Page 1 of 5 Gastro-Vision: Whack! Contemporary Artists and Piñatas

advertisement
Gastro-Vision: Whack! Contemporary Artists and Piñatas | Art21 Blog
Page 1 of 5
HOME
GASTRO-VISION: Food in Contemporary Art and Visual Culture
GUEST BLOG
flash points
Gastro-Vision: Whack! Contemporary Artists and
Piñatas
EDUCATION
VIDEO
search
subscribe
May 21st, 2010 by Nicole Caruth
do we experience art?
Art21 Blog feed
Video feed
How Education feed
Guest Blog feed
communicate
video of the week
recent comments
Korot: Dachau, 1974
Jennifer Rubell, Andy Warhol Piñata from "Icons," 2010. Via Brooklyn Museum on
Flickr.
The much-talked-about Andy Warhol piñata, created by Jennifer Rubell for last month’s
Brooklyn Ball, offered a witty art spin on an old party tradition. Instead of the usual candy
contents, this piñata spilled Hostess brand snack cakes, icons of American junk food culture,
redolent of Warhol’s work in pop art. Given the amount of art world enthusiasm about the
piece, it seems a good moment to look at piñatas as an art form. Rubell is not the first to
make clever use of this sweet-filled object. What follows is by no means an exhaustive
history of artist’s piñatas, but a look at some recent ones that, similar to Rubell’s, were
stuffed with small treats and big concepts.
teaching with
contemporary art
and out of the classroom
blogger-in-residence
Caroline Denaro in (UC
Beryl
Crisis) Post 2: The Feeling of
Embalming Education : I
definitely want to be evolved
again!...
John Hammond in What
Makes Us (More) Human: The
Vast Middle Ground Between
Art and Science: “science
measures;...
Eden Maxwell in What Makes
Us (More) Human: The Vast
Middle Ground Between Art
In and Science: I’m both a painter
and...
Sabine Rousan in Multiple
Intelligences: That is a very
fascinating concept. It causes one
to contemplate the reality...
grebenshi in What Makes Us
(More) Human: The Vast Middle
Ground Between Art and
Science: I’m afraid, wanting to...
Lizpages
K. Sheehan, Independent Curator,
Massachussetts
About Art21
About the Art21 Blog
Writers & Contributors
categories
> Flash Points: (209)
Compassion: Do artists have
a social responsibility? (10)
Fantasy: Does art expand
Mariana Castillo Deball, "Klein bottle piñata" as installed at the Contemporary Art
Museum St. Louis, 2009. Paper mâché. Courtesy the artist. Photo: David Ulmer.
our ability to imagine? (20)
How can art effect political
Since January, museum audiences in the United States and Europe have been taking
whacks at Klein bottle piñata (2009) created by Mariana Castillo Deball for the traveling
exhibition For the blind man in the dark room looking for the black cat that isn’t there,
organized by the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis. Hung in austere museum lobbies,
Deball’s Piñata looks more like an semi-precious kinetic sculpture than a goodie-filled party
piece. Its color and title intimate the intense blue hue developed by French artist Yves Klein,
while the shape refers to the “bottle” attributed to nineteenth-century German mathematician
Felix Klein. In short, the Klein bottle is a topological surface with no inside or outside. “It’s a
container that has no content, or has no possibility of having content,” says the artist. Klein
bottle piñata was born out of a lecture-style performance about black boxing and how
greater sophistication of knowledge makes technology more cryptic for its users. “For
example,” said Deball in a recent video podcast, “everyone has refrigerators, computers,
and mobile phones, but nobody knows how actually these devices work. This piñata is a sort
of metaphor for [how] cryptic all the objects and the things we use on a daily basis have
become.”
change? (37)
How do we experience art?
Sign up
art21 online
on Art21.org
on Blip.tv
on Del.icio.us
on Facebook
on Flickr
on iTunes
(4)
How does art respond to and
redefine the natural world? (28)
on PBS
on Twitter
on YouTube
Must art be ethical? (21)
Systems: Can art transcend
paradigms? (22)
Transformation: How does
blogroll
16 Miles of String
2 Buildings 1 Blog
art adapt and change over
Art Fag City
time? (16)
Art Whirled
What is the value of art? (34)
What's so shocking about
Klein Bottle Piñata also relates to the artist’s native Mexico where these “devices,” as she
calls them, are mainly used for Christmas and birthday parties. Deball suggests that getting
what’s inside is only half the fun. “Sometimes the actual procedure of breaking up the piñata
is much more interesting than the toys or objects you can collect…Sometimes breaking it up
is the end of the game. You’re not interested any more in the presents or things you are
taking out afterward.”
newsletter
contemporary art? (18)
> Video: (295)
Artlog
ArtsBeat
Bad at Sports
BOMBlog
C-Monster
Classroom (6)
Contemporary Confections
Conversation (4)
Culture Monster
Excerpt (35)
http://blog.art21.org/2010/05/21/gastro-vision-whack-contemporary-artists-and-pinatas/
5/23/2010
Gastro-Vision: Whack! Contemporary Artists and Piñatas | Art21 Blog
Exclusive (120)
Ed Winkleman
Reblog (112)
Eyeteeth
Spoof (6)
Heart as Arena
Uncut (3)
Henry Art Gallery: Hankblog
Art21 Access '09 (25)
Art21 Artists: (896)
Alfredo Jaar (29)
New York-based artist Ronny Quevedo sights McKenzie’s piñata as personally memorable.
In January, Quevedo and artist Blanka Amezkua invited twenty-three emerging artists to
create piñatas for the one-night exhibition and party, Rompe Puesto, at the Bronx River Art
Center. (The event’s title loosely translates to “breaking ground.”) At the time, Quevedo and
Amezkua were talking about “a lack of community and physical gatherings in the Bronx and
among Bronx artists” and thinking of ways to bring people together. Quevedo had been
independently thinking about piñatas as “a materially cheap way to make something.” The
form is simply paper mâché, wheat and tissue paper (though clay is also an option).
Quevedo said in a recent phone interview, “We figured the best thing was to have a party of
piñatas and invite the community…We didn’t advertise it as a family event, but a lot of kids
showed up.”
Mattress Factory
Modern Art Notes
Andrea Zittel (18)
New Curator
Ann Hamilton (27)
OC Art Blog
Arturo Herrera (21)
Open Space
Barry McGee (32)
PBS NewsHour: Art Beat
The Ben Street
Two Coats of Paint
updownacross
Bruce Nauman (32)
VernissageTV
Cai Guo-Qiang (35)
Walker Art Center
Cao Fei (23)
Carrie Mae Weems (23)
Catherine Sullivan (17)
Charles Atlas (10)
Cindy Sherman (26)
Collier Schorr (17)
Do-Ho Suh (22)
archives
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
Doris Salcedo (17)
November 2009
Eleanor Antin (22)
October 2009
Elizabeth Murray (8)
September 2009
Ellen Gallagher (15)
August 2009
Florian Maier-Aichen (11)
July 2009
Fred Wilson (9)
Gabriel Orozco (26)
Hiroshi Sugimoto (23)
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
Hubbard & Birchler (7)
February 2009
Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle (18)
January 2009
Ida Applebroog (21)
December 2008
James Turrell (20)
November 2008
Janine Antoni (16)
October 2008
Jeff Koons (43)
September 2008
John Baldessari (28)
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
John Feodorov (1)
April 2008
Josiah McElheny (31)
March 2008
Judy Pfaff (22)
February 2008
Julie Mehretu (23)
January 2008
Kara Walker (56)
December 2007
Kerry James Marshall (28)
November 2007
Kiki Smith (41)
Kimsooja (11)
Krzysztof Wodiczko (18)
Along with community and creative process, Quevedo took a personal interest in the history
of piñatas. “Realizing that, at one point, they were used to coax Native Americans in South
and North America into Christianity,” he said, “was a big influence for me.” The sevenpointed star piñata, almost as common as cartoon figures today, is a relic of such religious
manipulation. Early missionaries supposedly used it to represent the seven deadly sins,
which required only “blind” faith to destroy.
Inside/Out
An-My Lê (21)
Jessica Stockholder (20)
Kid-friendly contents could be found in a bust of Christopher Columbus filled with gold
chocolate coins, and in Quevedo’s gold four-finger ring (pictured above) that on one side
bore the name of Inca king Atahualpa. Inside were ring pops. Some piñatas were better left
to the grown-ups. Risa Puno, for example, created a fully functional disco ball that, along
with a DJ, set the mood for the evening (see video). The last to be broken, it contained all
the provisions one might need for an after-party, so to speak: mini bottles of liquor,
condoms, pregnancy tests, Advil, and then some. Other piñatas gifted custom-made t-shirts,
small sculptures, and photocopies of an artist’s drawings.
IMA Blog
LACMA: Unframed
Jenny Holzer (70)
"Rompe Puesto" at the Bronx River Art Center. Photo: Argenis Apolinario.
Hyperallergic
Allora & Calzadilla (38)
Beryl Korot (2)
For some artists, stuffing their piñata is not as important as the beating it will take, especially
when it’s a self-portrait. From 2002-2007, Los Angeles-based artist Meg Cranston created a
series of empty piñatas in her own image. Each piece in the series is titled after the
anthropological documentary Magical Death (1973) about the Yanomami people of Brazil
who use ritual warfare, or “shamanic drama” to avoid real blood shed. According to
Artforum, early in the series Cranston invited visitors to “enact a similar ritual murder on her
own pendant form—if they would be willing to pay for the pleasure by buying the work.”
Cranston later suggested that no one had taken her up on this masochistic challenge and
for this reason she filled her last piñata with candy. “The violence has to occur,” she said,
“so the figure (my doppelgänger) can symbolically triumph.” When Jamaica-born artist Dave
McKenzie commissioned an effigy of himself as piñata, his “hanging” and “beating” had
entirely different connotations. The video Self-Portrait Piñata (2002) documents an event at
the Queens Museum of Art in which museum-goers joyously bash McKenzie’s likeness.
Candy and fun seem trivial, if not inappropriate, as his dangling lifeless figure begins to
conjure America’s history of lynching and other racially charged violence.
Hrag Vartanian
Allan McCollum (15)
Barbara Kruger (32)
Meg Cranston, "Magical Death" installation, 2002. Paper mâché with color tissue and
touches of pastel. Courtesy the artist and The Happy Lion Gallery.
Page 2 of 5
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
Lari Pittman (13)
Laurie Anderson (24)
support art21
Laurie Simmons (25)
Your tax-deductible
donation provides crucial
support for Art21 projects.
Laylah Ali (21)
Louise Bourgeois (48)
Margaret Kilgallen (8)
Mark Bradford (47)
Mark Dion (38)
Martin Puryear (21)
admin
Admin access
Mary Heilmann (19)
Matthew Barney (32)
Matthew Ritchie (18)
Maya Lin (31)
Mel Chin (20)
http://blog.art21.org/2010/05/21/gastro-vision-whack-contemporary-artists-and-pinatas/
5/23/2010
Gastro-Vision: Whack! Contemporary Artists and Piñatas | Art21 Blog
Page 3 of 5
Michael Ray Charles (4)
Mike Kelley (35)
Nancy Spero (36)
Oliver Herring (26)
Paul McCarthy (18)
Paul Pfeiffer (14)
Pepón Osorio (6)
Pierre Huyghe (25)
Raymond Pettibon (33)
Richard Serra (37)
Richard Tuttle (17)
Robert Adams (19)
Aaron Krach, "Indestructible Object", 2009. Pinata, copper leaf, chocolate, Plexi.
30 x 18 x 8 inches. Edition: 1/3. Courtesy the artist and DCKT.
The ceremonial destruction of an artist’s piñata typically corresponds with an exhibition’s
closing. Aaron Krach’s copperleaf donkey, Indestructible Object (2009), was instead
smashed at the grand opening of Invisible Exports gallery last year. The crushed shell was
displayed in plexi for the remainder of the show. Krach is largely interested in objects you
can’t keep. Or if you keep it, “you have to recognize that it changes.” He explains: “A
scratched lottery ticket that doesn’t offer a prize. Is it useless? It’s still the same piece of
paper on an elemental level. Same with a piñata. It’s still sculptural and interesting, but it’s
been ‘destroyed’ in most viewers’ eyes. I want to subvert that.”
Robert Ryman (16)
Roni Horn (27)
Sally Mann (20)
Shahzia Sikander (15)
Susan Rothenberg (11)
Tim Hawkinson (11)
Trenton Doyle Hancock (25)
Ursula von Rydingsvard (21)
Vija Celmins (10)
Walton Ford (12)
Krach grew up surrounded by Mexican and Mexican-American culture in Los Angeles and
says, “Piñatas were more common at birthday parties than games like Pin the Tail on the
Donkey.” To a degree, he resents those affairs.”When you’re a kid and you go to a birthday
party, bust the piñata, and all you get are hard candies, maybe peppermints or butterscotch
balls, you’re angry!” And so, Krach fills his piñatas (there has been more than one) with
expensive imported chocolate truffles in a few different flavors. From the shell of the piñata
down to the candy, participants continually pull back layers. “Also very important,” he says,
“is that they are wrapped in the most beautiful colorful foil. These chocolates are so pretty
you don’t want to eat them, but of course that’s just like the piñata. You’ve got to open them
in order to really enjoy them.”
Share |
William Wegman (16)
Yinka Shonibare MBE (29)
Art21 News (227)
Biennials (47)
Columns (370)
> Art 2.1: Creating on the
Social Web (11)
> BOMB in the Building (19)
Like
23
Posted in: > Gastro-Vision, Food, Installation, Performance, Sculpture, Social
Similar posts: Catching Feelings , Weekly Roundup , Weekly Roundup , Maya Lin & Martin Puryear at the de
Young Museum , Weekly Roundup
William Kentridge (26)
> Center Field | Art in the
Middle with Bad at Sports. (3)
> Gastro-Vision (11)
> Inside the Artist's Studio
(10)
Comments (0)
> Letter from London (63)
> Looking at Los Angeles
(18)
Trackback URI | Comments RSS
> No Preservatives:
Conversations about
Name (required)
Email (required)
Conservation (13)
> On Location: Inside Art
Documentary Production (6)
Website
Leave a Reply
> Open Enrollment (10)
> Teaching with
Contemporary Art (124)
> The Weekly Roundup (61)
> What's Cookin': The
Art21ndex (34)
Education (186)
Exhibitions (510)
Festivals (32)
Guest Blog (347)
Interviews (146)
Locations: (894)
Argentina (1)
Asia (1)
Australia (7)
Canada (16)
Caribbean (2)
Submit Comment
China (10)
Colombia (3)
Cuba (2)
Denmark (9)
http://blog.art21.org/2010/05/21/gastro-vision-whack-contemporary-artists-and-pinatas/
5/23/2010
Gastro-Vision: Whack! Contemporary Artists and Piñatas | Art21 Blog
Page 4 of 5
France (18)
Germany (48)
Greece (17)
Iceland (1)
India (5)
Iraq (1)
Ireland (3)
Italy (21)
Japan (3)
Korea (2)
Mexico (3)
Middle East (1)
Netherlands (6)
Poland (1)
Russia (1)
Scotland (1)
South Africa (1)
Spain (21)
Sweden (3)
Switzerland (14)
Taiwan (1)
Thailand (1)
Turkey (2)
Ukraine (1)
United Kingdom (96)
USA (696)
Boston (17)
Chicago (44)
Connecticut (1)
Houston (5)
Indianapolis (11)
Los Angeles (80)
Miami (6)
Minneapolis (1)
Nebraska (3)
New Orleans (22)
New York City (332)
Ohio (8)
Philadelphia (15)
Pittsburgh (3)
Portland (1)
San Francisco (38)
Seattle (3)
Texas (21)
Washington (3)
Washington D.C. (21)
Media: (924)
Architecture (23)
Design (39)
Drawing & Collage (176)
Fashion (13)
Film & Video (233)
Food (2)
Installation (344)
New Media (132)
Painting (218)
Performance (162)
Photography (191)
Printmaking (42)
Public Art (140)
Sculpture (279)
Social (75)
Sound (12)
Sound & Music (57)
Photos (19)
http://blog.art21.org/2010/05/21/gastro-vision-whack-contemporary-artists-and-pinatas/
5/23/2010
Gastro-Vision: Whack! Contemporary Artists and Piñatas | Art21 Blog
Page 5 of 5
Podcasts (6)
Prizes (39)
Programs-Events (219)
Publications (62)
Season 5 (98)
Support Art21 (5)
Uncategorized (11)
© Art21, Inc. 2001-2009. All rights reserved.
Art21 is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization;
all donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
contact us
posts(RSS)
http://blog.art21.org/2010/05/21/gastro-vision-whack-contemporary-artists-and-pinatas/
comments (RSS)
top
5/23/2010
Download
Random flashcards
Radioactivity

30 Cards

African nomads

18 Cards

Create flashcards