Generalizing with Icons

Icons can be used to suggest not only a specific city but a broader region as well. They serve as a generalization of the idea of a place.

The Staircase Rose

I took advantage of icons in “The Stair Rose” (#110702) to suggest a place and atmosphere without making it so specific that other viewers would be unable to relate to it. Rather, it’s the kind of scene that almost any traveler in Italy might come across and could imagine having seen in person.

It’s like thumbing through old photographs and saying, “Oh yes, we took these on our trip to Italy. I don’t remember which city it was in, … but do you remember …?”

In the same way, icons serve to trigger personal memories, and our art can take advantage of them to appeal to a much broader audience than experience-specific images usually do.

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