Victor Burgin
Lei-feng 1973–4

Artwork details

Victor Burgin born 1941
Date 1973–4
Medium 9 photographs, gelatin silver prints on paper
Dimensions Image: 406 x 508 mm

frame: 9 frames, each 686 x 762 x 21mm
Acquisition Purchased 1974

Display caption

Advertising images have appealed to Burgin because they 'are used... deliberately in the service of ideology'. He has presented the photographs here not as a picture of real life but rather as a carefully coded sign, equivalent to written language. Each panel in this work shows the same image drawn from an advertisement for sherry. Burgin uses this to indicate an aspect of bourgeois ideology; material success is presented as something to aspire to. Burgin deliberately opposes this view of the world by including a précis of a Maoist parable about the socialist worker, Lei-Feng. In addition, Burgin includes a commentary in each panel where he analyses the underlying meaning of image and text.

September 2004

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