Sunday, November 8, 2009

Research Findings 1.1

November 8, 2009

Statistics have shown that the distribution of M&Ms in the fun size bags are not consistent. In a case study four bags from the same batching were tested.

The Findings:

Bag A. - 18 M&Ms

Bag B. - 19 M&Ms

Bag C. - 18 M&Ms

Bag D. - 17 M&Ms

Further tests will be conducted.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Research Paper

Eric Zimmermann

Fall 2009

Research Paper

Tatau – the result of tapping or sticking.

“One should either be a work of art, or wear a work of art.”

- Oscar Wilde

Tattooing has appeared everywhere on earth and in nearly every culture. There is much speculation as to what culture started the art of tattooing but it has been present since ancient times (12,000BCE) in cultures such as the Incas, Burmese, Tahitians, and most notably the Egyptians. These markings that have today become known as tattoos have been around for thousands of years and have been practiced and collected for many different reasons. Their specific meanings and purposes can only be speculated, but the three categories most researchers associated with tattoos are 1. Ritualistic – amongst tribal peoples to mark a young man’s transition from boyhood to adulthood. The process of tattooing incorporates many elements associated with ritual such as blood, symbolism, and pain (physical awakening). 2. Social status can also be inferred through tattooing in cultures such as the Egyptians, who would adorn their bodies with ornate markings. 3. Medicinal purposes were the last reason ancient cultures would tattoo one another, most often as a cure for what we now know today as arthritis.

The ideas and reasoning behind tattoos however has long since changed. Over the thousands of years that tattooing was thought of by most notably the Catholic Church as a pagan practice tattooing has evolved. When the Europeans began their period of exploration tattooing was rediscovered. This would be the start of tattooing, as we know it today.

The culmination of this resurgence of interest in tattooing came in 1862 when the Prince of Whales, who later became King Edward VII, had a small Maltese cross tattooed on his arm to commemorate his visit to Jerusalem. (Pg.22, Pushing Ink). This is when the idea of tattooing became the trendy thing to do, and would eventually carry over to the United States. Sailors became the main collectors of tattoos during the mid 1900s, and led to the creation of the electric tattoo machine replacing the original methods: 1. Cutting the skin and rubbing the wound with pigment. 2. Burning the skin and filling the wound with pigment. 3. Soot covered needles (bone) drawn through skin or skin being pricked with needles covered in dye.

With the inception of the electric tattoo machine and modernization of technique the fad of tattoos exploded in America. Tattooing became a subculture, but soon after died out for several decades. But during the mid twentieth century tattooing took a new life and the subculture became mainstream challenging ideas and creative expression. Tattoos became a new form of art and tattooists were always experimenting with new techniques and constantly pushing boundaries. Tattoo artists most notably Spider Webb even went a step further from the original idea of tattooing and began to think of it in a conceptual manner and creating tattoos reflecting these ideas.

“An X to me is a very anthropological experience. A dog, bird, fish, or cockroach can make a line. It takes a certain intelligence to cross it with another line.”

- Spider Webb (in reference to his “Scarification Series”)

Spider Webb also used light and shadow lying across peoples skin as conceptual tattoos in a study during the late 1970s as a means to show tattoos in a different light. His ideas challenged what we today think of when we hear about tattoos and societies perception of them today in the twenty-first century, while also nearly single handedly leading a revolution to have tattooing legalized in all 50 states in the United States.

Tattooing in society today has since Spider Webb and his idea of tattooing being “Warm Art” in the late 1970s grown by leaps and bounds, in my opinion to its detriment. With the constant creation of new tools (pneumatic machines, needles, etc.) and new techniques the art of the tattoo has been lost. The concept of permanence has dissipated, and in turn has taken away from the original idea of what tattooing is, and what it represents.

Through my thesis piece I hope to bring to light the original ideas of what tattooing is and its significance to its owner, how it is ephemeral. A tattoo can be defined as an indelible mark, which results from the injection of particles of ink or other coloring substance into the dermis – the area that lies directly under the epidermis. The permanence of the tattoo and its lifeline are my main focus throughout my thesis piece, conception to demise. My goal is to successfully illustrate this in an accelerated manner and document the lifeline through photographs. Building on the conceptual ideas of Spider Webb I plan to use fruits and vegetables as merely a conveyance of the superseding idea.

“You may lose your most valuable property through misfortune in various ways. You may lose your house, your wife and other treasures. But your tattoo cannot be deprived except by death. It will be your ornament and companion until your last day.” - Netana Whakaari

Research Paper Outline

Eric Zimmermann

Fall 2009

Research Paper Outline

I. Thesis: Tattoos have since their inception risen in popularity from a tribal ritual and honor to a mainstream statement about one’s own individuality and interests. The tattoo artist was born, and with this many changes came as well. However, we must not forget that the lifeline of a tattoo will always end with the person who bears it.

II. Early Civilizations and Tattoos

A. Ritualistic

B. Social Status

C. Medicinal Reasons

III. Tattoo and Culture during the early 1900’s

A. Sailors traveling throughout the Polynesian islands discover tattoos and the fad is born

B. Americanization/Modernization of tattoos

IV. Tattooing as a Subculture

A. Tattoo artists among the likes Sailor Jerry, and Spider Webb

challenge society with new ideas regarding tattoos and body art.

B. Spider Webb creates tattoos as conceptual art pieces.

V. Tattooing in society today

A. New artists continue to surprise the tattoo community by continuously pushing the envelope and trying to out do his or her predecessors.

B. With the acceptance of tattoos in modern day society they have become a fly by night business and the significance of the art of tattoo has been lost. The concept of permanence has dissipated.

C. Laser Removal has saved many, but at what cost? This has also taken away from the original idea behind the art of tattoos (from the moment it is applied to the last breath you take that tattoo is with you, a part of you). No more is this the case.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

TINY drawings & NYC

It's 9:17am.. I think, and I have not slept much since last night because of all the drawing I have been doing. For some reason last night I started drawing insanely small, insanely tight drawings that kept me occuppied for a lot longer than I thought they would. Anyway, NYC today so hopefully that's good. Still thinking about how im going to make my ideas for my internal/external sourcing project a reality, but I will figure it out.. . I hope

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

External Sourcing

An artist's environment and surroundings are obviously the inspiration for most in terms of external sourcing.  Rather then a solely private experience, thought or emotion that would be internal sourcing art deriving from external sourcing is experienced by more people then just simply the artist.  I do believe that it is hard to define inspiration as either internal or external because I feel sometimes the line between the two gets blurred.  I suppose it is only for the artist to decide and know where exactly his or her inspiration is rooted, whether it be one or the other or both.

Sourcing Inspiration

Naturally inspiration is found by every artist in his or her own way.  Whether it be by internal or external sources on the person creating the art will know for sure.  After reading the article I would say that I am still unsure as to whom or what I relate too most.  I feel that it changes for myself; inspiration could come from inside or be inspired by external elements.  I am aware that I have more passion for certain things then others naturally and maybe if I explore the passions I speak of I will find a better understanding of what my exact muse is, and where my inspiration stems from.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Artist Statement

Hello my name is Eric Zimmermann as a child I would always find myself locked away in my room drawing rather than outside playing with the other kids. This stayed true all the way through high school where I eventually expanded from drawing to working with other mediums, such as painting, sculpture, printmaking, etc.

Since high school my main outlet for my work has been painting and this became even more apparent when I declared it as my concentration in college at University of the Arts in Philadelphia. My years of drawing have always been reflected in the way in which I paint, strong lines, free brushstrokes, and a more abstracted view on many of the subjects I choose to paint. As it turned out my painting would eventually lead to another form of art, tattooing.

The transition from painting to tattooing has been relatively easy because the tools have many similarities in their ranges. It has however forced me to become much less abstracted and really tighten my style in respect to my drawing. I still draw and paint for myself, but as it has seemed to happen for most of my life I am just waiting for tattooing to eventually lead to another outlet, and expand the ways in which I create art, and share it with the people around me.