ARTIST’S SHIT, PIERO MANZONI, 1961

This is one of the most misunderstood contemporary artist, and his work is often an example of how stupid contemporary art is.

Piero Manzoni was an Italian artist, and this is his most famous work of all times.

Actually, this was precisely the intent of the artist!

The can is supposed to contain real shit, but actually nobody knows what there is really inside. All we know is that some false copies were identified because the real shit that was in the cans was releasing gasses that made them explode. This obviously didn’t happen with the real ones.

Why did he do such a strange work? Because he was laughing at the art market and the art world, claiming that anything could be an object of art if signed by an artist. In fact he made other similar works, such as the Artist’s breath, oh a series of people that he called his works because he signed them on their skin.

This was a deep reflection of what art means, and when the artists made the Artist’s shit, he was not famous or known at all! He was genuinly making fun of all the art market, without self-conceit.

But it became a real work of art in the end, in a way confirming his theories. But the thruth is that art is something that spreads a message with images and objects, and this time it really did its job!

What do you think about this controversial work of art? Comment down below and tell us!

#funfact: in 2016 a can of Piero Manzoni was sold at auction for the incredible price of 275,000 €!

– M.C.

Bibliography and further readings:

GILBERTI Fausto, Piero Manzoni, Corraini, 2014

MANZONI Piero, Manzoni Piero: Paintings, Reliefs and Objects, Tate Publishing Ltd, 1974

GUALDONI Flaminio, Piero Manzoni: An Artist’s Life, Gagosian/Rizzoli, 2018

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