Blake Ward

La Notte

The ReThink Collection

The Souvenir Series
La Notte

La Notte begins with the act of theft, as a pirated image, a copy a of a well known Renascence work and as such, is not Art!
Further this is a funerary object and functions as a Funerary Urn.

The souvenir series are designed to be everything that “Art” may not be. These are a very small group of works created as a reaction to the criteria that constitutes modern art as defined by some art critics, prohibited principles become the commanding prerequisite. The critics thereby lead in the creative process, as the resultant work is a reaction to these directing elements. The Guild Conciseness and the establishment that controls the trend are addressed.

The act of appropriation of this image not only includes removing it from it’s original context but also presenting the object under the title of Souvenir and thus suggesting that it is of reduced value due to it’s banal and “popular” image. It is no longer exclusive but is given the allure of a large production run for the benefit of the masses. Further the new context under which the bronze copy is offered is more as a found object than an original work of art.

The appropriated image remains the intellectual property of the original artist due to the unashamed presentation of this bronze as a copy, a souvenir, denying the new work any value of creativity or originality.

Following academic tradition, imitation was considered as an act of homage, preserving the past within the present, however, this work addresses the past in order to scrutinize it, not to imitate it. La Notte examines the original sculpture from a point of view of research, I was interested in the exercise of copying the original in that I was interested to test the theory that in the original Michelangelo had used a male model for a great deal of the piece. Having employed exclusively a female model, I came to the conclusion that my copy looks a great deal more feminine than the original marble. Although, this is pure conjecture and does, in no way determine the gender of the model used in the original work.

The utilitarian purpose that the bronze work serves, although true to the funerary function served by the original sculpture, further to ensure that the work will be viewed as unsuitable as art by the definition used in post-modern critical thought. La Notte consciously demonstrates the impossibility of originally and through this retroactive essence, can be eliminated due to its’ decorative nature.

Having appropriated this image I am interrogating the idea of authorship as well as originality, as all artists’ borrow from history and in the Souvenir Series I do so admittedly. There has been a claim that plagiarism cannot be art, this then is clearly not art.

Yet the original message is perhaps more appropriate today than when originally created, as a tribute to the desire and need for redemption, in our society that has become more commercial than concerned with the spiritual aspects of life. The appropriation of an image as done by the advertising industry demonstrates the impossibility of originality while purposing copyright and legal issues of property and ownership.

The Doctrine principally is to subvert the ideas of originality and the culture of art. By displaying a nude figure I am both representing in a certain manner the female as well as exposing the figure. I am embracing both ideas and seek to communicate both concepts.

This work could be considered and marketed as Craft or Advertisement in the appropriate exhibitions, as it may successfully deliver Brand recognition, presented as “unfound” objects as opposed to “Ready-mades”; Art created as art to be art.

Aesthetically this work refutes the direction taken by a great deal of art today and refers back to a more traditional concept of beauty and depiction of the human figure.


58cm, 29cm, 75cm (Height, Width, Depth)
Edition of 3 plus 1 Artist Proof
Figurative, Realistic, Classic
Body, Society, Craft
All artworks from Blake Ward
Scroll to top of the page