Art Brut. Part 2. Creativity Of Outsiders

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Art Brut. Part 2. Creativity Of Outsiders
Art Brut. Part 2. Creativity Of Outsiders
Video: Art Brut. Part 2. Creativity Of Outsiders
Video: Turning The Art World Inside Out (HD, eng/ru subs) 2023, February

Art brut. Part 2. Creativity of outsiders

There are so many people on planet Earth, and rarely does anyone think about the question "Is there a root cause, the meaning of life?" Only a person with a sound vector is persistently knocking on all doors in search of a clue to the meaning of his existence. That is why religious motives and symbols are so often found in art-brut paintings.

In the previous article, we examined the concept of "non-art" by Jean Dubuffet, embodied in a whole separate direction - art-brut. Dubuffet himself went the hard way before finding his own unique style, reflecting his idea of ​​real work. This is an art imbued with the spirit of freedom of sound search, art devoid of harmony, "sleekness", orderliness. The embodiment of the spirit of chaos and barbarism: crude, lively art.

As we have already said, Jean Dubuffet himself left behind more than 10 thousand works, written in different techniques. Moreover, the artist became the creator of a unique collection of paintings by outsiders, carefully selected by him from all over the world. These were the works of murderers and maniacs, the mentally ill, who imagined themselves to be mediums, madmen, eccentrics and even representatives of "wild" ethnic groups. It was in the work of such people that Jean Dubuffet saw the very freedom and spontaneity that he was looking for in himself. Their work is devoid of cultural frameworks, the concepts of “beautiful-ugly” are inapplicable to such creativity. The artist himself argued that the concept of beauty is wrong, and personally he prefers to admire "uncut diamonds".


The collection assembled by Jean Dubuffet formed the basis of a whole trend in art. Art brut is still popular with many sound specialists, so the list of authors working in this direction is only growing and expanding. Today we will consider some representatives of this direction (including those that are included in the Dubuffet collection).

His majesty the sound

The paintings included in the art-brut collection belong to all kinds of outsiders - people whose sound vector is often in poor condition, which is why they cannot adapt in society and often live on the edge. Of course, this does not apply to everyone, but many of the authors whose works are included in the golden fund of the art brut direction are recognized as mentally unhealthy, many of them are hermits, vagabonds, drug addicts, failed suicides trying to realize themselves, to fill their shortages.

The fact is that nature has set a special task for a person with a sound vector - to know the world inaccessible to the human eye, the world inside, the metaphysical world: to know God through knowing oneself and the world around. There are so many people on planet Earth, and rarely does anyone think about the question "Is there a root cause, the meaning of life?" Only a person with a sound vector is persistently knocking on all doors in search of a clue to the meaning of his existence. That is why religious motives and symbols are so often found in art-brut paintings.

The task of knowing God seems overwhelming. How many inventions have been created by mankind for several thousand years, how many discoveries have been made, but none of them has brought us closer to understanding God and the meaning of life. How many philosophical and religious works have been written, but unanswered questions have only increased.

The lack of a person with a sound vector is incredibly large and brings unbearable suffering to its owner. Therefore, he throws sound specialists from one extreme to another: a genius with a touch of insanity and an insane person with the potential of a genius. That is why in many paintings of art brut you can find all this universal suffering, emptiness and lack, expressed in ugly and terrible images.

For many audiovisual people, creativity is both a way to understand themselves and a way to display their own picture of the world. Thanks to the visual vector, such people perceive the world around them at a subtle level - in all its smallest changes, and the abstract thinking of the sound vector processes the information received in very bizarre forms. It can be anything: music, lines of poetry, drawing … A drawing of a person with a sound vector is often symbolic. For such a person, painting is a way to express his own picture of the world in the material world, to depict the inexpressible in a language accessible to a person - the language of symbols.

The symbols are not that hard to guess. For example, in the works of Pascal-Désir Maisonneuve shells instead of ears are a constantly recurring motif - a kind of metaphor built not only on the play on the words “shell” - “auricle”, but also on a special perception of reality. After all, the ears of a person with a sound vector are a very delicate and sensitive organ that establishes a connection between the external world and the internal world. The sound engineer perceives reality through the ear, therefore, the noisy outside world seems to him so hostile, traumatic. Any screams inflict serious injury on him, make him want to “hide in a shell”, withdraw into himself. It is not surprising that in some art brut paintings you can find snails - another living metaphor for the sound artist, the thing-in-itself.


Let's consider some other sound manifestations in art brut paintings.

Non-European "savages" and the sound picture of the world

A significant part of art brut creativity is made up of the works of people who do not belong to European culture, which means that they do not bear the imprint of the traditions of the classics in their work (that is, those who create without frames and rules). These works, as a rule, are interesting because they display folklore and religious motives that are unusual for a European person.

So, the sound-visual Kashinat Chavan, a resident of India, belonging to the caste of shoemakers, in his free time creates amazing pictures with a ballpoint pen with symbolic meaning. All characters are Indian deities or heroes of the Indian epic. Kashinat has developed his own technique, which consists in a special drawing of strokes. His paintings are imbued with an amazing atmosphere of tranquility.

Another representative of Art Brut lives in Bali. “Strange” grandmother - Ni Tajung, who spends all her time locked up: there are not even windows in her house.

A person whose sound vector does not find fulfillment and realization often flees from the surrounding reality and begins to lead a hermitic lifestyle. The sound engineer, it seems to him, does not need people at all, because the outside world for him is just an illusion, an imaginary world. True life takes place inside: where images and amazing worlds are born.

Nee Tajung, having lost her husband, lost her last connection with the outside world. Now her reality is that which is inside the house, the one that she painted herself. And this reality is inhabited by paper figures - self-portraits, as well as portraits of Tajung ancestors and images of spirits and totems.

A person with a visual vector is most afraid of being alone. Therefore, it is not at all surprising that the lonely and strange Ni Tajung created a "company" for herself, releasing images she invented herself.


The whole world of this little house is the world of the afterlife. Neither creates whole panoramas and acts out scenes between his “charges”. Inside the mysterious house, mysterious actors come to life under the direction of a lonely grandmother. Ni Tajung looks at her drawings through the mirror and says that this is how she gives them life and frees them from paper. It is not for nothing that many peoples consider a mirror a portal to the other world, to the world of the dead.

For connoisseurs of the art-brut direction, the works of such “non-European savages” seem especially attractive, because thanks to them one can see and understand the picture of the world of a person of a completely different culture with a completely different idea of ​​the world. An ideal opportunity for sound specialists to search for clues to the mysteries of life.

However, not only "extra-European savages" depict their picture of the world on canvas. For example, Johan Winch, a former piano teacher, while being treated in a psychiatric hospital, embroidered individual mythological codes that she assigned to those around her (doctors and other patients). Each stitch by Johan Winch was filled with a special meaning: each person was assigned a religious and mystical attribute and status in a special space of the Embroiderer (as the woman was nicknamed in the clinic). In her works you can find religious and folklore symbols: crosses, candles, bells, eyes, etc., as well as the names of famous real and mythical figures (Jehovah, Mussolini, Galileo Galilei, etc.).

All the work of the Embroiderer was accompanied by descriptions and transcripts. Johan Winch created entire carpets, embroidered on the shirts of other patients, and wore her own work. But, unfortunately, only a small part of her creations have come down to us.

I would be in the sky

What kind of person with a sound vector doesn't dream of the sky? Endless, deep … The sky for a sound engineer is inevitably connected with God, with something unknown. Therefore, it is not at all surprising that it was the sound engineer who invented the airplane and it was the sound people who pilot these wonderful flying machines.

The thought of flying inevitably catches up with every person with a sound vector. This idea takes on a special form in the art of outsiders of art brut. For example, Charles Delschow, after retiring, began to draw airships. Among his works, a notebook was also found in which Charles described the history of his activities at the Sansor flying club. The notebook contained reports on the activities of the club (design and construction of airships), votes, reports of the death of club members, but … no evidence was found that this club really existed. Most likely, Charles Delschow, an eccentric dreaming about flights with a sound vector, invented this club and its members himself.

Another figure in the art brut direction went a little further than the usual pictures: Gustav Mesmer was trying to design his aircraft.

When the sound vector is in good condition, a person has sufficient properties to study for the necessary specialty and bring his ideas to life. For the owner of an eccentric sound, ideas do not find their embodiment (after all, this requires a lot of knowledge and skills), but remain at the level of an impossible dream. That is why the apparatus of Gustav Mesmer never took off.

Art brut: in search of the formula of the universe

A person with a sound vector perceives beauty a little differently than, for example, a person with a visual vector: he can see beauty in numbers, letters, and formulas … This is especially true for skin sound specialists. You've probably heard from mathematicians the words "What a beautiful example!" or from chess players "What a beautiful game!" It is not surprising that often among the works of art brut one can find paintings entirely consisting of numbers or words.

In attempts to solve the mysteries of the universe, people with a sound vector often try to derive a universal formula for the universe. This formula can consist of numbers, letters, words (sometimes words of their own language) and even chemical elements.

The formula of the Universe can be found in the paintings and photographs of Charles Benefil. Having lost his home at the age of 18, Charles begins to wander around America, finding refuge only in abandoned houses. At the same time, he is actively taking drugs. Many people with deficiencies in the sound vector take refuge in drugs. This is an attempt to look into another reality, "expand the boundaries", and a desire to hide from the real world.


Benefil's photographs are frightening: in the center of the composition there are ugly, twisted figures - broken dolls, boys and girls with spoiled faces, severed limbs … sewn together as if in pieces. One of the works shows a girl doll with a skull instead of a head. An ugliness that embodies suffering and lack of a sound vector. The figures are usually bordered with numbers … endless rows of numbers. In different sequences, patterns. With dots, no dots … the author's hidden messages in the language of numbers. Some paintings consist of only digital series.

Some representatives of art brut in search of the formula of the Universe prefer to paint the walls of the city. Someone describes the history of their own universe (Oreste Fernando Nannenti, for example), someone leaves mysterious messages to the residents of the city (Elaine Rault), but, as a rule, such inscriptions are not a hooligan trick of the local punks, but a kind of art: layering words interspersed with symbols makes up one big picture, catching the eye, arousing interest. For example, a whole documentary film was shot about the wandering philosopher Elaine Raoult, scratching messages on the walls of his hometown, where researchers find patterns in his graffiti and try to uncover the mystery of his work.

Another interesting street artist (who still hides his name) draws molecular formulas on the walls of new buildings in Jerusalem. Moreover, all the formulas are taken not from the textbook, they are the author's and have nothing to do with real chemistry. An unusual artist devotes his "molecules" to various famous figures of the Jewish community - Anne Frank, Ilan Ramon (pilot), etc., and also comes up with new phenomena associated with the world of organic chemistry, and gives them names: "molecular rotor", "lord molecules "and many others. "Molecules" of Jerusalem are like living creatures leading some kind of special life unknown to the common man.

"Not art"?

Why is it hard for many to call art brut art? The fact is that art is created and served (like the whole culture) by people with a visual vector. It is for them that the concept of "beauty" is important. For sound people, in fact, the concept of beauty does not exist. The meaning is important to them. But, of course, no sound engineer will draw, embroider or create sculptures without a visual vector.

Most of the representatives of art brut described above do not realize their creativity as a process of creating a work of art. For them, it is primarily a way to understand the world and oneself, a way to express their idea of ​​the world, in the end, a way of communicating with the outside world (and sometimes, on the contrary, a way of leaving). Their activity is the process of the work of the unconscious, and it is from this point of view that ar-brut is interesting, because through the work of such people, one can better understand what is going on inside this person, what experiences, frustrations he has, how he perceives the people around him and the world generally.

"System-vector psychology" helps to more accurately interpret the meaning of the work of outsiders, to penetrate deeper into the seamy side of their life. She also suggests what exactly they attract millions of people who are fans of art brut.

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