(Roughly) Daily

“The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls”*…

 

Montreal-based Peter Gibson started painting on the streets as a form of activism (for more bike paths); he remains engaged, but his commitment to the pavement has become more embracing.  He’s changed his name to “Roadsworth” (“where Wordsworth is a poet of words, Roadsworth is a poet of roads”), and redoubled his allegiance to asphalt.

As my personal artistic process evolved, political concerns were eclipsed by artistic ones and I often felt more inspired by the process than I did by the message I was trying to convey. Marshall Mcluhan’s famous quote ‘the medium is the message’ is significant in this regard. The ubiquitousness of the asphalt road and the utilitarian sterility of the ‘language’ of road markings provided fertile ground for a form of subversion that I found irresistible. I was provoked by a desire to jolt the driver from his impassive and linear gaze and give the more slow-moving pedestrian pause for reflection. The humourlessness of the language of the road not to mention what I consider an absurd reverence for the road and ‘car culture’ in general made for an easy form of satire.

See more of Roadsworth’s work at My Modern Met, and on Gibson’s own site.

* Pablo Picasso

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As we look both ways, we might send elegantly-composed birthday greetings to Mary Cassatt; she was born on this date in 1844.  An American printmaker and painter, she moved to Paris as an adult, where she developed a friendship with Edgar Degas and became, as  Gustave Geffroy wrote in 1894, one of “les trois grandes dames” of Impressionism (with Marie Bracquemond and Berthe Morisot).

Self-portrait, c. 1878

source

 

Written by LW

May 22, 2013 at 1:01 am

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