Out of Minimalism

Detta är en avhandling från Uppsala : Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis

Sammanfattning: The dissertation involves a threefold investigation of sculpture. Firstly, the interpretations are focused on particular artworks by three British sculptors: Antony Gormley (b. 1950), Anish Kapoor (b. 1954), and Rachel Whiteread (b. 1963), respectively. The notion of applied minimalism is tentatively applied to their sculptures. A primary argument is that these works are idiomatically, thematically, and theoretically founded on the heritage of American Minimalism from the 1960s. The sculptures by these three artists are seen as readings and transformations in themselves of the Minimalist sculptural idiom. Secondly, the dissertation aims at an investigation of the notion of sculpture, which is explored as a discursive term, i.e. as a working notion. Therefore, each specific sculpture in the study is analysed in terms of the means it is manifested as such. Thirdly, interpretation per se is recognised as a performative act inscribed and restricted by specific contextual features. The constituent aspects are acknowledged and employed in terms of the white cube gallery locality, minimalist theory, sign theory, sculpture as staged, and the crucial recognition of a/the corporeal viewer's own presence and movements within the gallery space. Especially pertinent to the interpretations are Michael Fried's notion of theatricality, notions of performativity, and meaning as site-specific, respectively. The dissertation argues that the notion of sculpture, specifically in the wake of Minimal sculpture and the artworks inscribed by that category in art critical discourse, relies on the imperative of a corporeal acknowledged viewer/interpreter and that significant relations as regards the notion of sculpture are therefore external to a high degree.