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Collections “monument” for V. Tatlin

Collections “monument” for V. Tatlin

Title
“monument” for V. Tatlin
Artist
Dan Flavin
Date
1969
Dimensions
overall 96.0625 × 32.0625 × 4.75 inches
Materials
cool white fluorescent tubes, fixtures
Location
Not on view

Object Details

Type
Sculpture
Accession Number
1981.25
Edition
3/5
Credit Line
Gift of Leo Castelli Gallery, 1981

object label Dan Flavin, “Monument” for V. Tatlin (1969) Walker Art Center, 1998

By employing generic mass-produced light fixtures in his works, Flavin denies his art any transcendental significance while simultaneously denying those same light fixtures their simple utilitarian function by calling them art. His simplified visual vocabulary is related to the work of contemporaries such as Donald Judd, who have been labeled Minimalist artists for their reduction of formal devices and their emphasis on serial and rational rather than gestural forms. Light, rather than form, activates the space.

“Monument” for V. Tatlin is part of a series Flavin dedicated to Vladimir Tatlin (1885-1953), the leading figure in the Russian Constructivist movement who dreamed of a close-knit relationship between art and science, artistry and engineering. Tatlin’s greatest work was his unrealized spiral tower The Monument to the Third International, for which Flavin’s “monuments” are named.

Label text for Dan Flavin, “Monument” for V. Tatlin (1969), from the exhibition 100 Years of Sculpture: From the Pedestal to the Pixel, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, February 22-May 24, 1998.

Copyright 1998 Walker Art Center