GUATEMALA - There is much to be be said for those who overcome artistic barriers, persevere and continue to create. Words alone cannot describe the wide range of powerful imagery achieved by a small and truly innovative group of artists. These young outsiders have transgressed all limitations of aesthetic propriety by engaging in a process far beyond the academic realm of traditional mediums. As a result the fresh rhythmic elegance of such works as "Stems With Peel #5" (Fig. 1) have set new standards in the discourse of modern art. This daring nouveau arguement contends the use of the banana in past art has been largely representational or at best metaphorical as in film or literature. The impact of the "found object" and Marcel Duchamp's readymades, have paved the way for bold new experimentation with otherwise edible material. This medium, once removed from the context of mere subject, takes on it's own inherent characteristics. The maxims of modernism have proven that art lies not in human appreciation or posterity but is contained within the material itself, the artist acting as mediator, freeing art from it's dormant state of cosmic otherness. Artists have since diligently sought to discover new materials thereby discovering new art. The recent use of the banana in contemporary art has created quite a stir among artists and intellectuals as well. Raising nothing more than a fruit to the status of art has had profound philosophical implications. Consider "cogito ergo sum," Descartes. Thought may be the basis of our own existence but since bananas have no mind in the conventional sense, they are incapable of thought. However they continue to exist. We must therefore question the very forces that allow bananas to exist outside the limited sphere of human mental perception. This requires an evaluation of the subliminal powers that be. The universal forces, that act on inert matter and give animation and form to life, define bananas as well as human beings. Identity is thus dependent on physical manifestation. Individual consciousness is the means by which the unknown becomes known as we learn through trial and error. The cumulative knowledge of all that has gone before plays a crucial role in shaping the empirical world. Just as we better ourselves through reason and past knowledge, likewise the collective subconscious influences and creates a better reality. In turn it is our perception and retention of what is good in life, i.e. truth, love, justice, beauty that give dignity and true meaning to human existence. But can bananas be art? Heimlich Obst thinks so... Excerpted from "The Sunday Supplement," by Miles Pennwright, art critic, You will find more samples of my writing in "past work" including my first two letters to prominent members of the art establishment concerning the lack of public involvement with the arts. See if you can spot the error in my second letter. Yves Arman did!
Heimlich's ArtPrize Entries
These are Heimlich's official ArtPrize entries from this year and past years.
Heimlich's Past Work
These are images of past work that Heimlich has done.