October 1, 2010

The Finished Collage

October first seems to be a meaningful time to post my now completed collage “Facebook Purgatory.” As the title implies, it is numerically divided into the threes and nines found in Dante’s The Divine Comedy. My original painting that this collage is derived from was a satire on Facebook putting me into a two-week long waiting period before deleting my profile. It struck me as having a purgatory-like judgmental quality. In recent times, however, with the release of the film today, “The Social Network” as well as the news stories of a youth whose tragic death appears to be linked to a form of harassment exposure on the net, it seems as if the social network of cyberspace itself stands in limbo.

The part of Dante’s long poem about purgatory is distinct from his descriptions of Inferno because although it describes sin, they are character flaws - the seven deadly ones to be exact - rather than actions. Figures in Dante are often described as being in strange positions - backwards or upside down, which is why I decided in my collage to take the face icons and turn them upside down. The three large central icons were made from cut out painted paper and the rest were made with carved rubber stamps. Generally when I design a stamp for an art work I keep them for use in future art works. I threw away the face stamps for this art work, not wanting to revisit the theme.

The painting of the she-cat and her two little ones is number thirty-two in my series of paintings of the thirty-three paintings of the big cats. Tomorrow they will end and it will be on to the next cycle.

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