork I created inspired by my virtual visit will be shared at the end of this post.
An overview of MONA was covered in the guest post but I did want to make special mention of their ‘about us’ section on their website. According to their website, anything written about MONA is likely to be out of date quickly as ‘we are constantly changing our mind about what MONA is’. They go on to provide a few different answers to ‘who we are’. Two of the possibilities they include is ‘purveyor of hot chippies’ and ‘somewhere people can come to say not sure about the art but the architecture is amazing’. You either love it or hate it. Either way, it is a museum that definitely generates a lot of discussion.
To add something contemporary to this post, MONA has made the news recently as the first museum in Australia making the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory for all staff. This information influenced the final decision for my artwork.
This week, for the Club, we have four links to explore. Three of which are Google map/image links taking you to the exterior of the Museum and to a room filled with blank books. The final link is to another artist vlog by Alexis Winter. They all provide a nice overview of the space and the kinds of artworks on display. In the artist vlog there is also an insight into how visitors can engage with artworks using their mobile devices. I’m going to spend a bit of time talking about my favourite artwork that features in the vlog.
Bit.Fall by Julius Popp
This is an artwork that you can hear before you can see. I remember spending quite some time standing in front of it when I visited because it has this sort of hypnotic element to it. The artwork consists of a platform with nozzles that shoot out water creating a waterfall. With each release of water, the droplets spell out a word or phrase. I’ve included an image below so you can see what I mean.
These are not random words but words that are being constantly sourced from live news feeds. Watching the word only appear for a second then dropping to the floor is commentary on the speed of which information is exchanged in today’s society. Not only the speed, but the amount of information we are constantly exposed to over a very short time period. It is amazing to think that sitting behind this artwork is a computer program reading streams of news on the internet then sending word patterns to the nozzles so that they can form the most popular words. It is truly incredible.
If you don’t want to scroll the news on your phone then you can just watch Bit.Fall for a while and see the main news stories of the day summarised and dropping before your eyes.
I was really inspired by Bit.Fall for my artwork for this week. I have sketched the nozzles and overhanging platform then stitched the word ‘vaccine’. I chose this word for two reasons. Firstly, and most importantly, it is something I care about very deeply and wanted to use the Untitled Drawing Club as an opportunity to capture this moment in time. It is also a way I can express a small gratitude to those who have been involved in the development/production of the vaccine and to those working on the frontline. Both dedicated to the health and safety of everyone. Secondly, I stitched this word because of the vaccine mandate at MONA and I wanted this to be captured too.
No doubt this word has appeared on Bit.Fall more than a few times recently!
With one more week to go I am starting to think about what I will do with all my artworks. I will hopefully be able to share next week the final outcome as they are currently just sitting in a stack on my desk. If you want to learn more about the Club or join, then click here. Otherwise, see you again next week.