George Gittoes

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George Gittoes Case Study

George Gittoes, born 1949 in Rockdale Sydney, NSW has trained at, The Yellow House, Sydney, NSW 1970-1971, Art Students’ league, New York, USA and The University of Sydney in 1968. George is an artist of many talents, he is known as a ceramist, screen artist, performance artist, printmaker, draughtsman, painter and photographer. Gittoes is also a filmmaker, known well for his documentary Soundtrack to War filmed throughout 2003-2004. His documentary captures authentic recounts from individuals who have experienced or are experiencing the war in Iraq.

In this quote George explains why he partakes in works about war and humanitarian issues in today’s world, “Why do I do it? As far as choosing the roads I have traveled, I have this instinct that if I get comfortable, the work will lose its ‘sting’, so I go out of the comfort zones and into the wilderness to find my art. In the past it was the natural world where predators fed on gentler creatures. In the contemporary context, I go alone into a different kind of human wilderness – Rwanda, Bosnia, Afghanistan, Iraq – not to contemplate nature, but the basics of humanity...” George Gittoes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Gittoes)

George Gittoes artwork, white earth is oil on canvas portrays political corruption and how youth were immersed in the propaganda of Nazi Youth. On the work, the boy’s ears are distorted, expressing the impossibility of closing them now and not listening to the lies he is immersed in. By using blue and yellow dividing lines in the background it separates the boy from the two official behind him giving orders and leading him.

Gittoes witnessed an Afrikaner-Weerstands Beweging (AWB) rally during his visit to South Africa in 1994, there he saw a 15year old boy immersed in the propaganda of Nazi Youth. Whilst being pestered by photographers, Gittoes sympathises for the boy, as he recounts the rape and tortured. The boy in the work is too young to...
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