The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

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    The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    "The Maybe", if you haven't seen or heard about it, has gotten some loud press over the past several days, since appearing / opening at the NY MOMA last weekend.   

    This is more Matty's domain than mine ... so feel free to say say whatever, Matty.  :)

    The Maybe will reside in the NY MOMA, on an occasional, unannounced, unpredictable basis, 6 times, over the course of the next year.   

    It is at times said to be "performed" and also called a "still life" (not your usual bowl of apples and pears) ... and since I suppose a still life by a live, posed model is a "form of performance" then that wording lines up.  

    The work is a snooze-cube for actress Tilda Swinton.   Swinton naps in a glass box, very similar to a display case, with only her eyeglasses, cushions and a water jug by her side.   

    The cube is the only work of art in the room, so viewers (and voyeurs) walk around the cube and look at it like any (other) work of art.   

    MoMA said in a statement, “An integral part of The Maybe’s incarnation at MoMA in 2013 is that there is no published schedule for its appearance, no artist’s statement released, no museum statement beyond this brief context, no public profile or image issued. Those who find it chance upon it for themselves, live and in real-shared-time: now we see it, now we don’t.”

    I just read that Swinton could hear the people outside the glass -- and thought she was in the cube for double the time, rather than only 6 hours.   It is not as much "fun" as it might appear to be the live subject of a still life.   

    We've done well with other discussions about art (modern art, pricey art, performance art, etc.) : what do you think of this as a work of art?   Any thoughts?   

    ALSO, as it pertains to music, Tilda Swinton was in David Bowie's latest video, "The Stars are out Tonight" from his new album, The Next Day.    She also recently gave a speech at the opening of the exhibition "David Bowie Is" at  London's Victoria and Albert Museum, and apparently did a fine job.  She's a HUGE fan of Bowie; she dressed up like Bowie for the event, including waxing back her hair.  

     

    http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/music-arts/tilda-swinton-surprises-moma-visitors-sleeping-installation-article-1.1297328

     

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from MattyScornD. Show MattyScornD's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    Heh.

    Way to open a glass box of statuesque blond worms, yoga...!  ;)

    I can go a couple of different ways on this.  Tilda Swinton is, for lack of a better word, a movie star.  Movies are innately voyeuristic.  In the art world, there's nothing really unusual about "living art" (or "living sculptures" in some parlance).  

    To make a celebrity actress the object of the piece is almost banal, but maybe that's part of the point.  If it was someone less well-known or even anonymous, then it would take on a different meaning.

    So, based on that, it just feels a little rote...like I've seen it before or that it's been done in better, more interesting ways.

    I'll also add that it's one thing to see a photo or conceptualize what's going on, and it's another to actually be there, at MOMA, in the presence of the piece viewing it as intended.

     

    BTW, asking the question of "Is it art?" is pretty much irrelevant to the piece.  It's definitely art.  The real question is how successful a piece of art.

     

     

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    P.S.  A line from Oliver Stone's delightfully messy "The Doors" just occurred to me.

    The scene at USC Film School (with Stone as the prof) where Jim Morrison has shown his student film, and a hippie nearby saying, "You need your art spoon-fed to you, man...!"

    That's what some of these discussions are about...that there is sometimes meaning in what's left out or what seems obscure by comparison.  Not everything needs to be presented in four-color graphs with captions and sidebars.  Sometimes a piece of art is "Untitled" just because it has no title.

     

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    Ha ha.   Yes, Tilda Swinton is a well-known movie-star.    And that is certainly, at least in part, what the attraction is and will be to both museum-goers and the media.

    Can you imagine if it were Mila Kunis??   Jesseyeric would be there every day.   :P

    Not much critical review of it, because there really is nothing to critique.  Nor criticize.   

    It just IS.   I find it very relaxing and refreshing.   

    It's oddly voyeuristic.  

    I did read that as she moved in the case, the viewers want to be on the side to see her face -- and that seeing her from the back was not as desirable.   As though The Maybe is meant to be seen from the front -- like it even *has* a front.    Curious.  I imagine looking at it a little nervously -- hoping that Swinton is okay, and not getting a leg cramp or something.  :)

    All I can think of is that music's equivalent to this is some variety of experimental music  -- you're not sure what to make of it, but as you say, you know it's music.   Liking it is not the point.    

     

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    It is kind of sad that people would find watching a stranger sleeping interesting.

    Surely people have at least one aquaintance or friend you could observe sleeping, if this is your thing lol

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to MattyScornD's comment:

    To make a celebrity actress the object of the piece is almost banal, but maybe that's part of the point.  If it was someone less well-known or even anonymous, then it would take on a different meaning.

    I fully agree with this, and see it as part of the point of the piece.   Why not put a different person in the case each time it appears?    Why always the same person?     

    It's as though Swinton "owns" it.   Apparently, she "performed" the piece 15 years ago, so it's being brought back similar to a revival (like a Broadway play).   

    Can you imagine the stampede if David Bowie were to appear in the case at some point? 

     

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    I bet The Pine Street Inn and other homeless shelters would be glad to accept a donation if you want to make arrangements to watch someone sleep!

     

    Eta:  Art,  okay, I guess I just don't get it.  I'll take a walk through the MFA and see if that might help me understand.

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to Robin39's comment:

    I bet The Pine Street Inn and other homeless shelters would be glad to take a donation if you want to make arrangements to watch someone sleep!



    That would be an excellent counterpoint to "The Maybe".

    We can call it "The IS".

     

    (P.S.  I love Corgis!!  :))   )

     

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    We're not watching someone sleep.   We're looking at art.   There's a diff.  :)

    Watching a sleeping baby, a dog, a cat, kitten ... etc., is a beautiful sight.   Intriguing, in fact.  I didn't get up from a chair for several hours when one of my kitties was a kitten, as I didn't want to disturb him, and could not stop staring at how cute he was.   

    This is about art, not celebrities.   Can't help it if this is what the MOMA installs as art; take it up with the curator.  :)     The installation is a "pop up" moment,  there one minute, gone the next.    You're there or you're not.    That's part of the fun of it (and in life in general)  -- the unexpected.  

    Why is it "sad" that people would find watching someone sleeping interesting?   Who said they find it "interesting" anyhow?  Who said it's anyone's thing?   There's no telling what they think.  Those that were there for those brief moments are the only ones who can react.  They're in a world class modern art museum.   They enter a gallery and see a human being in a glass case.   They did not expect to see it.   They did not go to see it, either.   They're passing through a gallery, for a few minutes.   Done and done.    It is what it is.  If you find that sad, then perhaps you're over-thinking the art far more than it's worth, and in doing so, missing the point.   

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from jesseyeric. Show jesseyeric's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    Saw it - it blows.

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to jesseyeric's comment:

    Saw it - it blows.



    Get out.   :)   That's so funny.    Were you at MOMA that day ...  or did you get word and then go over to see it specifically?

    What if it had been someone else ... like Mila Kunis?   (did you see what I wrote above?)     

    Anyhow, you saw "it" --  NICE going, m'love.  :)

    If you want to see a bunch of babes in yoga clothes all lying down at once (Savasana pose or corpse pose for the uninitiated  haha)  at the end of a yoga session  -- I'll notify you of the next Yoga Conference in NYC --  that might be more your style.   :)

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    When David Blaine was in a glass box,they called it "magic".So I guess having Tilda Swinton sleeping in one can qualify as "art". 

    It's just a form of art that doesn't do anything for me.

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to yogafriend's comment:

    In response to jesseyeric's comment:

     

    Saw it - it blows.

     



    Get out.   :)   That's so funny.    Were you at MOMA that day ...  or did you get word and then go over to see it specifically?

     

    What if it had been someone else ... like Mila Kunis?   (did you see what I wrote above?)     

    Anyhow, you saw "it" --  NICE going, m'love.  :)

    If you want to see a bunch of babes in yoga clothes all lying down at once (Savasana pose or corpse pose for the uninitiated  haha)  at the end of a yoga session  -- I'll notify you of the next Yoga Conference in NYC --  that might be more your style.   :)



    Speaking of seeing women in Yoga  clothes:

     

    http://www.boston.com/business/2013/03/20/see-through-yoga-pants-pain-for-lululemon/vpNGS7g6JgoNAuSFvyRbBL/story.html

    Lululemon has yanked its popular black yoga pants from store shelves and online after it found that the sheer material used was revealing too much of its loyal customers.

    The see-through yoga garb is the latest in a series of quality glitches that threatens to alienate the retailer’s hardcore fan base, which has so far been more than willing to shell out $100 for pants and other athletic garments. These legions of followers have helped Lululemon, founded in 1998, become a billion-dollar business.

    Eva Glettner, 33, of Los Angeles is a case in point. Glettner, who has been a devoted fan of Lululemon, said she'll now shop only at Target to buy her yoga outfits.

    ‘‘You expect a certain quality, and they definitely let me down,’’ Glettner said. ‘‘For that price point, it’s unacceptable.’’

    Glettner says Target has similar pants for $30. ‘‘It’s hard enough making a commitment to working out without worrying about whether you are baring your behind.’’

    Lululemon Athletica Inc. said on its website that it first began to understand the extent of the problem on March 11 as part of its weekly call with store managers, who voiced worries about sheerness. Lululemon declined to respond to Associated Press queries about whether the problem was discovered when customers started to return the Luon pants, the latest batch of which went on sale at the beginning of the month.

    But Faye Landes, an analyst at Cowen & Co., believes customers reported the problem to store managers, who in turn reported back to management.

    ‘‘If this is indeed the case, we suspect a serious lapse in (the company's) supply chain, quality control and vendor management and specifically in its quality assurance program,’’ she said.

    Investors usually like transparency. But not in this case. Lululemon’s stock price slid $3.90, or 6 percent, to $62, before recovering and closing Tuesday at $64.08, lobbing more than $250 million off of its market value in one day. The stock is down 16 percent so far this year, while the broader markets have been hitting multiyear highs.

    Lululemon insists that the problem didn’t occur because it changed specifications for the clothing or switched suppliers. It warned that the recall could lead to short supplies and will hurt its first-quarter revenue. The Luon pants, made from a combination of nylon and Lycra fibers, are one of the retailer’s product staples and account for about 17 percent of all women’s pants in its stores. The company is offering customers’ full refunds or exchanges.

    The debacle marks the fourth quality problem in the last year for Lululemon, according to Credit Suisse analyst Christian Buss — and not the first see-through issue.

    First, the Vancouver-based company had sheerness problems with certain swimsuits for spring 2012. And some light-colored pants currently on sale carry this disclaimer: ‘‘You may experience sheerness with some of our bright-colored bottoms because of the lightweight nature of the fabric. We recommend you do a couple of Down Dogs in your brightly colored bottoms to ensure you’re happy with the fit and coverage.’’ ‘'Down Dogs’’ refers to a yoga position. The company also has had problems with bright dyes bleeding.

     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from MattyScornD. Show MattyScornD's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to jesseyeric's comment:

    Saw it - it blows.



    Heh.  Everyone's a critic.

    :))

     

     

     

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to mrmojo1120's comment:

    Speaking of seeing women in Yoga  clothes:

     



    Heh.  Yes, I saw this (quite a few times) last week.  The "bottom line" and all that.   Ha.   

    I don't wear this brand, never liked it, aside from the price.   It's really just work-out clothing, you see women wearing it all over the gym (and that's another reason I wouldn't buy it, I shy away from clothing with "branding" on it (within reason ... it's hard to find fitness clothes without branding), and all LuLuLemon clothing includes their branding.     I buy my yoga / work-out clothing onlin, it's organic cotton and half the price, heaps nicer and I've never seen anyone else wearing it.   Made in USA, too.  :)

    Namaste.  

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to WhatDoYouWantNow's comment:

    Well, I certainly don't see it as "art" - if that's art, anything is art. But again, I recall the last time we had this discussion and I concluded that there are a few words that have virtually no objective meaning, art being one of them.

    (The gist being that there isn't any universal meaning, just the meaning people intend when they use the term. A word like "chair" has a high-degree of objective meaning in that definition because we all tend to refer to the same general thing when we say "chair." But what people term "art" varies so wildly that it has little in the way of definition.

    Take this: http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/art/news/blank-canvas-london-gallery-unveils-invisible-art-exhibition-7767057.html


    "Invisible: Art about the Unseen 1957-2012 opens on 12 June and includes an empty plinth, a canvas of invisible ink and an invisible labyrinth."

    A canvas of invisible ink. A blank flipping canvas. Well if enough people call that "art", the term can't have any real common meaning).

     

     

    Is it art simply because someone put it together? Because someone might look at it and have a thought? Then a Big Mac is "art." Because someone put together some frozen garbage and I looked at it and thought "disgusting." Certainly, being in a museum can't be a requirement of art.

    If I were to come across this exhibit in a museum I would look at it and think "Is it a person or a very good painted sculpture of one? Oh, just a person? Why?" Then I would walk away, annoyed.

    Just as foolish and non-art as a rope hanging from the ceiling. No real effort by the artist to portray anything.



    Just because it may be "art"...that doesn't make it "good art" necessarily.  A bad painting is still art in a way...only mainly because people "objectively mean" a painting to be an art object.

    A performance is art even if not intended to be, because the proper elements are all there: setting, performer, audience, and piece.  All art has those basic elements in one form or another - even if the piece is well-done, the performer/artist is unskilled, and the audience is minimal (or indifferent).

    That you don't see it as a successful artwork is what's really implied by saying, "that's not art."  The reasons will vary depending on your personal standards for what works and what doesn't.

    The difference between a live model, a photo of a live model, or a video of a live model is merely in the medium. 

    In terms of the notion of "sandwich art", a big mac is a rather poor example, to me.  Maybe a prosciutto-apple-and-brie is a better example (or just a frufru one).  ;))  [Effectively, a sandwich is more of a design object, but that's another convo...]

     

     

     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from mrmojo1120. Show mrmojo1120's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    Here's some examples of sandwich art,although they're not made by the "sandwich artists" at Subway:

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to mrmojo1120's comment:



    Speaking of seeing women in Yoga  clothes:



    There's a website called 'Girls in Yoga Pants', of course.

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    Two words................Robert Mapelthorpe

     
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    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to WhatDoYouWantNow's comment:

    And yet, the only reason two of those four elements you seem to imply are necessary exist for the sole reason that an institution calling itself an "art museum" put the thing there.

    Does something become art merely by virtue of at least one person, or an institution, saying so?

    As with the completely blank canvas, I have to say that calling it "art, but bad art" renders the term "art" effectively meaningless - so broad that nothing could fail to be "art" so long as someone looked at it.



    Oh boy, here we go. :-)

    The fact that something is on display, and that people come to look at it, doesn't mean there's art, does it?  It could be a shipwreck, or a dinosaur fossil display at the science museum.  People find these things interesting to look at.  But neither the audience or the presenter thinks it's art.  There is no artifice.

    I believe that one of the parties involved, the audience or the presenter, has to believe that art exists for it to be possible to exist.  In a case like the sleeping actress, I would have to be convinced by the presenter that they believe they are presenting art.  I would like to know why they think it's art.  If I believe they are genuine in their reasons for thinking it's art, then I will accept that it's bad art and not non-art.  Because in a case like this, you could say that you're presenting art without believing it. 

     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from Hfxsoxnut. Show Hfxsoxnut's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    When John and Yoko had their bed-in in Montreal, was that art?  I don't think so, because it wasn't their intention.  It was supposed to be a peace demonstration.  But on another occasion, John and Yoko could quite conceivably have laid in bed in a museum not saying anything, and called it art. 

    Isn't intention pretty crucial to what's art?  You could have the same object, someone lying in a bed.  In one case it's intended to be art.  In the other case it's intended to be a mockery of this kind of thing being art.  In both cases it looks exactly the same.

     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from MattyScornD. Show MattyScornD's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to WhatDoYouWantNow's comment:

    In response to MattyScornD's comment:

    A performance is art even if not intended to be, because the proper elements are all there: setting, performer, audience, and piece.



    And yet, the only reason two of those four elements you seem to imply are necessary exist for the sole reason that an institution calling itself an "art museum" put the thing there.

     

    Does something become art merely by virtue of at least one person, or an institution, saying so?

    As with the completely blank canvas, I have to say that calling it "art, but bad art" renders the term "art" effectively meaningless - so broad that nothing could fail to be "art" so long as someone looked at it.



    Except that the canvas isn't blank; the medium is invisible ink.  It's a painting...just a tongue-in-cheek one.

    Again, you may see the term as "meaningless", when in fact the definition is so broad as to describe any or all of human experience as rendered by a particular medium in particular way by a particular artist.

    Point being is that the "beauty is in the eye of the beholder", so even if everyone thinks it's ugly, it's still art.  Just ugly art.  "Dogs playing poker" is art; to me, it's just silly art; to others it's the pinnacle of western artistic expression; there is a case to be made for either viewpoint.

    But ultimately you're right: you have your own preconceived idea of what constitutes art, and you make your judgements thusly.  That's fine.  The only problem I see with that is the notion that you might not be open to revising your standard in light of an example you've never seen before.

     

     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from MattyScornD. Show MattyScornD's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to mrmojo1120's comment:

    Here's some examples of sandwich art,although they're not made by the "sandwich artists" at Subway:



    Great!!

    I think of some of the brilliant, stunning cakes being made, and it occurs to me that we might be in a golden age of food-as-art/design. 

    I find art/design that's meant to be consumed/destroyed very comforting...like the edible rice wrappers on some japanese candies.

     

     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from yogafriend. Show yogafriend's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    Certainly, cake decorating is a culinary art, and a very seriously studied one.  I took a few professional pastry classes at one time (not recreational, professional) and I can tell you, it is very hard work, and everything has to be perfect if it's going to be sold for full price.   

    Isn't this sandwich actually based on a work of art by ....?    Name escapes me.  Or does it look like Rubik's cube?   Or .... ??

     
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from MattyScornD. Show MattyScornD's posts

    Re: The Maybe (a napping actress on a mattress)

    In response to yogafriend's comment:

    Certainly, cake decorating is a culinary art, and a very seriously studied one.  I took a few professional pastry classes at one time (not recreational, professional) and I can tell you, it is very hard work, and everything has to be perfect if it's going to be sold for full price.   

    Isn't this sandwich actually based on a work of art by ....?    Name escapes me.  Or does it look like Rubik's cube?   Or .... ??



    You may be thinking of Piet Mondrian.

    Ostensibly part of the de stijl movement.  

    Perfect example of a painter whom it's very difficult to regard without seeing the work(s) in person.

     

    (Fun fact: De Stijl is also the name of a White Stripes LP.)

     
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