Sunday, January 15, 2012

Toy Cars Take Over The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Chris Burden’s has struck again at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; but this time, with a new sense of art style.

In the 1970’s Burden’s began with a more drastic style of art. In the article, they mention that he was shot in the arm for an art piece. Now, he has been drawn to a more objective form of art. After four years, Burden is now opening up his new art piece: Metropolis II

The writer, Alex Schmidt, explains the sculpture:

The piece is a 10-foot-tall model of a city. Basically, it fills up a room. There are colored buildings here and there, and dozens of aluminum tracks sloping over, under and around them at different levels. An operator steps under some tracks, into the middle of the sculpture, and flips a few switches.

It’s not your ordinary piece of artwork. Artists have been known in the past decade to stretch the boundaries of what exactly art is. Truthfully, in my opinion, it looks like an adult version of a hot wheels racetrack.

In addition to the article is a short documentary on his new artwork.

The article is well written and gives you a good image of who the artist is. The quotes that are used bring the story to life. The explanation of the sound that the cars and the machine makes, make you feel as if you are there listening to them. I also enjoyed the quote about how all the cars are not attached to tracks and so an actual car wreck is possible.

In the end, my main question was, is newsworthy? If it is newsworthy, what makes it worthy?

Also, do you feel that this is focused on a specific audience? If you weren’t interested in art, would you click on this article and read it?

Even though the documentary is nearly six minutes, did you feel it was worth watching? Was this beneficial to the rest of the article?

Here is a link the to article:


  1. I thought that this article, as well as the documentary, were visually appealing but not altogether newsworthy. I thought that the documentary especially was too long and did not really hold my interest. It showed the same thing over and over and only played minimal audio of the artist speaking, therefore I felt like I didn't really understand the sculpture and I lost interest.

    The news article, however I thought was much more interesting than the documentary, which is unusual because usually video is more entertaining. But I thought it was very well written and explained the meaning behind the sculpture much more than the documentary did. However, I felt since I am not especially interested in art, it didn't exactly pertain to me, even though it was an entertaining read. It may be newsworthy to people living in Las Angeles because of proximity and maybe to people who listen to NPR regularly, since their listeners tend to be a more cultured audience. However, as an average person not interested in art, I didn't think it was very newsworthy.

  2. As an art lover and someone with previous knowledge on Chris Burden, this article immediately jumped out at me. I found it entertaining and informative. The documentary really aided the article as well. After reading about something, I think it is important to be able to get the same information from a different type of medium. The video was art in itself and allowed the reader to experience the piece of work the took Burden four years to create.

    Overall, I thought the story was well written and the quotes from Burden really aided to the story. Burden stated,"It's like the real world. One accident causes more and more, and then, you know, it's a pileup." You don't have to be an art historian to understand the theme of his work. This particular piece of artwork can be enjoyed by many different types of audiences. I believe even if you are not interested in art, it is still important to take notice to what constitutes as art in the current decade.

    I think this story is newsworthy, but only to those interested in art. It is important for all types of news to be available to readers so they can be well-rounded individuals.

  3. This story was very cool to me. The video really gave the story life and the "driver's seat" shot at the end was incredible and I wish it was longer. I know I am not that interested in art but when I read the headline and the opening paragraphs, I had to keep reading.
    I feel like this article was newsworthy because it introduced a new idea and anyone living on the West Coast or is interested in art now has something that they could do because it seems like a really cool exhibit.

  4. I really enjoyed reading this article and I think it is super appealing to those that are interested in art. However, I don't think that this is a particularly newsworthy article because it only reaches out to a small demographic.

    I did like watching the documentary that accompanied it and I think it was a good choice to keep it relatively short. I liked that the viewer could see the art working clearly and not just from a still photo. The art in itself is incredibly impressive and it deserves to be seen and recognized.

  5. For the first question, yes I believe this is news worthy, because what isn't. This is news worthy for all the art guru's out there. Personally if I was scrolling through news stories I would probably scroll right pass this story. Its just not interesting to me.

    But the art itself is pretty impressive, I think. I mean I'm not very knowledgeable in the art category, but I could never come up with an idea or carry an idea out like Burden.

    He is talented, most people know that and to come up with something as bizarre and complex like this is impressive.

  6. I thought that this article was interesting and indeed news worthy. It would appeal to any art lover or even someone interested in toy cars. The second reason is why the article caught my attention. I just thought that a bunch of toy cars being art was interesting.

    I thought that the documentary was beneficial to the story. It allowed me to see the sculpture first hand and really brought everything to life. If I hadn't watched the documentary I don't think that I would have really felt the impact that this piece has.

  7. This article was newsworthy in my opinion becuase it is a prime human interest piece with enough creation and unique identity to stir inspiration in the readers. I enjoyed the movie that went along with the article because it gives the readers to really witness the Metropolis II project in action.

    I love the video honestly, I don't think I can emphasize it enough, becuase it gets the art in action which really brings the idea around it to life. It depicts the real world in the sense that everyone relies on driving as a means of transportation so much that basically the entire world is backed up in a traffic jam. Zooming cars that speed through the tunnels and highways of the Metropolis II design illustrates the slow and fast life of the world through the fast lanes of the road.

  8. I think the article has a wider audience than art lovers because the work itself is more easily understood and accessible to the masses, like Burden said in the story. The title itself, "Speedy Toy Cars",I think triggers memories of childhood and brings in more readers because it focuses on the unique nature of the piece, not Burden.

    The video was a great addition to the story because it capture the spirit of the piece. I actually liked that it had a lot of long takes without the artist speaking because it gave made me take the time to really watch the cars move. That gives me the feeling of seeing it in the gallery, just being hypnotized by the city and the movement.