Hood Quarterly, summer 2003
Blue Saxophone (1992), a vibrant and highly characteristic watercolor by Claes Oldenburg (born 1929), is the thirteenth work by the renowned Swedish-born Pop artist to enter the Hood’s permanent collection. Oldenburg is perhaps best known today for the monumental public sculpture in which everyday objects, like the musical instrument depicted here, are subjected to comic distortions of scale and gesture. Oldenburg has taken great pleasure in scandalizing art world officials and the general public alike, once asserting “I am for an art that is political-erotical-mystical, that does something other than sit on its ass in a museum.”
Blue Saxophone is part of a dazzling group of contemporary graphic art works—including significant objects by Dorothea Rockburne, Renée Cox, Joe Zucker, and conceptual artists Komar and Melamid—given recently to the museum by Hugh J. Freund ’67.