Ceci n'est pas une conserve de soupe Campbell's. Duchamp, Magritte, Warhol nous ont appris que la représentation d'un objet n'est pas l'objet lui-même. Quand un artiste s'approprie un artefact de la culture populaire, un produit manufacturé, une marque, ou bien la travail d'un autre artiste, il s'agit de détournement, d'interprétation, de transcendence.La représentation d'un objet est un travail de ré-interprétation qui attribut au représenté une nouvelle signification, de nouvelles propriétés qui sont peut-être en opposition avec l'inspiration original d'où il provient.
But Harry, even when an artist borrows from another artist's work or an image from pop-culture, it is the artist who provides the contextual meaning to the image being used. So I'm not sure why you call that as 'misuse'. Unless it is used as a spoof of the original meaning or to denote the original meaning itself, I can't see why that kind of 're-use' (like Histoire(s) du Cinema) is inferior...
Détournement is not "misuse", not in a negative way when we talk about art anyway.Duchamp's urinal, Warhol's can, Magritte's pipe are art. They are superior to their object of reference, because art transcend their usual function in culture and elevate them to a statute of artistic concept. So in the end, there is little affinity between the object and its representation. Because of conceptualisation, because of mise en scène, because of an artist's gesture.What was popular culture is no longer.Histoire(s) du cinéma doesn't operate the same transcendence than my examples above. JLG explicit and commentates history. Even if he sometimes tortures and alter his samples from cinema history, he doesn't dissociate the objects from its original meaning, like the others do. His commentary of history is still at the same level as the referential objects used. In his fiction films, he does more détournements by citing brandnames, ad logos, books or even cameos, which are displaced in a new context, therefore given a new meaning.Duchamp doesn't want to tell us about urinals; he puts an end to figurative arts and opens the field of conceptual arts. Magritte doesn't want to tell us about pipes; he deconstructs the dichotomy image/word and kills the illusion of perspective representation with colour paint. Warhol doesn't want to tell us about soups; he gives an artistic discourse on an era of industrial consumption.
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