Bruce Conner, TAKE TWO, D.H.O.M.S., VOL. 1, 1973/2001

Bruce Conner, TAKE TWO, D.H.O.M.S., VOL. 1 (detail), 1973/2001. Portfolio of 8 etchings. Purchased, the Marie-Louise and Samuel R. Rosenthal Fund.

Bruce Conner, TAKE TWO, D.H.O.M.S., VOL. 1, 1973/2001

Bruce Conner was a multi-media artist in the Man Ray strain, as interested in artistic identity as in artistic production, though produce he certainly did. Consumerism and its commodities — especially of the acquired, wrecked, and discarded variety — were of particular use in his collages and assemblages, which he first began exhibiting in 1959. About this time he began sourcing 19th-century wood engravings for a group of collages which he, ever willing to erase himself in pursuit of his project, publicly attributed to the American actor Dennis Hopper.

These collages, then in obscurity due to their purposeful misattribution (and his dealer's unwillingness to market them under a co-opted famous name), became in the late 60s the visual source for a group of 26 etchings bound in three volumes and titled THE DENNIS HOPPER ONE MAN SHOW VOLUMES I-III. (Conner decreed that his titles were always to be printed in all caps.)

Never happy with the quality of the first volume and employing both the experience gained with the later two and the aid of San Francisco printer Kay Bradner, Conner reprinted volume I in 2001, published by I.C. Editions, New York.