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🔪Guido Nijhof🔪

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The work of Peter Struycken, Computerstructuur 4A, 1969

Peter Struycken talks about the computer era that brings a light and dark side with it. This was made in 1969 before any controversial subjects like nowadays are talked about. I found this very interesting, the visual he made looks like a qr-code from nowadays. For me was the question how he was able to create something so far ahead.

I found a connection by linking it to a subjects that is really talked about nowadays. Privacy, on the web. I found the connection and visual response of it by doing research, in the early days we always represented this kind of personality and identity for example tribal tribes that represent them selfs by mask, and face paintings. But also during different wars in Europe in the 18th century where the French, the English represent themselves with their country colors.

But there is this shift going on where everybody want to protect themselves and be unique. Look at the work of Leo Selvaggio’s. He made mask of his face and sold them to people so their identity could be safe. I’m interested in this positive to negative shift.

Mapping in class

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This mapping was really insteresting, we made this with 3 people. We tried several things and then we connected them with the words we had chosen. It was a linear form of history, so a lot of new connections where made by creating this as composition.


Inspiration, linked content

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Contrafactual Past

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This was based on the art piece of Martin Margiela, 1989. Where he created a dress made out of destroyed objects and created something new with it. I created a typical image that is broken. But also says something about the product itself.

Speculative Future

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This was based on the work of Manray The Gived, 1921. Where he created a iron with nails. So a useless object that has no purpose. I created a "remote controlled" drinking machine that is so ridiculous that it doesnt make sence. This was based on some information of the japanse stream of products called: "Chindogu". Inventions that defy consie explanation. They are not usefull.


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What if you give people a new visual identity?

In society now it is important that you have an identity as a person. Everyone tries to arrange or act differently. You can see this on social media. On social media we give each other and others information without knowing what to do with it or who’s reading it. During the visit of the Boijmans van Beuningen museum, I saw a kind of graphic image. It was the work of Peter Struycken. This work is called Computer Structure 4A, and was made in 1969. What interested me in this work was how it went with the time. Before that time, this artwork was very progressive. The description showed how Peter Struycken prepared us for the computer age. He describes how there are dark and light sides to the computer age. From here I found myself a connection with the era where we live now.

It is interesting to see how a part of our society reaches out to the digital world, and how the others try to push it away. During my research and searching for visual material I encountered several other art projects that had a lot to do with how privacy now plays an important role in this digital world. The work of Peter Struycken reminded me visually of a QR code that is now present and popular everywhere. But it also reminded me of a kind of landmark. The use of a symbol and the use of a flag. From here I came to the conclusion that these symbols and landmarks were used more often. For example, during the French war with England, a lot of colors were used during this, also flags and other objects. But the tribes of papua new guinea, used their face-dressing and painted their faces with during wars and other events.

These landmarks and objects used to be a form of recognition. But if you look nowadays, you see fewer and fewer people who want to belong to a society in this way. I myself was interested in Leo Selvaggio's work. This artist made a mask to ensure that the systems of governments and other parties would not recognize his face anymore. He ensures that a kind of blockade came into the privacy. In a way he made a sort of shield around him. During the other assignments I found out that I can also show a new kind of view of products or visuals. I also had to looked differently during the assignments that we did together as a group. I found it interesting to see how you should try to link something old and something new. For example the cave people also used a way of conveying and telling stories with cave-paintings.

On the other hand, companies and governments are collecting data. They get this data from social media and other places. But I was interested in the forms of data that are not immediately visible or can be converted into numbers. That is why I wanted to give people a new sort of identity that isn’t yet linked to the digital world. So I asked people to write down their dreams or nightmares and tell me. This is something that is very personal and often can not be found in this digital world. By means of creating a new identity on the basis of dreams, it had not been done before. There was a lot of interesting stories, I made three of the dreams and nightmares that people had experienced.

The concept was as follows, I started by collecting dreams or nightmares to create a story that could be connected to the mask. The intention was to do this in a visual way, as nowadays almost every kind of data company tries to establish. I want to show the difference between what is possible and in what ways this information can become a part in your life. The goal is to show other people that they have an identity that nobody knows or has seen before.

This is the way I started this project. By asking questions via social media and friends, I came behind a number of dreams. I wrote down the important events and translated them into images. I found out that there are a large number of people who are interested in this. Sharing a dream is something that is very private. And many people are still curious to see what happens to other people in their heads. First I collected images and digitally processed them into a design in the form of a scarf / mask. In this way, the persons of this identity could find a way to not be immediately visually recognizable. But they would recognize their own work and dreams / nightmares. After I had made these images digitally, they were intended to be printed. So I looked for the solution to see how it could be printed on textiles. From here I used the heat-press, and I printed the scarves piece by piece. Then it had to be transferred to the textile by heat. After finishing it, I used the lock machine from the fabric-station. From here I made several photos with people who tell the story.

I have chosen this way so that the face and identity of the person decays. Although there is a new identity that no one else knows, I think it is important that these kinds of privacy issues now come back to society as a subjects that is relevant. But this subject is often also seen as something very negative and sometimes another identity can be positive which can be linked to a person. Personally, I think that this was successful, those whose dreams were translated into masks are feeling connected to the different works that I have made. But there is also interest from others who find it interesting to tell or show their identity in this way. I noticed that when I showed these visuals, people started to get interested in the way how their identity would have looked liked. And what if it was translated in their dream.

Fragments of a Dream

I named this project Fragments of a Dream, I want to tell the audience that their have just a small perception of the full identity of a person.

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Fragments of a Dream - The dream of Jorijn. Is that he entered this gate with guards. And where he fells into a deep pit. And sees all kind of horrifying creatures.

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Fragments of a Dream - This is the dream of Annabel. She is the age of 10 when this happens. She comes home to her house looking for her mother. But she is not able to find her. Then she walks up the stairs and sees the door of her brother. It's open, in the room she find a manger. In the manger she finds her dead brother split in to perfect squares.

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This was the dream of Tim. Being stuck on an small island. And only being able to get away from it, is by putting your hand in the mouth of a fish. And being dragged to shore.