Wednesday, June 06, 2007


Sherrie Levine - Fountain (after Marcel Duchamp: A.P), 1991

'Since the early 1980s, Sherrie Levine has made a career out of re-using - or appropriating - famous works of art, often by making new versions of them and placing them in different contexts. Throughout her career, Levine has created art based on works by prominent male artists from the early 20th century in order to underscore the relative absence of women in the art world at that time. Her sources have included Walker Evans' photographs and Constantin Brancusi's sculptures. Levine's piece, entitled Fountain (after Marcel Duchamp: A. P.), is inspired by Marcel Duchamp's Fountain (1917).

When Levine's Fountain is compared with Duchamp's sculpture, it is apparent that it is not an exact copy. Most notably, Duchamp's piece was an actual urinal, turned upside-down and unaltered except for his signature. He believed he could transform such mass-produced, everyday objects into artworks merely by proclaiming them so, and called them "readymades." In contrast, Levine's sculpture is a contemporary urinal cast in the sculptor's traditional precious metal, bronze. Polished to a brilliant shine, this piece is no longer a common, store-bought item; it has been transformed by the artist into a unique object.'

'I try to make art which celebrates doubt and uncertainty. Which provokes answers but doesn't give them. Which withholds absolute meaning by incorporating parasite meanings. Which suspends meaning while perpetually dispatching you toward interpretation, urging you beyond dogmatism, beyond doctrine, beyond ideology, beyond authority.'

Sherrie Levine

Ming-Zhu has tagged me with a so-called Thinking Blogger Award, "in most part for the wonderful, bold career/life choices he's been engaging with recently". This is flattering, not least because not everyone has deemed to call my recent career/life choices wonderful or bold. As for the Award itself, here's the lowdown:

The origin of this award is The Thinking Blog.

1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,
3. Optional: Proudly display the 'Thinking Blogger Award' with a link to the post that you wrote (you have a choice of a silver version or a gold one).

I would in turn award (read: tag) Austin's Disposable Words, for the remarkable photographs; Edward's Wino sapien, for its flights into the olfactory; Ed's Tomato, for being the nexus between mainstream food writing and amateur food blogging; Sarah's Prima la musica, poi le parole, for its passion; and Voltaire's Monkey, for its pseudonymed blogger and his Benjamin-esque approach to our cultural history.

Meanwhile, Ming is taking a break from blogging, with good reason. Ming's not only one of my favourite bloggers, but one of my favourite people, too, and my thoughts are with her.

Matt Clayfield, Esoteric Rabbit