HEAD OVER HEELS, a print edition by Lawrence Weiner, went live on Jen Bekman’s 20×200 art print site this week.
At the time of writing, the release has sold 333 of the 8 x 10 inch prints, 18 of the 20 x 16 prints, 4 of the 30 x 24 and 1 of the $5000 40 x 30 size. I bought one of the 8 x 10 prints, ’cause, you know, it was only $50. The sale statistics are interesting to cite. For such a famous artist, one who recently had a retrospective at the Whitney, Weiner’s prints haven’t sold out yet.
The typeface is classic Weiner, standard for an artist whose major medium is the written word, printed in vinyl and stuck on the wall. The line, “Head Over Heels After Marx & Angels” is evocative and deft and plays on the artist’s own politics, an artist who is described as “kind of a socialist” in the 20×200 newsletter that accompanied the release. There’s a sense of humor there too, the bright red heart and the all-caps semi-ironic sincerity are right on key.
In an earlier post, I wrote that I appreciated large run prints, like this one, that embrace their medium. Weiner’s “Head Over Heels” doesn’t lose power by size or by repetition; it certainly benefits from a kind of omnipresence. I’d love to, as Bekman and Weiner suggest, look up in a bar and see this print hanging over the mirror, its rough and cynical optimism. Jen’s found an artist that perfectly matches her “art for all” idealism. So why does this print still make me a little uneasy?
Maybe because contemporary art can be dangerous; it can quietly change lives. Weiner’s 60s conceptualism packages up so neatly that it’s almost unsettling. The print is a perfect package of everything I like in art, a little pill dosed a grand total of 575 times to 575 takers. Here’s to hoping “Head Over Heels” is an invasion of contemporary art into the most ordinary of every day life.
I like that Bekman is working with very famous artists and I hope it continues. Maybe a posthumous Sol Lewitt, endlessly repeated, or Alber’s Homage to the Square series is next? Pieces like “Head Over Heels,” from canonized artists, are now easily purchasable by anyone with the Internet and a Google account. This, to me, feels revolutionary and the start of something big.
I’m interested in what everyone else thinks though. This is less a strong critical statement and more, hopefully, the start of a debate — what does it mean that a Lawrence Weiner can now be purchased for $50 online?
If there is an object you have ever desired in your life, rest assured that someone in the advertising industry made money convincing you of exactly that.
Eva Hagberg’s new book sheds light on the relationship between critic and publicist Aline Louchheim and architect Eero Saarinen.
The award-winning Canadian artist explores notions of power through the imagery of science fiction in portraits, sculpture, and objects.
Custodians, groundskeepers, and movers at the Rhode Island School of Design are seeking wage improvement, healthcare benefits, and a retirement package.
Ceramic fried eggs, critiques of real estate, and a whole booth dedicated to female-identifying saints caught my eye at Untitled, NADA, and Art Miami.
This affordable, interdisciplinary program with excellent facilities and private studios offers in-person instruction for 2023.
The Manhattan District Attorney’s office recovered 23 looted objects from Shelby White’s home over the last year and a half.
An egregious “anti-woke” billboard erected in Los Angeles attempts to sow division among Latino/a/x communities.
The latest episode of this documentary series on PBS explores the meaning of home through handmade objects, hand built homes, and the artists who create them.
This week, missed signs of previous life on Mars, the appeal of forged art, and why are blue whales singing in lower octaves?
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed forcefully posits multiple parallels between the world Nan Goldin grew up in and the one she fights in today.
Rhode Island School of Design opens registration for its residential summer Pre-College program and year-round online intensive Advanced Program Online.
Your list of must-see, fun, insightful, and very Los Angeles art events this month, including Bob Thompson, Aimee Goguen, Uta Barth, the Transcendental Painting Group, and more.
There is the singular artist and then there is the more exclusive club that has only one member. Harvey belongs to the latter.