Segments in this Video

Minimalist and Conceptualist (04:05)


Art will never be resolved. Michael Craig-Martin discusses when he began incorporating color into his art. The Irish Museum of Modern Art hosts a retrospective of his work.

Functionality: Defining Characteristic (01:45)

Minimalists believe an object does not represent other things. The most defining aspect of an item is what it is used for.

"An Oak Tree" (04:13)

Using dialogue allows the artist to be a skeptic and a believer simultaneously. The original artwork is in the National Gallery of Australia; three or four copies travel to different countries. The tension between the world referred to by the image and the image itself fascinates Craig-Martin.

Artistic Approach (02:25)

Manufactured objects are a perfect thing. Craig-Martin paints anonymous objects because they did not pre-exist. Milton Keynes hosts the exhibition "Surfacing;" the artist draws many chairs because of the infinite amount of different forms.

Color Use (04:26)

Craig-Martin says that black, white, and red are conceptual, but color is not. He attempts to exploit color's arbitrary nature and thinks of objects as democratized and non-hierarchical. He cites the inspiration for "Deconstructing Piero" and "Reconstructing Seurat."

"Signs of Life" Exhibition (04:46)

Craig-Martin discusses organizing the Bregenz retrospective. Computer work requires the artist to elaborately plan. The Laban Center asks Craig-Martin to engage in color.

Johanniterkirche Installation (04:23)

Craig-Martin wants to design the interior of an abandoned church. His work echoes medieval images even though he incorporates common objects. While art is not spiritual, it is inexplicably strange.

Credits: Michael Craig-Martin (00:30)

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Michael Craig-Martin

Part of the Series : theEYE, Series 2: Painting and Video Art
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $129.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $194.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $129.95



In 1973, Michael Craig-Martin exhibited a glass of water on a shelf, together with a printed text, and called the work An Oak Tree. As the text explained, the artist had changed the glass of water into an oak tree. More than thirty years later, Craig-Martin creates – along with screen-savers, works on LCD monitors and conventional paintings – gloriously colorful environments with blown-up outline images of domestic objects. The conceptual and the rigorously material have been central to the artist’s complex development across four decades of work that is both intellectually demanding and austerely beautiful. At the same time, Craig-Martin achieved an almost legendary status as a teacher at Goldsmiths, where he encouraged, among many others, Damien Hirst and Sarah Lucas. Richly illustrated with works and environments filmed in Bregenz and Dublin, as well as at notable exhibitions in England, this film profile outlines the career of one of today’s most innovative and influential artists.

Length: 27 minutes

Item#: FMK194740

ISBN: 978-1-64867-385-6

Copyright date: ©2008

Closed Captioned

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