13 August 2008

watch out for that giant turd


Complex Shit by Paul McCarthy from ArtInfo

Alright, for my after vacation come-back to Pinball...too good of a story to pass on. The UK's Telegraph reported yesterday an incredible story. Here's the headline:


Now even Hollywood can't make that "shit" up. (sorry too good to pass on that one) The Zentrum Paul Klee in Berne, Switzerland was hosting a modern art exhibition entitled "East of Eden. A Garden Show" and this inflatable sculpture of a pile of dog turds the size of a small house was a part of the exhibit. The sculpture by American artist Paul McCarthy was supposed to have a built in fail safe that would deflate should the turds come loose, but it malfunctioned and floated 200 yards away to a children's home on July 31st.

The hardest thing about all this is trying to figure out what part is best. The turd sculpture, the fact some engineer had to design a deflation safety device (can you imagine a client coming in asking for that..."Um yeah, we'd like you to design a deflation device for a balloon." "How large of a Balloon." "One the size of a house, oh and shaped like a turd."), or that apparently today we would consider an inflatable turd "high art."Ah, I almost forgot. The name of the piece is "Complex Shit" (2008). Totally Classic!

As for the sculpture itself this isn't an unexpected piece from McCarthy. He himself has said "My work is more about being a clown than a shaman." (Magnus Petersen) Critics have also gone so far as suggesting his work seeks to undermine the idea of "the myth of artistic greatness." (Paul McCarthy: Rites of Masculinity) Either way you have to give it up for someone out there who still has their sense of humor intact because personally I think it would be awesome to walk through a beautiful sculpture park full of serious pieces watching people pretend to know something about art and then turn a corner and find a giant pile of inflatable dog poop. To see such a common nuisance elevated to such a ridiculous scale would be hysterical. The fact that it took flight is just the cherry on the sundae.

The museum's official description of the intent for exhibit is as follows,

"20 Hectares of playground for the garden show: the farmland to the rear of the three steel hills and the entire tract of greenery from the Wyssloch Valley down to Lake Egelsee will be sprouting weird and wonderful objects to form and animated kind of front garden.

Paul McCarthy will be subverting the otherwise harmonious landscape sculpture of the Zentrum Paul Klee with his installation Complex Shit - a giant pile of dog feces."

To read the full article - Telegraph Uk

Zentrum Paul Klee Bern

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Really had fun sharing this entry with other people including Paul LePage who laughed!!