Thursday, March 27, 2008

Earth Loves Assemblage Art

"It's about waste... and not wasting. Dying... and never being dead... and being desperate to feel alive. Its about me and earth, aging together... and having a place that loves me back... and rescues me from fear..." Vanessa Deranged.

During all of March RHC has had the pleasure of supporting artist Vanessa Deranged, an artist from Tallahassee, FL, who uses assemblage art to express herself. With death and rebirth and beautiful simplicity, I was honored to get to learn more from this peaceful soul.

Vanessa dabbles in other types of art, like painting and drawing, but assemblage art has taught her that not everyone belongs in a flat world. "Assemblage art allows  people to express themselves through the objects we humans create ourselves...and in many cases turn around and throw in the trash. Magically these objects turn into things."

So Sad. ©Vanessa Deranged 2008.

She discovered assemblage through not having any other means to do anything else, coming from no time and education, all she has is her cherished works and her soul. Most of the objects she uses were already owned or found on the street, and many of them are from the earth. "Earth loves assemblage art", is her modo, "creating beautiful compositions, from practically no bought materials, even no glue!"

In a world of beautiful things and inspiration from mother earth and other artists Vanessa dwells in her creations, living in places she creates. "I found assemblage art by accident and I am realizing that assemblage art is looked at with greater love and respect in other countries...and here in this country, most of us don't even know what it is. We tend to put other types of art in the high pedestal. In school we learn to draw and paint and play the recorder but never once have I ever heard the word assemblage till I was trying to figure out if there was a name for what I was doing and there was."

Who says you can't wear Derangements on your sleeve or perhaps your neck.
This piece is sweater guard made from bones, chain and elements from a flower. ©Vanessa Deranged 2008.

"My personal mission and I hope those reading this will help me make assemblage art more appreciated and admired. Assemblage art is also a great art for senior citizens... since alot of them have lots of objects they have collected over the years. Plus teaching assemblage art to kids will help us teach the young not to be quick to chuck something in the garbage and that many things can be used for other purposes... it teaches resourcefulness... in everything... not just the art."

Vanessa hope that one day assemblage art and photography will merge into something big and modern. Both art forms make a great pair, and she hopes she can make a difference on how we regard it. In her last words about the art form she loves so dearly, "ASSEMBLAGE ART IS NOT A CRAFT."

Earth's Guardian. ©Vanessa Derranged 2008.

We have been honored to have such a wonderful person and artist to feature this past month, and we hope to work with her in the future. Maybe one day both her and I can collaborate on a piece. You can view more of her art work at her myspace: or please stop by


Thursday, March 20, 2008

Looking into the eyes of death.

The Latin phrase, Memento mori, meaning "Remember that you are a mortal", "Remember you will die", "Remember your death", is a specific genre of beautiful work that reminds the viewer of their own mortality.

The Memento mori picture became popular in the seventeenth century, in a religious age when almost everyone believed that life on earth was a preparation for Divine Judgement, Heaven, Hell and the salvation of the soul. These ideas brought death to the forefront of the consciousness. The symbolism became popular in funereal art and architecture of tombs of the wealthy in the 15th century, most powerful was the transi, or cadaver tomb which portrayed the decayed corpse of the dead. The intense humorous, danse macabre (The Dance of Death), a dark portrayal of the Death swaying the rich and poor into his hands of forever death is a prime example of the Memento mori theme. "Death" became decoration in many European churches, where as later on many Puritan tombstones in the United States, similar depictions of winged skulls, skeletons, or angels blowing out candles were frequently seen.

An early
memento mori piece from the early 19th century.

Time pieces or "death clocks" often were a reminder of an individual's mortality, with time on earth growing shorter by every second and the passing minute. Many public clocks were decorated with elaborate mottos such as ultima forsan ("perhaps the last" (hour)) and vulnerant omnes, ultima necat ("they all wound, and the last kills"). Many private people often carried these distinct "death clocks." One person in particular was Mary Queen of Scots who owned a watch carved into a skull made of silver.

An example of a Memento mori death watch created by Thomas White, London. 1780.

A basic mememto mori painting would be a portrait with a skull, but commonly other symbols are hour glasses or clocks, extinguished or guttering candles, fruit or a flower losing it's petal. Closely related to the memento mori is the Vanitas still life, Latin for "vanity". In addition to symbols of mortality other symbols are of musical instruments, wine and books to remind us explicitly of the worthlessness of common pleasurable objects that control one's life. The term originally comes form the opening lines of the Book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible: 'Vanity of vanities saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities, all is vanity'.

Pieter Claesz (holand├ęs: 1597-1660). Vanitas. 1630.

Later with the invention of photography during the 1860s, mourning photography  became popular with preserving the image of the deceased. Many  mourning photos were painted or embroidered in silk, cotton or wool; this photo was often the only image taken of the deceased in poorer families.

The first piece from the Skeleton Krew Collection, an memento mori interpretation of death portrait translated through a ferrotype and gouache and ink. By artist Leila Marvel ©2008.

The body in the end, is a machine that will eventually stop and decompose. With the brevity and fragility of human life in the face of God and nature, one must live like there is no tomorrow!

Memento mori. March 9, 2008.
Mourning; Rituals, Clothing, and Customs.


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Spring Cleaning Sale!

It's that time of the year for our early Spring Sale. With over 75 items in our etsy shop;, we want to say farewell to some of our older pieces and in time bring in new heartfelt pieces. Most of the jewelry have been reduced to $15 or less, and there is always free shipping on jewelry so don't hesitate to stop on by and get 'em before there gone for good! We hope you devour this wonderful time of the year, and look forward to new inspirations and beautiful relics.

Buy Handmade

Friday, March 7, 2008

Thank You Cult Followers!

Hello Cult Followers,

Welcome to the Red Heart Cult! To those you who don't know us, we hope in the future you keep us close to your heart. RHC is a huge supporter of the arts, though we are small and slowly building with followers, we want to express our obsession with art from the human soul. I am Deadeye Jane, the founder of RHC and RH13, I am a graphic designer by trade and an artist true to the heart. Throughout our myspace and etsy shop you can view my adornment relics, jewelry and works from two new collections; Sweet Heart collection and the Skeleton Krew collection. My true mission is supporting the arts through RHC Findings, we honor having featured artists each month and are inspired by sharing their work and watching them grow. During the month we also have special treats, with specialty galleries so stay tuned in April for Vampires Amongst Us gallery.

February was exceptional with the launch of our Sweet Heart Collection, Portraits of Beautiful Deaths. We sold a total of 18 items from our etsy shop, Red Heart 13 And the  Sweet Heart Wooden Necklace and the Macabre Mary painting were sold from the collection. We also sold our Soul Searcher card set and the Venus Locket Relic; which has always been a favorite. It was wonderful being that successful during the time of love and adornment.

We have the arrival of two new galleries up during March. A gallery of ribs, flesh and bones; March Medical Madness II is more grotesque than ever. With over 150 images, we hope you enjoy our obsession to anatomy. Also RHC Findings is supporting artist Vanessa Derranged, an assemblage artist from Tallahassee, FL who believes that "Earth loves assemblage art". So far we are off to a lovely start this year, you have been spreading the word and we honor your support. We are One, The Red Heart Cult.

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