Art 1 – Due Nov 4 – Rosenquist/week 2



Big! James Rosenquist



***Post a comment and discuss:

the  political meaning of F-111,

and share your analysis of the specific ways in which the work is well designed.

(…consider the use of repetition, rhythm, emphasis, transitions, contrast, color, positive and negative space.)

For your sketchbook  (keep track of the time to total 1 hour ) do a pop art style drawing that has a social or political message that you care about. Like Rosenquist’s, it may require the viewer to make interpretations and draw conclusions based on the pop imagery you present.


27 responses »

  1. Being anti-Vietnam War, all of the “modern-day flak of household things” (such as the girl getting her hair dried, the tire, the spaghetti, and light bulb) seem to signify all of the everyday activities and items America was protecting by bombing Vietnam with this plane. Most of the objects seem to be a product of America’s industrial and capitalist zeal. Anyhow, being a plane yet to be constructed, it would be giving a small portion of Americans– each with families to support –a job to sustain themselves with. Despite the destruction this plane would cause, the constructors might care less because it’s money in their pockets…

    By putting the majority of the plane in the middle ground of the work, the plane is “surrounded” by culturally American things. One might not even notice the plane unless they stepped out a bit to look at the picture as a whole– especially since Rosenquist completed the work in a grid-panel format. The plane is very camouflaged– not just behind the images of American culture, but also by the overlapping and contrasting colors he uses. The plain isn’t just one color, it’s a collage of different hues. It’s as if Rosenquist might be saying that this plane is behind (or protecting) all the amenities you see– all of American culture… This being what much of the commonwealth believed the United States’ involvement in the war was accomplishing– defending capitalism from communism –by bombing Vietnam.
    Most of the emphasis is on the scenes of American culture, while the plane itself changes color with each new scene.

  2. I think that he meaning of the F-111 is to emphasize the Vietnam war and the way that the war affected everyone. I think that the bright colours and contrast emphasizes the theme of the f-111 and the war slicing through everyday life and affecting everyone and everything and how people believed that the war was protecting all those things.

  3. Politically, Rosenquist is commenting on the Vietnam war being used to emphasize America’s capitalist consumerism and the media. He’s also commenting about the ways the Vietnam war has bled into everyday life. He does this by incorporating “everyday items” into the painting such as spaghetti, a hair dryer, lightbulbs, tires, etc. I think the work is well-designed because he takes a concept as dark as the Vietnam war and paints it so that it’s, by contrast, incredibly cheery. Rosenquist uses bold bright colors, contrasting textures, and the image of a little girl smiling. Although the piece has a lot of bold lines separating different parts of the plane and different images, the parts of the painting aren’t separate entities. Each part of the painting needs the context of the previous part, if that makes any sense at all.

  4. I think Rosenquist was commenting on the war and the idea of the idea of consumerism, how it seems we’re all tantalized by big bright colored things and this is what leads us to war. I agree with tennysprinkle in that it cuts right through everyday american life and the whole idea of “the nuclear family.” The use of bright images and sharp contrast really juxtaposes the horrors of war with normal American life. Overall I think it is a striking political statement.

  5. I think his works give a perspective on the war and give emphasis towards society and “rise above” what’s normally accepted. Including things that we always see every day in a vibrant color painting also gives off this idea. The images and detail, with the added photo like objects we see every day create an interesting statement relating to life and how we live today.

  6. I think Rosenquist was symbolizing our consumeristic culture and how we protect our ideas and values in America. our Values are symbolized by the girl getting her hair done, spaghetti, the tire, etc. I think he was suggesting that America seems like a very happy and peaceful place but, the way we sustain such a place is by brute fore and dominance; hence the plane. He also shows that idea by using bright colors and then contrasts them with dark colors. He seems to be putting an emphasis on capitalism in America and how we try to hide it with fancy things and promise of happiness. He seems to be portraying that by blending and transitioning the piece so that the plane isn’t all that clear but, you can clearly see all the everyday objects. He also characterizes the Vietnam war’s pain and violence as the darker colors. He seems to have mixed multiple political meanings within the art work.

  7. I think that he meant that war was hidden in everyone’s lives. The F-111 is also made up of a bunch of household/commonplace items so Rosenquist could also have meant that a bunch of people helped to create the plane/war. This piece was very well done in that it makes a person look at it for a while if they want to get the whole picture. Someone can’t just glance at it and move on. I also like that it is painted around a room ( at least in the video it looks like it), like the image surrounds the viewer. I think this fact is also indicative that war is all around us. The colors seem to be mostly red and this might symbolize the death and anger of war. Also the shapes of solid color and the placement of them so that adjacent colors contrast makes the scene more chaotic and war-like.

  8. I think that the way it showed a bunch of household items showed that al ot of people were affected by the war. I like how all the colors were basic and the collage-theme.

  9. F-111 is a painting of a fighter plane used by the Americans in the Vietnam War. It is striking for several reasons. First of all, it’s size is impressive. “The work, 10 feet high and 86 feet long, filled 51 panels and wrapped around the front room of the Leo Castelli Gallery on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.” It also has a wide range of colors, made of strong bright colors which are emphasized when he switches sections. Like most of Rosenquist’s art, he overlaps his work by using different layers. The plane is the only aspect that remains constant throughout the whole work. This helps give the painting rhythm and repetition. He also incorporates regular everyday items, such as a light bulb, a tire, and spaghetti, into separate sections of the painting. It’s as if he put these separate pictures together with the plane being the only constant that ties them all together as one. This and the use of different colors creates the sharp transition between each piece. Even though each object is distinct and separate from the other, the plane serves to protect each object found in American daily life. On a great scale, the plane is a symbol of the Vietnan War and the country’s fight to protect the American way of life.

  10. I think that the F-111 showed not just that the war effected Americans, but that the war was also effecting the vietnamese. The US bombed a huge amount of vietnamese suburbs, farms, nature and homes. The americans at home saw none of this. Rosenquist’s piece threatens everything in the domestic American setting – all of our worries (shown in the painting by the images of hair-driers and spaghetti and such) – such as are hair being dry or our spaghetti being delicious – are threatened by the F-111 airplane going through all of that. I think this piece is Rosenquist’s way of conveying this idea to the people of America, who were not seeing the wars, bombings and battles firsthand that they are very much real problems and that they are lucky it wasn’t happening on American Soil.

  11. I think the painting is symbolizing our priorities and how we focus on certain things in our daily life, but the underlying picture (the plane/war) is one of the things we don’t focus on, but is actually a major part of our lives. It seems like the bright colors are showing our confusion and the american way of focusing on the wrong things, and trying to avoid our problems but in the end when you step back to see the bigger picture it is all there and that is what all the images are representing. All our actions and thoughts are put into a painting, and Rosenquist made it work so now he can bring our attention back to what is important so we can figure out what really is important.

  12. The F-111 painting represents war and how it’s bad and how some people don’t know that. The plane in the background is like war. It is glorifying war by showing off a new invention which people will think is cool and exciting. The little girl reenforces that. She is happy and excited about the new plane and doesn’t think that it is made to kill people. The mushroom cloud shows the bad sad of war because most people feel bad about and think that nuclear weapons are bad.

  13. The F-111 is a reminder of how war affects everyday items and your lifestyle. Rosenquist felt as if he should show was with an optimistic cover, but on the inside show the horrors. Pop art is the exploitation of commercialism and Rosenquist thinks as if war was just another commercial thing. How war could be seen as something as innocent as spaghetti or a light bulb. The painting itself if quite colorful and is interesting that it stretches around the spectator as to almost ingulf the viewer. It is a light painting with a heavy meaning.

  14. I think that the F-111 shows a lot of meaning of the Vietnam War and the struggle of the people involved in it. I think the picture really reflects on peoples daily lives but doesn’t really show the meaning of the war, or how it effected peoples lives. The work was so big, covering 51 panels, 10 feet high and 86 feet long, all the way around the room. The painting starts from one end with spaghetti, then moving into a cloud of smoke and and umbrella, then a girl under a hair dryer, and then it all goes into the back of an air plane.

  15. F-111 shows how everyday people are effected by war, and how so many people chose to ignore it. War is there, lurking in the background, partially hidden by the aspects of everyday life, which are both blocking out the war and becoming part of it. They may seem like to separate things, but they’re part of the same picture. The spaghetti and hairdryers and laughing girls are what we pay attention to, and they are bright and happy, but what will always be there in the background is the war we refuse to acknowledge.

  16. The F-111 is shown intruding on the normality of spaghetti, beach days, children playing, and progress. The plane is displayed in-between representations of common life intruding, and replacing normality with mushroom clouds and the shiny new airplanes that bring death. In a way it is a contrast of two opposites. Life: spaghetti, kids, etc. vs death: a new airplane that can more efficiently end the enemies of the US. I think that Rosenquist is conveying this message both on a literal level (the new plane probably was better at killing things) and on a bigger scale criticizing the Vietnam war as a whole. The F-111 represents war pulling apart life as it should be lived and replacing it with smoke and chaos, and most importantly death. The spaces in the piece that would otherwise be filled with other images of life are taken up by the F-111 which shows the holes in society and in the populations of both sides (of the war) that would result from mass conflict.

  17. Rosenquist began the painting F-111 in 1964, in the middle of the Vietnam War. He positioned his main subject, the F-111 military plane, which was in development at the time, flying through fragmented images of consumer products and references to war. Through its expansive network of colliding visual motifs, F-111 addresses the connections between the Vietnam War, income taxes, consumerism, and advertising.

  18. F-111 is well designed because of the jarring effect it has on the viewer. It is very disjunct, but the scenes portrayed by it all fit together very effectively, and as a whole, the painting is unified. It contrasts themes of innocence (the little girl) and war (the fighter jet), so it is obvious that all of the contrast, repetition, and rhythm is completely intentional.
    The political meaning of F-111 doesn’t seem to be radically anti-war, but it still does have slightly anti-vietnam implications. The ordinary household items are what the F-111 plane is designed to protect, so in that aspect it seems somewhat pro-vietnam, but it all showcases the sacrifice necessary for protection. Also, the parts of the plane that are inserted into the lives of the regular people show how the war is affecting people, and the chaos that has ensued due to the war. However, not everything has gone bad, as noted by the little girl that is smiling. Because of her youth, she is oblivious to all of the terrible things happening around her.

  19. I think that the F-111 was meant to be the most technologically advanced weapon in the U.S. Air Force, it kind like a symbol of the Vietnam War, a interdictor, a flighter-bomber and a strategic bomber, you may associate that how the war effected people in America and Vietnam, this slaughter let too many people lose life. Rosenquist’s this work has 10 feet high and totally 86 feet long, it’s surrounding the room. This big art work also showing how different the war made instead of daily life by drawing some saghetties and hairdryers. The color used of this work is more like red, to symbolize the anger and the bled for the war.

  20. I think you could interpret the F-111 in two different ways. One way is that the plane is intruding on the images of the happy daily life, and another is that plane is being covered up by everyday things. It is up to the viewer to decide which way they interpret the plane and therefore the war. I think Rosenquist’s use of bold colors and layering enhanced the meaning of the painting.

  21. The political message that Rosenquist’s piece sends is an anti war message evoking compassion and humanity while focsing on the universally negative aspect of conflict. the F-111 uses familiar and violent imagery to show the affect of the Vietnam war on day to day life. The pieces vivid color scheme grabs the observers attention and focuses them Rosenquist’s subjects. The large proportions of the F-111 also allow its details to be more easily visible and makes the piece overbearing.

  22. Bright colors and everyday objects and concepts against the plane and war-like background seems to be making fun of the war slightly. It could very well represent ignorance of the current political situation based on the incorporation of daily objects. Also, it could be positive, convincing Americans to go on with their daily lives during the war. I think the different colored segments of the plane in the background made the work more consistent, but still kept it bold.

  23. I think there are many facets to the political statement Rosenquist is making here. First of all, he’s clearly showing how the war is seeping into all parts of people’s lives. But also, I could see his piece as demonstrating the way in which the war (symbolized by the F-111) is protecting the ways of American life, the luxuries Americans enjoy (having their hair done, eating spaghetti, using electricity). I think his statement may be that the war has gone too far, impacted too much the lives of common Americans.
    The uses of color and popular/usual imagery makes it so the painting relates for a normal person. It almost reminds me of an advertisement in how happy the girl looks and how bright the painting is.

  24. I think the super-imposition of every day objects and the fighter plan speaks to the contrast of the atrocities of war and the consumerism of American culture. The bright colors emphasize the industrialization and the dreaminess of common society in that time period–all white picket fences and cokes for a nickel at the corner store. However, on a deeper level, the images of consumerism also hint at the length of the war and how the government was deceiving the American people. Five presidents presided over American involvement in the war–from financial support for the french in their quest to reclaim Vietnam as a colony to a full fledged invasion–yet it was never quite clear exactly what intentions the US had. In the view of ordinary citizens, their lives went on as usual; this is why the items of consumerism are shown overlapping the plane in front of it. The war simply existed as a backdrop.

  25. Rosenquist showed the political significance of the Vietnam war through his pop art style painting
    F-111. The painting is larger than life, showing a cut up war plane, intertwined almost with daily commercial household items. This could be a jab at the monstrosities of war, and how unaware americans are of it. War demonstrated by this dark negative F-111 plane is metaphorically hiding behind the comforts of daily american life. While people and nations are killing and being killed american citizens are being brain washed with bright happy looking commercialistic products. Rosenquist uses bright colors and sharp lines to convey a certain feeling of familiarity and comfort when the opposition of comfort is being portrayed.

  26. In Rosenquists painting F-111 he showed some of his political view of the Vietnam war. The painting is a very large one of a war plane mixed with daily household items. This could show how as soldiers are at war being killed, other Americans are at home being told the war is a good cause and a bright and happy thing for America.

  27. Rosenquist’s work of art, known as the F-111, is a depiction of a blonde girl in some sort of hair curler, which looks almost menacingly industrial. This is only reenforced by the fact that the space behind the machine is red, and the space behind the girl is green. The machine almost looks like some sort of space-ship, leaving the girl’s face in the exhaust.
    One thing I found particularly well thought-out is that the girl seems dominated by the machine, as it is physically over her. She also doesn’t seem to mind; her eyes aren’t even focused on it. She’s almost embracing it as a way of life.

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