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Madonna and Child

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Transcription of Audio Piece - I don't really understand it, I'm struggling to see how it started, like, sometimes, I don't know, I, even if it's like a squiggle I like to have an idea of what's behind it, or what is it, or what the person was thinking and with this it kind of looks like and A that's joined at the bottom and then whipped round, um or like a weird signature, if it was a signature that'd be cool, I don't really know, I mean, um, almost looks like an ink splodge kind of gone wrong but.. oh it's so difficult, I don't know.

- Well I guess it kind of looks quite like a Celtic sign in some ways, the way the very simple black line work cause that's very common especially during Irish Celtic times. Umm, yeah it's really, really quite interesting, um and I like have you've done, just put it on a white background really kind of brings out, very kind of.. it's very hard to describe but no it's very cleverly done, so yeah I really like it.

-'I like the shaping of the piece, I like the way how the more you look in the centre you can kind of, the lines become more don't know more not just lines more of a shape, or a kind of a movement
- Yeah very wise very wise
- I also like the little details like the smudging kind of gives the motion of energy
- Yeah a lot of movement, yeah that's what I was trying to think of a lot of movement
- i also like the way the lines will go to a point maybe kind of like there's something extra like its going onto something like a direction, or a, or a maybe a letter like an A or a G or a Z
- What a mind yep.

- Ok, um, what I can see is, basically a little bit of a squiggle, um.. it looks like some movement or something of an object when you leave the exposure on a camera and you move light around it looks a bit like that.
- Oh yeah, I thought when I first looked at it, it looked like more of a symbol more than a drawing I suppose.
- I guess like a letter or something and it's quite stark I guess with a black and a white thing, yeah, But yeah it does remind me of movement. It looks like something's missing from it, like, some sort of person or thing like a ball or something.
- Yes, it's quite free, if you look at it, it starts to kind of take on almost 3D kind of look
- I guess it's kind of that curve
- Yes exactly if you look at it long enough the form changes
- It's like when you look at a letter for long enough, but sort of looks like an A actually.
- Yes I suppose so.

- It looks like a nose and that's it's eyebrow there do you see it? Do you see it? We just need the '...'
- It the number 2 with the number 7 upside down through the middle.
- Oh I see yeah..
- Or the number eight?
- Who painted it?
- It looks a lot like numbers
- I don't see the eight, who painted it?
- It looks like a photocopy
- Isn't it irrelevant who painted it?
- I'd just like to know.
- It looks like, I think it's photocopied
- I think the piece of art is us actually talking about it not the actual thing!
- Ohhh..
- So we're making art!
- You're not going to use any of this are you?
- CUT!

- I see ink, like a, kind of reminds me of something Chinesey, like some sort of calligraphy that's what it reminds me of. I can see that it could be taken like a simplified drawing of something else maybe some sort of animal I don't know what, maybe a swan. Is it printed looks like it's been printed, ok. So did you design it? I can't ask you that can I? Ok, Is it just like a smudge of printer ink like with no real reasoning behind it? I don't know, I don't know what to say about it.

- Umm, well slightly abstract isn't it? And, it's not the most intriguing painting - personally. Um, I guess I'd need to know the idea behind it before I found it a bit more interesting, than it is already. But um that's about it really.

- When I first looked at this painting I thought it was some sort of symbol or language, um almost like a Chinese symbol but not really. Umm it looks like it's been done with kind of a black liquid pen, um, done quite freely but looking at the structure as well umm. The lines overlap each other and connect, umm. It's like you can't see a meaning, like straight away if you just look at it I think, um, you need the artist to you know tell you what it means or, umm, the lines have different widths of how thick it is.

- I think i need like 40 minutes to study this even though it's just like four lines, you know what I mean? But it is interesting actually cause um I'm trying to figure out what it is, is it letters? or..? umm.. Ahh, I know what it is! I can see what you are trying to do there is a two in there, and maybe you're playing with numbers or something, you know? But are you.. ah that could be, ah I know what it is! That looks like a parrot d'ya know what I mean? Look at this. Look at this. The nose and that could be the eye, or maybe a pigeon or bird or something you know. Oh wow ok so how many things did I come up with that's interesting already. I came up with numbers and then I went to a bird, it could almost be a ninger or something in a way you know. But I like how the way how you done it, limiting yourself from using colours, and just so plain, how long did it take you by the way? Two minutes? Ok. Umm, Yeah it's just so weird, I can't believe I came up with two things already with it, numbers, birds. Is it, is it a human? I'm trying to think, let me see if I look upside down what I see. Oh no, you can't see much if you look upside down. But um. Dude is it a foot or something? Um, I really can't figure this out, which is what I like cause you have many interpretations of it you know? Was that your objective like to make people talk about it and stuff like that? But yeah I said quite a lot of humms in this talk! But it would be quite nice if you could tell me what it is you know, and then maybe I could agree or disagree with you.

Transcription Ends

One night my brother and I came home to find many paintings my niece had made lying on the kitchen table. 'Hey this looks like the Madonna and Child' said Simon intrigued by the innocent creation of his daughter. I immediately thought of my fine art project in which we had to chose a painting in the national gallery and transcribe it. I wanted to create a work that was less focused on a specific object we can see, such as a canvas or sculpture and use a medium I had not before.

I took my dictaphone and recorded people talking about the painting my niece had made (please see recording and image below) without telling them what it was. This represents the audio guide I used in the national gallery to help me understand the paintings as the huge mass of them did not have much meaning or value until I knew the story behind them. It was interesting to see how varied people's dialogues were. Some giving an honest literal account of what they saw, and others letting their imagination flow. It made me think of many other themes, such as the conditioning society and schooling has on us, the suppression of our creativity and confidence in our own imaginations or even to what extend we can look into a scribble on a piece of paper and come up with so many meanings, which is sort of what a lot of conceptual art provokes us to do.



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