Acquired 1978
Dan Flavin

American, 1933-1996

“monument” for V. Tatlin, 1964

Cool white fluorescent light
Edition 3 of 5
96 x 28 x 4 3/4 inches
Gift of Society for Contemporary Art; Twentieth-Century Purchase Fund

In 1964 Dan Flavin conceived his most sustained series of light sculptures, which he termed “pseudo-monuments,” to honor the artist Vladimir Tatlin (1885-1953), an innovator of the Russia avant-garde who dreamed of combining artistry and engineering.  Realized from commercially available fluorescent light fixtures–each able to provide 2,100 hours of temporary illumination–these sculptures put an ironic twist on the more traditional, timeless concept of the monument.  They also serve as a comment on the influence of the modern technology on art history, which Tatlin could only have imagined.