Trabajo forzado [Forced Labor]
5 cm x 110 cm x 26 cm (1 15/16 in. x 43 5/16 in. x 10 1/4 in.)
(Buenos Aires, 1941 - )
Latin America, Argentinean
Medium and Support:
Shelf, plastic figure, mulch
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, Gift of Judy S. and Charles W. Tate, 2005
A major figure in the development of Conceptual art since the 1960s, Porter continues to produce work with a unique blend of humor and literary or philosophical references. In Trabajo forzado, a tiny figure seems to be engaged in the monumental task of moving a large amount of mulch onto the floor. Given the sizes of the figure and pile, the little man must have been hard at work for a very long time. Unlike Camnitzer, Porter avoids severity and chooses to address injustice in a playful and absurd fashion. Through the use of humor, she is able to call attention to the plight of the ordinary person, long-standing social inequalities, and the punishingly hard nature of continuous physical labor.