Updated: Oct 10, 2018
With her piece 'My Bed' (1998) Tracy Emin used the concept of the readymade sculpture/installation to accurately portray the harsh realities of modern life. After having a mental breakdown and spending four days in bed semi unconscious, drinking sleeping and smoking, Emin finally got out of bed had some water and went back and looked at what her life had become. Emin has described the bed as looking at the absolute mess and decay of her life. Along with the bed itself and its yellowing sheets there are condoms, a tampon, a pregnancy test, discarded knickers and a lot of vodka bottles, the guardian described the piece as a violent mess of sex and death. Many have described Emins bed as a piece purely created for shock factor however I believe that the piece reflects the human experience in its most raw form. Emin was nominated for The Turner Prize in 1999 and the extensive media coverage of the piece made the exhibition visitor record increase to a record 140,000, with an average of 2,000 visitors a day which just shows the impact the piece had on not only the art world but the general public. The aspects of Tracey Emin’s work that i would like to take inspiration from is the intense sense of personal narrative that is prevalent throughout her work not only the piece in question. Along with her use of the readymade which i believe makes the concept or message of a piece more impactfull than if Emin had painted her bed.