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  • Whistler Work Out

Hudson, Graham, 2014, Show, Exhibition or Event, Whistler Work Out

Abstract or Description:

Recent work used Jane Fonda as a metaphor and pivot for an enquiry into the psychology of the construction of sel. The invitation from The Fine Arts Society and the 'What Duchamp taught me' exhibition led to a logical research enquiry to Whistler, who had lived in the building, in the room I used, he became the ready-made. Whistlers contribution to art history is undoubted but what struck a chord for me was the contribution he perhaps missed to ‘real’ history. Like Jane Fonda ( although born 97 years apart) Whistler came from all-American lineage, from immigration, Manifest Destiny, Revolution and Civil War. There was a Whistler and a Fonda present at all the major events of American History. Whistler’s Grandfather fought in the Revolution and was a Fort Architect of some renown, establishing such bases as Fort Dearborn ( Modern day Chicago). His Father was caught between the Revolution and the Civil war so was not in combat, but his West Point engineer training saw him as a major contributor to the technology of the trains and railways moving West across the lands of the Native Americans in History’s biggest genocide. Whistler followed his father to West Point, held in high esteem by Robert Lee, the famed General of the Confederate army of the South. But Whistler opted out, while brothers and cousins lined up for the Confederacy. The parallels with the Fonda’s begin with immigration, there’s from the Netherlands not Ireland. Also fighting the British for revolution, and in the civil war. But the Fonda’s ( the town of Fonda is in NY) lined up for the Union. Henry Fonda has played every role from the first generation immigrant of his ancestors, in Drums along the Mohawk, to a Civil War General ( just after the war) in Fort Apache. Fonda joined the army in WW2, and went on to play roles in war films, while daughter Jane picked up Vietnam in movies like ‘coming home’ and most infamously for real during her period of left wing extremism. She was a Che quoting ( 'revolution is love') anti-Nixon Black panther, who ran out of money supporting her causes. The ‘Workout’ project was a sideline to raise cash for these issues, it went on to be the greatest selling video of all time as the medium evolved. Never before had ‘rewind’ and ‘re-play’ been seen of use. This was the historical tipping point for the historical analogue media and the contemporary 'on-demand'

Official URL: http://thefineartsociety.com/exhibitions/55/overvi...
Subjects: Creative Arts and Design > W100 Fine Art > W130 Sculpture
School or Centre: School of Fine Art
Copyright Holders: Graham Hudson
Date Deposited: 15 Nov 2016 12:48
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 12:48
URI: http://researchonline.rca.ac.uk/id/eprint/2144

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