Hi, I’m Artotem, the mascot for the Artotems Co. company. I am a fully articulated artist manikin (mannequin).
I began life as a tree, then moved to a gallery, and now can be found hanging out with the great people that make up Artotems Co.
Despite my wooden nature I do have some favorite pastimes and creative endeavors. Music has always been important to me. Long before I became what you now see me as I was a Maple tree located in a secretive wooded area in which a group of drummers and flautists often stopped by to play meditatively in the night. Hence, my love of drums and the flute. By the way, that drum is from the Taos Pueblo in New Mexico. Nice! And then of course there is Art, but more on that later.
A Word about Mannequins (clears throat)
Mannequins can be traced to as early as 1350 BC, based on the discovery of a wooden torso near the clothing chest in King Tutankhamen’s tomb.
Historically, artists have often used articulated mannequins as an aid in drawing draped figures. The advantage of this is that clothing or drapery arranged on a mannequin may be kept immobile for far longer than would be possible by using a living model.
Mannequins were a frequent motif in the works of many early 20th-century artists, notably the painters Giorgio de Chirico, Alberto Savinio, and Carlo Carrà. Shop windows displaying mannequins were a frequent photographic subject for Eugene Atget.
A Working Artist
Being an artist’s mannequin naturally leads to an interest in art. In my case it leads to a desire to work with natural materials. Often that work is with stone. You can see two examples below. The first is from a series entitled “Life Stones”. The second piece uses natural materials as well. It’s entitled “The Keepers Let Us
And in Conclusion
I’m out of time but thought I would include a list of a few inspirations for my art and activities.
Founded in 1916 by Hugo Ball, Cabaret Voltaire was literally the birthplace of Dada, the art movement, or more accurately, the anti-art movement that turned into a crucial statement and artistic outcry predicated on a protest against the horrors of World War II. The world was stunned at the carnage of the war and the Dadaists responded.
More Info Here
While I am not a surrealist I do have a warm spot for the manifesto written by André Breton:
Schwitters worked in several genres and media, including Dadaism, Constructivism, Surrealism, poetry, sound, painting, sculpture, graphic design, typography, and what came to be known as installation art. He is most famous for his collages, called Merz Pictures.
On 2 January 1937 Schwitters, wanted for an "interview" with the Gestapo, fled to Norway to join his son Ernst, who had already left Germany on 26 December 1936.
A radical avant-garde anti-art movement started in New York in 1959. Its founders sought to deliver a shock to the complacent consumerist society around them. At the age of sixteen he was taken prisoner by the Nazis and imprisoned for a period of four years at Buchenwald and other concentration camps.