Variable Piece #70: 1971 (In Process) Global, Crocodile Tears II: Ronald
Douglas Huebler ( American, 1924 - 1997 )
Douglas Huebler is recognized as one of the pioneering artists of the conceptual art movement. He was part of an idealistic group of artists in the late 1960s who often paired text and image to wryly deconstruct the ways we derive meaning from visual information. Influenced by minimalism and the art of Marcel Duchamp, and inclined toward language, mathematics, and photography, these artists often transposed art to a form more closely resembling pure documentation, if not pure idea.
As referenced in the title of this work, Variable Piece #70 derives from Huebler’s original screenplay, Crocodile Tears, in which the artist addressed issues such as the monetary incentives of the art market, commodification of art, and art’s relationship to popular culture. This work is highly representative of Huebler’s tendency to shift between media and blur the boundary between elevated fine art and mass culture. As a combination of photography and text, Huebler’s piece invites the audience to consider the effectiveness of different methods of communication; as a work of conceptual art, it continues to challenge the commodity status of recent art.
- Anna Katherine Brodbeck, ed., TWO X TWO X TWENTY: Two Decades Supporting Contemporary Art at the Dallas Museum of Art (Dallas: Dallas Museum of Art), 2018, 212.
Learn more about Heubler's career as an artist and educator, and the development of the project Variable Piece #70.