b. 1974, Hazelton, Pennsylvania, USA
Levine appropriates works by influential artists, ranging from Vincent van Gogh to American photographer Walker Evans, and makes them her own. By presenting her photographs of reproductions of famous works or remaking iconic sculptures in new materials, she questions the definition of an artist and the significance we attribute to originality and the ownership of ideas. Fountain (Buddha) was made in the likeness of Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain (1917), arguably one of the most important works of art made during the 20th century, and one that eventually threw the institution of fine art and exhibitions into spasms. By ‘claiming’ the urinal and remaking it in a luxurious ‘high art’ material, Levine challenges Duchamp’s radical gesture of presenting such a lowly object in a fine art context.