Barney's Soap

February 6, 2005

A few days ago I posted a supposition about the aggressive implications of cleanliness.* 

This image coincides nicely with that theme but I do not tend to equate it with scrubbing hands (although that is the obvious depiction) so much as the color palette of Matthew Barney's Cremaster Cycle.

For those of you familiar with Barney's films you might think I'm making a comparison born out of extreme arrogance, so let me clarify. I'm not comparing myself to Matthew Barney. I'm sharing with you that this crappy low-res movie of me washing my hands with an unnaturally pink bar of soap was a meditation of the coolness of his color palette. It was not contrived— the pink bar of soap was sitting by the sink and the quality of the florescent lights overhead had been established when I filmed the toothbrushing sequence. So in that way, it is nothing like Matthew Barney, who might be one of the most calculated and meticulous artists alive today. My spontaneous film would have no place in his icy palace of conceptual frosting— it is too earnest in its simplicity.

*Further proof from the forefront of cultural design: Fight Club soap design by Weiden+Kennedy. "Works great on blood stains." Draw your own conclusions.

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