Mark

Kendell Carter
Mark
14-carat gold-plated brass and found object, 2006-07
13 x 29 x 1/4 inches
Museum purchase with funds from the Mark and Hilarie Moore Family Trust
2008.005

In Mark, Kendell Carter pulls together visual elements of street culture with the stylized nameplate necklace. Hung from the hook is a hooded sweatshirt, or “hoodie.” The nameplate necklace and hoodie can be seen as two aesthetic markers in the realm of hip-hop culture. Carter gives the nameplate a heightened level of glamour and design by enlarging and removing it from its everyday hip-hop context. Not only can Mark be seen as a name, it also can be understood for its vernacular meaning, “making a visible trace on an object.” In slang, mark can be synonymous with sucker, and in street culture, a graffiti tag is called a “mark.” Through this work, Carter reveals similarities of street art and high design, mashing up the aesthetic, cultural, and social qualities of these seemingly different worlds.