Saturday, March 31, 2012

Mechanical Turk Review of My Art: #4

This is a project where I pay workers on Amazon's Mechanical Turk to review my art and website and pay them $5 dollars for 500 words. This is the fourth review I've received:

Complicated Simplicity: The saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words” may be a tad cliche. However, after reviewing the artwork that is spotlighted on Paul Shortt's website, this popular idiom rang truer than ever before. Not only does this art possess a clear artistic vision, it draws out the satirical simplicity of contemporary life and allows its viewers to interact. With an emphasis on realism and modernity, the artwork that Paul Shortt features is nothing less of outstanding. In particular, I was taken aback by the featured work entitled, “Corner Piece”, which is an image of a black folded plaque, one side reading, “Put your hands behind your back” and the other, “Then put your head down”. The caption states that, “This sign directs the participant into time out, while the sign is conforming to the space.” Immediately following the caption there is a picture of a woman making use of the sign. While I understand the artist's intention for this piece, I was able to gain my own unique interpretation. The artwork by itself is as powerful, if not more powerful, standing alone. Primarily, my interpretation of the piece made me reflect on law enforcement. I pictured a cop telling someone to put their hands behind their back and then to subsequently put their head down. Obviously, police officers do not usually tell their suspects to put their head down. Therefore, I took these words as a statement about the shame that is imbedded in nonconformity. I always see criminal suspects lower their heads. This piece spoke to me, acknowledging the disgrace which is inherent in violating the law. I was ecstatic that I was able to gain my own interpretation of the artwork. After all, art is an individual expression and should always be unique to the individual who creates it as well as the individual who interprets it. This, in my opinion, is the nature of true artwork: that it is able to be interpreted and reinterpreted countless times without losing its intensity. Moreover, much of the art that is featured on Mr. Shortt's website speaks volumes concerning life as we have come to know it. From the photograph entitled, “ROFL CON”, which makes a play on new-age text lingo, to the piece called, “Seeking Good Conversation”, which simply depicts a person holding a cell phone, this artwork is both modern and uncomplicated. For a beginning art enthusiast, uncomplicated artwork is sought after. There is no pretense, no pomp and no arrogance in the art that Paul Shortt displays and this is certainly appreciated. For, one is better able to discern the deeper meaning behind an artistic piece when the artists themselves are not seeking to complicate the concept. What's more, many of the artistic representations that Paul Shortt presents are interactive. Not only are the viewers allowed to interpret the art intellectually, they are often asked to physically participate in the art's action. For instance, the piece “ROFL CON” allows viewers to roll around on the red carpet that the text lingo is printed on. This makes for a more entertaining involvement with the artwork and, undoubtedly, leaves viewers feeling personally related to the piece itself. In reference to interactive and entertaining art, the piece called “Strap-on Ballsacks” is hilarious. The name speaks for itself. There are images that show random people, women and men, wearing colorful strap-on testicles. I never knew that raw artistic photography could be so humorous. There is a vast array of interpretations which can be concluded from this piece alone, and as wonderful as it is to interpret art, I must admit that I would love to get the opportunity to wear those strap-on ballsacks. They look like a lot a fun. In retrospect, the artist deemed certain artistic videos, “It's Simple but Complicated” and I have found that these words actually convey the nature of Paul Shortt's entire art collection. Much like the saying, “a picture is worth a thousand words”-- which, as a hackneyed phrase, has greater depth than initially realized-- Paul Shortt's art compilation is fairly simple and yet, possesses a more intricate plot than first perceived. After reviewing the artwork that is spotlighted on Paul Shortt's website, one is able to grasp the very value and significance of complicated simplicity.