For me, sometimes it is hard to identify and distinguish certain art forms from others. The more you meet the creators and curators of art, the gap between what pleases your eyes and what is appreciated by the tasteful, kinda widens.
Now the art form KITSCH world over is considered tacky and cheesy especially by the modern artists. In fact, it is inspired from a German word that means to cheapen. However, there are slightly accepted forms of kitsch called Pre-emptive kitsch and Meta kitsch through which popular artists like Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons and Allen Jones (who have a certain artistic style that can easily be disregarded by the modern artists) have tried to fit in. They have adopted kitsch and pulled it off deliberately instead of even trying to create what the tasteful like. Try checking out the works of these artists to understand the kind of explicit display & style (for many it falls in the vulgarity zone) kitsch talks about.
World over, now for ease, it is all termed as Pop Art.
In our country, kitsch has somehow taken the form of pop art style and colours that are bold and mostly drawn from Bollywood and the real Indian streets. Our sense of kitsch, I don’t think, will in any recent time go to create works similar to Jeff Koons, the kind of work he has pulled off with Lady Gaga. Well, to me, his work is not chic but it is not kitsch too…it’s playful…lol
This time here at The Purple Frog, there is a coffee jar turned into a flower vase, a tea lover’s Bollywood-style-confession Coaster and our own version of a Playful kitsch Do Not Disturb door tag.
So it’s festival time and if you, like me, you do not know how to feel special on special occasions, try making cool things.
In one of his books, People Watching, Desmond Morris starts by highlighting the fact that all animals perform actions and many go for making artefacts too such as nests, burrows, beds and webs. And then he makes an observation about the ability of abstract thinking in humans and says a beautiful line – it is only with man that artefaction and abstraction have run riot and that’s the essence of his success story.
The ‘run riot’ part sounds superbly wild and when I look around, there are many people who are running their imaginations wild and personalising their worlds. With the Purple Frog store – The Make Shop, the idea is to preserve that touch of raw, that touch of wild which I think is a sign of brimming life.
So you can watch this space for interesting things people have created in the cosy corners of their homes, studios or workshops with varying degrees of precision and suaveness. You can buy them or mail me if you want to make something similar with your touch and I would be happy to help in whichever way I can.
Leaving an inspired you would be the ideal thing here. It is the sense of accomplishment that comes with MAKE that makes all the difference. It is obviously not possible to design and stitch your own clothes, make your own furniture, cook gourmet meals or all things else.
But, you can definitely make a small wooden chest, tie and dye a silk scarf, add a few pearls at the base of your white linen curtain for that starry shimmer, cheer for your team in a jersey with you in the team’s name, paint a board game on the ignored side table or cook gourmet using an ingredients kit …so MAKE DO with your existing craft skills and DO MAKE something every now and then…
This Week’s Thing
A 19 by 12 inches iron table turned into a game board for mindless, quickie games of Saap Seedi and Ludo. This has magnetic ‘Gotis’, a Die and a Dice Cup. We have left the legs of the table bare in case some day the imagination runs wild, there will be scope to do more.