A line element in arts refers to the continuous mass an artist makes on the surface by moving a particular point. It may be two-dimensional or three-dimensional, even an implied line if it is a contour, silhouette, or outline.
Shape and mass in arts define the space of the piece of art. Two dimensional shape sculptures can only be seen from one angle but three-dimensional sculptures are seen from all angles. Light in a piece of art reveals the darkness or lightness of the object, and it can be used to evoke emotions in viewers. The value of the light refers to the relative darkness or lightness of the object.
Color in an art object has three properties: the color name, intensity and strength of color and the value of the color. An artist uses color to provoke different moods of the viewers. Dark colors signify mystery, lack of light or even an interior scene (Prince, 22). Light colors, on the other hand, represent a source of light and bright moods.
Texture in arts refers to the smoothness or roughness of the art surface. The actual texture is felt by simulating the way an artist renders areas of art. Texture also gives viewers a visual sense of how it would be felt if he or she touches the object: whether it would be soft, hard, smooth, rough, or hairy. Artists make use of color, light and shade to imply the texture.
Space in artwork refers to the feeling of a three dimension of depth of an object. We can also describe it as the artists’ use of the area within the object or picture plane. The area the primary object of the art occupies is the positive space while the area that surrounds the primary object is the negative space. How the artist uses the positive and the negative space can have an enormous impact on the piece of art (Peoples and Bailey, 357).
Perspective refers to the approximate representation of an object on a surface from a vantage point of view. Linear perspective refers to the appearance of an object relative to the viewer distance. Atmospheric perspective refers to the perspective where the background appears fuzzy because of a distance from the viewer.
“Anti-mass” is a three dimensional piece of art made of charred remains of a burnt church. The viewers are able to look at the sculpture from different angles: front, side and back. In such a way the viewer has a possibility to imagine how the explosion moved through the scattered pieces of timber (Peoples and Bailey, 357). The lighting in “Anti-mass” by Cornelia Parker is dark to represent the dark side of the destruction of the church. This evokes emotions of sadness for the viewers as they try to figure out what happened during the burning of the church. The artist makes the installation hanging in the air, and thus creating its virtual space. The gloomy dark brown color in the background emphasizes the effect of the burning. The rough texture of the surface is explained by the use of charred timber. It represents a linear perspective, where the viewer can see it clearly. All features mentioned above make “Anti-mass” a real piece of art.
The sacred theme of arts tries to explain things that are beyond human understanding. Every society tries to form its explanation on the universe based on their beliefs and faith, and the religion they believe in. It explains the relationships between the Gods and Goddesses and how they influence the actions of the earthly people (Peoples and Bailey, 357). When the sculptor suspends her installation in the air, she is trying to explain to the viewers that there are supernatural powers, which the human people cannot explain or understand. They come from the divine power, and they are beyond the natural powers explained by the science. According to the law of gravity, no mass can hang in the air, since the pull of gravity will pull it down to the ground. However, the sculpture seems to hang in the air, defying the law of gravity.
In addition, by using the charred charcoal and timber to construct the imagery, the artist tries to explain that it is possible to develop a useful thing from things considered useless. It also reveals the temporal nature of the earthly things, which cannot remain uncorrupted. While an object can be magnificently beautiful today, it would only take a short period to destroy it and render it useless. Cornelia immortalized the spirits of the people who worshipped in the church before its destruction. Parker’s work represents a miracle, which evokes memories of the lost place of worship and congregation.
The art can also represent the natural world theme. Under natural theme, people form and make their own environments. They have shaped the world into what fits them the most and according to their needs. At the same time, people destroy what they do not consider necessary or things that tend to go against their beliefs (Peoples and Bailey, 357). It also shows that all the things in the world can be destroyed within a remarkably short period. However, Parker shows us that it is possible to recreate other things from debris that seems useless to most people. She was able to make the beautiful sculpture from the charred timber and charcoal, which continues to attract people all over the world up to date. Creativity is the only ingredient needed to transform a useless piece of debris to a magnificent piece of art.