Topics in American Art since 1945

By Lawrence Alloway | Go to book overview

STOLEN

(with Arakawa: An Interview)

This is the record of a theft of art. A group of five young artists removed from an exhibition at the Dwan Gallery a painting by Arakawa inscribed: "IF POSSIBLE STEAL ANY ONE OF THESE DRAWINGS INCLUDING THIS SENTENCE." So they did and their action has esthetic ramifications which should be indicated here. In one sense, the group's intervention is in a tradition concerning the annexation of art by artists. Marcel Duchamp is a precedent, with his addition of a beard and moustache to a reproduction of the Mona Lisa in 1919 and, also, in this note for a readymade : 1.

Use a
Rembrandt as an
ironing board.

Yoko Ono's "instruction paintings (meant for others to do)" 2. include the following:

Borrow the Mona Lisa from the gallery.
Make a kite out of it and fly (it).
Fly it high enough so the Mona Lisa smile disappears. (a)
Fly it high enough so the Mona Lisa face disappears. (b)
Fly it high enough so it becomes a dot. (c)

These examples, two from various precedents, are not a direct influence on the group but a part of the line of thought to which their act

____________________
SOURCE: The first part is the Introduction to Stolen by Kathe Gregory, Marilyn Landis, Russell F. Lewis, David Crane, Scott R. Kahn (Colorcraft Lithographers, Dwan Gallery, Multiples, Inc., New York, 1970). The interview is from Arts Magazine, XLIV/4 (February, 1970), 46-47, where it appeared as "Arakawa Annexed."
1.
Marcel Duchamp. Notes and Projects for the Large Glass. Ed. Arturo Schwarz. New York, n.d. [1970], p. 100.
2.
Yoko Ono. Grapefruit. New York, 1970, unpaginated.

-213-

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Topics in American Art since 1945
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Topics in American Art Since 1945 *
  • Contents 7
  • List of Illustrations 9
  • Introduction 11
  • Acknowledgments 13
  • Abstract Expressionism 15
  • The Biomorphic '40s 17
  • Melpomene and Graffiti - Adolph Gottlieb's Early Work 25
  • The American Sublime 31
  • Barnett Newman - The Stations of the Cross and the Subjects of the Artist 42
  • Jackson Pollock's Black Paintings 52
  • Jackson Pollock's "Psychoanalytic Drawings" 58
  • Willem De Kooning 62
  • The Sixties, I - Hard Edge and Systems 65
  • Leon Polk Smith 67
  • Systemic Painting 76
  • Serial Forms 92
  • Sol Lewitt 96
  • Agnes Martin - (with an Appendix) 100
  • Gesture into Form - The Later Paintings of Norman Bluhm 111
  • The Sixties, II - Pop Art 117
  • Pop Art - The Words 119
  • Jim Dine 123
  • Rauschenberg's Graphics 125
  • Jasper Johns' Map 136
  • Marilyn as Subject Matter 140
  • Roy Lichtenstein's Period Style 145
  • The Reuben Gallery - A Chronology 151
  • In Place 155
  • The Sixties, III - Problems of Representation 161
  • Hi-Way Culture - (with Notes on Alan D'Arcangelo) 163
  • Art as Likeness - (with a Note on Post-Pop Art) 171
  • George Segal 182
  • Photo-Realism 185
  • Art and Interface 193
  • Allan Kaprow, Two Views 195
  • Artists and Photographs 201
  • The Expanding and Disappearing Work of Art 207
  • Stolen - (with Arakawa: an Interview) 213
  • Radio City Music Hall 218
  • Robert Smithson's Development 221
  • Art Criticism and Society 237
  • Notes on Op Art 239
  • The Public Sculpture Problem 245
  • The Uses and Limits of Art Criticism 251
  • Index 271
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