Allora Calzadilla Petrified Petrol Pump
What will the world look like thousands of years from now? This is what artists Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla have captured in this post-apocalyptic art of a petrol pump caught in a fossil-filled limestone. This controversial piece which the artists have chosen to represent the US at the 2011 Venice Biennale stirred a global buzz recently. Their ingenious work of art is tainted with the political and social paradigm of this age, no doubt.
Avant-garde? The genius behind this modern sculpture is the curious mix of metaphor and irony that touches a spectator's psyche. It's like looking at Gian Lorenzo Bernini's 'The Rape of Proserpina' which gives you that peculiar feeling of something fabulous, yet... eccentric. Odd is not even the right word to describe the sculpture, but one look at this petrified petrol pump and you can't seem to question the way things are today.
If I were to describe this masterpiece in one sentence, it would be: A Modernist art with a twist of irony. How so? If you were to put this sculpture at the very lobby of BP's head office. Picture that. It would be richly deserved and paradoxical. Come to think of it, if you explore the complexity of objects and the way the human mind gives meaning to each – this art would be a fine addition yet to be listed on the MET collection. The paradox? No one can really tell if they dig this up in the year 3000 and beyond. For now, just feel yourself getting transported to the future with this tableau.
The Genius Behind the Obra:
This US-Cuban tandem has been setting the art world on fire through their visual art, including sculptures, photography, movement and sound. Jennifer Allora, born in Philadelphia, has gained her Bachelor's degree from the University of Richmond in Virginia and a Master's from the Massachussetts Institute of Technology. Guillermo Calzadilla, born in Cuba, received his Bachelor's degree from Escuela de Artes Plásticas in Puerto Rico and a Master's from Bard College. This duo had been working since 1995 on artistic expressions that reflect today's consumerist age. Learn More about the artists HERE.
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Resources I've read that helped me write this review: