Reconstructivist Art: Diesel Sweeties

R. Stevens’ “Diesel Sweeties” as an example of Reconstructivist Art

Diesel Sweeties is a subversive and deceptively simple web-based comic strip depicting the lives, passions and tangled love affairs of a motley group of humans, robots, pets and inanimate objects.

Reconstructivist Elements:

  1. Nod to Artifice: In Diesel Sweeties, the stylized pixelation of the artwork highlights the fact that it is created on a computer, while the large contingent of computers and robots among the strip’s main characters is another reference to the strip’s personal sense of artifice.
  2. Classic Structure: Diesel Sweeties has experimental moments, especially in its web version, but generally stays within the “four-panel gag-a-day” format familiar to anyone who has ever read a comic strip in a newspaper.
  3. Transcontextual and Iconic Elements: Diesel Sweetie’s characters are literally “icons,” at least as that term is applied in computer circles. Each one is a figure taken from popular culture, distilled into its essence and rendered in the brightly colored boxy style of early computer graphics.
  4. Moments of Genuine Emotion or Significance: The overall theme of Diesel Sweeties is love (in all its human irrationality!) and the subject is returned to again and again as the characters meet, mate, and experience lust, joy, jealousy, happiness, and all the other emotions that come from the relationship one person has with another.

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