Claes OldenburgAmerican, born Sweden (Stockholm, Sweden, 1929)
In the winter of 1961-62, Oldenburg opened the Store, also known as the Ray Gun Manufacturing Co., which he set up in an actual storefront on East Second Street in New York. A combination of exhibition, performance, and garage sale, the Store offered for purchase various items — including candy bars, a bridal mannequin, cakes, and Blue Legs — all fashioned out of painted plaster over chicken wire. The artist could replenish the stock, if necessary, by simply making more items in the studio portion of the space in the rear.
Oldenburg's replicated consumer goods could never, with their crude surfaces and straight-from-the-can paint application, pass for the real thing. His radical assertion, however, was that such foodstuffs, clothing, and miscellany viable subjects for art.