BY Bruce Hainley in Frieze | 10 OCT 02
Featured in
Issue 70

Pop Quiz

20 Questions on Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett

BY Bruce Hainley in Frieze | 10 OCT 02

The word 'pop' in 'pop quiz' refers to:

e)Pop art

2 The best adjective to describe the overall effect of Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett, 2000, is:


3 Edmier has stated that his dad wouldn't allow him to have a Farrah poster.


4 If the answer to question 3 were true, it would mean that, in part, Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett, 2000, could be seen to be:

a)Another sad example of how difficult it is for men to communicate
b)An act of revenge
c)An exorcism of Americans' puritanical, patriarchal notions of sexuality
d)A conflation of sex and resentment
e)Akin to a negative theology
f)All of the above

5 In order to consider the complexities of Edmier and Fawcett's collaboration, it might be good to read:

a)Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
b)Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
c)Farrah: An Unauthorized Biography
by Patricia Burstein
d)Masochism: Coldness and Cruelty by Gilles Deleuze
e)Within the Context of No Context by George W. S. Trow
f)Passages in Modern Sculpture by Rosalind Krauss

6 Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett, 2000, refers most to:

a)Michelangelo's David
b)Canova's Cupid and Psyche
c)Frederick Hart's Ex Nihilo for theWashington National Cathedral
d)Parts of Rodin's Gates of Hell
e)Charles Ray's Oh! Charley, Charley, Charley
f)Brancusi's The Kiss

7 If Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett,
2000, can be said to provide a theory of love, after looking at it one could conclude:

a)It is better to have loved and lost
than never to have loved at all
b)Love is blind
c)What's love got to do with it?
d)Love is a battlefield
e)Love is the drug
f)What the world needs now is love

8 Given the art-historically burdened materials (Italian marble, bronze), the realistic representation of the figures, references to Botticelli's Birth of Venus,
etc., the use of the word 'conceptual' to explain the sculpture's contemporary viability is fatuous, not to mention lazy.


9 Despite Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett, 2000's classical use of portraiture and media so unlike the artist's trademark pink dental acrylic and translucent resins, three earlier sculptures of Edmier haunt the collaboration with Fawcett: in terms of fantasy, fandom and hair, Jill Peters (1997); in terms of the embodiment and sincere meaningfulness of (camp) heroics, Evel Knievel, American Daredevil (1996). The third sculpture in this list would be:

a)Emil Dobbelstein and Henry J. Drope
(2000) in terms of the memorial
b)Beverly Edmier, 1967 (1998) in terms of the maternal and Oedipal aspects of beauty
c)Untitled (Wreath) (1999) in terms of mourning for the passing of fame and beauty
d)Nowhere (Insideout) (1995) in terms of catastrophe, failure, disappearance
e)Victoria Regia (First Night's Bloom) andVictoria Regia (Second Night's Bloom)(1998) in terms of survival and poise despite woundings
f)Siren (1995) in terms of the machinery and machinations of publicity

10 Edmier could have collaborated with any star/artist and the result would have been similar.


11 If the answer to question 10 were true, the best star/artist to collaborate with would have been:

a)Phyllis Diller
b)Tony Curtis
c)Martin Mull
d)Sylvester Stallone
e)Joni Mitchell
f)Patti Smith

12 To make the statement 'The Farrah poster is one of the most masturbated-to images of all time' in the context of Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett, 2000, is:

b)Beside the point
c)Provocative because it suggests part of the autobiographical intensity of the project
e)Only part of the story since it would be important to know what male star tallies numbers anywhere close
f)Crucial in that it refuses to sublimate the work's dependence on sexual idealization

13 Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett,
2000, is an example of:

a)The intensification of the blurring of entertainment and culture
b)The delusions of love
c)The beauty of belief, sincerity and happiness
d)Folie à deux on a grand scale
e)The conservatism of so-called cutting-edge art (John Currin, Vanessa
Beecroft, Gregory Crewdson, et al.)
f)Post-Warholian exuberance, rule-breaking, and potential for contemporary art

14 The best place to see Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett, 2000, to succeed with mass cultural appeal, would be:
a)In Hollywood, near Grauman's Chinese
b)In Fawcett's or Edmier's backyard
c)At Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas
d)At the Louvre
e)At the Vatican
f)On the moon

15 Keith Edmier/Farrah Fawcett as:
a)Alfred Stieglitz/Georgia O'Keeffe
c)Anjelica Huston/Robert Graham
e)Elizabeth Taylor/Larry Fortensky
f)Georgia O'Keeffe/Alfred Stieglitz *

Essay Questions (Choose one: 16, 17 or 18)

16 Farrah Fawcett had a rather strange opening night in Butterflies Are Free at the Burt Reynolds Dinner Theater in Jupiter, Florida, on 30 July 1980. An obese lady in the front row of tables began yelling insults at her and making bird calls during the performance. Later, this unidentified lady raised her dress and flashed the performers, causing co-star Dennis Christopher to take notice, although the character he was playing was a blind man. Nearby, a male patron began vomiting, and yet another patron fainted. Incredibly, the reviews for Farrah's performance were positive.

a)Explain how one rises above adversity.
b)Perform a Lacanian reading of the opening-night performance.

17 The difference in facture - technical felicity - between Edmier's and Fawcett's sculptures is negligible. Given that Edmier is best known as an artist and Fawcett as a television and movie star, what does this say about contemporary art practice? (With the glut of so-called 'reality' programming, where regular 'Joes' can be stars, or at least star-like, should there be any reservation or hesitation with the star as artist - or is 'real person' like 'artist' just another role?)

18 Art, like love, can save any situation, no matter how debased, embarrassing or depressing. Discuss.

19 Fawcett's Playboy pay-per-view specialAll of Me painting video, and notorious odd appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman are as much art as Keith Edmier and Farrah Fawcett, 2000.


20 Which of the following is true:

a)Life is the art, love the critique
b)Love is the art, life the critique
c)Art is the love, critique the life
d)Critique is the love, art the life
e)All of the above
f)None of the above

Bruce Hainley lives in Los Angeles, USA. His book, Foul Mouth (2006), is published by 2nd Cannons, Los Angeles.