Ant Farm 1968-1978

Main Gallery Jun 5–Aug 14, 2004

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Ant Farm 1968-1978
Jun 5–Aug 14, 2004





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Ant Farm 1968-1978 (detail), 2004

Ant Farm 1968-1978 marked the first major museum retrospective of the Ant Farm collective’s underground architecture, video, performance, and installation. Committed to working outside traditional systems, core members Doug Michels, Chip Lord, and Curtis Schreier riffed off, puckishly chided, and embraced themes of contemporary pop culture–especially cars, space exploration, and the future–in a way that presaged the work of many later artists and radical thinkers. Ant Farm was responsible for such iconic works as Cadillac Ranch (1974), a modern Stonehenge of ten mid-century Cadillacs buried nose down, and Media Burn (July 4, 1975), in which artist-dummies Michels and Schreier drove the Phantom Dream Car, a customized 1959 Cadillac convertible, through a wall of flaming televisions. The exhibition included the ICE-9 inflatable, a visual timeline of the collective, blueprints, publications, drawings, collages, architectural models, illustrative video clips, and a video retrospective from the Pacific Film Archive, as well as other documentary material and ephemera.