In light of the news article Construction crane falls on museum, everyone assumes it's a new sculpture, it made me wonder (yet again) about the meaning of art. I, like many people have experienced art in the most abstract of forms.
Apparently the cookie crumbs and cardboard scraps didn’t fit her expectations of what is art. Neither did Damien Hirst’s installation of beer bottles, coffee cups and overflowing ashtrays. The cleaning crew at London's Eyestorm Gallery was also overzealous in their cleaning of the gallery, and tossed his work.
But let’s not think illustrators are not guilty of creating artwork that is questionable too. Felix Pestemer is known for his illustrations of trash and compost. His illustrations are beautifully presented in gilded frames. Is it the frame, the artist statement, or the gallery presentation of the illustrations themselves that elevate these works from being thought of as Trash, to that of Art?
Perhaps it’s the combination of A, B, C and all of the above. Perhaps it’s all about the framing of the subject matter, and controlling the eye of the beholder. Or, maybe it’s the isolation, intent and presentation of the art outside the normal context that stops us in our tracks.
Or in art-speak, it’s the theoretical pontification about the dichotomy and juxtaposition of our banal environment with that of the neo-neo, post-dada, post-modernist world. So yes, when a cookie, paper scrap or construction crane are exhibited in the right context – it's Art. Otherwise, to quote an artist friend of mine, “it’s just crap”.
This week's illustration is a combination of a photograph I took of the Jaguar sculpture, and some added digital figures.