Sunday, December 2, 2012

Something Happened - A Magpie Tale

Photo offered by Tess Kincaid of an art object created by Man Ray, done in 1923, originally titled "Object of Destruction"

In 1932 a second version, also called Object To Be Destroyed, was published in the avant-garde journal This Quarter, edited by André Breton. This version featured an ink drawing of the object to be destroyed with the following instructions;
Cut out the eye from a photograph of one who has been loved but is seen no more. Attach the eye to the pendulum of a metronome and regulate the weight to suit the tempo desired. Keep going to the limit of endurance. With a hammer well-aimed, try to destroy the whole at a single blow.

Wiki says: Object to Be Destroyed is a work by American artist Man Ray, originally created in 1923. The work, destroyed in 1957, consisted of a metronome with a photograph of an eye attached to its swinging arm. It was remade in multiple copies in later years, and renamed Indestructible Object. It is considered to be a "readymade", following in the relatively new tradition established by Marcel Duchamp of employing ordinary manufactured objects that usually were modified very little, if at all, in works of art.

Man Ray said: the piece was originally intended as a silent witness in his studio to watch him paint. Later, he appears to have linked the object with the loss of a lover.

There is more. The incident in 1957 was perpetrated by art students. The students invaded the gallery and took the artwork away. They destroyed the object in protest by shooting it to death, dramatically following the artist's earlier instruction concerning it, after which the appreciation of artistic value and the consequent insurance payout funded the creation of a hundred more identical pieces, now named Indestructible Objects. Also, while the art was destroyed, the show in which it had appeared became a resounding success because of the that sensational publicity. Thus an object of performance art became an object of performance art. The recreations are on display in several museums and galleries.

Oh yes, it appears the students were protesting art because they thought poetry far more important. They considered their act not surreal but surely real.

Don't you just love knowing this stuff? (I said shit for stuff but everyone seems to be commenting on that so I removed shit) :D

Something Happened During The Civil War
Or, The Tipping Point

It turns out I am
surely real now, my friend,
and a surreal
moment like this can
hardly be bettered, ever.

Consider my eye,
how it swings impaled.
Doesn't hurt, I assure you.
Turn me on in back
of your studio.
Or take me out and shoot me
in some back alley
and accept your fate
for it all - give your soul to
art for art's damn sake.

December 2, 2012 8:16 AM

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  1. Yes, I surely to love knowing this shit. The first thing I did when I saw this prompt was look it up on wiki. I see I am not the only one.

    Your poem is a wonderful piece of creative brilliance.

    "give your soul to art for art's damn sake."

    I am trying, I am trying.

  2. Crasy artists! And, yes, I just love hearing this 'shit' - THX

  3. That's an eye opener, if you like! LOL

  4. yep I'd rather know "shit" than be a unknowledgeable piece of "crap"

  5. Ya gotta love artists. Thanks for the details

  6. an eye openeer indeed.....thanks for sharing this Chris

  7. Love "turn me on in back of your studio"...giggle...

  8. Cant help feeling the end result of any spiritual journey is the giggling realisation that we are not what we think !, because i am thinking it, i am obviously not there yet , a- ha

    1. I want to make a witty remark but can't figure out how to make it not turn out confusing. Heh.


The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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