Artists and IKEA
ARTinvestment.RU   23 февраля 2010

Modern authors expressed on the subject of one of the major phenomena of our time

Most of you are probably at least once in your life holding directory of furniture IKEA. Incidentally, the annual circulation of the publication (175 million copies!) Is one of the highest in the world - it is ahead of even the Bible. Almost every year in the world opening up new stores IKEA; the company's business is not interrupted even the fact that its founder in the early years supported the Nazis. Of course, the art could not stay away from this phenomenon.

In 1996, the curator of last year's Venice Biennale, Daniel Birnbaum (Daniel Birnbaum) has written for Frieze magazine article where he called the IKEA catalog training manual on "inauthentic existence". The latter, in Heidegger, involves the dissolution of man in the everyday, the "average", his desire to be "like everyone else. Catalog store, according to Birnbaum, can give a clear idea about the structure of the standard of existence in the western world. Moreover, he defines the standards of human daily life, fulfilling the function of das Man, that the anonymous and impersonal, that gives him the concept of social norms, that "it should be". Birnbaum notes that Heidegger does not consider "non-genuine" absolute evil - there must be common to all the rules, otherwise people just do not get along together - but he was opposed to passive acceptance attitudes. Curator talks about several projects by contemporary artists who express their critical attitude to the influence that IKEA has on average a representative picture of the world "developed" society.

The American, Andrea Zittel (Andrea Zittel), in its draft "Residential unit" (series ultraminimalistichnyh spaces, where everything is subordinated to the laws of functionalism) wondered what the consequences would be a desire to "cleaned" from the chaos of their everyday lives, but also reflects on the discipline, excellence and freedom of choice (spartan furnishings as a deliberate rejection of the enslaving desire of luxury). Her compatriot Jason Rhodes (Jason Rhoades) appropriated the aesthetic of IKEA, to give it a chaos, to combine the strict forms with bold, often pornographic images, accented thus the two poles of modern consumer culture. Clay Ketter (Clay Ketter), arguing that the main purpose of the artist not to produce new objects, and draw the viewer's attention to the aesthetic value of existing ones, refutes the "faceless" furniture IKEA, creating from her songs that refer to classical minimalism.

In recent years, was also created many works on IKEA. Nathan Baker (Nathan Baker), for example, makes part of the chair "Stephan" psevdomodernistskie sculpture. This use of IKEA products runs counter to its ideology, which focuses on functionalism, and opposes "averaged". Design chair "Stephan" is very simple, but the artist refused to use other materials - limiting himself, he stimulates his imagination.

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Salavon Jason (Jason Salavon) brought the minimalist aesthetic of IKEA to absurdity, turning the pages of its catalog of songs from the rectangular color blocks. For this work he used a computer program, which reduces the image to one color.

course, seeking new opportunities for products from IKEA is not confined to contemporary artists. There are entire blogs devoted to «IKEA-hacking". However, most of the creators of such resources tend to give furniture a new function, while the artists want to deprive her of this function. Many works «IKEA-art" are satirical: Take, for example, by Helmut Smits (Helmut Smits), who in his work explains in detail how to make fire, using eight standard products of the company.

Skenlan Joe (Joe Scanlan) proposes to construct a "ikeevskih" shelves is a real coffin. "The ideal option for those who want the funeral were modest, but stylish" - he sneers. The artist has even done his creation "Scandinavian" name. Previously shelves (along with instructions for assembling the coffin) can be bought for 27,5 dollars on his site.

Jeff Carter (Jeff Carter) from IKEA furniture creates kinetic sculptures, often using electric motors. In his works he speaks of "tourism objects" and the globalization of design. Once he turned the coffee table in the "Ocean", which floats on the waves of a plastic bottle. Bjorn Andreassen (Bjorn Andreassen) also deals with the problem of globalization: its "Atlas of IKEA» is a map of the world, which "covered" the corporation of the country painted in the colors of the Swedish flag.

Once at IKEA placed the call: "Please, we operate". Guy Ben-Ner (Guy Ben-Ner), his wife and two children listen: they came into the store and began to live there .... They not only imitate familiar actions (such as: absorption dinner and washing dishes), but also played out in front of astonished spectators this melodrama: the artist's son was "caught stealing" and received a notation on private property. "Performance", of course, proved short-lived - store employees troublemakers kicked out the door. But Ben-Ner and his family did not calm down and repeated his action in a few "Ikeyah. They managed to stay in the stores, located in New York, Berlin and Tel Aviv.

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