February 17, 2010

Sherrie Levine's Shiny, Rocking Playthings


I don't quite follow how these sculptures of vintage children's objects cast in bronze fit in with Sherrie Levine's ongoing questioning of authorship and originality. They're not quite as iconic as, say, Marcel Duchamp's urinal, which Levine had previously remade in gold.


Levine has talked about wanting her self-conscious reproductions and re-photographs to have as much aura as the other artists' works she copies. With Dada [which is apparently French for hobby horse? Is this true?] and The Cradle, there is aura to spare. These things look fantastic.

In fact, I'm tempted to get a table saw and make my own version of that rocking horse right now. I'm sure Levine'd understand.

Dada, 2008, L177 x H99 x W12 cm, ed. of 12 [image: jablonkagalerie.com]
The Cradle, 2009, H91 x W91 cm, ed. of 6 [image: simon lee gallery via artnet]


More generally, in French, "dada" is a child's word for "horse".

Levine has always been one of my favorite artists. I think she makes really smart work. I see how these aren't the same as what she's been doing but I like that it's different. But also really beautiful. Wow.

Change is good.

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