Monday, July 13, 2009

Mueck exhibit

More good news: We're picking up Demi on Thursday so that she and her cat, Cosmo, can stay with us til the end of the month.

The Mueck exhibit was awesome. It only consisted of It's a Girl (the giant baby) and a micro-sculpture called Woman in Bed, plus some sketches and small preliminary sculptures, but the two main works alone are worth the visit. Girl is every bit as intricately detailed as it looks in photos... every fold, every wrinkle, every whorl of a baby's skin are there. There are even veins faintly visible beneath the "skin". Absolutely astonishing, almost unreal craftsmanship went into this. And when you stop to think that Mueck has done well over a dozen such works, all with the same attention to detail and many on an even larger scale, it's almost mind-warping. All his sculptures are photo-quality. If you look at pictures of them without knowing what they are, you'd think you were looking at wonderful, candid art photos of real people.

I know that postmodernism has made it taboo to qualify any art as "better" or "worse" than other art. I really don't care.
The video/installation artist that was paired with Mueck, Guy Ben-Ner, isn't much of an artist at all. I have no idea why he would be considered a rising art star, as the literature suggested. Most of his cheaply produced, low-quality digital videos consist of himself play-acting with his wife and children in stores, his kitchen, and a few other places. He pretends to be a pirate or Buster Keaton or Robinson Crusoe, doing quirky things that I guess are supposed to be whimsical and endearing. They're not. I think it was a disgrace for the true artistry of Ron Mueck to be shown alongside stuff that could pass for a film school dropout's unfinished class project. Moby Dick is mostly Ben-Ner prancing around his kitchen with a telescope, and a plastic fin "swimming" in stop-motion on the floor. What's really sad is that he actually story-boarded this.

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