Thursday, 24 February 2011

Bite 67: Jasper Johns - Three Flags, 1958

Three Flags, 1958, encaustic on canvas, 78 x 116 x 13 cm
One flags sits in front of another which sits in front of another; the Stars-and-Stripes in reverse perspective, flat and painterly while simultaneously sculptural (sitting out from the wall) and 'pure' appropriation. This is not the flag itself but rather the reference of a reference of the flag of the United States of America - a monument to the flag as simulacra.

Where does painting cease to be painting? And when does a symbol, from overuse and misappropiation, become meaningless?

This 'flag' does not symbolise patriotism, freedom or liberty. It is instead an open question; the Stars-and-Stripes becoming conceptual art.