Week 1


Damien Hirst

Considering the flamboyancy and grandiose concepts Damien Hirst dips into in his work, I would expect his website to be somewhat quirky, but turns out he kept it pretty simple, using mostly simple images of his work that speaks for itself, which in perspective makes sense. His work is bold and loud. The home page opens with a large striking image of one of his pieces, and this image oscillates every time the viewer returns to the home page. At the top of the page there is a hamburger menu with 10 options. Home, News, Artworks, Biography, Exhibitions, Video, Text, Image Licensing, Shop, and Newport Street Gallery. Two of these options take you to another web page, which I think is somewhat of a distraction for the viewer. When I go to a website, I always find it more satisfying if the menu options keep you under the same page, enabling you to simply just lick the back button or click back on the hamburger menu still at the top of the page. When directed to another page that opens in a separate window, it complicates the experience. There is something very satisfying about staying on the the same tab when viewing a website. My favorite part, and a strong aspect of Hirst's website is his biography. When on the page, one has the option to toggle between Group Exhibitions, Projects, and Monographs in an easy to read, easy to clock list form. When toggling, the viewer stays on the same page, and is able to click on a certain project Hirst has done, bringing the viewer to a snapshot in time of one of Hirst's creations and simply press back to continue perusing his biography. He has a lot of interesting work and to see his time line laid out so clearly is very satisfying. His actual Artworks page is designed in a similar fashion. A thumbnail of the image is shown on the page, and the viewer is able to use menus at the top to limit their search of Hirst's work, for example, the viewer is able to limit the time frame they are searching, as well as the category of artwork, for example formaldehyde, collages. Etc. One is also able to search the title of a piece. When doing this, the browser stays on the same tab. The Texts section under the menu is aligned with the Biography and the Artworks page, as is the Video, News, Exhibitions, and small Image Licensing section. On a whole, the viewing of the website is clean, with a white background throughout which gives a sense of a gallery when flipping through the pages. It is for the most part super easy to navigate, and one stays on the same page but for the two links in the menu, Shop and Newport Gallery. I wonder why Hirst couldn't keep the shop on the same browser, however it makes sense the gallery opens in a separate page in some ways. All in all, this simple website compliments the work of Damien Hirst, and is easily setup for anyone to look through and get a good understanding of what Hirst is all about. He keeps his social links on the bottom left of the browser throughout your search, in a faded, subtle tone. A sub menu lives at the bottom right of the site as well, on the same line of the social links, though underlined in blue. I am not the biggest fan of the blue underlined words and might take that out if redesigning, but all and all, the website is easy to navigate. The only other thing I would change, is that the background image is responsive to the browser, but the content stays at a certain percentage, so that it does not enlarge when stretching the browser to fit your page. This doesn’t totally bother me, and isn't super important, but it would be nice to see the content and words a little bigger.


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Banksy

Banksy, one of the biggest/top paid artists alive at this time, always has something up his sleeve. He has an amazing way of marketing, and concealing his identity/keeping his privacy. Talk about simple! When first visiting his website, the viewer it taken to a screen with a white background, a very simple menu with in hand written type (which is actually a bit blurry/pixelated/hard to see). The menu options are as follows: Outside, inside, Q&A, Shows, and Hotel, stacked on top of one another. To the right of the menu, well spaced out, three images of his latest graffiti work at different angles oscillate at about five seconds each. Next in line, the outside option scrolls though 137 images of his graffiti work done outside. Some of them are super simple, many of them are humorous, conceptual, and simple. What is satisfying about scrolling through his work is how vulnerable the work is. He sets a perfect example of confronting the hypocrisy in our world in a playful way. The way he inserts his work into the public eye is brave, exciting, and controversial. He touches on very sensitive subjects in a humorous way, and is not afraid to address any topic. Along with images of his artwork, there is an image, for example, of a letter written to Banksy from a Kurdish artist who wrote him from jail-for she was sentenced to two years after posting a controversial painting on social media. Banksy keeps it real, and represents justice for all. Some of the photos one questions whether he manipulated the photo itself, or if the artwork actually does exist. I love how simple the website is, though in some ways I wish I was able to select individual photos on my own rather than scroll through all of them to see the one I remember. The Inside menu is equally as satisfying as the outside, and built in the same fashion. There are 47 images to scroll though, including paintings and drawings (some framed), sculpture and installations, and of course graffiti. His work is extremely sarcastic, daring, and humorous. In the Q&A Section, one image appears, of a street artist in New York painting a portrait of Bansky who is sitting in a metal folding chair with a mask on. Above the photo says : "Send all questions, complaints and threats to faaq@banksy.com.uk. Banksy is NOT on Facebook, Twitter or represented by Steve Lazarides or any other commercial gallery."" Banksy is refreshing to and very complimentary to the world we live in today. His website reflects his simplicity, genius and bravery. Be is not looking for fans or likes, he just makes great work.


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Jeff Koons

When first entering Jeff Koon's website, one is taken to a page with one photograph that is very close to the top of the page. It is a photograph of his large-scale sculptures of a balloon dog and some other balloon accessories. It’s a great photo, it just bothers me a bit the way it sits on the page. One can only do one thing but press on the photograph where it says ENTER and one is taken to his ARTWORK page. At the top of the screen there is now a menu Artwork, Exhibitions, Biography, Bibliography, and Contact. Fairly simple. A list of his work borders the left and automatically one lands on Inflatables. While on this option, the right side of the screen, shows a sub menu for what is chosen on the image chosen, opens in the middle. I am not able to scroll down on the screen to see the full list of his artworks. There must be something wrong with his website for the screen continues to bounce instead of going where I ask it to. The setup of the menu is appealing in this case. It reminds me of reading an art history book the way that he has it set up very clear and simple, as well as how he lables his artwork and the font he uses.. His name in a light blue shows at the top of the page. Light blue is his continues theme for having clocked on something as well. He has it set up so that you can click on various social media sites to make a post with this particular piece of art you have clicked on. On the Exhibitions page there is an extensive amount of work shown, and at the very bottom a search bar. One can click on his shows and be taken to another page without opening another tab. His Biography and Contact are very clear as well. All and all I am a fan of this website in the sense of how clean it is. He has a lot of work that speaks for itself. I would just maybe work on the cleanliness of is name at the top of the menu and fix that one problem with the glitch, as well as align the opening photograph a little better with the screen.

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