Last week, on Thursday, November 18th, my media arts class went on a field trip downtown. In the morning we went to the National Film Board, and then in the afternoon, we visited the Art Gallery of Ontario. At the NFB, the first thing we did was meet with two of the staff there to have a discussion about documentaries. At the beginning, we learned about some features found in most documentaries. I think the most important point was that even though they are based on or follow real life events,they are still biased in some ways because they are edited by a person who usually has their own opinion thrown into the story.
Next, still at the NFB, we watched a documentary called Rip: A Remix Manifesto. This film was telling the story of Girl Talk, a remix artist, and how remixing is becoming controversial in terms of copyrighting. Some people interviewed in the movie said they thought remixing was illegal because it was just using other people’s work, and it was a form of stealing. However, the creator of this movie disagreed with this and was on a quest to prove that remixing really is an art form. I agree with the filmmaker because by the time a remix is made, the new product is completely different from the original. I think remixing requires just as much creativity and skill as other types of art or even playing an instrument. I enjoyed watching this documentary and learned a lot of new things from it, including my favourite new fact ... Warner/Chappell owns the rights to Happy Birthday and everytime it is used they make a profit!
After lunch we continued our field trip by going to the AGO to see an art exhibit. The artwork in the exhibit was by an artist named Julian Schnabel. The paintings were very interesting and they were a style I have never seen before. They were these delicate drawings, but then the artist drew lines of paint or words all over them to purposely make them looked destroyed (seen in one of his paintings pictured on the left). It was a unique way of doing art, but I didn’t really like it because I kept wondering what the picture would look like without being drawn over by paint! However, it is very creative and I appreciate the fact that he is trying to be different.One painting that was cool was the one which had a surfer on a wave in the background, because it resembled a picture done by the artist Jean-Michel Basquiat in the movie we watched in class prior to the field trip. This movie was directed by Julian Schnabel. Overall, this was a great excursion and I got to experience a lot of things that will help my understanding of media arts.