Today’s lecture was supposed to be on Deleuze but the lecturer was unable to delivery it, much to my relief. On Sunday I’d tried in vain to read a bit of background to his subject but couldn’t even understand the wikipedia entry; I was despondent.
We started by discussing amongst ourselves “Can we identify the traits in art and design practices during the period that Richard Brettell calls the end of Modernism, around the end of World War II?
The members in my small group were well qualified to talk about this as it was a time we could recall, either because we had lived through it or born just after. We concentrated on the early 1950s and struggled to come up with the names of British artists.
Due to the turmoil in Europe the art scene moved from Paris to New York, many of the artists fleeing the Nazis.
The lecture started with Jackson Pollark – referred to as Jack the dripper.
Jackson Pollark by Hans Namuth
1942 , Oil on canvas, 69 x 43 in; Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice
Art is something everyone can understand, the subject matter becomes common to all.
James Rosenquist, Marilyn Monroe 1, Oil and spray enamel on canvas, 236.2 x 183.5 cm, MOMA, New York
Taken from advertising and pop culture. It was the celebration of communality.
Bob Adelman, Andy Warhol shopping at Gristede’s supermarket on Second Avenue, executed 1964, printed 2008, archival inkjet print, 19 x 14 inches. Boca Raton Museum of Art
The drive to make profit is inherent in U.S. culture. This was a world where everything turned into art: Commerce,, celebrity, music, outrage pulsed along the conveyor belt and was turned as if by magic into art.
Photograph of The Factory 1964 by David McCabe
What is art? Danto states that it is whatever the art world says it is. The collectors, the curators, the writers, the critics, the artists, the exhibition goers. George Dickie contests this in his paper ‘What is Art? An Institutional Analysis’
Andy Warhol ,
962, Acrylic paint on canvas, 2054 x 1448 x 20 mm, Tate London
What was happening in Britain?After WWII Britain was on its knees but colour in packing and advertising developed at a rapid pace. Coca cola the ubiquitous symbol of the U.S.A. The same drink the poor and the president consume.
Sir Eduardo Paolozzi, I was a Rich Man’s Plaything, From Ten Collages from BUNK, 1947 Printed papers on card, 359 x 238 mm, Tate London
With John Ruskin looking down on the scene!
Pop is pro-typical of post moderism.
Richard Smith, Slot Machine, 1962, Oil paint on canvas, wood and paperboard, 569 x 505 x 85 mm, Tate
Simon Starling, Shedboatshed, Turner Prize, 2005, Tate London
No significant form but with plurality of meaning. Eclecticism of materials, one thing becomes another. The gallery space is transformed into a soup kitchen, spaces are appropriated. The artist collaborates with the public.