Whenever I’m away in another city, generally the main entertainment I initially focus on is what artwork I can look at. Art is always representative of the personality of a city in the historic and contemporary pieces that have been produced in that environment, and I feel that this triggers respectful engagement with the town I’m visiting. Another important thing to observe is the way in which pieces are displayed. The way artworks are curated can develop understandings of how you can culturally connect with a city.
A good way to explore this idea is to look at street art. Each city has its own home grown talents which serve as a representation of a city’s soul and spirit. The urban artists have grown up there and expose whatever relationship they have with that environment in the work they choose to create on the concrete pedestal that has been their home.
I feel that this is what WearThatART does. It gives you a great way to show what makes you tick, what art inspires you and how you want to share your passion for that art by displaying it on your clothes.
It can be really interesting thinking about how one’s mood can be affected by the artwork you choose to surround yourself with, so let’s look at a few case studies.
The dominant Colour in Titian’s ‘Bacchus and Ariadne’ 1520–1523 is blue, which is generally linked to working through problems through contemplation. This is why this colour created using the expensive ultramarine pigment is considered to be calm and reassuring. However, if you consider how many emotions are depicted in the painting, Ariadne, who is being pursued by Bacchus’ wild animals is shown in a state of fear towards him as he jumps from his chariot, you wonder how this dominant colour can be so calming. However, the harmonious, contemplative nature of the painting comes from the viewer’s gaze being drawn up to the skies, where Bacchus, lovingly turns the previously scared Ariadne into a beautiful constellation, represented by the stars above her head.
This demonstrates how a painting doesn’t have to show a scene too unrealistically cheerful in order to give the viewer a warm happy feeling (which is often triggered by the viewer’s memories of the piece).
Take Van Gough’s Bedroom At Arles (1888) for example. Yellow can elicit thoughts of depression and give the impression of fragility, which we often associate with Van Gough’s oeuvre. However, this scene doesn’t generally make people feel sad. Consider firstly how yellow is also often associated with friendliness, and see how the yellow bed contrasts with the blue background (which as we have already discussed represents calm contemplation). This suggests that the piece signifies the painter looking forward to having his friend as a guest at the house, which they can use as a space to have intellectual discussions about the arts.
This makes the piece fill me with comfort whenever I see it. Despite Gauguin’s visit ending in a series of soul destroying tragedies for the artist, his feelings of enthusiasm that he felt when making the painting is reflected in my own enjoyment of the piece.
Both of these paintings are complex and show a variety of emotions, but are pieces that I have chosen to display as posters in my own bedroom. I consider the act of choosing these images as a way of curating a scene that shamelessly reveals the kind of person I am, what inspires me and the complex emotional interactions that make the world a magical, fascinating place.
I try to do the same thing in the clothes I choose to wear. Whatever shirt I wear discloses information that allows people to understand that I’m an interesting, creative person who cares about art and culture. In a way I’m proudly curating myself as a kind of mobile exhibition.
The artwork you display on whatever shirt you buy from Wear That Art could say a lot about you. This piece by Viktor Miller could display that you are interested in people and what stories you can learn by contemplating the way they stand. Is this fictional character relaxed or is she tense and sheltered? What is the significance of the cigarette holder? These and many other discussions could be triggered by wearing this shirt at an event or in a bar. What about this piece by Jake Troyli? The artist definitely has a good sense of humour, but are you attracted to the bold primary colours because they make you feel happy, or is the subtle subversion of western art traditions and their relationship to theology an intrepid act of defiance and rebellion?
Whatever you choose from the WearThatART collection will enable you to curate yourself and proudly solidify your own individual style. A gift from WearThat ART could do the same thing for your friends and loved ones. If you get them one of our shirts as a present it will remind them of your emotional bond whenever they wear the gift you present to them. So get thinking, ‘What art would work for which friend?’ then fill your shopping cart with art!