Monday, June 8, 2009

London Knees

It’s hard to realize, from today’s vantage point, how shocking the first mini skirt was. It became an obsession with people. So it lent itself very well to... especially in the context of London... to a monument. In 1966, Swedish-American sculptor Claes Oldenburg, mostly known for turning everyday mundane objects -like clothes pins- into HUGE public art, paid homage to this very thing. The idea was to monumentalize something contemporary and figurative, so he chose this new incarnation of the knee as a revealing part of the woman. More specifically the section of leg that was revealed between a boot top and a skirt bottom.
The sculpture "LONDON KNEES" was cast in plastic and it was originally presented in a box with all kinds of documentation which showed the knees in a really monumental scale-another thing that was coming into the landscape at the time were nuclear power plants and the landscape was filling up with these huge cone shapes-so these were an inspiration to the scale of the knee.
So, when I stepped out on the East side on saturday night and saw a slew of lovely ladies clad in boots and skirts, I decided I would, in turn, pay homage to this revolutionary advance in sex appeal.