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The Concept and the Contemporary Significance of Ultramodern Time and Space in Robert Smithson's Work and Theory

Junghyun Kim 1

1홍익대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study has an object in view finding the contemporary significance about the Ultramoderne time and space which Robert Smithson had showed through his works and Entropy concept. The term, “entropy”, was reinterpreted in a broader way with multiple meanings as it is associated with such matter of value as the exhaustion of usable energy and production of wasteful garbage as a result in addition to its use in physics as digitalized disorder. At 1960s in the progress of switching from modernism to post-modernism, he became ahead of his times and criticised the modern time and space focusing on the positive advance. Robert Smithson was the avant-garde artist who projected this energy consumption of human being and mechanism of entropy in their works in a specific way. To achieve this, he presented a cosmic time, or ultra instant, which cannot return to a single vanishing point and is not fallen by simulacre space and gradual time, in skyscrapers filled with mirrors. Furthermore, the simultaneous ubiquity of existence and non-existence that he suggested through the dialectical convergence of <Site and Non-Site> is understood as a symptom that predicts contemporary art at the speed of light. His work reflects the attributes of post-modernism that ultimately change the existing recognition regarding entropy and embrace social problems by art.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.