Krystyna Hawlena- Krzeminska
“ Second Hand Art”
I found the quotation quite daring and stimulating. It gives one’s urge to react to it, to express one’s impressions and feelings about it. It almost feels like we could not let the artist Elaine Sturtevant to get away with what she was saying. At first I wanted to rise in revolt, I got the impression someone is messing around with me, teasing. How come the artist known for copying the other artists’ works dares to criticize the art world? How dare she admit that the other artists “have become consumer objects” ? All of her works are the actual copies of other artists and she talks about originality which “is no longer a critical factor”? What an insolence! Artists are always striving to be original in their works. Is it not the goal and principle of all creation? Artists want to shock people, to attract their attention and this can only be done if it presents something new. So they do whatever it takes, not to repeat, or worse, not to duplicate the already known patterns. Like in the movie Azorro Group (“Everything Has Been Done”), artists are struggling to come up with an original art project and seemingly innovative ideas turn out being already used by someone else. In the film, constantly repeated quote: "it has already been done" becomes a terse comment on the current state of the art world, in which the author, to be noticed and well-appreciated, is forced to a constant quest for originality. But afterwards, I asked myself: is it possible to make a personal, original work of art by copying others? Then I thought that these artists use the replica as a tool for reflection on the boundaries of originality in contemporary art. They are provocatively “unoriginal”, they are brave enough to be...
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