Art of the Year - 1961

Monday, January 22, 2018
Art of the Year - 1961

The 1960’s was one of the most important decades in 20th-century art. Styles and movements that arose during this time include Pop Art, Op Art, Minimalism, Conceptual Art, Performance Art and Arte Povera among countless other styles and movements.

The 1960’s was one of the most important decades in 20th-century art. Styles and movements that arose during this time include Pop Art, Op Art, Minimalism, Conceptual Art, Performance Art and Arte Povera among countless other styles and movements.

Merda d'Artista, Piero Manzoni, Tins of artist’s feces, 1961.

Merda d'artista (English: Artist’s shit) is a 1961 artwork by the Italian artist Piero Manzoni. The work consists of 90 tin cans, each filled with 30 grams (1.1 oz) of feces, with a label in Italian, English, French, and German stating: Artist's Shit Contents 30 gr net Freshly preserved Produced and tinned in May 1961. At the time the piece was created, Manzoni was exploring the relationship between art production and human production in his art. Manzoni's father, who owned a cannery, is said to have once told his son: "Your [art] work is shit." Merda d'artista has been related to Karl Marx's idea of commodity fetishism and Marcel Duchamp's ready-made works.

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Museo Jumex (a private art collection based in Mexico City, Mexico) / David Chipperfield. Image © Simon Menges

Museo Jumex (a private art collection based in Mexico City, Mexico) / David Chipperfield. Image © Simon Menges

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