March 7, 2009

The Single Most Notorious Surrealist Bugaboo


From the discussion of Meret Oppenheim's Object on MoMA's newly designed website:

Oppenheim's fur-lined teacup is perhaps the single most notorious Surrealist object. Its subtle perversity was inspired by a conversation between Oppenheim, Pablo Picasso, and the photographer Dora Maar at a Paris café: admiring Oppenheim's fur-trimmed bracelets, Picasso remarked that one could cover just about anything with fur. "Even this cup and saucer," Oppenheim replied.
Well, there's nothing subtle about the perversity Ms. Oppenheim inspired among the stylists at Vogue this month. A photospread about animal prints by Raymond Meier titled "Born to be Wild" [Really, Vogue? Three months and that's the best you can do?] features a fur-covered Bugaboo Cameleon.


Is there really no one else out there--besides my wife, and I know her excuse, since she'd been planning to finally crack open her copy this weekend--who reads both Daddy Types and Vogue? I'm the Bug man here. Need the info!


I read both- why???

Nope I read Elle sorry.

Yep I read both . . . and I love the teacup!

The MoMA description isn't quite accurate. It's not so much a "fur-lined" teacup (in which only the interior would be furry) but it is a fur-shrouded teacup. The differences, while subtle, are actually pretty significant. For example, in order for the cup to take on more complex, ambivalent associations ("fur may delight the touch but it repels the tongue," according to a subsequent paragraph on the MoMA website) it must have fur *both* inside the vessel *and* on the exterior portions of the cup that could be handled by the hypothetical "user." Anyways, it would also make an awesome kids toy. I know my daughter would love it. ;-)

Chinese gazelles are cringing at the thought of these things going into production. At least the Bugaboo is faux endangered snow leopard.

This seems like a parody of an entry from STUFF WHITE PEOPLE LIKE.

no kidding, the other large, fake-fur-covered prop in the photoshoot is a Lincoln Continental.

I saw the fur-lined teacup in the surrealist exhibit at the Art Gallery of Ontario and four days later at the MoMA in New York. How many copies of it are around? Which one is the original?

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