Thursday, July 18, 2013

R.O.T.Y.O - Inside the project, part 1

This months cover by K.K.W,
with layout by Aleksandar Ares
Rise Of The Young Ones - inside the project, part 1. By K.K.W

"Any Major changes to a city's landscape / layout reflects either the concious or subconcious of the populace, or predates it. This is usually through the actions of one or more person (s) in conjuction with those in power (its educated and or dominant classes). And although its generally for the good of the city, its people and greater civic harmony, as an equation its never balanced."  (Aleksandar Ares)

March Revolution - Berlin, Germany 1848.
Image courtesy of Wikipedia. 
From the late 19th to the mid 20th century the major factors of urban change has been war, technology, social revolution & class struggle. All of which are influenced by politics and economic factors. One of the two main epicenters of these changes are France and Germany, via Baron Haussmann & Walter Gropius.  Both would leave its  mark on history and influence many other cities throughout the world.

Berlin, 1912. Paul Hoeniger Spittelmarkt.
Image courtesy of Wikipedia.
Bauhaus, Dessau Germany. Built in 1926.
Image courtesy of Wikipedia.
German Soldier, WWII. Image courtesy of
With this 2nd part [Rise Of The Young Ones] to the original project (In The Shadow Of the Young Ones) I wanted to reach back and examine the reasons  that gave rise to modern urban change;  leading to the cities we're living in today. At the same time, visually exploring our changing urban landscape through, digital photography, splicing the images together with others [about religion, people, class & political struggle, etc] to show what our urban landscape projects about us. And given that human nature is the same throughout the world, what one city projects you would find aspects of this & similarities in others. 

Downtown NYC 2012, by Kerwin Williamson.
From the 1st part of the project -
In The Shadow Of The Young Ones.
4th Ave, near Union Square [Manhattan].
By Kerwin Williamson.
From the 1st part of the project -
In The Shadow Of The Young Ones.
c.i_#80 by Kerwin Williamson 2012
In a way, one could say the imbalanced equation that is New York City, physically speaking, is a representation of its people. The city projects our tastes, wants, inconsistencies, shallowness, depth of our cultural richness, greed, love, need for commercial consumption, simplicity, order & almost religious obsession with space. Visually expressing this, through digital abstract art, is the result of exploring the contrasting aspects of modern architecture, public space and its predecessors. What's found is in fact aspects of our society, and connects us to each other despite distance of miles or culture. 
c.i_#99, by Kerwin Williamson. 2013
The most difficult aspect of the project [from a visual art standpoint] was how to create art that encompasses what I came to realize about modern architecture visually, changes in society that gave rise to it, along with aspects of the people. During the 1st part I began to think about the death of older buildings, and how it would be great if musicians played a requiem for them (how to show this visually in an interesting way). I opened a file with photos I took of a violinist (Miranda Cuckson), and began trying to merge one of them (via photoshop) with a photo of a old hospital that was being gutted. From this first 'c.i' [composite image] came many more, and another way of creative expression for the project.  

Splicing multiple digital photographs in a layering process, an alternate landscape & world is created. Order and control is lost and becomes redefined through extreme visual drama, representing our subconscious fear, and who we are; creatures that need change though resist it because we have little control over it. 

c.i_#1 [Requiem for Brooklyn], with
violinist Miranda Cuckson.
c.i_#33 [Requiem for Skopje],
violinist Miranda Cuckson.
R.O.T.Y.O Bklyn Ad image #1.
By Kerwin Williamson. 
This is a solo project that has many aspects which make it very difficult, although extremely enjoyable and important. At current, urban change in New York City is leading towards many social changes that will have a lasting effect. I think its important to be aware of this and examine the key factors that cause it.   

If you would like to know more, go to the project page on FB: 'Art is the reason, art is the way' 

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