Art Monday: Anthropometry


Close up of left side: Close up of right side:Click each to enlarge.

The text on the right hand glove says:

"It follows also, that no vain or selfish person can possibly paint, in the noble sense of the word."
-from Modern Painters by John Ruskin Vol.5, E.P. Dutton & Co. (no date on colophon) .

"When the pupils can make from the figure rapid pencil sketches showing good action and good proportion, they may be allowed to indicate the features in a very simple way. "
-from the Ontario Teachers' Manuals: Art, Toronto, William Briggs, 1916, 1918 edition.

The assignment was to discuss sexuality, body image, eroticism, beauty or any combination of these. I decided to go for body image and perfection from a different angle.
Anthropometry seemed appropriate.

After some discussion with
Felice Frankel about our upcoming ScienceOnline2010 session, my mind has been ticking about the way scientific visualizations and scientific illustrations create their own standards, holotypes and "perfect" images, as well as how artists have done the same. From da Vinci's Vitruvian Man, to laws of the body being 7.5 heads high (or whatever), artists have been using these semi-arbitrary rules for perfect drawing for as long as there has been clay and fingers to smudge it with.

India Ink, pencil, and sanguine brush marker drawing on hygienic latex gloves. Glued to stretcher bars and backlit. Copyright Glendon Mellow 2009.

Some of the rough work can be seen here.

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Original artwork on The Flying Trilobite Copyright to Glendon Mellow
under Creative Commons Licence.
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