Activity Fontana Mashup – Arsenal contemporary art



Oli Sorenson nurtures his practice with a fascination for the overabundance of digital information, and opposes the limitations of online sharing cultures through rigid copyright measures. His work questions closed-in approaches to creation, which dissociate works of art from other aesthetic influences. On the contrary, Sorenson prefers to highlight all his actions to cite and transform existing works, thus to engage his work in a dialogue with a multitude of other creators.


Fontana Mashup

Painting, 2017-2018

For the Fontana Mashup series, Oli Sorenson commissioned a series of fake paintings, handmade by Chinese artisans, to replicate some the most recognizable paintings of art history. Then, in the manner of Lucio Fontana, the artist cut these fake canvases into long slits, revealing dark interiors beneath the surface of the paintings, to effectively undo the structural integrity of these images. But Sorenson’s destructive gesture remains ambivalent: did he symbolically attack the original work, an extravagant object that unveils the economic inequalities of our world? Or did Sorenson seek to erase the illusion of the facsimiles, copies that are infinitely reproducible and negate the singularity of the original work? By allowing this ambiguity to linger as long as possible, Sorenson emphasizes the power relationships between “real” art objects, often removed from public view to protect their huge value, and “false” copies, mundane but omnipresent as never before in a universe of digital reproduction.

Curator : Art Souterrain


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