ARTIST STATEMENT

®

OSS McCLAIN

Our culture values the concept of ownership. The registered trademark, an R with

a circle around it (®), is the symbol of ownership in the context of consumer society.

The attitude of the ® implies a territorial mentality, like a dog marking its spot. In my

work, the registered trademark takes on this territorial mentality while also representing

my own personal reflection – R or ® for Ross. Consumerism projects a distortion of what is real, important and of value. This distortion leads to issues of victimization, objectification, and insecurities of the individual.

 

The images I collect and use are reclaimed by me by placing the ® on certain parts in the artwork. It becomes my stamp of ownership. I claim the images because I observed, assembled and offered them up to the viewer. I am editorializing them by the simple process of collection. Claiming the images as mine doesn't necessarily mean I'm approving of them. It simply means that I'm taking credit for offering the images up for observation in this particular way.

 

The ® is an admission of my own conflict. The juxtaposed of ® with other symbolic signage is meant to signify my critical removal from the implicated passive consumer/victim. It is my attempt to take an objective and critical view of what occurs in mass media and society, realizing I am a member of the audience who is preyed upon. In design, more specifically in graphic design, it is imperative to communicate effectively and unequivocally. The particular placement of objects, images, and color

serves to reinforce and clarify the "message". My goal is to inform the viewer of its meaning and intention. Otherwise, the communication would be ineffective.

2020 Ross McClain

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