Monday, April 25, 2011

Cardboard Mask: Scared!

Vilma Castaneda

Cardboard Mask: Jovial

Miranda Robert
Materials used: cardboard, adhesive vinyl, scotch tape

Replication Project: Trash

Miranda Robert
Materials used: Acrylic Paints, Skittles wrapper, trace paper, gloss, foam board

Trash Replication Project

Materials used: paper, acrylic paint.
Juan Carlos

Thursday, April 21, 2011


The themes among the trash replication projects in our class were food, consumption, and waste. What was especially interesting about this project was the fact that we spent hours upon hours examining items that are usually ignored. In replicating items that are valueless in our society we were able to recognize the complex design details that are normally disregarded.
This project also had the theme of power. To be able to recreate an item that is machine-made is a powerful feeling, despite the hours and hours it involves. While being able to replicate was a powerful feeling, it is also a scary notion. If trash can be replicated then so can any other material. This brings into question the idea of value. While in this specific project the replication is of higher value than the original, often the replication (of an artwork or money) is of less value than the original. These themes would be applicable to any kind of replication.
While certain objects in the class were clearly more identical to the original, I found those that were clearly distinguishable to be the most interesting to look at. While the assignment was to perfectly replicate a piece of trash, I found that the "mistakes" of certain pieces were the most aesthetically pleasing. Perhaps it is because of the unease one feels when they cannot distinguish two very different objects.
If I had selected anything to replicate I would still have chosen a piece of trash or at least a manufactured commercial good. This is because I love the power in being able to create a machine-made object and the parallel between an object that took possible seconds to produce and an adjacent object that took days, maybe even weeks.
The presentation of the trash replications sort of play a trick on the eye. They force the viewer to figure out the original and the fake, which is an exciting way to present art. The presentation gives a sort of pop art vibe and I would keep it that way, perhaps putting all the pieces together on a black background to complete the theme.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Trash Replication

Materials used: paper, acrylic paint, sharpie pen ( black and white)

Since all of our projects are replication of trash, they share the theme of the discussion about original value. Is an art work valuable because of it's originality? It's not really true in this case. The object was a piece of trash that nobody will care, but we picked it up and spend our time and effort in it and made another one which looks the same. Because of this replication, people will want to see it, spend time on it. The trash is changed in to a part of art work which adds another meaning on it. Thus it become more valuable.

The pieces work better as a group rather than an individual piece. The power of multiple replication works may let the audiences starting to doubt that what is the truth, or original works.

If I can do this again, I'd like to try something more natural. Like a flower, a leaf. It makes me feel that we are challenging the power of the mother nature.

I think the way this piece if presented works for my project. But it will also be really cool that if we can have a room that filled with the original work and the other half filled the the replications in the opposite places. Just like a mirror image.

Trash Replication

Hannah Southern

Trash Replication

Paper, acrylic paint, ink pen
Emily Yoon

Trash Replication Towards Content

All of the replication projects possess a theme of deception. That is, all objects appear to be the same upon first glance but as the artists, we know that one is an original and one is a replica. This theme raises an issue of judgment. Which object possesses more value? The original, because authentic trash, or the replication, because of its almost indistinguishable character? Needless to say, the theme of deception is applicable to any kind of replication project.

The content does not seem to shift much between the pieces within our group. Rather, all of the objects that were replicated are consumer items, which are of no value to us anymore, hence, the reason why they were trashed in the beginning. If I could have selected anything to replicate, I would have replicated something more functional and/or aesthetically pleasing. The ironic thing about this project is that by replicating trash, we have created more trash, whereas if we had replicated an object that was functional or had some aesthetic value, the replication would also have some value. Nevertheless, the replicated trash possesses artistic value, which comes from the amount of time spent and skill required in creating the structure and replicating the details.

The required presentation makes people appreciate the art work because otherwise, the replication may very well be overlooked as just another piece of trash. Mounting it on the wall, however, draws attention to itself and causes people to wonder why it is being presented, which leads to a deeper interaction between the viewer and the work. Ideally, I would present my piece on the floor, as if it was carelessly tossed, to see if people might pick it up to throw away. Then, I guess I could consider my work a success. ;)

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Trash Replication

In general, a theme I have noticed in all of the trash replication projects is the idea of consumption. There are many food containers, mostly made of paper, and there is a lot of detail, different types of interesting form (milk carton), and color matching. There is a lot of emphasis on trash itself which is seen in the crinkles, tears, and folds in the piece.

Certain trash has more character. I believe a worn crinkled, yet colorful popcorn bag or a Japanese candy box is more interesting than a 2-D Crunch or Skittles wrapper. There is more emphasis placed on the content and form rather than just detail work and color matching. However, in general I do not find much content in this project because the project was required. It was predetermined that we were replicating trash, so I have no connection with the Skittles wrapper that I chose to replicate. When someone walks by it, most likely they will be fooled--even just for a second--and not know which one is the replication. One may think that there are just 2 Skittles wrappers next to each other. But why are we replicating trash? What is the point? What is the content? Is it about consumerism? Or is it about how people take things for face value? What makes my piece of trash beautiful? Will other people even agree that it is beautiful or not?

If I had the choice of replicating anything, I would look for more texture and form than a candy wrapper. I would try to find something in nature just to see if I could replicate its intricate, random, and beautiful qualities.

The required presentation on foam board effects the reception of the work because it is very formal. It does not seem to suggest content, but form and execution of detail. I would present my piece in a more casual way in an environment outside a studio. I would want to catch a few observant people and see how they would react to a replicated piece of trash.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Trash Replication

1. Content or theme in Trash Replication project? 1) what makes the original piece of trash unique if it can be replicated exactly? Does it have more or less value? Does its identity change? Since it is not an exact replication, only a visual representation – does the loss of utility give it less or more value? 2) Since the replication is art and the original object is trash, is it now more appealing/ precious?

I feel that while the replication may be impressive and more precious, as a visual piece or a functional object it does not hold up. The replication is no more appealing to me than the original trash other than the amount of time and skill that went into it.

Is this applicable to other replications or multiples? It seems that when replicating things of little value, the replication becomes more valued, but a replication of something that is thought to be impressive is less valuable. This works both ways: the replication can either add value to or devalue the original.

2. The pieces have more power as a group than individually. Each one does not have enough context on its own to be more powerful than the idea on its own.

If I could have replicated anything I think it would be interesting content-wise to replicate something beautiful in nature such as a plant or tree because it has a lot of value in itself because of its beauty but I don’t think that a replication could take away or add to that beauty because it is so common place and abundant.

3. I think that the required representation lends itself nicely to the context I have discussed. It is not about the value of the trash or the replication but how they play off of each other and devalue or value its counterpart. The comparative display and the way it is mounted as a piece of art rather than a piece of trash helps convey that this is a comparison we want the viewer make: art or trash? Value or no value?

Nora Kostow

Replications n Things

I believe that replication projects, in general, deal with themes of identity and deception. When we are presented with an original and its replica, we may initially believe that the two are exactly identical, but upon closer inspection, this illusion of identity will break down. This makes us ask what the word "identical" means and it forces us to confront our notion of uniqueness. If you're me, it also recalls a number of questions from the philosophy of language and the philosophy of mind about what it means for two objects, statements or selves to be identical. Some of these questions are:

What does it mean when we use the word "is" to say things like "George Orwell" is "The author of 1984"? Do we mean that the two statements "George Orwell" and "The author of 1984" have the same meaning? That they function the same way within the context of a sentence? Or what?

If I was able to clone myself so that every aspect of my physical and mental constitution were replicated in my clone, would that clone essentially be me? Would there be two "mes"? What makes a "self"?

In general, replications also deal with the theme of deception through contrast between our initial experience of the work and our closer scrutiny of it. That is, what we initially thought to be an exact replica is, upon examination, actually something entirely different, possibly constructed out of different materials. It may be that if we could look inside or behind a replication we would find a skillfully arranged mass of tape and awkwardly-cut paper that, though it bears no resemblance to the original, succeeded in deceiving us into believing it was exactly the same as the original. In my mind this bears similarity to how our initial experience of another person may be a total illusion and wildly different from what we discover after knowing them for a while.

In my opinion, because our class was restricted to working with trash and because most of us chose food containers, there isn't much differentiation in content from one student's work to another's. Even so, we can talk specifically about the content our classes' work as a whole. More than anything, I think our classes' work forces us to consider the design and the aesthetic value in objects that we normally disregard. That is, our body of work takes an object (say a box of candy which has been designed with the intention of appealing to children in candy stores) and puts it on a wall in an exhibition space. Once that has been done, I think the viewer begins to consider this object in parallel with the works of artists and not advertisers.
Replicating trash also kind of gets at a central question about art which is, "what makes a piece of art valuable?". What it looks like we have is two pieces of trash but actually, one of them is a piece of art. Or is it trash too? If they are replicas, how are they different? Can Trash be beautiful? How do we decide?

If I could replicate anything, I'd replicate a person. I'd exhibit a human next to their inanimate replica. I'd make sure, though, that their replica appeared exact from one perspective and that from another angle you could see the interior sub-structure of the replica so that I could speak directly about how our initial perception of someone may be wildly different from the truth.

Trash Replication

One interesting thing to note was that most all of the trash replication pieces were packages of consumable items. All of the pieces shared a circular history and show the theme of how trash is art. All of the pieces of trash had some sort of graphic design element to them. The graphic design element is a very artistic component which is meant to draw consumers to the product. Once the product is used, it becomes a piece of trash and the artistic element of the graphic design is lost. In replicating the trash, the focus was brought back to the artistic elements. Something interesting to look at is how, once the replication is put next to the original piece of trash, the original piece of trash seems to be more beautiful or aesthetically pleasing than it was before.
The pieces seem to work better as a whole rather than on an individual level. Because these themes can be applied to any piece, the theme is stronger, when there are many pieces portraying the same thing.
I really liked the piece that I chose to replicate because it had so much color on it. But if I were to replicate anything, it might be interesting to replicate something that exists naturally such as a leaf or a rock. It would be fun to play with the idea of hand making a natural object.
I liked the way the trash replication pieces were presented. It was simple, clean and played with the idea of trash as art. It presented the question of would you want to hang this in your house? At what point does it become art you would want to hang in your house? Is it still trash? Would you want to hang trash in your house? Personally, I wouldn't want this hanging in my house. As interesting and cool as it may be, I don't think I'd want it on the wall of my living room.

Among our group’s projects, a general theme that developed was one of college student life: all of our pieces replicate food items that are fast, relatively cheap, and require little or no preparation (advantageous for those with ill-equipped or no kitchens). This theme may not occur in any kind of replication, as it appears here as a result of the artists being in school.

Whereas Mountain Dew may represent a student’s use of caffeine to stay alert while studying, and buffalo wings may reflect an escape from campus and the dining hall, Velveeta presents a food item that a student might be able to prepare in his or her own room or dorm kitchen. Another aspect of this piece is that of fakeness—the replicated item is fake, just like Velveeta cheese may be regarded as “fake” cheese, something artificial, overworked, or over-processed. I think that replicating an entire building (if funds permitted) would be an interesting project, especially a replication of a very famous or historic building. It could put into question the emphasis we put on specific sites.

The presentation of the current project, with the reproduction side-by-side with the original, forces a strict comparison between the two items that may not exist if the replication were presented on its own. A different means of presenting would be to display all of the class’s reproductions in a group and all of the originals in a group arranged in the same positions.


The general themes and concepts that came up when Juan, Greg and I talked about our three projects were the consist ideas of fast and convenient items in the relation to us as college students. There was also a similarity that our items collectively were not the healthiest items being Mountain Dew, Velveeta cheese and Buffalo Wild Wings. The idea of our location played a big impact in our analysis of our items, because we are in a small town with little resources and items are limited. When we discussed my object in general the theme of fast food played a major part we also came up with the idea of my object representing an escape because the item didn’t come from the campus. Overall the idea of college student and the fast pace lives made us decide that my item was a representation that even when a student does break away from the campus there is still that connection to students needing things fast and in a hurry.

If I had the option to pick a new object I would stay with the trash concept because I like the form that the trash took after it was emptied. I would also decide to pay more attention to the way that I would replicate all the detail of my original piece. The required presentation of the replication forces the eye to pay attention to the detail that is in the original but not in the duplicate. The setup of putting them side by side make it easier in some cases to tell the difference. In my opinion I would decide to put all the works in a line separating the original from the duplicate and then let the audience determine the replication. In my opinion this method would be more informal and more entertaining for the audience to find the differences in the two forms.

Trash Replication Project- Cigarette Box

The individual pieces of trash that were used in the project all have multiple themes that can be covered, but as a group the one major theme that I noticed was the consumption of brand name products no matter what country / culture they originate from. For example my project the cigarette box has the theme of consumption of a brand-name product as a form to relieve stress, and not just a brand-name product but also one that is unnecessary in life. It speaks to the unhealthy nature of consumption that most people want to ignore and brush away. The content of the piece, the different warnings in multiple languages, the number of cigarettes and the type of cigarettes all help speak to this theme of unhealthy consumption of products. If I had left out the bar codes, warning labels, and other details that help emphasize over consumption, the piece would simply be a replication of a cigarette box without any kind of implied message. The content that was chosen to be included in the piece can make the significance of it more obvious. If I could have replicated anything else it would’ve been a much larger Marlboro box so that I could include more details without making it look sloppy. I would like to be able to keep and add more of the tiny details of the box that could further enhance the theme. Ideally the way I would like to present this piece would be to have a photograph of it showing a person taking one of the final cigarettes out of the package, or if at least have a few cigarettes remaining in the pack before mounting it, which could also enhance the theme of unhealthy consumption.

Vilma's Trash Replication Project

Within this Trash Replication the theme or content that occurs is that of consumption. Particularly that of American brand-name consumption. The trash replicated is a General Mills, Honey Nut Cheerios box that is considered a popular alternative breakfast with its catch phrase "The delicious taste that can help lower cholesterol." This cereal brand is a brand that can be seen everyday through media and so on. It is seen as a ritual aspect of the american consumption as people tend to eat this cereal in the morning, during breakfast, and every day. This content does not shift generally far from the other specific pieces within the group because they all share this theme of American consumption. If I were to replicate anything I would replicate this box again just in a larger size and spend a longer amount on it. I would choose to replicate this cereal box again just because this trade mark is so easily recognizable and contains an important history behind it. This piece next to the original would be received as generally a good piece but would read off a little better if it was not compared to the original. Ideally, I would like to present this piece next to the actual product its suggesting, for example next to an actual bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios.