Acting Up and Boiling Over
Reminder! Visual Analysis paper due on Monday, March 30
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Adderall misuse survey
"The self-proclaimed, self-anointed art experts would scoff and say, ‘Oooh, terrible,’ but I like beautiful things, not modern art. I can’t even figure out that sculpture in the Hart Building." - Senator Jesse Helms
Alexander Calder, Mountains and Clouds, 1986.









Lady Pink in Jenny Holzer t-shirt

Jenny Holzer, Abuse of power comes as no surprise, collaboration with Lady Pink, c. 1980.











"How do you tell a communist? Well, it's someone who reads Marx and Lenin. And how do you tell an anti-Communist? It's someone who understands Marx and Lenin."
"Government's first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives."
- President Ronald Reagan











Historic Context
1979 Jean-Francois Lyotard's The Postmodern Condition
the 80s
John Lennon is murdered
1981 - 1989 "Reagan era"
1981 AIDS first recognized as a disease, given the name "Gay Related Immune Deficiency"
MTV founded
Assassination attempts made on Reagan and the Pope
1983 Compact discs first marketed, quickly replacing records and cassette tapes
1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident
GRID renamed HIV/ AIDS
1987 "Black Monday" stock market crashes and loses 22% of its worth
1989 Student protestors massacred in China's Tieananmen Square
Berlin Wall torn down
1990 Germany reunited
  Nelson Mandela released from prison
1991 USSR desolved and Boris Yeltsin becomes Russian President
1994 Advent of the World Wide Web
  Official end of white rule in South Africa
1997 Tony Blair becomes Prime Minister of Britain, ending 18 years of Conservative rule
"Dollie" the sheep cloned in UK











Vietnam Veterans Memorial
Maya Lin, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, 1980 - 1982.











"Walking through this park-like area, the memorial appears as a rift in the earth—a long, polished black stone wall, emerging from and receding into the earth. Approaching the memorial, the ground slopes gently downward, and the low walls emerging on either side, growing out of the earth, extend and converge at a point below and ahead. Walking into the grassy site contained by the walls of this memorial, we can barely make out the carved names upon the memorial's walls. These names, seemingly infinite in number, convey the sense of overwhelming numbers, while unifying these individuals into a whole." - Maya Lin's proposal for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial
Controversy over the Vietnam Veterans Memorial
and the 9/11 Memorial











The Three Soldiers

Frederick Hart, The Three Servicemen, 1984.
Glenna Goodacre, Vietnam Women's Memorial, 1993.











Richard Serra's Tilted Arc was commissioned [for $175,000] by the Arts-in-Architecture program of the U.S. General Services Administration, which earmarks 0.5 percent of a federal building's cost for artwork. Tilted Arc is a curving wall of raw steel, 120 feet long and 12 feet high, that carves the space of the Federal Plaza in half. Those working in surrounding buildings must circumvent its enormous bulk as they go through the plaza. According to Serra, this is the point.

"The viewer becomes aware of himself and of his movement through the plaza. As he moves, the sculpture changes. Contraction and expansion of the sculpture result from the viewer's movement. Step by step the perception not only of the sculpture but of the entire environment changes."
Tilted Arc
Richard Serra, Tilted Arc, 1981 - 1989.











Javitt's Call
Richard Serra, Tilted Arc, 1981 - 1989.
Richard Serra On Trial for Tilted Arc











During the public hearing held in March 1985, 122 people testified in favor of retaining the sculpture, and 58 testified in favor of removing it. Those wanting the removal of the work accuse it of attracting graffiti, rats, and terrorists who might use it as a blasting wall for bombs. The jury of five, chaired by William Diamond, vote 4 - 1 in favor of removing the sculpture.

Serra's appeal of the ruling failed. On March 15, 1989, during the night, federal workers cut Tilted Arc into three pieces, removed it from Federal Plaza, and scrapping the metal.

Javitz Plaza

Jacob Javits Federal Building Plaza today










Cala Lily

Robert Mapplethorpe, Calla Lily, 1984.
Robert Mapplethorpe, Poppy, 1988.











Female Nude

Male Nude

Robert Mapplethorpe, Untitled (female nude), 1981.
Robert Mapplethorpe, Untitled (male nude), 1981.











Robert Mapplethorpe, Ken and Tyler, 1985.
Robert Mapplethorpe, Derrick Cross, 1983.











Robert Mapplethorpe, Two Men Dancing, 1984.
Robert Mapplethorpe, Brian Ridley and Lyle Heeter, 1979.