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From: Juline Chevalier (julinec_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Tue Nov 27 2001 - 12:16:30 PST

Hi all,

I wanted to reply to a couple things:

This one first:

<< Who are some artists other than Degas
 and Matisse who used figures in action poses in their
work? >>

I will add Auguste Rodin, who hired can-can dancers
rather than artist's models to strike poses around his
studio while he sculpted. He supposedly had an
argument with his wife once and as she stormed around
the room yelling at him, he sculpted her and her wild
face. He tanked her for the argument at the end:)

Secondly, In regard to Dada:

And this is very very fresh since I just taught the
Docents in training about this this morning. Duchamp
was pushing the boundaries...seeing how much he could
get away with. He was making visual and verbal puns
on many levels. He said, perhaps tongue in cheek, that
none of the objects he chose as readymades were chosen
for aesthetic reasons or in good or bad taste...they
were sinply chosen and that act of choosing made them
art...well, in his mind.

I would reccomend an article titled "When is Art" by
Nelson goodman in which teh author points out that a
rock in a driveway is a boring old rock, but when you
put a rock in a museum you notice its formal
qualities, its color, shape, etc. etc.

I think Duchamp was trying to see how far he could go
and try to push the CONCEPT of art as far as it would
go. It is up to the viewer to decide whether a urinal
is art (when changed orientation and context and a
signiature is put on it) if Duchamp says it's art.

Think for yourself...really look and then look some
more and then look some more. What is the statement?
What is the message? What were the socio-political
times? Dada was a non-sensical reaction against the
horrors of WWI. Supposedly reason and logic had
resulted in WWI and so these artists wanted to do the
opposite since war was the earlier outcome.

So much to consider when looking at "Fountain".

My two cents,
(Museum Educator)

"Eat well, kiss well, work ditto and you'll die happy." -Gauguin

"But genius is nothing more nor less than childhood recovered at will..." -Baudelaire

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