Michael Craig-Martin is a prominent Irish-British contemporary conceptual artist, painter, author, and teacher. His most renowned work is arguably An Oak Tree, 1973 in which he claimed to have transformed a glass of water into an oak tree. He regularly uses mass-produced, everyday objects, images, and materials in his art, in the early years choosing to focus mainly on drawings and box designs (Box That Never Closes, 1967). Gradually his… Read more
About the artwork
Signs of Life features Craig-Martin's characteristic depictions of ubiquitous pop-culture objects such as a cell phone, light bulb, or wine glass. These impersonal illustrations of mass-produced objects are part of what the artist refers to as a visual vocabulary. In the tradition of Dada and Minimalism, these two-dimensional, neon-colored outlines encourage viewers to consider the relationship between representation of an object and the reality of the object itself. The appearance of an outlined urinal recall Marcel Duchamp's 1917 work Fountain which placed an article of everyday life in the context of art in the effort to rid it of useful significance.