They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and sure, you can say that our blog is anything but unique in the great vast of the internet but, the line has to be drawn somewhere. Rumors swirled out of Karamay, in northwestern China, earlier this week of a blatant disrespect of modern art. No, not a heist, a copy of none other than Chicago’s Cloud Gate, otherwise known as ‘The Bean’.
Turns out the rumors are true. I can’t help but feel a cold hard slap to the face. Mayor Emanuel on the other hand, appears to be OK with this – he apparently told the Chicago Tribune that the act was “flattering”. Flattering. Another slap. Whatever happened to dead-fish-mailing, democratic attack dog he used to be? Perhaps I’m just getting too worked up over this. I’m simply a fan of The Bean.
But, Anish Kapoor, the artist behind Cloud Gate, is quite upset with the “flattery” and has written an open letter to Mayor Emanuel, published in the Chicago Sun-Times, in which he states:
“Creativity in all walks of life is hard won. It is incorrect to accept that we should allow for it to be undermined or stolen and therefore give it little or no value. Chicago will lose from this thievery. We cannot let this happen.“
From what I’ve researched, China has yet to reveal the “artist” behind Bogus Bean – they do however note that the sculpture was inspired by an oil bubble – Karamay is a town built on oil, which provided the inspiration and, an resemblance to Cloud Gate is purely coincidental. I’ll let you be the judge but, be forewarned “Chang’s East, Original Beijing Deep Dish Pizza” is next.