mercoledì 8 aprile 2015

The Revenge of the Common Place

A TRIPLE-HISTORY of Appropriation and Illusion on behalf of the BRILLO BOX and some other Stories on Copies and Originals

Curated by: Hans Maria DE WOLF

Ever since its first appearance in New York in 1964, Andy Warhol’s “Brillo Boxes” became emblematic ICONS of a new kind of world in which high art and popular culture were no longer separated from each other. Pop art would become a dominant visual language of that period and although the whole movement was rooted in social critique and scepticism towards modern consumerism, none of the artists involved would prevent their art works becoming beloved OBJECTS of an art world, marked by an “unbearable lightness of being” in comparison to previous periods.
Arthur Danto proclaimed this sensational moment in time as the end of the domination of cultural elites. This was the hour in which philosophy would be REBORN again out of the “common place” for which the Brillo Box was the ultimate expression. Those ideas would make school on American campuses and beyond, however in the meantime all believers of Danto’s vision would turn a blind eye on the activities of a number of people operating in the shadow or in the caves of that beautiful new ART WORLD.
And when the world finally found out about those great stories on FAKES and BUSINESS, and we wanted to introduce them into an exhibition on the subject we were preparing in Beijing, we suddenly woke up on the fact that it all DOES NOT MATTER ANY MORE. Our Chinese friends would not even begin to understand where our problem comes from. They simply love the idea of the COPY. Any COPY! And so it happened that we ended up in Venice CA’FOSCARI palace with a number of objects that are not art works, nor copies, nor replicas, nor interpretations, and not even an edition or a joke. We only know that they allowed the painter RINUS VAN DE VELDE to come to terms with the whole story and to make a painting, just a painting. Not a fake.
Since the whole idea was born in China, a universe that has to come to terms itself with its recent history (in art) and its own unique appreciation of the COPY as the ultimate compliment one can make in regard to an ORIGINAL, we invited SONG DONG to mirror all those ideas into a new installation. Who else would be more appropriate to do so? We finally decided to close the circle on yet another continent, in Mexico City where FRANCIS ALŸS questions already many years the legacy of the original as a format. His contribution will complete the exhibition with the notion of VIOLENCE, probably the most ancient expression of the COPY as a format of narcissism. It is hard to become more accurate today.

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