Article

Suzanne Szucs on Rochester Art Center's "Minnesota Goes Pop" exhibition, which takes Andy Warhol's work as a starting point from which a wide array of contemporary Minnesota artists run, offering a fresh, distinctively regional spin on 20th-century Pop ideas.
April 24, 2017

Andy Warhol screen prints, 1986. Installation view from Andy Warhol: Minnesota Goes Pop at Rochester Art Center.

The Andy Warhol: Minnesota Goes Pop exhibition, currently on display at the Rochester Art Center, uses two bodies of work by Andy Warhol as the starting point to explore contemporary Pop Art. Curator Sheila Dickinson has organized an exhibition where Warhol forms the foundation, while contemporary Minnesota artists run with Pop ideas. Starting with Warhol’s Myths and Cowboys and Indians series allows Dickinson to build coherent relationships between the included artists. However, for the most part, the younger artists outshine the Warhol prints, offering fresh investigations of contemporary culture.

The large galleries of the Rochester Art Center provide ample space to explore the mashup of approaches to popular culture. Setting the stage, the first gallery features a grid of Warhol images from the Myth (1981) series. Also in the gallery are two large paintings by Frank Gaard who forms somewhat of a bridge to Warhol, being of the first generation inspired by Pop Art’s rise. His acrylic paintings, collaged with brightly colored LPs, remind the viewer of the diversity of Pop; it might have been nice to have a few more artists of his generation to emphasize this diversity and bridge the divide. Instead, Gaard and Warhol share the space with Tagged/Me (2014), the digital image collection of Nick Medearis. The continuous slideshow of selfies captures the conformity and commodification inherent in contemporary culture. Devoid of any self-reflection, or even beauty, the collection shows us only surface as the woman strains to pose, contorting herself into camera positions that she imagines will make desirable images. They fall flat, however, empty of any aesthetic pleasure.

The next gallery offers two media pieces that similarly engage, Dylan Redford’s Why did I watch this? (2016) and Ziyang Wu’s The Story of the Pig (2014). Redford’s piece is presented on an iPhone in the corner of the gallery. Spoilers here: there’s no image, only text that describes the narrator’s experience looking at footage of a terrorist attack. Warhol capitalized on images. Here we are reminded that we are so inundated with images, we can imagine them, the same manufactured media shots and accompanying logos identifying what we should be horrified by. We should look away, but we cannot. Watching Redford’s video, which consists of his reading the text, we are continually waiting for the expected image. As one gallery viewer mentioned, “I thought there was going to be some video to it, but it’s only words.” It was hard to tell if she was disappointed or relieved.

Frank Gaard, (L to R) Untitled (French Studies) 2014, acrylic and collage; Untitled (Penelope’s Tapestry), 2016, acrylic and collage. Installation photo courtesy of the author.

Wu’s The Story of the Pig occupies the gallery space adjacent. It’s grand display and outrageous imagery acts as a thoughtful counterpoint to Redford’s quiet piece. Pushing the pop culture paradigm to the max, The Story of the Pig is unrestrained and unapologetic. Wu has created an animated world, where anthropomorphized pigs take the place of humans. They fill a megachurch/arena worshipping a goliath, human-faced, multi-armed, war machine god that brands select worshipers with fascist symbols, marking them for later sacrifice. Columns at the back of the arena are giant penises constantly changing from flaccid to erect to flaccid, while pigs engage in orgiastic activities within skyboxes. Wu has gathered most major religions into his fantasy space, beginning the video with what seems like a harmless meditation, which soon devolves into cult-like behavior. All of this intersects with K-Pop, as gilded humanoid pop stars join in and amplify the chant. At the heart of the message is a warning – the relationship between conformity and fascism is never far away. Although over-the-top and absurd, Wu’s animation provides a remarkably apt parallel to our current political climate.

______________________________

Popular culture can be a powerful weapon. Wielded with dexterity, it can tap audiences with which “high” art might struggle to communicate. Pop Art made the case that art is not reserved for an elite few. 

______________________________

At the heart of this gallery is Katayoun Amjadi’s sculpture, Nightingale and Rose (2016), which consists of five cast porcelain roasting chickens: one that is covered in gold, two plain, and two with rose decals. The uniformity of the chickens is notable, referencing Warhol’s assembly line, but with a firm nod to Duchamp’s readymade movement. Warhol capitalized upon the readymade by expanding his subject matter to include photographs from news and culture as well as everyday objects. While Duchamp made the ordinary into art, Warhol commodified the banal. Amjadi’s exalted chickens seem, at first glance, like a simple gesture, much simpler than Wu’s expansive video. They present layered meaning, subtle references to the pose of the Buddha, the golden calf, or the delight found in a knickknack on a collector’s shelf. Yet these are casts of a headless roaster, a bird slaughtered en masse for consumer consumption. When looked at next to the Medearis photo collection, Amjadi’s porcelain chickens are filled with irony. How odd that a golden chicken carcass should be so much more beautiful and desirable than a photograph of a woman posing.

(Top) Bianca Pettis, Portrait of the Gear, acrylic on canvas drop cloth, 2016. (Bottom) Katayoun Amjadi, Nightingale and Rose, cast porcelain, gold luster, decals, 2016. Installation shot courtesy of the author.

The second half of the exhibition is inspired by Warhol’s Cowboys and Indians (1986) series. Native artist Jim Denomie contributes colorful paintings that seem to taunt the Warhol prints – appropriations of white as well as Native symbols of the American West (John Wayne, Teddy Roosevelt, Native icons). Maria Cristina Tavera also presents a gorgeous group of screenprints that appropriate commercial, pulp fiction and historical material to question the nature of identity. It is Rory Wakemup’s work that steals the show in this part of the gallery, however.

Rory Wakemup, Darth Chief, Buffalo Thunder Trooper, Smart Wars Resistance Troopers, 2015installation view,. Photo courtesy of the author.

A mashup of Star Wars and Native costuming, Wakemup’s Darth Chief (2014), Buffalo Thunder Trooper (2015), and Smart Wars Resistance Troopers (2016) strike poses in front of a wall full of Mirror Shields of Standing Rock (2016). Buffalo Thunder Trooper stands triumphant over a large papier maché head of the Cleveland Indian’s mascot. Around his neck hangs a smaller version of the head, what appear to be cast bronze, the size of a human heart – a triumphant souvenir of victory. The Smart Wars Resistance Troopers are wearable costumes, and viewers will long to see them parading the galleries. These pieces combine everyday materials – duct tape, athletic gear, used clothing – with semiprecious adornments, feathers, beads, bear claws, and bullet casings, and the popular mythology of the Star Wars series of movies, together celebrating the tradition of appropriation found among many Native cultures, well before Duchamp and Warhol made it popular within the fine art world. As those movies were based, in part, on Hollywood westerns promoting a racist fantasy of the American West, it’s only fitting that Wakemup’s warriors are based on the bad guys of the Star Wars myths, paralleling the Indians as they were portrayed in the old westerns.

Jim Denomie, Toast, oil on canvas, 2014. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Popular culture can be a powerful weapon. Wielded with dexterity, it can tap audiences with which “high” art might struggle to communicate. Pop Art made the case that art is not reserved for an elite few. When the things we are familiar with are exalted, we connect with work on an intimate and playful level. Appropriating Star Wars and blending it with a tradition that has been so besieged by stereotypes introduces a broader view of that community. It begins to speak to complex ideas about cultural appropriation, acceptance, and difference. It’s also just plain fun. While it is impossible in such a short review to speak to all of the work presented in a group exhibition like Minnesota Goes Pop, there’s no doubt that Warhol would have liked this one. It’s full of interesting artistic gestures, organized thoughtfully within the generous galleries of the RAC, and celebrates the vibrant arts and ideas being generated in Minnesota.

Suzanne E. Szucs is an artist, writer and educator located in Rochester, MN. For more information, see www.suzanneszucs.com.

Related exhibition and event information:

Andy Warhol: Minnesota Goes Pop is on view from February 4 - May 14, 2017 at Rochester Art Center in Rochester, MN. Artists include Jim Denomie, Frank Gaard, Maria Cristina Tavera, Ziyang Wu, Rory Wakemup, Krista Kelley Walsh, Star Wallowing Bull, Bianca Pettis, Dylan Redford, Nick Medearis and Katayoun Amjadi.

Related programs:There is an artist talk with Dylan Redford and Ziyang Wu on April 27 at 7 pm; Frank Gaard will give an artist talk on May 5 at 11:30 am.

Comments

vangjames:

Soi cầu đẹp chuyên trang phân tích lô tô soi cầu lô đề hàng ngày uy tín nhất - Phân tích chôt số Rong bach kim hàng ngày miễn phí

- tất cả đều được chúng tôi cập nhật tại trang web : du doan xo so

visit my website : http://soicaurongbachkim.top/

LIKE - Minnesota Goes Pop

muneer ahmed:

A debt of gratitude is in order for offering this quality data to us. I truly delighted in perusing. Will without a doubt going to impart this URL to my companions. Voyance Qualitéa

Linker SEO:

Very interesting to read this article.I would like to thank you for the efforts you had made for writing this awesome article. best car insurance rates

Linker SEO:

ανακαινισεις λευκωσια κυπρος, |ξυλινα σπιτια λευκωσια κυπρος|μεταλλικα σπιτια λευκωσια κυπρος|LeoHome Constructions Ltd

Linker SEO:

Very interesting to read this article.I would like to thank you for the efforts you had made for writing this awesome article.API for IoT developers 

Linker SEO:

A global leading business group based on Korea. Official Hanwha Group website.hanwha

Linker SEO:

I built up this fan site as an approach to help men and ladies keen on Phen375 one of a kind eating routine pill which advances fat consume. laser hair removal chester county 

Linker SEO:

Awesome showed data. I thank you about that. Most likely it will be extremely valuable for my future ventures. Might want to see some different posts on a similar subject! API for IoT developers 

sjaden:

Such a very useful article. Very interesting to read this article. loft conversions I would like to thank you for the efforts you had made for writing this awesome article.

voyance par telephone pas cher

andrewdavid:

A lot of people at my work told me that I should read this article because it's one of the best of the year. And I have now read this article and I can safely say that this is indeed one of the best articles of the year. biomagnetism

jamesjack:

Listed here you'll learn it is important, them offers the link in an helpful webpage: Online Shopping

Linker SEO:

Masa is a leading italian quality linens manufacturer. Our products are ideal for hotels, restaurants and luxury tables.italian table linens

Linker SEO:

Wonderful illustrated information. I thank you about that. No doubt it will be very useful for my future projects. Would like to see some other posts on the same subject!  italian shoes for women

Linker SEO:

Excellent information on your blog, thank you for taking the time to share with us. Amazing insight you have on this, it’s nice to find a website that details so much information about different artists. vehicle leasing

mattbrown:

Microsoft Support is here to help. Contact Microsoft Support by phone for technical support on all Microsoft products and software. Call +1-877-833-3455

microsoft contact

microsoft windows support number

outlook support number

microsoft office contact number

mattbrown:

Apple Support is here to help. Contact Apple Support by phone for iPhone, iPad, Mac, and more. 

contact apple support

apple technical support phone number

apple customer care number

apple id password reset

apple iTunes support

mattbrown:

Antivirus Support -Contact for assistance on Antivirus, Internet Security and security software. Make your computer secure and virus free. 

Norton antivirus phone number

MacAfee customer service number

trend micro support number

avast antivirus tech support phone number

AVG contact number

Bitdefender customer service phone number

Kaspersky support number

webroot contact

malkova:

glad to join your community!

192.168.1.1

192.168.1.254

dogra:

Take One School of Mass Communication works under the aegis of Guru Dronacharya Educational Society, an enrolled body with the Registrar of Societies, Government of National Capital of Delhi and is presently in Academic Collaboration with Shri Ventakeshwara University (Gajraula, Uttar Pradesh).
Mass communication institutes in Delhi

 

zaba:

Awesome and interesting article. Great things you've always shared with us. Thanks. Just continue composing this kind of post. designer clothes sale

zaba:

Interesting and amazing how your post is! It Is Useful and helpful for me That I like it very much, and I am looking forward to Hearing from your next..

ave the children

uali20:

I appreciate your efforts in preparing this post. I really like your blog articles yt converter

ndctb5:

ls on the market.

Our Japanese umbrella manufacturer has 5 years of experience in umbrella manufacturing in Vietnam

http://oduvietnhat.com/o-quang-cao-xuong-lam-du-ha-noi/

The price of Viet Nhat facility is the best in Vietnam and the quality is still ahead

Production facilities always have large labor force and modern machinery system, so progress of work, manufacturing products always exceed the level set out with customers.

 

The source of umbrella after each redundant order was liquidated 

ndctb5:

The clock purchased at our facility is guaranteed for 2 years so you can rest assured with the samples purchased at our unit.

http://www.donghotreotuongkashi.com/ http://temmacdecal.com/

Commodities made from a lot of different materials like the printing method also have a lot of different ways. Because of this, it is extremely difficult to find the right kind of marks for your business. You must be very clear about the characteristics of the product (s) your company is considering, and how long it can be labeled and stamped. The price of the item being distributed with the commissions is derived from those items, along with the calculation of the amount of money invested in each of the same branded stamps that the stamps carry.

What criteria does the standard stamp need?

To make a complete label, artisans must have a very good knowledge of the processing of stamp materials. The most important is to be careful when making molds or molds for stainless steel. The staff of TH is taught from the best skilled technicians and details of important factors in time stamps and fulfill the needs of customers.

- Accurate stamp must have good content and relevant logo close to your company

-Tem label should be designed eye-catching look with shoppers at the same time must have suitable material

-Templates need to produce creativity, in particular, create sympathy with customers and should not do too colorful sesame

Important details need to produce other colors to correlate with the viewer

Should use the logo as a stamp

......................

That is just a few things to keep in mind when you are planning to manufacture stamps. There are many other things to consider but please contact us for best advice: Hotline: 094 2222 856

 

frenchguy777:

 

 

french open womens final
french open 2017 women's final streaming
french open 2017 men's final streaming

uali20:

The web site is lovingly serviced and saved as much as date. So it should be, thanks for sharing this with us. Instagram uploader

una:

thanks a lot admin on your information and sorry permission share
Obat Herbal Penurun Berat Badan

johnsoncharles016:

When it comes to gaming consoles, there is always a big fight between Sony's Playstation and Microsoft's XBox. Now this 

rivalry is going to increase even more because Microsoft is getting ready to launch it's next console, the Xbox 2. You can 

check out all the details from my site here http://www.xbox2guide.com/xbox-2-features-wishlist/

Linker SEO:

ανακαινισεις λευκωσια κυπρος,|ξυλινα σπιτια λευκωσια κυπρος|μεταλλικα σπιτια λευκωσια κυπρος|LeoHome Constructions Ltd

abele2017:

Great exhibition! Popular culture can be a powerful weapon. I think you may like this: bullet force games online
 

novinhas:

 

Thanks for the excellent post took my doubts

pornografia

BMI CALCULATOR:

Have been looking for information on the subject! great news, I found a convenient timer on the Internet! Try it!

BMI CALCULATOR:

Thank you for the information! very good article! material! Never thought that it's so convenient to plan your day with a stopwatch! Now I'm in time! Try this site and you definitely like it!

lukashik:

Megabox HD is a great app in both Android and iOS operating systems to watch latest movies for completely for free. 

jamesjack:

I most likely appreciating each and every bit of it. It is an incredible site and decent impart. I need to much obliged. Great employment! You all do an incredible blog, and have some extraordinary substance. Keep doing awesome. backcountry coupon

hoahero:

hotmail com login Hotmail is known as the first email service in the world which is provided by Microsoft. 

jamesjack:

I simply want to tell you that I am new to weblog and definitely liked this blog site. Very likely I’m going to bookmark your blog . You absolutely have wonderful stories. Cheers for sharing with us your blog. petco coupons

tienamphu:

bọc răng sứ thẩm mỹ an toàn không đau nhức tại Lạc Việt là sự lựa chọn hàng đầu cho quý vị có thể tham khảo thêm kỹ thuật bọc răng sứ veneer để hiểu hơn về phương pháp làm răng thẩm mỹ này

kurama12:
muneer ahmed:

I want to say thanks for beautiful blog sharing with us. Your blog really great resource to update my knowledge. private investigation Singapore

Pages

MN Artists