Part Two – Assignment 2: Plaster Surrogates

Look at Allan McCollum’s work Plaster Surrogates shown at the beginning of this chapter and explain its relationship to Modernist art and theory.

To address this question you should first familiarize yourself with the work by looking at the different ways it is displayed in a gallery. Also give due consideration to the title as well as the medium and the way the individual elements are formed. Key to understanding the work is the term ‘monochrome’ – in what ways have artists before McCollum produced monochromes.
Also consider what is meant by the distinction between a monochrome and a blank canvas. Some artists to look for: Kasimir Malevich, Alexandr Rodchenko, Barnett Newman, Ad Reinhardt, Robert Rauschenberg, Yves Klein, Robert Ryman, Agnes Martin and Allan McCollum.

Thierry de Duve’s essay ‘The Monochrome and the Blank Canvas’ is an important text though also a rather demanding one. (1500 words)


The void as a spatial experience for renewal of art


My final assignment essay as pdf file:



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