Felix Gonzalez-Torres artwork “Untitled” (Portrait of Ross in LA) is a figurative symbol of his spouse who died from an AIDS-related disease in the early ’91. This artwork is a homosexual piece because Ross was a man (Gonzalez-Torres, 1991). In this regard, Gonzalez-Torres made it from pieces of candy in which the viewers are expected to grab some as a representation of Ross’ weight loss towards his death. The message of the piece is to illustrate the reflective meditations on love and loss of loved ones through tragic means (Gonzalez-Torres, 1991). Alternatively, Robert Gober’s piece used installations that manifested in gender roles through the pressures and constraints of social requirements (Gober, 1993). The central portrayal of the installations is to influence the romantic vision of the artist on the cultural expectations on different genders.
Considering this, the difference between Gonzalez-Torres and Gober’s artworks is that the message that tends to support different social values. For instance, Gonzalez-Torres’ influence was to honor his homosexual partner who died from AIDS-related disease, while Gober promotes gender roles in the societal contexts (Gober, 1993). This indicates that the pieces were oriented towards the promotion of different sexual and gender orientations. It is apparent that the two contemporary artists are using their platforms to inform the viewers of the true happenings in societies.
However, the artworks are the same in that they contain the societal messages that highlight the viewers on modern aspects (Gober, 1993). This implies that they use the artworks to represent their perspectives on gender orientation and sexual aspects present in their environments. The viewers interact and experience the artworks through the collection of the candy piles of Gonzalez-Torres’ piece. They interact with Gober’s piece by experiencing the pressures and constraints of the installations.
Gober, R. (1993). “Site-Specific installation at the Dia Centre for the Arts.” Dia Art Foundation.
New York. Retrieved from
Gonzalez-Torres, F. (1991). “Untitled (Portrait of Ross in L.A).” Guggenheim. Retrieved from
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