Extra Credit – Reading Reflection – Tony McKendry

I had just finished reading Anna Dezeuze’s article “The 1960’s” again and was pretty blown away by the artistic interpretation of a decade that I’ve studied in a more historical aspect during my education. Dezueze breaks down the 10 years between 1960 and 1970, not chronologically, but by the different facets of the art world during that time.

She begins by addressing the radical shift in art that began taking place during the 1960’s. Art was becoming less about the final product of art, and more about the process. Hybrid forms of art were taking over as combinations of text, photographs, manmade and natural materials as well as found and readymade objects were coming onto the scene. These new forms of art took names like “happenings” and “kinetic art”, which lent to their animated nature. These “happenings” typically were one-time performance pieces that would sometimes “happen” randomly in the street, or be performed on a stage in front of an audience.

Dezeuze breaks the article down into sections, the first section touches on three areas of art that became important: objects, production and bodies. Objects stemmed from the new sciences of the day; the space race was in full swing, and nuclear and quantum physics were being heavily researched all over the world. The quantum idea that all matter is composed of “living” molecules that were always moving interested artists and led to the creation of movement art. Movement art incorporated mechanical features in order create simulated movement in pieces, like lights and motors. Some movement artists took the ideas of space and time and included them in their works. Allan Kaprow, for example, created “environments” in gallery spaces, where he would set up the space to look like an ordinary room, down to details like the objects in the cabinets that could be taken out and inspected by visitors. Post-world war two america was flooded with a never-seen-before amount of consumer goods; some artists saw these goods as found and ready made objects that were exhibited as art to draw attention to the rampant consumerism that was dominating American society.

The production aspect took the ideas of the object artists one step further; where object artists saw consumer goods as art to draw attention to consumerism, productionist saw the object artists’ pieces as more consumer goods, elevated to a higher status as artistic artifacts. Piero Manzoni canned his own feces and labeled it like a consumer good to highlight the status that is given to artists and their creations. With manufacturing becoming so prominent in American society, artists like Andy Wharhol completely removed the artist’s touch from their pieces by mass producing them using machines and delegating tasks to assistants. Minimalism also stemmed from this school of thought and focused on bringing art back to its purest form through production; instead of creating the pieces, a group of artists called Fluxus wrote out “scores” to artistic performance pieces and mass produced them like sheet music to be mail ordered to whoever might want them.

Conceptual art took the productionist reduction of Objects and art even a step further. Instead of creating art that touched on different concepts, they created concepts of art, and proposals of pieces instead of creating the physical work. Lawrence Weiner created pieces that were merely directions that anyone could follow to create a piece of art, for example, one said “one quart exterior green enamel thrown on brick wall”. The idea that art was purely based on visual attractiveness, and was a unique piece was broken down by these Conceptual artists. This mimicked the roles that managerial positions play in the service industry; a boss type sits back and delegates all of the manual labor to other individuals.

The last type of art that Dezeuze focused on incorporated the human body as its canvas, brush or sculpture. The 1960’s was the time of the sexual revolution, birth control and pornography were invented and age old ideals about premarital sex and women’s rights were being torn down. Public art performances were associated with groups of artists trying to send a message and paved the way for protest activity. Political claims by the artists were not usually apparent, but were found in the connotations of the content.

This article was very eye opening to me, and showed me a side of the 60’s, a time when free speech and self-expression became mainstream, that I had never seen before. I had even heard of, or had to research some of the artists or pieces that Dezeuze talked about, but now I can see them with a whole new context. Many of these movements are highly famous, mainly for their absurd nature that most people who are not educated in art only know because they are associated with the weird, and sometimes “stupid” art that people know, and pop culture loves to make fun of. If only the general public could actually know the meaning behind some of these works, they might understand the enormous impact that they’ve had on nearly every facet of modern day life in America

Lesley Flanigan (Tony McKendry)

Tony McKendry

Lesley Flanigan

Lesley Flanigan resides in a nitch of the art world that I have become very interested in over the last few years in my artistic eduction, sound art. As a DJ, Music Producer, and Sound Artist myself, I am always searching for new and groundbreaking ways to use sound in a creative way that has never been seen, or more appropriately, heard before. I was very excited to attend Flanigan’s lecture for this reason, as Flanigan’s work with sound is absolutely revolutionary and very inspiring to me. To the common mind, sound art is often associated with the most popular version of artistic sound expression, Music; Flanigan constantly breaks the boundaries of these associations, ascending to a higher plane of sound, and creating “music” the likes of which has never been heard. Continue reading

Janine Antoni (Tony McKendry)

Tony McKendry

Janine Antoni

Despite the awesome opportunity that the University of Colorado’s visiting artist program affords us, most of the time the Artists that visit are lesser known and appreciated than some of the more “famous artists”; when I saw that Janine Antoni was on the roster this semester I got excited both because I am a fan of Antoni’s work, but also because I have been taught about her in almost every art class I’ve taken since my education at CU began. It was a pretty inspiring experience to personally hear her stories and motives behind her groundbreaking work, and see the artist in person that I’d seen so many times in textbooks and class films.

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Tony McKendry – Exhibition Paper

Chao(SiO)2trope was a contemporary production done by the New Directions in Digital Art Program at CU; it was held in the Black Box Theater in the Atlas Building on the University of Colorado at Boulder campus on Thursday, March 1st, 2012. This production was broken into two halves; the first half featured installations by artists and groups of artists, with most all of the works incorporating a digital aspect of some sort. Pieces ranged from holograms, to abstract video remixes to an ensemble of “instruments” made of glass. The New Directions group has managed to highlight some new and exciting art forms that are emerging, and even put some new spins on old forms. This was definitely a conversation-starting exhibition; whether Continue reading

Tony McKendry – Clyfford Still Paper

Tony McKendry


January 30th, 2012


Clyfford Still

Abstract Expressionism is a prolific movement in both the history of Art and of the United States of America. Never before had an American art movement attracted the attention of the entire world, and at the forefront of this revolution stood Clyfford Still. Never before had emotion and ideas been conveyed through such a abstract and surreal medium; Still, along with other Abstract Expressionists like Jackson Pollock realized their visions through shapes, colors and other artistic elements, shying away from the traditional methods and interpretations of the art community during that time. Still’s work is very interesting, especially when viewed as one complete collection, due to the fact that the evolution of his style can be seen very clearly.

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Tony McKendry Intellectual Profile

1. Give some basic information about your studies and fields of interest.
-I am a studio art major, my focuses are mainly photography and digital art; i enjoy graphic design, and electronic music production Continue reading

Terry Smith – Tony McKendry

Terry Smith’s purpose for writing is to find the true meaning of “contemporary art”; at first he defines it as “the institutionalized network through which the art of today presents itself to itself and to its interested audiences around the world”. I find this definition to be interesting, as Smith states that the art only presents itself to (what I assume to be) the contemporary art culture and those who are interested in it, while others are not so enlightened. Contemporary art truly started in the 90’s, but some would argue that it started in the 80’s, or that many pieces of art from various periods of time could be considered contemporary, this is why nailing down a definition is so difficult. The contemporary period followed the postmodern period, which followed the modern period before that.

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