THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF DUMB DESIGN IDEAS
Above is yet another of the trove of recently discovered paintings by noted 17th century tyro Dirk Van Assaerts. I had enormous difficulty photographing this piece. When I figure out how to get a better image I will show you that. I keep getting moire patterns and surface glare. It must be because it is so dark.
This painting has a problem, as usual. Everything in it is square, parallel to the edge of the canvas. It is wicked rigid and static. It is SQUARE. That's not hip.There are few designs less imaginative and more boring. But, we see a lot of industrial or edgy subjects painted that way. Art students are very fond of these designs, they are confrontational I guess. They stand directly in front of their subject and there it is, devoid of content or arrangement. Again, one or two of these in a larger show might be OK, but none would be preferable.
Below is further biographical information on the artist.
Dirk arranged an appointment with the Access to Creativity officer for his district. When he arrived, the officer was friendly and welcoming. He was an artist too! Dirk made a point of hiply saying "like" in every single sentence. The officer then said, "Sure, there's probably a grant for you, say, do you like working with three year olds? WE have a lot of that one right now". He explained that the things in Dirks portfolio were very nice, but that the local cell of the Accreditation Commission For Conformity Assessment Bodies who would actually be making the decision, liked to see edgier, more contemporary work. Realism was OK, now, anyway.... but it needed to be relevant to today, cutting edge and nonsentimental. Gritty realism is best. You know? Like all that other stuff out there.
Dirk knew just what to do . He took his easel made of sturdy deal, out behind the knackers shop. There he painted the old wooden dumpster. He saw his childrens faces looking up at him and his wife in her sofa, and he went hard to work. He set up his easel directly in front of the dumpster, placing it a little off center in his composition so it wouldn't be right in the middle of his canvas. He drew carefully being sure to include both the top and bottom of the dumpster and leave some air around it too. He used a viewfinder and he made a point of getting it all just like nature.
He finished the picture as carefully as he could and put it into a silver engine turned frame. There was a lot of paper work for the grant, but he carefully filled it all out correctly. Then he dropped the painting off at the submission entrance to the Conformity Bodies building, being careful to staple his paperwork in its isinglass envelope securely to its back.