Tacita Dean and Still Life

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This article explores the relationship between the work of Tacita Dean and still life painting, focusing upon two recent films made from footage shot in the re-installed bedroom studio of Giorgio Morandi (Day for Night and Still Life, both 2009). I argue that the history of still life painting dramatizes three of Dean’s key concerns: with transience and finitude; with a heightened attention to the textures and surfaces of the material world; and with forms of formal, historical and conceptual self-reflexivity. Ultimately, what is at stake in Dean’s return to the genre of still life, I argue, is the negotiation of art’s conditional and precarious autonomy, which is dependent upon yet resistant to powerful heteronomous forces dominated by exchange value.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)960-977
Number of pages18
JournalArt History
Volume37
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2014

Keywords

  • Tacita Dean
  • Morandi
  • still life painting
  • film
  • drawing
  • autonomy
  • Theodor Adorno
  • Louise Lawler
  • contemporary art

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