To Dream, to Collect

Follow

It’s clear that the digital world can help artists to feed their vast imagination. There are no more limits for ideas, no limits in creation, and most of all, no limits in the numerous channels that help artists spread their own works. Over the last few months, during a typical scroll on Instagram, I bumped into the works of the German artist Tony Futura and the Bulgarian Dan Cretu. 

As a huge fan of the irreverent Pop Art, I found these works to be hilarious and smart in the way that they drop hints to the popular culture of today. Both of them love to use digital tools in order to transform everything that is constantly surrounding our daily life without us noticing - contemporary idols, commercial symbols, objects, food, etc... And that's the point! What they use is the perfect mix between traditional advertising, a provocative pop languages and, in many cases, that which in the history of art is defined as Appropriation (Art). 

What does Appropriation (Art) mean? What does it have to do with these two artists?

As suggested by the name, this art genre requires the use of pre-existing objects or images with little or no transformation applied to them, according to the purpose. What is really interesting is how much this genre was basilar for all the 20 Century Avant-Garde until today. Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque with the first to try it with the Synthetic Cubism, as we can note in the compositions of Guitar, Newspaper, Glass and Bottle (1913); or during that same time, Marcel Duchamp with the first ready-made in which "industrially produced utilitarian objects...achieve the status of art merely through the process of selection and presentation"; then, a few years later with the Surrealists, as in the case of Méret Oppenheim's objects, up to the first Campbell's Soup by Andy Warhol.

    

Tony Futura. Courtesy Collater.al 

 

Tony Futura. Courtesy Collater.al

 

This list could go on and on: other examples are in the '80s, when this term was commonly used to describe artworks by artists like Sherrie Levine, who addressed the act of appropriating itself as a theme in art; Richard Prince and his re-photographed advertisements such as for Marlboro cigarettes or photo-journalism shots, and more recently Jeff Koons or Damian Hirst. In short, there's nothing new under the sun, but what is new is that, thanks to the digital, these artists may access an infinity universe of images.

If you are a huge fan of Jeff Koons and Damian Hirst' artworks, don't miss our recent articles --> 4 Most Expensive Artworks by Living Artists - 51 Most Popular Contemporary Artists!

So, what makes Tony Futura and Dan Cretu so special? Nothing in terms of the History of Art, but they are geniuses in their assemblages, and in the way they play as a movie director with overlapping images of past, present and future. The true goal for both artists is to be hilarious by using contemporary imaginary. Even better, by fitting all aspects of their works at those typical features of the "Instagram kingdom"... and as well we know, Instagram loves to reward who favours his strategic rules! 

 

Dan Cretu.

 

Dan Cretu on Instagram.

 

Cover images: Tony Futura. Cortesy Collater.al; At The Beach. Photo collage by Dan Cretu.

Stay Tuned on Kooness magazine for more exciting news from the art world.

Share

Newsletter

I read the Privacy Policy and I consent to the processing of my personal data