In 1997, South Korean artist Lee Bul's "Majestic Splendor," an installation of bedazzled rotting fish, was removed from New York's MoMA because the stink was too much for visitors. To prevent the odor problem from interfering with Bul's new retrospective at London's Hayward Gallery, he put the fish in potassium permanganate. Of course, potassium permanganate is frequently used as a firestarter and can easily lead to a blaze when combined with tiny amounts of other common chemicals. From Frieze:
On receiving advice, the gallery decided to withdraw the artwork, but it spontaneously combusted mid-removal.
‘Following expert advice regarding the materials used in Lee Bul’s Majestic Splendor we took the decision, along with the artist, to remove the artwork from the exhibition. During the de-installation, a small fire broke out and the fire service attended,’ a spokesperson for the Hayward told frieze.
Royalty Now paints over classical portraits and statues to depict famous leaders as they might appear in the modernized flesh. Above, Julius Caesar. Below, Caligula.
Artist Refik Anadol, who has appeared on Boing Boing before, designs dreamy installations using artificial intelligence. Some of them he calls ‘data paintings.’
Researchers have determined that the above self-portrait of Vincent van Gogh, long thought to have been a fake, was indeed painted by the artist in 1889 while he was suffering from psychosis in a French mental institution.
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