Maurizio Cattelan L.O.V.E. 2010

A few frilly words and you’re counting ceiling tiles.[Steve Martin – Roxanne]

“‘… officially it’s name is L.O.V. E. – so it stands for love – but everyone can read between the lines and take away the message they see for themselves…” [MC]
“… the sculpture created in 2010 was commissioned after 2008 when the economic crisis struck the whole of Europe and Italy in particular. One can only imagine that it sends a giant ‘ you’ to the financial world at Milan’s Piazza delgi Affari. The financial sector in Italy is believed to have contributed to the recession during which Italy sank into a financial crisis.” [Public Delivery on Maurizio Cattelan]

stefansimchowitz Love @mauriziocattelan on making the greatest ready made of the social media era. From Duchamp to this…. excellently played Maestro on orchestrating this instant iconic classic. Boom! Art world still intact and firing on all cylinders. What a cover… Steve Cohen. Donald Trump and Cattelan’s duct tape Banana. I can only wish I got there first to buy it. [Stefan Simchowitz Instagram]

Maurizio Cattelan America 2016

jerrysaltz 🍌 🍌 🍌 🍌 🍌 🍌 🍌  The art world that we see already no longer actually exists – except for 155-people. The cracks are visible. The rot. That accounts for a full 1% of 1 % of 1% of the art world. Meanwhile for the 99.999% we beat on against the tide in this urgently beautiful pursuit. A violent disordering is in the offing- a sub-music of change. 
Art will be fine; so will we. But joke art, shock-your-Nana-art, art about art about art: That’s all been DOA for a decade or more – of course idiot artists, collectors, dealers and critics don’t see that to even take it seriously is to put the gun to your own head. Easy answers. Migrations are afoot – art is on the move
xoxoxo [Jerry Saltz Instagram]

Maurizio Cattelan A Perfect Day 1999

“…real artists are not out to hoodwink you. What makes Mr. Cattelan a compelling artist… is precisely Mr. Cattelan’s willingness to implicate himself within the economic, social and discursive systems that structure how we see and what we value. It makes sense that an artist would find those systems dispiriting, and the duct-taped banana, like the suspended horse, might testify to his and all of our confinement within commerce and history. In that sense, the title “Comedian” is ironic — for Mr. Cattelan, like all the best clowns, is a tragedian who makes our certainties as slippery as a banana peel.” [Jason Farago on Mauricio Cattalan]

Maurizio Cattelan We 2010

“It feels good to express disgust, of course, and when that comes with social affirmation—favorites, retweets, followers, blog posts—there’s an incentive to show more anger. But I think there’s more to it than that. In a world where prejudice and privilege still rule the day, it’s cathartic for a lot of lefties—even straight white dudes—to show outrage, even if it leads to nothing in particular... In a sense, for the social-media left, cultural outrage is a substitute for politics.” [The Year of Outrage]

… with notoriety comes outrage. Overreaction is crucial: the work must prompt commentators to proclaim the end of art, to evoke the cliché of the emperor’s new clothes. But Cattelan also triggered art-world outrage at art market extremes. The art historian and our contributor Bendor Grosvenor bemoaned those “who can only think of—and value—art which is designed to shock” and Jerry Saltz, the critic at New York Magazine attacked the “idiot artists, collectors, dealers and critics” who take “joke art, shock-your-Nana-art” seriously. But Cattelan’s satire—placed in the most ludicrously excessive art-world jamboree of the year—is surely aimed squarely at just those people. [Ben Luke on The Five Stages of Art World Scandal]

Maurizio Cattelan Comedian 2019

Too easily lost in the commotion and over-intellectualizing about the work is the fact that The Banana is meant to be ridiculed. It exists to be mocked…. The sheer absurdity of such a purchase, easily identified by people outside the art world, is a feature, not a bug, of the piece, laying bare what you might call the performative aspect endemic to so much collecting today. Buying art now is about being seen in the right circles and acquiring the right names. And, of course, about having enough discretionary income that spending $120,000 on a fruit doesn’t faze you. What, exactly, you are buying is secondary to the status conveyed by the acquisition itself
Might those buyers have been in on the joke being made literally and figuratively at their own expense? Most likely—these are art-world VIPs, after all. But the chance to be inside the ruckus, to check a major artist of their “To Collect” list, to be one of the few who actually has an Original Banana was too tempting to pass up—critique be damned, grab the checkbook. The fact that there are multiple buyers only further proves Mr. Cattelan’s point.” [Brian P. Kelly @WSJ]

Libertà. Odio. Vendetta. Eternità. 2019


  • 1001010z (@1001010z)

    I think that we see the cannibalism of Art by the “Memes”. Somehow memes got so much stronger than art in the last 10-15 years. They are easily made by altering or photoshop some content that makes a funny or weird comment, a kind of visual joke that everybody understands (that is in a certain culture) Andy Warhol started to turn pop icons into memes. Richard Prince works a while in this area with his jokes and visual jokes, that work more as memes than art. Maybe good artsy memes become the better art in the future ? What is the point, that art wants to comment on anyway these days ? BR Hans

  • gwh12

    Artists have come through 20-30 year’s worth of self criticism,with art that is laughing at itself, with an art world chorus joining in.So it is going to be difficult now to be serious: what is that going to feel like? It looks like the only viable option though, because sticking with the old will be nauseous, and ignoring what has happened pitiful. I think It will be painful, but exhilarating.

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