Jo-Anne Balcaen


  • Photo of artwork by Jo-anne Balcaen

    Installation view, Galerie B-312, 2009

  • Photo of artwork by Jo-anne Balcaen


  • Photo of artwork by Jo-anne Balcaen

    Photo of original guitar pick

  • Photo of artwork by Jo-anne Balcaen

    Photo of accompanying text in English

  • Photo of artwork by Jo-anne Balcaen

    Photo of accompanying text in French

Concert Guitar Pick Rob Metallica

2008 Ink jet on paper, 71cm x 81 cm, and text panel, 21.5 cm x 27.5 cm

On August 16, 2008, I purchased a bass guitar pick on eBay that had allegedly been used by Rob Trujillo, bass player for the band Metallica. The pick, represented in a large format print, is subjected to a rigorous, clinical analysis in the form of a condition report, in French and English, on adjacent text panels. The report attempts to determine the origins of the numerous scratches and abrasions found on its surface, subsequently offering the hypothesis that the pick was not, in fact, used by the musician himself, thereby throwing into question the real provenance, and the fetishized nature, of the object. Doubters and fans alike are invited to see (and touch) the pick themselves by asking permission from the Gallery Director, who safeguards the pick (in a small plastic baggie) in his/her desk drawer during the course of the exhibition.

Exhibition history: Open Space, Victoria, BC (2008); Galerie B-312, Montréal (2009); Eastern Edge Gallery, St. John’s, NL (2011); Modern Fuel Gallery, Kingston, ON (2012)

Cette œuvre analyse la nature mythique de l’« aura » du musicien de rock et la capacité de celle-ci à se transférer de l’idole à un objet. Un médiator de guitare basse acheté sur eBay et censé avoir servi à Rob Trujillo, bassiste de Metallica, est soumis à une analyse clinique rigoureuse afin de déterminer les origines des abrasions de sa surface. Une hypothèse suggérant que le médiator pourrait, en fait, ne pas avoir été « utilisé » par le musicien lui-même, remet par conséquent en question la provenance et la valeur fétichiste de l’objet.

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