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Alph-Art: Reviews and Opinions

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BlueBlisteringBarnacles
Member
#1 · Posted: 17 Sep 2004 12:16
Moderator Note: Combined more than one thread

See also: Tintin and Alph-Art: general discussion

I bought a copy of the new translation a while ago, and to be honest I'm not entriely convinced that the storyline is the best Tintin story. What does everyone else think? To my way of thinking people start trying to kill Tintin too early on. Though I know this happens in some of the other books, such as Tintin in America, it doesn't seem entirely justified.

Also the sequence where Haddock buys the art piece and then unexpectedly gets a call from most of the usual Tintin characters, esp. Jolyn Wagg, just seems unnatural.
jockosjungle
Member
#2 · Posted: 17 Sep 2004 12:27
Got to admit that I didn't think it was a great storyline but it was never completed so we don't really know how far along Herge was with the story and what changes he planned to make.

Rik
BlueBlisteringBarnacles
Member
#3 · Posted: 17 Sep 2004 14:01
Do you think the plot line with the Emir would have been more central, as it seemed great precedence was given to it at the beginning. unofrtunately Rodier (who did a great job with the artwork) just seemed to roll all the additional characters into one group at the end. Although I suppose good for a 'final' Tintin ending, probably wasn't the most satisfactory for the plot. How would anyone else like to see the story resolved?
kirthiboy
Member
#4 · Posted: 11 Oct 2004 20:51 · Edited by: Moderator
I still don't get it how can people consider alphabetic letters as art?
I don't have Tintin and Alph-Art, but I am very curious.

---
Related sub-topic (different thread):
Who is Endadine Akass?.
jockosjungle
Member
#5 · Posted: 11 Oct 2004 21:31
People buy dead cows cut in half as art so why not letters?

Rik
kirthiboy
Member
#6 · Posted: 11 Oct 2004 21:39
Well Said Rik. Very Well Said!!!
Martine
Member
#7 · Posted: 11 Oct 2004 22:30
Yes, indeed. There seems to be a great shortening of the gap between art as a result from observation, study and technique, and 'art' as the use of iconography or a happening or an installation.
I sure would've loved to see that book finished; it seemed like Hergés own critique of the modern art world, and that's always insteresting from any artist's point of view.
Richard
UK Correspondent
#8 · Posted: 11 Oct 2004 23:04 · Edited by: Richard
I've always thought that the idea of turning letters into art was a very believable idea, and a bit surprised that it's never really carried through by an artist to a successful extent in the way that, for example, Pollock did with his "action" canvases, and Hirst with his cow.

"Art isn't about painting pretty pictures," my art teacher once told me, "what's the point of painting a perfectly accurate landscape now when you could just take a photo ?" I personally didn't agree with this, but the logic is (barely) there, especially with regard to styles like photorealism.

Art is supposed to be an expression of oneself, so not necessarily the depiction of something that already exists. In centuries past, art was more of a trade than a talent, and artists were known as painters due to their almost mechanical churning-out of work, usually for paying clients. In recent years it has become more a form of personal expression.

The idea of taking letters of the alphabet, which everyone recognises as having a meaning, and then turning them into an art form with "no frills attached" presents a puzzle - what does it mean ? A landscape is a landscape, and someone looking at it can appreciate the way the light reflects off the sea, the flowers bloom and the trees quiver in the breeze - but what does a stark, strong plexiglass letter "A" mean ? You have to try to work that out for yourself. A rule of thumb my aforementioned teacher told me was "Nothing in art is there by chance."

Hmm ... that's almost a thesis of sorts - better bring it back to the main topic.

I'd like to have witnessed Hergé's take on the art world (in case you hadn't guessed by all that above), and I also think that the storyline would have been heavily refined. As BlueBlisteringBarnacles said, the characters randomly turning up didn't make much sense - the hall is in the middle of acres of parkland somewhere in the Loire Valley (probably; see other topics), and people turning up for a few minutes in the middle of the night seem a bit hard to believe. I'd like to think, as has already been mentioned elsewhere, that Haddock would have ultimately either staged a party to show off his acquisition, or attend a private viewing with Tintin (as a discarded storyline suggested).
Martine
Member
#9 · Posted: 11 Oct 2004 23:53 · Edited by: Admin
I have been taught that typography is in fact a major part on art, only when art is separated into parts, one of which is graphic design. Typography as an image instead of something to be read, isn't a new idea. just a bit underestimated by people who grew up on a classic idea of art.

The meaning is not given then by the figure itself, but by the concepts used in the building of such figure.

It's not a transmission of feelings, as much as a means to visual communication.

--
[Post edited by Admin. Removed irrelevant remarks.]
Richard
UK Correspondent
#10 · Posted: 12 Oct 2004 00:10 · Edited by: Richard
I agree that the idea of typography as an art form is very much a means of visual communication, because it embodies an idea within itself without any embellishment (we all know what a letter "H" is, to take the Alph-Art example). It also allows the person looking at it to question their own views on what is art. Is there something more to a letter than what it is itself ? It let's people contemplate the shape of it, and the meaning, and through this allows them to look at something in a completely new light.

Well, it's an interpretation anyway - there's the alternative view that anything's art when it's given a price tag ! :op

It's a real pity we'll never get to see the finished book. There's so many possibilities, it had masses of potential to be not only a great satire on the art world, but a really exciting (and believeable) adventure, which would probably manage to overcome the questionably deus-ex-machina ending of "Flight 714".

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