Average Groucho: Engorged

2008, Forde Espace d’art contemporain, Geneva

This project is a performance disguised as an art object. Before arriving in Geneva to install my solo show, I sent information to the gallery giving them a detailed description of the piece that I would be showing. The single work in the show was a large-scale sculpture. The sculpture, given its size, had to be shipped in several crates. The gallery was instructed on how to unpack the artwork, assemble it and were given details about it’s fabrication, weight, dimensions, shape, etc… and were asked to document the process of installation. The one aspect of the sculpture that made this complicated for the gallery was its invisibility. The sculpture was invisible. The sculpture was made visible during the exhibition by three separate methods:

1) A computer rendered and generated shadow cast by the sculpture accomplished by a hidden HD video projector to create a precise, accurate and realistic shadow of the large sculpture that, like a shadow, moved throughout the day as the light changed in the exhibition space.

2) Three categories of local “performers” hired to interact with the sculpture. During the entire duration of the exhibition, for all open hours, there was always one of each category in the space with the sculpture:

-Performers trained in mime technique who physically interacted with the work (examining it, trying to touch it, walking around it, etc…) making apparent to the other visitors the size and shape of the sculpture.

-Art students who made sketches of the sculpture, making it apparent to the other visitors the color, form and size of the sculpture.

-Actors who discussed and described the sculpture for other visitors to overhear and took digital photos of the sculpture for visitors to perhaps get a glimpse of (we loaded photo-shopped images of the sculpture installed in the space into the actor’s camera) making it apparent to the other visitors the beauty and magnificence of the sculpture.

3) Lastly, the gallery employee or attendant who worked in the gallery during my exhibition was given specific instructions on how to answer every question imaginable while maintaining that the sculpture was indeed there.

All involved, whether hired “performers”, gallery employees or the curator of the show had to

aggressively assert that there was in fact a sculpture there and they could see it there, clearly


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