Throughout history artists have used various mediums to express their views of the world, some use oils and canvas, some use marble or clay, and others use a camera. Gregory Crewdson uses both a camera and his flawless lighting skills to create beautiful other worldly scenes. In the Article In a lonely place by Gregory Crewdson, Crewdson discusses how his art reflexes the “ideas of beauty, sadness, alienation, and desire.” Crewdson has derived these ideas from a myriad of influences. The most influential of these sources would have to be other artists and Hollywood films.
The light work used in almost all of Crewdson’s pieces is very reminiscent of the unnatural light that embodies the great works of the Baroque period of art. The light appears seemingly from no known source but greatly serves elevate the dramatic themes of the pieces. The light also serves to tie the pieces together. This technique of using the uniting power of light was also used by Edward Hopper.
Edward Hopper was greatly influential on Crewdson. Both artists use their mediums to tell a story in one scene. They use windows, walls, and even doorways to frame their scenes. The scenes are framed in a way that leads the viewer to believe they are “looking in” at the subjects; it gives the artists’ works a voyeuristic quality that is both intriguing and mischievous.
Like William Eggleston, Crewdson takes everyday occurrences and transforms them into something mystical and captivating, often with a hint of the sinister. This is best reflected in Crewdson’s piece “Untitled (boy with hand in drain.)” The scene takes place in a normal bathroom, even the task at first glance appears to be completely normal. A boy with his arm down the drain searching for either an article lost to vast underworld of drainage pipes or possibly a hairy culprit of a nasty clog. But once the viewer’s eyes transgress down the piece they realize this is no ordinary drain, instead of opening up to a labyrinth of plumbing pipes it opens up to a dark cellar like realm beneath the bathroom. It is incredibly eerie, and purposely depicted as dark and empty to show the voids of emptiness that can be recessed within even the most average looking individual.
The Crewdson’s image of a boy and his mother at the dinner table is another example of turning an everyday scene into something more. This particular piece of his demonstrates an influence of both Eggleston and the famed Norman Rockwell. This piece entitled “Sunday Roast” Crewdson shows a similar theme to Rockwell’s “Freedom from Want” however his interpretation of a “family” meal is much darker. Rockwell’s’ art depicts very warm atmosphere where all family members wear huge smiles as they pass around heaping plates of food. The family seems connected to one another and very happy to be together as a family. Both Rockwell’s piece and Crewdson’s piece demonstrate a very surreal quality. Rockwell’s painting is a picture of perfect idealism. All of Rockwell’s...