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The Gehry Tapestries October 15, 2013

Posted by anagasto in art, history.
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Gehry has been in the news for some time because of the Eisenhower memorial that he designed.

It doesn’t look like “just another Gehry”, because there are no shapes, but there are very large tapestries illustrating Eisenhower’s life:

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And the tapestries are made of fine interlaced metal yarns that represent pictures of Eisenhower’s life.

Some people do not see them as tapestries but as iron curtains — the nickname that Churchill invented for the frontier that the Soviet Union once set up in Europe,  meaning walls and tanks and machine guns.

Of course, names influence a lot.  Somebody also called Gehry’s tapestry a fancy bug screen :-)

The photo was released into public domain by the Eisenhower Memorial Commission , formerly, but now, October 7, 2016 no longer  at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Eisenhower_Memorial_ViewFromIndependenceAvenueLookingSouth.jpg

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The problem is Classicism, the fact that the center of US wealth and many universities and government buildings have been made to look just like the most famous of Greek temples: and why ?

Because in the West all of science, plus mathematics and philosophy owe basic traits to Greek thought facing Biblical vision.

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the parthenon in athens

The Parthenon 2500 years ago was a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena. Later it became a church and then a mosque and also an ammunition dump — altogether a meaningful CV.
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The drawing by Simonfieldhouse is under the CC Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:New_York_Stock_Exchange_Simon_Fieldhouse.jpg

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NYSE-building

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Yet, because this style is old and has been venerated and imitated for generations, it stays present in many people’s hearts and minds. It won’t just go away. It is in fact everywhere. I think I have seen its  echoes even in China. So all artists have to face it.

Some, like architect Leon Krier, attack Gehry’s orientation*** with big words like

— brain dead
— fired by fossil fuel energies
— an atavistic belief in infinite progress
— artistic amnesia
— cataclysmic degradation
— paralyzed tremor and arrested collapse

and this was published as piercingly intelligent.

Most modern art critics write like that. That is the ugly part of the problem.

  Added now, October 7, 2016   Gehry got similar linguistics for his project. It is an attempt “to kill metaphysics by calling it names”, Karl Popper once said, when he ran into that kind of difficulties.
Evidently, many people would prefer to see a guy in his jeep there.
The jeep could be sculpted in Carrara marble or cast in bronze, and with wheels that actually turn. It could be made to honk, too.

Leon Krier’s text is complete at http://www.eisenhowermemorial.net/krier.html

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* Gehry’s art is sometimes classified as modernism or post-modernism, but these labels are not yet figured out.

Try for example to read these two dictionary definitions:

Modernism: “Genre of art and literature that makes a self-conscious break with previous genres”

Post-Modernism: “Genre of art and literature and especially architecture in reaction against principles and practices of   established modernism”.          from  http://wordweb.info/free/ :

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Comments»

1. Carl D'Agostino - June 15, 2012

When art and movie critics trash something, I know it will probably be pretty good.

2. Best Dallas Criminal Lawyer - September 18, 2013

I like the info on your blog! Incredible material about this subject, thanks so much for sharing.


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