This is from Defining Moments in Art: Over a Century of the Artists, Exhibitions, People, Artworks, and Events that Rocked the World, general editor Mike Evans. The book features items sequentially, starting in 1863 and ending in 2008. I am selecting items from back-to-front (starting in 2007) because I enjoy going from recent to distant more than the reverse:
… Many of his images are updated adaptations of well-known painting from the art history canon by Velázquez, Hokusai, and Eduard Manet, while others were inspired by literary sources such as the writings of Franz Kafka, Yukio Mishima, and Ralph Ellison. Wall’s use of an advertising gimmick [the light box] to promote his “high culture” source material was a brilliantly subversive way of combining mass media with intellectual culture.
… Viewers often report that seeing Lightning Field during dusk or dawn, when the slanting rays of the sun illuminate the poles in a sequence, is a nearly divine experience. But the work’s title refers to the rare moments when it becomes truly spectacular as the poles act as conduits for lightning during thunderstorms.
Key Artist Christo and Jeanne-Claude complete the Running Fence project; Date 1975; Why It’s Key The first project by the partnership as “American” artists — he gained citizenship in 1973 following many years of being “stateless” after illegally escaping Communist Bulgaria.
… The artists still decline all grants, foundation money, and commissions — they also refuse all volunteer help or commercial involvement. Christo and Jeanne-Claude always pay the entire cost of the artworks themselves.
Since 1964, Christo and Jeanne-Claude have lived at the same address in the United States (for the first three years they were illegal aliens) … . The couple earn all their money through the sale of [the] preparatory studies [from their public projects], early works from the 1950s and 1960s and original lithographs on other subjects.
Key Artist Duane Hanson, major retrospective tours the United States; Date 1976; Why It’s Key Important Hyperrealist sculptor.
Duane Hanson, Woman with Dog, 1977
… Whether or not most gallery-goers wanted to admit it, encountering a disarmingly realistic couple of typical tacky, middle-aged tourists, or a lug with a beer in his hand and his big belly exposed, or a junkie nodding off against a wall, was not shocking because the figures were fake, but also because it is so rare to see those demographics in an art gallery in the first place.
Duane Hanson, Woman Eating Synthetic Material, 1971
Last week’s post from this book is here.