June 29, 2004

Hallucinogenic carpeting as art.

If I were in NYC, I would love to see the big Grand Central carpet-installation-as-art-installation that is written up in today's Times. The vast expanse of "hallucinogenic blue-rose-patterned carpet" is the work of Italian conceptual artist Rudolf Stingel. But really, this reminds me of the artist who got the bright idea to dye rivers green, when in fact Chicago annually dyes its river green. If you want to see a vast expanse of floral patterned carpet in deliberately crazed hallucinogenic colors, you can go to the Monona Terrace convention center in Madison. (Picture of the carpet pattern.) But I don't mean to knock the NY installation. I think it's cool to take something normal (floral carpet), make it less normal (make the colors a bit strange), and put it where it doesn't belong (Grand Central). I especially like that it will entertain and amuse and cushion the ordinary people that use the terminal and didn't ask to have art imposed on them. It is the opposite of the sort of art that means to "challenge" people and imposes on them in a place they have no choice but to use, like the "Tilted Arc" and the "Tumbling Woman."

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