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Art Anecdotes : Carl Andre & Anna Mendieta

Through ART ANECDOTES, Art From Us brings you funny, heart-warming and sometimes heartbreaking stories that shape Artists and their work. Today we look at the story of Carl Andre & Anna Mendieta.

Art From Us and Divvya Nirula bring to you a curated collection of Art related events, from suspected murder, to love affairs, to grand theft and curious cases of creation through ART ANECDOTES. Join us on this fun-filled ride of exploring and reliving these art-tales.

The art world was shocked with the death of Anan Medieta, more so the mysterious circumstances. There were no known significant eventsthat led to the incident, except its violent nature.

Young Up Coming Artists

Ana Mendieta was a talented young artist from Cuba. She did performance pieces, video work in Cuba, Mexico, Italy and the US. The autobiographical nature of her work was due to her own pre occupation with her own displacement, identity and , feminism and violence.

Undoubtedly her work disturbed many for the nature of her content but it was definitely avant guard art.

Carl Andre was a sculptural artist, who had made a name for himself and steadily making a place for himself in the art space. His work is a part of several esteemed collections and museums.

The Incident

On September 1985 Ana Mendieta fell from her apartment that as on the 34th floor of her Mercer street apartment. Her body fell with a thud and landed above a 24 hour delicatessen.  Prior to her fall neighbours had said that they had heard the couple argue furiously.

Carl was charged with second-degree murder but he was acquitted soon after for the lack of supporting evidence. There were scratch marks on his face and arms.  Andre’s lawyer described the death as a possible suicide or an accident. This was based on Carl’s statement that she had gone to her room – never to return. He was aquitted based on reasonable doubt.

The Argument

Friends of Ana defended the theory that she was most certainly murdered and thrown off her ledge as she was not depressive and she was scared of heights. Climbing a window was not something that she would do. Carl maintained that they were both highly creative and were argue over the representation that they had in the public.

The acquittal caused a serious uproar amongst feminists. And it remains controversial till this day. They fought for Ana’s rights long after she was gone, but there was no progress made in the case. Carl walks a fee man.

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