Mark Dion

Hunting Standard (Boar), 2005

Sale price€780,00

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Silk-screen print Sheet size 40,00 x 50,00 cm Signed and numbered Edition of 15 + 3 AP

For over twenty years, the repertoire of American artist Mark Dion (*1961 in New Bedford, Massachusetts) has included staged workbenches, dusty storage vaults, stuffed bears, and tarred birds. Ostensibly, his installations, interventions, performances, and photographs critique humankind’s often cruel treatment of nature. However, the artist also demonstrates that “nature” is a mere construct that is constantly being reshaped and reinterpreted. Dion’s current project, Concerning Hunting, examines hunting as a traditional, but controversial, cultural practice. One of the fascinating things about hunting is its fundamental contradictoriness: the sensitivity of the hunter and his profound knowledge about what nature requires are also expressed through the act of killing animals. Dion’s artistic examinations do not focus on nature as such, but rather on the hunt as a way culture deals with it.
Mark Dion calls the silkscreen he has created for our Collector’s Edition a Hunting Standard, and it is a kind of banner. The trophy is adorned with the stylized head of a boar with rolling eyes, set in a pool of ketchup-red blood, clearly recalling a comic book drawing. The black boar’s head was a popular heraldic symbol in the Middle Ages, and the crests of many noble European families still feature a boar’s head. As early as the Renaissance, the boar’s head crest was the subject of irony: poet Ben Johnson suggested that a fitting motto would be “Not without mustard.”