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Everything You Know About Art Is Wring

Matt Brown

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Damien Hirst has only work of art on Mars. One of his spot paintings was on Beagle 2 which we know made it to the surface of Mars, though was unable to contact.

The original of Duchamp's urinal Fountain hasn't been seen since original exhibition (it was probably thrown out with rubbish) but still exists as 15 copies in museums around the world. You can still buy copies of Martin Creed's self-explanatory A sheet of A4 paper crumpled into a ball for £3.500 + postage. Rodin's statues The Thinker and The Kiss exist as hundreds of marble, bronze and plaster casts - and that's just the official duplicates.

Artists commonly made duplicates of their own popular paintings. Van Gogh did seven different copies of Sunflowers, of which six survive. (One was destroyed when Allies bombed Japan in 1945).

In 1975 the Tate, using public funds, acquired Carl Andre's Equivalence VIII (a pile of builder's bricks). The original bricks were thrown away, so he had to 'recreate' the art work. Then, the bricks were defaced by dye by a protester, so the tate had to source another lot of replacement bricks.

Art doesn't 'progress' in the way that tech does. It simply goes in different directions.

The division between fine arts and decorative arts is laden with snobbery. Painting is better than jewellry. This is a Western judgement - other cultures and other eras had different view.

Rodin would typically make sketches and clay models then leave it to assistants to complete full size sculpture. Our idea of the artist as a lone genius is not reality. We expect the output of architects or scriptwriters to be team efforts.

Star with original story that van Gogh sliced off his ear. But now conventional idea that he only sliced off a small bit. But according to diagram drawn by the doctor who treated him, he did in fact take off everthing exceot a small part of lobe.

Terms 'impressionists' and 'cubists' were both invented by critics disparaging the new direction of art.

Ancient Greek statues in museums are invariably white marble, but they were originally painted in bright colours with glass eyes.

There is a full size replica of the Parthenon in Nashville Tennessee, with an accompanying version of the famous (lost) statue of Athena which originally had a cloak made of a ton of gold.

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