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Victor Grippo’s pile o’ potatoes

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Posted by Roberta and Libby

A banquet table of 700 pounds of potatoes dominates the center of the room in the new contemporary art installation, Energy Yes!, at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

We ate ’em up.

The piece is interactive, with a button that lets you measure the amount of energy the potatoes are generating through the maze of wires that droop above the table.

The piece, Analogia I (second version), 1977, is on loan from the estate of the late Argentinian artist, Victor Grippo.

Carlos Basualdo told us he’d be changing the potatoes in about three months, due to the potato putrefaction factor. He said the museum would be squeezing the goods for signs of deterioration regularly.

This is a show with potatoes, mud, sand, neon, diamond dust, dollar-store toy soldiers and tape. A show like this is a breakthrough into the 21st century for the contemporary art galleries at the PMA.

The installation will last for six months. We wondered what was next, and they wouldn’t tell us, except to say it would be a three-artist installation, and the artists would come from Africa, Europe and South America and would have some relationship to the huge art of Latin America show coming up later this year.

See previous posts here, here and here and next post here for more on Energy Yes!