Victor Grippo is often lauded as the father of Argentinean conceptual art he started life as a chemist before trying his luck as a painter. In the 1970s he began to experiment with art installations in which he attempted to show how the dormant energy of everyday materials could be transformed through the power of alchemy.
An example of this type of work is Man Naturalization, Nature Humanization (1977) in which he measures the electrical charge of potatoes through a series of electrodes. This highlights his fascination with the potential energy objects hold within them, more especially potatoes, which Grippo constantly used in his artworks.
To him the electrical energy of potatoes was analogous to its power as the staple food of the world’s poor. One has to look no further than the Irish potato famine of 1845-1849 to see how the failure of a crop can have grave social and political repercussions for poorer countries.
I saw this installation at the bottom of the Tate’s website page when I was researching Jannis Kounellis, and I was taken by his usage of light and how he installed the entire show. The one thing I dislike about the entire installation is the extra length of wire from the lightbulbs hanging dow. I think there could have been a few better ways for him to install the piece. This helps me with my installation because I will be hanging my photographs with ribbon and wire from the ceiling and I need to think of ways to achieve this and keep it looking neat.
I like how clean the aesthetic of his work is, some have a medical feel which I think he did on purpose. One thing I have noticed about all of the installation artists I’ve been looking at is that they know how to effectively use the space they have been given, to make sure viewers are interested in their work. I do not have much space in the Lanchester gallery so I need to use my space well, to make sure people want to walk over to see my installation.