under consturction more to come.
Shopping was important for Warhol ("Shopping is more American than thinking") though he mostly only depicted items he used in his daily lilfe, most famously his soup can and brillo detergent. Decades earlier Duchamp went shopping for his 'ready mades' as results of pure acts of shopping though not in the leasure department of the BHV but in the hardware department of the luxerious French 'grand magasin' which hasn't moved since Duchamps shopped there in the 1910s. Since then, many artists engaged in various acts of shopping for their art works: Heim Steinbach, Jeff Koons, Silvie Fleurie, Guillaume Bijl to name only those few who have been doing it for at least twenty years with each one stressing another aspect of the 'ready made' logic. One should also not forget that many artists - since the Dadaists - have worked with found materials which at one point lined up in shelves as seducing commodities even if the artist him/herself might not have engaged in an act of exchange.
Shopping entered my art making through my interest in history. As somebody who spent 5 years in university engaged with historiography - I have come to understand that historical events were sedimenting (mostly) as kitsch in antiquarian shoops, flee markets, and today, massively on various internet trading platforms. When looking for a portrait of Marcel Janco while working for my dadalenin project (dadalenin.com) I came accross on an online auction in Israel where they sold many drawings of this famous Dadaist. I coudn't resist but max out several of my credit cards for 4 original drawings of the artists made in the 1930s. Thus I ended up making the works entitled dadaleninmarceljancomehrwert /surplusvalue where I combined my collage work - reflecting on the purchase and on Janco - with his original drawings which I just framed. A similar format was used in my work on Alexander Rodchenko entitled DADALENINRODCHENKO BELOMORCANAL MERHWERT / SURPLUS VALUE, 1931-33/2009. Since 2005 I have been engaged with Dadalenin and subsequently started buying Lenin busts on ebay and on Moscow or Warshow flee markets using the busts for my art work.
For the works Ceci n' est pas une pipe ... I unfortunately ended up using the purchased art work that I aquired for collecting only as my art work. Due to marketing and control issues some artworks I collected by Aleghiero Boetti and Franz Wests which I had aquired many years ago where not recongnized by their archives. Since they losts their authors I stepped in and recycled these works as mine - hence using something I originally purchased as an act of quasi-shopping.
The pure pleasure for colorful fine silk and exotic motives made me a big admirer of Hermes scarves which I used for a video with my less than 3 years old son Edgar. Together we tried to "read" these iconographically rich scarves. In the video Reading Hermes these desirable foulards figure as pedagogical ludic items of visual and haptic pleasure. It is like reading in a book of images for learning about ballons, horses and lots of motives taken unappologetically from the archive of European colonial history. All this lets us ignore their simply history of shopping with all its consumer status it is usually entangled in. Calculated in square inch, Hermes scarves belong to the most expensive clothing items on the market. Wih someting from the top
more to come
Friedrich Engles works THE CONDITIONS OF THE WORKING CLASS IN ENGLAND
THE CONDITION OF THE WORKING CLASS: SHOPPING ON EBAY.CO.UK: Complete set antique metal printer blocks
printing, ink on 3 papers, 8.5 x 11 inches
Ceci n'est pas une pipe, Alighiero Boetti, Le infinite possibilita di esistere / the unlimitied possibility of being, 1980s/20
vintage photographs, print on paper, 1905 / 2011
SHOPPING - a reading seminar .... Los Angels 1994 ... in the future to be done...
even though this reading seminar was entitled Imported - A reading seminar.. in Los Angeles one of the students, Jennifer, see the lady on the right hand side, answered me - when asked about their interest - SHOPPING. hence I decided to read mostly about shopping.. and so we did. ... for a couple of weeks.
dadalenin, ebaylenin US $ 77.66 , 2010
(collection Johan Hartle, Amsterdam)