Ephemeral art: the art of being lost

O'Neill, Mary (2009) Ephemeral art: the art of being lost. In: Emotion, Place and Culture. New formations (67). Ashgate, Aldershot, pp. 149-162. ISBN 9780754672463

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How can we speak of grief and mourning? There are things, events, horrors, place of sorrow and love for which we have no words. Grief, like art, can leave us mute, it can paralyse – there is nothing more to be said, nothing more to be done. And yet, grief can be very eloquent and rather than presenting us with a privileged view, which excludes those who have not shared the experience, can provide a vehicle for understanding. Two art works that act as such a vehicle are Untitled (Portrait of Dad)(1991) by Felix Gonzalez Torres and Strange Fruit (for David)(1992-1997) by Zoe Leonard. These works are ephemeral and embody the experience of mourning. Discussing these works risks losing the central experience, because they demand an engagement that does not sit comfortably with the aesthetic detachment and the wariness of deeply felt personal This chapter, written in two sections, the first in a conventional academic form follow by the same territory explored in narrative form, explores this myth of detachment and relate the experiences of these works to my own local knowledge as an artist and as a mourner.

Keywords:Art, Grief, Digitised
Subjects:W Creative Arts and Design > W900 Others in Creative Arts and Design
Divisions:College of Arts > School of Fine & Performing Arts > School of Fine & Performing Arts (Fine Arts)
ID Code:2454
Deposited On:14 May 2010 12:40

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