Looking ahead Today: Lecture on Assemblage, Happenings, Pop Art: Ch. 19 Tues. 11/17: Film: Andy Warhol. Also, discussion about MAG Paper due Thurs. Dec. 3rd Thurs. 11/19: Ch. 20, Sixties Abstraction: Minimalism REMINDER: NO CLASS WEEK OF NOV 24
1950s & 1960s Beat Background Assemblage Happenings Pop Art
Historical Background: 1950s Conventional America: Emphasis on the nuclear family: TV’s ‘Leave it to Beaver’
1950s Beat Generation Background “I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked.” – Howl, 1955 Allen Ginsberg, Howl, 1955
1950s Beat Culture BackgroundOn the Road, 1957 For: Jazz Zen Buddhism Experimentation Against: Conformity Materialism Mainstream
Art Movement: Assemblage (also called Neo-Dada) Artists gather seemingly random objects and put them together in unruly compositions to see what kind of meanings might emerge Emphasis on everyday surroundings for subject matter Create their works from the “refuse” of modern society Artists: Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns Influences: Composer John Cage, Artist Marcel Duchamp (Dada)
Assemblage Both Johns and Rauschenberg move away from individual personal expression and fixed identity associated with Abstract Expressionism toward an identity shaped by factors from the outside environment.
19.31, Jasper Johns, Flags, 1954-55. Encaustic oil and collage on fabric mounted on plywood. MOMA
19.32, Jasper Johns, Target with Plaster Casts, 1955. Encaustic and collage on canvas with wood construction and plaster casts. 51 x 44 x 3 ½ inches
Art Movement: Happenings Purpose: to call into question the idea that a work of art was an enduring record of artistic genius Sought to integrate art with life and extend art into a theatrical situation Approach: Ephemeral works; chance; mixed media **Audience is necessary to “activate” the work of art Influenced by: John Cage Dadaism (Duchamp) Action Painting Artist: Allan Kaprow
Happenings, Allan Kaprow, Yard, 1961 Early to mid 1960s Name Happening from Allan Kaprow’s 1st show at N.Y.’s Reuben Gallery 1959.
Allan Kaprow, Yard, 1961, Happening: Environmental artwork activated by performers & viewers.
19.36, Allan Kaprow, Photograph from Household, a Happening commissioned by Cornell University, 1964
Art Movement: Pop Art (1960s) Backdrop was rise of consumer culture/ advertising/ celebrity Pop Art was the union of art and popular culture. They embraced mass culture Deal with the “new”, the “store-bought” Pop artists borrowed images that were mass produced and made them repetitive British Pop Art came first: Richard Hamilton American Pop Art: Claes Oldenburg, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol
Pop Art Pop artists made an effort to make viewers aware of the extent to which advertising and the production/consumption cycle dominated everyday life America’s shared knowledge no longer came from “high culture” sources like literature, mythology, or religion, but rather from television, movies, and advertisements. Pop artists reflected this by blurring the distinction between art and consumption. The movement examined the effects of consumerism on human thought, emotion, and creativity. It posed the question: what is more important, the thing or its image?
Andy Warhol,32 Campbell’s Soup Cans, 1961-2, acrylic on canvas, each 20 x 16”
19.58, Andy Warhol, Installation view of Campbell’s Soup Cans, Ferus Gallery, Los Angeles, 1962
19.57, Andy Warhol, 210 Coke Bottles, 1962 “A coke is a Coke & no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good”