Artists

Claes Oldenburg
1929–



Audio

  • Making Knowing: Craft in Art, 1950–2019, Spanish

    Claes Oldenburg, Giant BLT (Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato Sandwich), 1963

    Claes Oldenburg, Giant BLT (Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato Sandwich), 1963

    0:00

    Narrador: En 2011, en una conferencia aquí en el Whitney, Claes Oldenburg habló sobre su enfoque y trabajo con escalas en obras como esta.

    Claes Oldenburg: Muchas de mis obras son muy pequeñas, otras son muy grandes, y parecen hallarse en el mismo universo. Se trata simplemente de a qué distancia te encuentres. Veo las escalas como algo relativo: casi todas las cosas pequeñas pueden verse como algo muy grande, y viceversa.

    Narrador: Al exagerar las cualidades de un objeto común y corriente, Oldenburg modifica nuestra relación con ese objeto. Las dimensiones y superficies de esta escultura son el resultado de varias etapas de bocetos minuciosos.

    Claes Oldenburg: Lo que hicimos fue comenzar con un modelo en cartón, y luego pasamos a lo que llamamos el modelo fantasma. La idea del modelo fantasma es poder examinar los errores y no cometerlos al trabajar con el vinilo. Usamos vinilo antiguo, que era realmente grueso y elegante, suave y brillante. Entonces para poder hacer el objeto final en vinilo hacía falta bastante preparación, porque el vinilo es tan delicado que no puedes cometer ningún error a la hora de coserlo.

  • Making Knowing: Craft in Art, 1950–2019

    Claes Oldenburg, Giant BLT (Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato Sandwich), 1963

    Claes Oldenburg, Giant BLT (Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato Sandwich), 1963

    0:00

    Narrator: In 2011 at a lecture here at the Whitney, Claes Oldenburg spoke about his approach to scale in works like this one. 

    Claes Oldenburg: A lot of my work is very small, a lot of the work is very large, and it seems like it's in the same universe. It's just a matter of how far away you are from it. I think of scale as being a relative thing, and that almost anything that's small can be seen as something that's very big, and vice versa. 

    Narrator: By exaggerating a common object’s qualities, Oldenburg transforms our relationship to it. The dimensions and surface of this sculpture are the result of several, careful draft stages.

    Claes Oldenburg: What we did is we started with a cardboard model, and then we went into what we call the ghost model. And the idea of the ghost model was that you could study your mistakes so you wouldn't make them in the vinyl. That was the early vinyl, which was really thick and beautiful, and soft and shiny. So when the object came to be made in vinyl, the final object, there had to be a preparation, because vinyl is so delicate that you can't make a mistake when you sew it.



Images and Permissions

Sunrise

Sunset

A 30-second online art project:
Kristin Lucas, Speculative Habitat for Sponsored Seabirds

Learn more