National Gallery of Australia | Audio Tour | The National Sculpture Prize and Exhibition 2005

Tony SCHWENSEN, Monument to progressing thought (after Homer Simpson) 2003



Monument to progressing thought (after Homer Simpson) is an attempt to locate what I regard as the most significant trajectory of sculptural investigation of the twentieth century, the ready-made, within the then contemporary debate surrounding the proposition to investigate the reversing of Australia’s rivers to irrigate the inland. The sheer absurdity of this knee-jerk suggestion was instantly reminiscent of something that Homer Simpson would propose and attempt to carry out, and certainly reminded me of The Simpsons episode where Homer’s failed attempt to build a BBQ is diagnosed/discovered as outsider art. His final artwork is flooding his town to make a new magical Venice, which is loved and enjoyed by all. Monument to progressing thought (after Homer Simpson) is my proposition to sculpturally commemorate what might have been had this reversal of the rivers proposition been allowed to develop just a little further. It is not difficult to imagine welfare recipients being mutually obliged to wheel barrow-