“People accuse me of making fun of the art world, of cynically satirizing it,” Allan McCollum (American; b. 1944) once said. The truth is McCollum believes that art should be for everyone. So much so that in 2005 he began “The Shapes Project”, a system that allows him to hand-design 31 billion two-dimensional shapes with no two alike - far more than enough to put original art into the hands of everyone on the planet.
McCollum is perhaps best known for his “Perfect Vehicles” sculptures that all bear the same shape - that of a Chinese ginger jar, a traditional vessel that has been copied and reproduced for centuries. He is interested in the way in which a simple thing (a painting or a photograph or even a fossilized dinosaur bone) makes the journey from object to icon to symbol.
Offered here is Visible Marker (Drawing) #207 - an extension of a project that McCollum started in 1997 with an exhibition at Susan Inglett Editions in which he cast concrete bars (8 x 2 x 2") in various colors. The markers have the word 'thanks' imprinted on their face. Similar to that edition, the pencil drawings, which are 5 x 7 inches, have the word "thanks" drawn in various typefaces. This drawing was originally exhibited at the Xavier Hufkens Gallery in Brussels in 1998.
McCollum’s works are held in over seventy art museum collections worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C.
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