Statement Object: Boxes for Meaningless Work

May 5, 2011 § Leave a comment

Walter de Maria, “Boxes for Meaningless Work”

“I will have built two small boxes. I put small things in the boxes. A sign explains the boxes to anyone who should approach them. It says “Meaningless work boxes.” Throw all of the things into one box, then throw all of the things into the other.  Back and forth, back and forth. Do this for as long as you like. What do you feel? Yourself? The Box? The Things? Remember this doesn’t mean anything.” March 1960

See also de Maria’s essay “Meaningless Work:”

“Meaningless work is obviously the most important and significant art form today. The aesthetic feeling given by meaningless work cannot be described exactly because it varies with each individual doing the work. Meaningless work is honest. Meaningless work will be enjoyed and hated by intellectuals—though they should understand it. Meaningless work cannot be sold in art galleries or win prizes in museums—though old fashioned records of meaningless work (most of all paintings) do partake in these indignities.”

[read more….]

both originally published in An Anthology of Chance Operations, La Monte Young, ed., Heiner Friedrich, New York, 1970

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