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Fruit basket upset – John Baldessari’s iPhone app lets you re-arrange a Dutch masterpiece


Jori Finkel’s story on Culture Monster tells only half the story, namely that  courtesy of John Baldessari’s new iPhone app (previewable online here), you can re-arrange the 17th Century still life to suit your own fancy. What it doesn’t say is how much fun it is. Quick, go play with your food!

my re-arranged Dutch still life.

The free  app will be at iTunes next week.  The app cost $35,000 and was produced by For Your Art.  The whole project is in conjunction with Baldessari’s show, Pure Beauty, at LACMA. The painting featured in the app is the 1667 oil Banquet Still Life by Dutch master, Abraham van Beyeren, which is part of LACMA’s collection.  This is Baldessari’s second foray into computer-re-arrangement of art.  The last time, in 2001, he used the same painting and viewers would manipulate the painting at a computer set up in the gallery.  The conceptual artist has been reconfiguring human heads and bodies for quite a while in his work, which never struck me before as humorous.  Maybe, given this whimsical art project, I’ll have to reconsider.


abraham van beyeren, iphone app, john baldessari, lacma, pure beauty