Elephant Dung and More!

(Rudy Rucker is a guestblogger. His latest novel, Hylozoic, describes a postsingular world in which everything is alive.)

There's an artwork by Chris Ofili in the San Franciso MOMA art museum just now. It includes a sequin-decorated ball of elephant dung, and stands on two more balls that rest on the floor. It's a pretty nice work.


A Frank Stella illuminates the marble stairs.


I thought I'd heard of all the Abstract Expressionist painters by now, but here's another one: Al Held. I really like the colors in this work.



  1. As an abstract expressionist painting myself, I am really glad for your post, Mintphresh.

    Love the way the Frank Stella piece is photographed!!

  2. At my wedding, I’m going to have a ball. It will be a cave wedding in the Appalachian Florists.

  3. I was just at SFMOMA today. Maybe it’s my lingering disdain for the Cult of Abstraction, but I greatly preferred the powerful (and also sometimes playful) work by William Kentridge. His “Black Box” piece, which combines projected black-and-white animation with haunting mechanical automata, seems like it would resonate with some Boingers.

    And the exhibit dedicated to Robert Frank’s legendary photo book “The Americans,” while hardly groundbreaking in this day and age, is certainly also noteworthy.

    No love for the non-garishly-colorful, Mr. Rucker?

  4. I saw Chris Ofili’s work at the Venice Biennale in 2003. It was in the UK Pavilion with the lights down low and the heat turned way up. Very atmospheric. I think it was about the time that (then) New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani threw a tantrum because Ofili had a Madonna painted in elephant dung that was being shown in Brooklyn.

  5. Yea BJacques I remember that happening a few years back, at the “Sensation” show at the BMA… didn’t they eventually have to display it under glass because someone tried to deface it by throwing white paint on it?

  6. I am amazed at the “snark-a-tude” Dr. Rucker’s guest posts have evoked in many of the commenters here. People, when your snark is showing, that’s a little like your brains dripping out your ears.

  7. Is it snarky to point out that the 2 artists featured as abstract expressionists are associated with the color field movement, rather than abstract expressionism? They are not synonymous and if i remember correctly, have very different mentalities.

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