Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan is, to put it bluntly, a troll. His most famous works of art include The ninth Hour, a sculpture depicting Pope John Paul II lying on the ground after having been struck down by a meteorite, Him, a statue of a schoolboy-sized Adolf Hitler kneeling in prayer, and America, a solid gold and working toilet that visitors were encouraged to use. The latter was famously stolen a few months ago and has yet to be recovered. Cattelan likes to anger people who think modern art is rubbish and he loves to fool around with the cultural establishment that both rejects and fawns over him. I like his audacious stupidity, personally. He’s like a less repetitive Damien Hirst but with fewer dead butterflies. Modern art needs more pranksters who are actually funny. That’s why I find his latest piece so hilarious.
Comedian is a simple piece of work involving a banana and duct-tape. Said banana is attached to a wall with said tape and that’s pretty much it. It went on display at the Art Basel Miami Beach exhibition this week, and organizers say that two editions of the work have already sold for $120,000 each.
View this post on Instagram
Maurizio Cattelan is at it again 🍌 The art world’s favorite prankster came in hot for Art Basel Miami Beach with a duct taped banana that sold for $120,000. Follow along with our stories for more Miami Art Week highlights. — #MaurizioCattelan #ArtBasel #ArtBaselMiamiBeach
Yes, really. I love this.
A spokeswoman for Art Basel Miami Beach told Sky News in the UK:
‘After a 15-year hiatus, Maurizio has returned to the international art fair, and we are so fortunate to collaborate with him. The banana is many things — a symbol of global trade, a witty double entendre, and a classic device for humor. Maurizio takes mundane objects and transforms them into vehicles of both delight and critique.’
Sure, there is that, but he’s also trolling. Come on, he’s rubbing it in your faces and you’re paying him six figures!
Comedian is sold with a certificate of authenticity and apparently the owners can replace the banana as needed. No word on whether the same allowance applies to the tape. Maybe that’s where the real money is.
Header Image Source: YouTube