Tuesday, 22 November 2011

On Vogue

Arthur Buxton, 30 Years of British Vogue Covers, Pigmented Inkjet Print, 2011

Arthur Buxton is an artist who has recently been invited by CFPR Editions to produce a limited edition print at the Centre for Fine Print Research in Bristol, UK. Buxton's work engages with data visualisation methods that use colour extraction tools to explore trends in the natural world, painting and print media. Using open source software he extracts colours from photographs to create charts and timelines that typically display the five most common colours in each image as a percentage. In this instance, the removal of figurative and formal elements from an image present a series of colour harmonies and trends, alluding to sampling methods, information graphics, automation technologies, and objective forms of re-presentation.

The artist explains his most recent work produced with CFPR Editions; 'As the worlds most influential fashion magazine, Vogue acts as an ideal barometer for colour trends. Making use of British Vogue's own online online cover archive I use free software to extract the five commonest colours from each cover and chart them, in Illustrator, by percentage. Arranging these charts into a timeline we begin to see trends emerge - seasonal variations and also in the longer term, a gradual fashion for lighter hues. In my thirty years of British Vogue covers visualisation each column is a year beginning with September (the start of the fashion year) at the top and working backwards to October at the bottom. 1981 is on the right and the timeline runs through to 2011 on the left'.


Fictionman said...

What type of print technology was used to create this image?

P.Laidler said...

That's a good point. The printed image was produced using an Epson 9800 and printed on a coated cotton based Somerset paper. We have been tinkering with the possibility of using a UV printer which will allow us to layer a spot varnish onto the surface of the printed image - although a few more tests are needed.