Comedy in art, it’s not such a strange combination considering. From the dawn of time, mankind has had a need for comedy. From historical Jesters and licensed fools to clowns to stand up comedians, there has always been a place for humour on every continent, in every civilization as far back as the records reveal.
When I hear the words comedy and art together, I automatically think of satire and spoofs. Topical comedy which relates to the audience through means of current events and or familiarity of a subject. I like to do this every now and again. But a word of advice for those of you who haven’t pushed the comical boundaries… ‘Some people are really, really sensitive’. Some of the audiences you will experience has difficulty mixing comedy with certain themes. A classic example is religion. Just be careful artistic monkeys. Content must be selected carefully. We are here to entertain and not insult.
All seriousness aside, how far can you go before a joke cuts too deep. I’m certain sooner or later, every artist will cross that boundary with out even considering it. The most important thing is to appreciate the level of effort and creativity that goes into the piece. Art is art in my eyes, yet the audience is diverse. You will see followers come and go. My advice, look after the followers who are loyal. If you find a piece offensive, get over it. No artist goes out their way to antagonize one another through their work. It will more than likely be an oversight or an err in judgement. Sorry, I’m going all serious again. The most important thing is to have fun creating.
I actually did a piece with a fellow artist only recently that fits in line with Artistic spoof. Taking something well known and putting a little comedy spin on it. In this case it was the Mona Lisa and the spin was a Pokemon Pikachu in her lap with a change in wardrobe to accompany Ash’s hat. well I thought it was funny.
Either way you decide to travel with this theme, you will find there is plenty of comical paths to follow. Surrealism often steps close to the comical mark. There is such a thing as surreal comedy. Surrealistic comedy – A form of humor based on bizarre juxtapositions, absurd situations and nonsense logic. That could be an interpratation of a Salvador Dali piece. I mean we’re talking about a guy who drove a mini around filled with broccoli. This man had a sense of humor that is for sure lol.
Some artists base their entire career on Comedy. ‘Comic strip’ creators. Artists who do nothing but create visual art to give someone a giggle. Comic strips you’d read in your paper and even my favourite, ‘Mad magazine’. Funny art, one liner comic strips, Garfield, Hagar, Snoopy, the list goes on and on. Even the likes of Matt Groening with the Simspons and Futurama. Mixing a character creation with humour and giving them a personality people love and relate to…Doh!. Seth McFarlane witht the Family Guy and American Dad. Even Matt Stone and Trey Parker. Who would have thought they’d mount so much success on a 2D comic strip with minimal articulation of characters?
Anyway, there is a whole heap of references out there and I can’t write an article on the twenty plus genres of comedy lol. Most important part is have fun. Be creative but try to refrain from being offensive.