Obiter Dicta Issue 4 - October 15, 2013

Vol 86 Issue 4 The Definitive Source for Osgoode News October 15, 2013 Nuit Blanche unlocks modern art MARIE PARK Layout Editor As night fell upon the streets of Toronto on October 5, 2013, hundreds of thousands congregated to experience Nuit Blanche. Though many were artists in their own right, many were also members the general public with a topical understanding and awareness of modern art. Many such individuals may know of Pablo Picasso and Henri Matisse, but may shake their head when asked about another character of the modern era who is too often less credited. been considered an honest piece of art. But as the years progressed, this piece, as well as his subsequent other “readymade” sculptures, became acknowledged for teaching artists an invaluable lesson about their own identities and their work as artists. For those with a working knowledge of art history, Marcel Duchamp is a revered name, but for those who know and understand art on a more-or-less superficial level, Duchamp is an elusive character, and the significance of his works is too often misunderstood and understated. As aspiring artists and art appreciators, one must know how this one artist influenced a lasting and profound change of the role of art to the artist, and in turn, to the audience as well. A most crucial lesson hidden in these seemingly everyday, mundane objects was this: art is more than an object of technical creation; it is a vehicle that can capture the infinite potential of human expression through forms that can be felt through the physical senses. It is a method of transforming abstractions, or thoughts, into tangibles so that other individuals can experience them, in their own perceptions, through the interaction of a physical manifestation of those thoughts. What this means is that an artwork is not merely a visual ornament; it is an attempt of the artist to transmit the conscious thoughts and experiences that exist in their minds through media that can be seen, felt, heard, touched, or otherwise sensed. Duchamp is perchance most known for his piece entitled Bicycle Wheel – literally, a bicycle wheel mounted and inverted onto a stool. It caused some outrage in the artistic community of his time, as such a simple object in such a simple presentation could not possibly have An artist is one who can identify the abstract, an idea, and present it in a form that can be subjectively interpreted by an audience. In contemporary and modern art, this experience of transmittance and reception of the idea is the artwork itself. Without understanding this, contemporary art can appear nonsensical and sometimes mindless. Duchamp understood this in an age where the artistic community just began to abandon notions of art simply as decoration. Artists began to revolt against the ideals of traditional art, where excellence in art arose from the artist’s ability to replicate historical forms of perfection. Art began to leave the realm of purely decorative to become art for art’s sake. Duch» continued on page 10 In this issue... Mental Health Awareness Week page 8 Legal and Lit update pages 3 and 4 Jurisfoodence pages 11 and 15 International Legal Partnerships pages 18 and 19