“Book of Mistakes” is a project based on the theme of “Flaws and Perfection”. I was initially particularly interested in looking at how limited control over the process of making artwork affected the notion of flaws and perfection. Jackson Pollock remained very influential to my artwork throughout the entire project.
I found visual appeal in using a colour scheme containing only primary colours . I began to realise the connotations that these had with children and childhood which led my project to become more focused on the notion of flaws and perfection in relation to children. I then began to explore the, often subconscious, opinions about the artwork children create. I found that children's artwork is often dismissed as an art form because children may not use advanced techniques. I felt very strongly that this dismissal was something I would like to address in my artwork. In my opinion, art should be strongly promoted during childhood as it provides a incomparable tool for communication and expression. I spent some time researching Abstract Expressionist artists to establish how self-expression is featured in their artwork. I noticed some visual similarities between their paintings and paintings we could imagine being created by a child. Of course, Abstract Expressionists will have a deeper understanding of composition and how colours interact with each other, but the element of spontaneity and rawness of their art, I found, reflected that of a child's.
My project then grew to be centred around the negative input we may receive as children and how this can later affect our opinions regarding our own artwork. I did this by combining phrases written in the first person, such as “I did it wrong”, with artwork inspired by a range of artists, primarily of the Abstract Expressionist genre. By having the phrases in the first person, I intend to trigger an emotional response on the part of the viewer. Imagining a child thinking these things about themselves may be striking and unexpected.
I chose to present my designs in the form of a children's picture book as these are very influential in most childhoods. I titled the book “A Book of Mistakes; as titled by an adult” to give a brief glimpse into the concept behind the piece, as it is unlikely to be immediately obvious through the artwork alone.