Thursday, July 19, 2007

It Was Only A Matter of Time



As posted by woostercollective.com: "[This was] Placed outside of the White Cube Gallery Masons yard at 3.30 am on Sunday night in response to the Damien Hirst's "For The Love of God" diamond skull exhibition.

The "For the Love of God" prank was created using 6522 Swarovski crystals and took Laura, the artist, a month to create."

Now I'm just waiting for a line of jewelry to come out. Wait, it already has. Just hit up Target or Hot Topic for the very shiniest in glam-punk gear.

So, the prank has mos def started an inevitable riffing/commenting trend that will see death objects be-blinged, or perhaps Hirst-ified...if nothing else, this work is easier to ape than a floating shark.

But, that off-the-cuff comment raises larger issues (no, not of the commidification of art, that ship has certainly sailed) but of where one draws the line between a precious, singular object, and an object for replification.

I am certainly not the introducing an original idea here, but it does raise questions of the ramifications of comodifying the minutiae of life. In a larger sense, it taps into a universal desire to see, and be seen as intelligent, erudite, and witty (I am no exception).

In an age of instant gratification, where knockoffs of knockoffs abound and “group identification” is as simple as the right pair of limited-edition Nikes, I posit that we are nearing a time where there will be greater and greater stratification between high and low, between fine and craft. That might not be a bad thing per se, but the unintentional fall out will be a war of ideologies (according to Jacksonville artist, James Green this is already occurring). Which in blind striving for the winning argument will be reductivist to the point of redundancy. As the shades of theoretical grey fall by the wayside, absolutism will take hold, and then we'll be left with a bunch of brittle, flat, art...that serves no purpose save for to shriek it's own validity from gallery walls.

So, does this mean that the Hirst skull points to the downfall of civilization? No. It is merely that my observation that the furor created by this piece should be a jumping off point for discussion. Hopefully, not further stratification.

Either side you choose though, rest assured there will be a logo and a t-shirt not too far behind.

2 comments:

Jennifer Morgan said...

When I saw this 'prank' I thought, "Perfect!" I love it.

madeleine said...

I loved it too since it speaks to the fetishization of an object in it's own time...which (as we have seen with other objects like, fer instance: hair wreaths) then to be less highly regarded in following generations...I love the way it contextualizes the Hirst piece.