“You’re in a chair, in the sky!” I needed a laugh today and found one thanks to this great clip of Louis CK from Conan O’Brian via Kevin Kelly. (Also: a little free wisdom from Conan here via 37signals—I thought the same thing when I read this article in NYT.)
I was recently reminded of this stellar article by David Robbins for Artforum in 2004 entitled “Concrete Comedy: A Primer.” It’s pretty much all quotable but here’s a taste: “By 1920 or so, then, the two foundations of concrete comedy have been established. From the comedian Karl Valentin we get the idea of an invented, theatricalized context. Objects and gestures of the Valentinian persuasion stand on their own merits as comedy and infer their own comedic context. Artifacts created and gestures enacted by figures such as Jack Benny, Robert Benchley, the Ramones, Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters, David Letterman and Jeffrey Vallance are appropriately placed in this category. Of equal weight, import, and value are comic actions that explicitly recognize, engage, or activate context, including the art context. Use of context as a material is a possibility derived from the example of Marcel Duchamp. The comedic output of Marcel Broodthaers, Andy Kaufman, Maurizio Cattelan, and others fall into this category.” Any list that mixes Jack Benny and Andy Kaufman with Duchamp and Broodthaers is unquestionably onto something.