The Rapidian

Impart: Local artist Brandon Belote sees links between art and science

Brandon Belote, Kendall Fine Art graduate, answers a few questions about art.
A still from Belote's film "Retrospective"

A still from Belote's film "Retrospective" /Courtesy of Brandon Belote

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This article is part of a series called “Impart” which asks local and national artists questions about art to preface ArtPrize and begin the conversation.

Read other artists' answers: 

Thomas Hammer

Gil Lelazhe Jariq

Melanie Manos

Nate Otto

Consuelo Poland 

Mark Reigelman

Salvador Jimenez

A still from Belote's film "Retrospective"

A still from Belote's film "Retrospective" /Courtesy of Brandon Belote

A still from Belote's film "Retrospective"

A still from Belote's film "Retrospective" /Courtesy of Brandon Belote

Impart seeks to preface ArtPrize by asking artists essential questions about art. 

Brandon Belote is the projectionist and AV technician at UICA and a Kendall grad. He often experiments with video in his work.

"I wouldn't consider myself a filmmaker," he says. "I don't really make enough films to be a filmmaker. I'm really just using video. What I have been doing is capturing drawing materials. It's very abstract. It has certain structures that are similar to narrative but it is right on the fence between art and film."

What is art?

"If you go back and look at what art has been for different cultures I think it encompasses a lot of expression and storytelling and communication. It's hard for me to separate art from story. I think it is tied to communication but just to call it a form of communication is just sort of marginalizing how important it really is. I think for a lot of artists it is not so much to communicate but to explore the self and the relationship of the self to the world around them. And the communication becomes something that is sort of secondary. 

I think in a lot of ways art and science are related. Art comes from an honest inquiry, much like science does. People are such a strange thing in the universe. Here on earth there are these forms of matter that realize they are matter. This sort of awareness is such a unique thing and I think art focuses on that small part of what it is for us to be an aware piece of matter in this universe. It sort of excercises that awareness. I think for us, art isn't necessarily how beautiful can you make a thing but how aware can you be. I think science in the same way is about that observation. Science is still is an art form. Once you learn how something works than you can imagine what you can do with it and that's how art and science are related because both require observation. Art focuses more on the imagination and what things can become whereas science focuses on what the mechanics of that thing are."

What is the purpose of art?

"I think for some people it does seem like an extra and not a necessity. When you are trying to verbally communicate, you are just describing things. Art tries to demonstrate things. It tries to have a certain feel, a certain movement or a certain flow. These different things that you just can't do with words. To put yourself out there in the means of art, you are putting yourself in places that are a lot more full then you can with verbal terms. For someone to embrace you through art is a more full embrace, then it is to just embrace your ideas articulated verbally. They're meeting a more holistic view of who you are then embracing that."

Is art important? Why is art important?

"You can get quite a range of how important art is and how much meaning it has. Working at the UICA, some people feel like there should not be a price to view art. I don't think there is one way people value art. I think it is very individualized. Art is very personal. It's about an inward dive."

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