Jason Salavon – Every Playboy Centerfold, The Decades (Normalized) (2000)
Every Playboy Centerfold, The Decades (Normalized) by Jason Salavon is a series of image averages of Playboy centerfolds from the 1960s though the 1990s. They reveal interesting trends in the popular images of women in the West, such as the increasing lightness of skin and hair as well as the desire for skinnier women as the decades pass. The change in perception and objectification of women is a subject with an immense scope, but the specificity choice of material in order to convey an aspect of this subject works greatly in its favor.
Memo Akten and Quayola – Forms (2012)
Forms, by Memo Akten and Quayola, is a series of audio-visual, computer-generated, graphical sculptures based on the motion of athletes. The finely-tuned movements of these athletes is abstracted into dynamic forms composed of meshes and particles that mimic their movement through space and is accompanied by audio effects. Culturally, the motion of high-caliber athletes is something that fascinates most people, making the content very enthralling. I think the audio, which is composed of echoing mechanical noises is accompanies the visuals well, but I think the music in the background is an odd choice. Also, the lack of an interesting background to the kinetic sculptures seems like an oversight.
Jim Campbell – Ambiguous Icon 5: Running and Falling (2000)
Jim Campbell’s Ambiguous Icon 5: Running and Falling is another work that deals with the abstraction of human motion, however it does not seek to glorify or portray it in a beautiful manner. The work is a video of a man running and falling and running played on a very low resolution binary display composed of red LEDs. The work explores the capability of the human mind to recognize patterns and forms with which it is familiar. In its low resolution format, the images are nearly impossible to recognize when taken apart, however the temporal aspect of the video enables the viewer to discern the subject of the work. Unfortunately, I think that the content of the video is lacking. I understand that it was important to choose video of something that the viewer had not ever seen, however I think choosing something more aesthetically interesting would add to the work.