Monday, October 29, 2007

Halloween Art Gallery 2: Charles Krafft




Dark Art part 2: Charles Krafft visited Sarajevo in 1998 and upon his return set out to produce porcelain replicas of the weapons used in the Balkan conflict. He borrowed weapons from black market arms dealers and created slip-molds and then cast them in white porcelain. Then he decorated the porcelain weapons with the beautiful and classical Delft ornaments. He exhibited them at the Slovenian Ministry of Defense under the title: "The porcelain war museum project" in 1999. Krafft said:"My aim is to produce a delicate arsenal of life-size ceramic weaponry so gorgeous and patently functionless that they will bedazzle and confound everyone who sees them."

I don't like guns and have a hard time with the concept, that here in America anybody has the right to bear arms (maybe , because I am European!?). Krafft's porcelain guns are the best statement of political criticism towards guns and violence. It is so poetic and therefore reaches me on a deep level. A gun out of porcelain is an object of utmost vulnerability. You have to handle it with care, because if you drop it , it will break - just like a real gun can break life...

4 comments:

Green Eyed Thing said...

wow, these are beautiful! we both always say that we dont like guns, but i don't think they entirely symbolize war, fighting, death, etc.. thats only one terrible way people use them for. what people dont realise, is that they also are exquised, useful, and beautiful toolls, that could help you do many things aside from shooting living things. i personaly think they look very artistic, and i actully like when there are shirts with gun prints.

elisabeth alexander (elisabeth engel) said...

Hmmm....I am not so sure....
guns might be exquisit and perhaps beautiful, but are they useful? What do you use them for besides killing and hurting? I usually really shy away from t-shirts and stuff with guns on. In American culture there is already so much gun imagery and it's glorification.
The porcelain guns are still uncomfortable for me, but I can accept them, because they are such a crazy and surreal concept. they question all that is associated with guns: strength, durability, hard metal that will prevail, machismo.

Ulla said...

Interesting conversation happening here... I am not a gun person either, and find these 'edgy' to say the least. The only time I can justify a gun would be for protection, and yet, why? We should stirve for peace and do away with the need entirely!

Charles Krafft said...

I like the name of this blog! I don't own a working gun. Never really got into them. However, being an American male, I have a lot of friends who collect and carry guns. My generation wasn't as gun obsessed as the next two generations. The quality of life was without danger when I grew up. Now, you must avoid certain parts of the city, or not be out alone on the street after dark because of the angry irrationality and predatory nature of America's forced multiculturalism. I live in fear, like a lame deer, trying trying to keep up with the heard and avoid wolves. -Charles Krafft (Seattle USA)