I think I might try to make today “Art Wednesday”. So thinking along those lines, here is a rant I typed for Tobi, a Lovewell intern, attempting to explain “the naming game”. Together we are designing a poster for their annual “Lovewell Theatre Festival”. Carrie, I am sure that you are tired of hearing me talk about this piece of art… But, I love it…

Margitte is by far my favorite artist and the first master of surrealism. Above is one of his most famous works and just so happens to be hanging in the Chicago Art Institute. It also happens to be a great example of “the naming game”. As you can see at first glance, it is a pipe. As you read the text (if you could), you would see that it says “this is not a pipe”. So, if the pipe is not a pipe, he must be talking about the painting itself. The physical paint on the surface of the canvas. This is the naming game.

As in all great art there are many different ways to look at the results, but for the purposes of the naming game; At first glance, the pipe is not a painting… The text is not a painting… but together, they inform the viewer what the artist is talking about the painting. The end result has nothing to do with the aesthetic of a pipe or text… It’s a freaking painting. This a very simple example, but an effective example of “the naming game”.

  1. an admirer
    Jun 15, 2005

    all the time in the world wouldn’t make me tired of hearing what you had to say!