“Lines of Life” by Jody Zellen

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Screen capture of "Lines of Life" by Jody Zellen. A window shows a blurred vidoe of U.S. Troops; the background is a series of ink doodles. Text: "MORE"
Open “Lines of Life” by Jody Zellen

Jody Zellen describes this visually driven artwork and poem as:

It is a critical and aesthetic commentary on how one draws conclusions about mediated representations of war. Embedded in this commentary is an investigation into the ideas generated by the words, drawing and lines and their multiple manifestations.

The poem is built from one or two words at a time, sometimes appearing as plain text in a small window, usually layered over a slightly larger pop-up window with images and animation. When language appears in the image-driven windows, it does so as an image: handwritten or drawn words, or bitmapped and transformed typed words. The visuals are reminiscent of her tracing technique used in “Without a Trace” and the juxtaposition of sometimes a single word with images creates relations similar to “All the News that’s Fit to Print.”

Part of the interest in this powerful piece is the brief animations that blur the lines between line-based art and photography, often illustrating the transformations that occur when a reality is represented and abstracted.

Note: You’ll need to authorize pop up windows in this site. No worries: they’ll be used for artistic purposes, though you may need to quit the program to expediently close all the windows.

Read more about this work at ELMCIP.