In this workshop we have been introduced to two principal methods of describing the meanings of words: Connotation and Denotation. Connotation refers to the wide array of positive and negative associations that most words carry with them, whereas denotation is the precise, literal definition of a word that might be found in a dictionary.
We were send off with our eyes and brains open and the starting point was Rosetta Stone.
At first glance is looks like a piece of rock but this piece of work carries very rich history with it. It has the clue to breaking a code of Egyptian hieroglyphs. It baffled scientists for centuries trying to work it out.
It was interesting to be drawing in the museum as even though I found people around me distractive it was charming how many people said nice and positive things about what we do and our work.
Very challenging task for me as drawing from perspective is tricky as I have never done any drawing classes apart from one short course. My issue is also getting into details so I produce less but more detailed pieces. Picked one item and tried to capture people’s reactions when they walked past it.
In the end we got together to discuss our work. I always like to see other student’s work as it amazes me how good some people’s drawings are and some managed to produce a lot of work in a short space of time.
We have been prompted to look at the Grayson Perry’s The Tomb of The Unknown Craftsmen Exhibition that took place at the British Museum in 2012. From what I can see this is relevant to our topic of denotation and connotation.
Perry created it as a memorial to all the anonymous skilled individuals who made all the things in the British Museum. The piece is a combination of artefacts from the museum’s collection alongside Perry’s own creations where he let his imagination and quirkiness shines through.
Perry mostly works in ceramics, producing pots which have a traditional shape that we all have seen many times in museums. What makes it different is the content on the pot. He decorates them with humorous, cheeky, awkward and controversial at times art. He often adds captions and speech bubbles.
If I saw this pot from far away I would automatically assume this could be one of the Greek art pots like the one below.
What we can see from the exhibition is the obvious and less obvious interpretations. The items from the British Museum might be easily recognised by the shape, colours, layout that we have in our memory and history surrounding them. However Perry’s designs on it are his own imaginative fantasies that have an element of surprise and controversy too.