Wednesday, August 7, 2013

AC/DC Snakes & Week Two of the MoMA MOOC

For our week 2 assignment, we have been asked to "Browse through MoMA's online Collection and choose an image that inspires you in some way. Research some information about the work of art using and/or other online sources. Please upload a thumbnail image of your selected artwork by using the "Attach an Image" option. [Snip] respond to these questions: What drew you to this work of art? What information were you able to find out about this work? If you were to teach with this work, what aspects would you like to introduce to your students? "
Parreno, 2010: AC/DC Snake
[personal sketch]

I chose 'AC/DC Snakes by Philippe Parreno. Since I probably don't have the appropriate permission to post MoMA's image of this work here, I'm posting instead my own drawing of the piece so you can see what I'm talking about.

What drew you to this work of art?

Simply, its appearance, the visual impact it had on me. This work establishes bonds to my personal experience in several ways. First is its composition of familiar objects in a familiar setting. Second is the way the artist has used found objects to create a complex and meaningful form, reminiscent to me of pre-industrial art like the inukshuk produced by Inuit. And finally I am compelled by the artist’s recognition that some of these digital-age artifacts have anthropoid characteristics, with electrical sockets forming immediately recognizable faces. This perception has enabled the artist to construct a post-industrial art form that is strongly reminiscent of the pre-industrial totem poles of native americans of western North America.

What information were you able to find out about this work?
From the MoMA website:

"Philippe Parreno (French, born 1964)
AC/DC Snake 2010
Date:  2010
Medium:  Multiple of electronic adapters
Dimensions:  overall (irreg.): 16 5/8 x 5 1/4 x 6 5/8" (42.3 x 13.4 x 16.8 cm)"

From The Serpentine Gallery:
"On the occasion of the first solo exhibition of Philippe Parreno in a public gallery in the UK, the Serpentine Gallery is delighted to present two limited edition works by the artist.

"Philippe Parreno (born Algeria 1964) is an internationally acclaimed French artist known for creating works that question the boundaries between reality and fiction, working in a diverse range of media including drawing, sculpture and film.

“AC/DC Snakes likewise give tangible form to a phenomenon that would otherwise be invisible. A group of electrical plugs and connectors from different parts of the world are linked together making manifest the hidden currents of electricity that enable global communication and exchange.”

"AC/DC Snakes, 1995-2010
Electrical plugs and adapters
Edition of 20
£2,100 excl. VAT (£2,520 incl. VAT)"
“Philippe Parreno is a French artist and filmmaker who lives and works in Paris, France. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Grenoble from 1983 until 1988 and at the Institut des Hautes Etudes en arts plastiques at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris from 1988 until 1989.”

The Wikipedia article goes on to demonstrate the extremely wide range of media that Parreno has used to express his creativity. His series of AC/DC Snakes, produced between 1995 and 2010 is interesting in that the final works appear to consist both of the original structural assemblages as well as a series of prints (possibly giclée) created by photographing the original constructions. The MoMA piece appears to be on of the 3-dimensional originals rather than one of the prints.

If you were to teach with this work, what aspects would you like to introduce to your students?
  • -artist’s materials
  • -artist’s apparent intentions
  • -artist’s apparent sources of inspiration
  • -students’ perceptions
  • -students’ associations
  • -students’ emotions (feelings)
  • -colors & tonality
  • -3-dimensionality
  • -relationship to unseen forces (electron flow)
  • -what would students do with same materials
  • -what similar kinds of assemblages have they seen
  • -what similar kinds of similar assemblages would they create

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