“Molotov Cocktail Fine Arts Week” continues with these two artworks both from 2008, each involving a threesome of Champagne bottles, made into Molotov cocktails.
1. Riiko Sakkinen’s “LVMH Molotov Cocktails”
Sakkinen has done a number of Molotov-related bottle sculptures, including one of the Coca-cola bottles we featured yesterday and a “Molotov Six-pack” of Heineken beer. Regarding the “LVMH Molotov Cocktails,” Sakkinen writes:
CHAMPAGNE MOLOTOV COCKTAILS
…we celebrated and had three bottles of champagne – I needed the bottles for my LVMH Molotov Cocktails. Amel complained that she doesn’t like Moet & Chandon and I said that we can then just throw the content away, I just needed the empty bottles.
LOW-END BRAND JELLY FOR CAPITALISTS
On Monday, my last day in Berlin, we tried to find solutions for transporting the LVMH Molotov cocktails to the collectors. One idea was to replace the liquid (it’s not gasoline but the cheapest brandy from Lidl) with a jelly but we are not Ferran Adrià and we weren’t able to produce anything solid with Dr. Oetker gelatin powders. Actually, the incendiary weapons are not sold but they appeared in Frankfurter Allgemeine, a conservative right-wing German national newspaper and I’m sure that now many repulsive Teuton capitalists want to buy the cool and subversive art works.
2. R. Lloyd Ming’s “Chinese Molotov Cocktails”
Like Sakkinen, Ming also shows ambivalence about consuming the contents of the Champagne bottles prior to making his sculpture. From his press release:
“It was fun making that sculpture,” says artist R. Lloyd Ming. “To collect the bottles I started a ritual at my studio. Each time I sold a work my assistants and I would open a bottle of Dom Perignon champagne to celebrate; however the meaning behind the sculpture is far from being a celebratory one.” …The sculpture is called ‘Chinese Molotov Cocktails’ and it refers to the political conflict between China and Tibet. “The work reminds us that the Chinese Government is rich and Tibet is poor,” says Ming. “It makes us consider that China’s government is so big and wealthy, that there is little that Tibet can do to get the rights and freedom they long for. The red, white and blue prayer flags used as a fuse, represent American consumerism which has helped to make China rich.”
While using luxury beverage bottles to make a revolutionary Molotov Cocktail follows a certain ironic/iconic logic as a comment on economic inequality, Champagne bottles are apparently a poor choice for a functioning fire bomb. Something about the glass being too thick to reliably break when thrown. Not that I’m advocating that.