Sunday, March 8, 2009


Return of Richard Mutt In this piece, I have taken a contemporary slant on Marcel Duchamp's urinal. Video art is anything the artist wants it to be. The artist must have his concept in place to be credible but I will argue that a concept could be assigned to anything. For example: In this piece of contemporary video art (note the words the artist uses, he implies that it is actually a piece of contemporary art already, thus confirming to the spectator that it is indeed art, and not just a toilet being flushed ) the artist uses the toilet as a metaphor for the cycle of life: We flush away our waste, one of two things happen, if we have a septic tank, when it fills, it usually gets emptied more likely than not by a farmer, who then spreads the waste on the land to act as fertilizer. This makes the grass grow, which the cattle then eat, we then eat the cattle and the process begins again. The other way is by a waste treatment plant, the waste is treated then released into rivers etc, the rivers lead to the sea, the seas put moisture into the air which falls as rain. Rain helps the crops to grow, which we then eat, and the process begins again. So there we have a credible? Concept which the artist has used to justify that it is not just a toilet being flushed, he has even referenced another artist. ( I am sure that many more artistic references could be found; Simon Starling, Robert Rauschenberg etc. ), This ultimately begs the question, is the concept more important in contemporary art, than what an actual finished piece is? If the answer to that question is yes, then to be considered a great contemporary artist, all we will need to do, is come up with great concepts, the finished piece itself then will be irrelevant.

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