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The Fluxus Blog has examined Fluxus in historical and theoretical terms. I have posited that Fluxus "happens when one feels that life and art must be taken so seriously, that it becomes impossible to take life or art seriously." I have also previously posted several other ideas, theories, and views about Fluxus. But how would "you know it when you see it"? What characteristics of an artwork serve to identify the work as belonging to or related to Fluxus?

Historically many artists working in different media have related their work to Fluxus. However, there are really only two types of work that are nearly always related to Fluxus. They are "Event Scores" and "Fluxkits".

Event Scores:
Event scores are similar to short musical scores or theatrical setting descriptions. Some are designed to be performed, and some are written to be read and imagined without ever actually being performed. Of those that are written to be performed, some may be designed to be performed only once and recorded (through written, photo, or video) documentation, while others are written so that they can be performed repaeatedly. Fluxus associated artists who have made extensive use of event scores in their work include Yoko Ono and George Brecht. The musical compositions of John Cage and the "Happenings" of Allan Kaprow are also closely related to Fluxus event scores.

Fluxkits:
Fluxkits, also sometimes call Fluxboxes are smallish (usually no larger than a shoebox or briefcase) objects that are collections of other objects that hold meaning to the artist and can be interacted with by the audience. Fluxkits have been produced as multiples in editions, and as unique, one-of-a-kind objects. Interactivity can consist of examination of the contents, rearrangement of the objects, or games in which the rules often resemble event scores. Artists who have received attention in the art-oriented mass media for their fluxkits and fluxboxes include George Maciunas (who coined the word "Fluxus"), Ay-O, and George Brecht. The first Fluxkits probably resulted from fresh interpretations of the work of dada artist, Marcel Duchamp, and have continued to influence present day Fluxus and mail artists.

Fluxus as Intermedia:
A third indicator of Fluxus relatedness is the concept of "intermedia". Fluxus artists and historians have sometimes used the terms Fluxus and intermedia almost interchangeably. The important Fluxus artist, Dick Higgins, described Intermedia as a myriad of emerging genres that spilled across the boundaries of traditional media. In the interseces between the arts, mixed-media forms coalesced: Happenings, performance art, kinetic sculpture, and electronic theater (Higgins). Higgins suggests that Fluxus artists explore the territory that lies between art media and life media. The difficulty in using intermedia as a determinant to identifying a particular artists or artwork as Fluxus is that it is not easy to identify what kind of objects exist in "the territory between art media and life media". However, performance art, video art, installation art, mail art, and time-based artworks are closely related to Fluxus even if not identified as such by either the artist or art critics.

It is safe to say that any work that closely resembles an Event Score or a Fluxkit/Fluxbox, is either Fluxus or is closely related to Fluxus. But Fluxus isn't quite that simple. While Event Scores and Fluxkits are Fluxus, so are many other types of artwork. If a work is not an event score or a fluxkit, it can not be automatically implied that the work is not Fluxus. While the historical- theoretical core of Fluxus remains the strongest determinant to linking work to Fluxus, many Fluxus artists would argue that the only determinant of Fluxus "authenticity" is the artists "say-so".

As the result of a Facebook Challenge...

15 "artists" that had some influence upon me:

per Jen Bradford's Rules - Monday, September 13, 2010 at 11:36am]

The Rules:  Don't take too long to think about it.  Fifteen Artists who've influenced you and that will ALWAYS STICK WITH YOU.  List the first fifteen you can recall in to more than fifteen minutes.  Tag fifteen friends, including me, because I'm interested in seeing what artists my friends choose.  (To do this, go to your Notes tab on your profile page, paste rules in a new note, cast your fifteen picks, and tag people in the note.) Quickly, and in no particular order…

 

  1. John Cage
  2. Yoko Ono
  3. Pablo Picasso
  4. Ken Friedman
  5. George Maciunas
  6. Marcel Duchamp
  7. Leonard Cohen
  8. Vincent Van Gogh
  9. Monet
  10. John Lydon (aka Johnny Rotten)
  11. Andy Warhol
  12. Allen Ginsberg
  13. Charles Bukowski
  14. Basho
  15. Jean Baudrillardï

Gamesmanship: New Works by Reed Altemus & Frank Turek

Saturday, 18 September 2010 at 17:00
Front Room Gallery

As active as the Portland art scene is, rare is the appearance of 'new media'. Any Portland artist straying from the Painting-Sculpture- Photography trinity will usually get attention simply for doing something 'different'.

Two Portland artists, Reed Altemus (digital prints) and Frank Turek (boxed assemblages) have been doing something 'different' for more than a decade. These artists have dedicated their artistic talents to their respective marginalized media and in the process they have garnered a local and national following.

Their media may be worlds apart, but Altemus and Turek share some basic philosophies of art's role in contemporary society. These ideas form the foundation for their joint collaboration: a game board. The Fluxus  Board Game came out of Turek's career long desire to design a board game and Altemus participation in Fluxus, an art movement which brings many game concepts into the world of art. This game board will be set up as a playable interactive part of the exhibit.

Featured among Turek's work for this show will be his 4 Sonnets. Each piece is a visual representation of the strict classical poetic form., the Sonnet. The sonnet form is a 14 line poem with a specific  rhyming scheme and rhythmic structure.

Turek's box assemblage enclosures echo this scheme visually, with paired images acting as rhymed couplets and the sections of the box's structure acting as the 14 lines.

Art in a 'self-contained world'

Frank Turek's ubu studio

ubu studio photostream

Reed Altemus Tonerworks

The Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA), 17 U.S.C. § 106A, is a United States law protecting artist rights.

VARA was the first federal copyright legislation to grant protection to moral rights. Under VARA, works of art that meet certain requirements afford their authors additional rights in the works, regardless of any subsequent physical ownership of the work itself, or regardless of who holds the copyright to the work. For instance, a painter may insist on proper attribution of his painting and in some instances may sue the owner of the physical painting for destroying the painting even if the owner of the painting lawfully owned it.

While federal law had not acknowledged moral rights prior to this act, some state legislatures and judicial decisions created limited moral rights protection. The Berne Convention required protection of these rights by signatory states, and it was in response that the U.S. Congress passed the VARA.

VARA exclusively grants authors of works that fall under the protection of the Act the following rights

  • right to claim authorship
  • right to prevent the use of one's name on any work the author did not create
  • right to prevent use of one's name on any work that has been distorted, mutilated, or modified in a way that would be prejudicial to the author's honor or reputation
  • right to prevent distortion, mutilation, or modification that would prejudice the author's honor or reputation

Additionally, authors of works of "recognized stature" may prohibit intentional or grossly negligent destruction of a work. Exceptions to VARA require a waiver from the author in writing. To date, "recognized stature" has managed to elude a precise definition. VARA allows authors to waive their rights, something generally not permitted in France and many European countries whose laws were the originators of the moral rights of artists concept. [1]

In most instances, the rights granted under VARA persist for the life of the author (or the last surviving author, for creators of joint works).
Covered works
VARA provides its protection only to paintings, drawings, prints, sculptures, still photographic images produced for exhibition only, and existing in single copies or in limited editions of 200 or fewer copies, signed and numbered by the artist. The requirements for protection do not implicate aesthetic taste or value.

Full Article on Wikipedia

Link to US Legal Code

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