Saturday, January 25, 2014

The LGBT Pictionary: Part III

Gay and Vivacious

I describe the idea-making-paperwork (ideation process) necessary to begin actual work on the first batch of artworks in the LGBT Pictionary.

I began work on the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) Pictionary in the spring of 2012, and it is no surprise that “gay” was the first word that occurred to me. After all, I am gay. Then I thought to look at synonyms and antonyms for gay, and added “Vivacious,” “Jaunty,” and “Festive” to a list of possible paintings to make. I moved on to look at historic words used to denigrate LGBT people with the idea that I would reappropriate them in the more positive light of our times in which LGBT people have fought and continue to fight for recognition as equal to their heterosexual brothers and sisters. I also thought to look at historic symbols used against by and for various groupings within the LGBT category, like the pink triangle symbol. It was first used in Nazi Germany as a uniform patch to be worn by gay men in the concentration camps. Today that negative has been turned into a positive as gay men and women turn the Nazi triangle upside down so that it points up instead of down. The list of words grew until it filled a one page Microsoft Word document in two columns before I ever lifted brush to paint.

By May, 2012 I had begun to collect text and images that I thought might be appropriate to words on my list. I made a new list of images I would need to photograph for use in the first set of five artworks for the Pictionary.

Finally, in July, 2013 I began work on the first four, 8 x 8 inch squares that would become “Gay,” “Sapphic,” “Pink Triangle,” and “Vivacious.” Gay and Vivacious were the second and first artworks in the series to be completed on August 1st, and 8th respectively.

I will talk more about the techniques I used in making of these artworks in a future entry.

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