Gallery: A Candy Memorial to HIV/AIDS – Félix González-Torres

felix-gonzalez-torres_untitledportrait-of-ross-in-la_1991_photo-credit-molly-robert

Classified as a Minimalist artist, Félix González-Torres conceptual art work is far from minimal. Profound, dense and thought provoking are our first words that come to mind. Why talk about this Cuban artist now, you may ask? His process art pieces have not only brought awareness to HIV and AIDS, but have imprinted his message in our He(ARTS). His most notable art installation in our eyes, is Untitled Portrait of Ross L.A, 1991. This installation piece is an allegorical representation of his late partner Ross Laycock, who passed away from AIDS. The Installation consists of 175 pounds of candy paralleling his partner’s weight. Viewers are encouraged to take a piece of candy and eat it. This action is metaphorical to the slow painful death that AIDS victims must endure-slowly dying and disintegrating into nothingness. There is also a layer of cannibalism – a condemnation on society due to the lack of research to find a cure. His artwork (this in particular) is a device used to help bring awareness. And isn’t that what art should be? To bring up debate, controversy and awareness to our society? Think about it.

Peace out, K

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