Friday, 11 September 2015

Site Specific Facsimile Boxes at V&A

I think I've just discovered probably the most fun you can have in a museum.

I took about a dozen of made Facsimile Boxes to the V&A to release to the wild, their natural habitat. I found a place for each, somewhere near or like where the images were taken, and left them there.
It was brilliant, and totally covert, as I didn't want them to be immediately taken away by the guard people there. The blocky shapes of substance looked very much in the right place.

When I was looking for somewhere to leave them, it felt like I was casing the joint and about to steal something. How funny to feel like that when I am doing the opposite of stealing. I wonder if there is a word for that - I am not exactly donating, or giving, but surreptitiously, covertly sneaking things in.
It raises an experience of museum and gallery policy issues - art students are forever sneaking little publications into gallery bookshops - apparently.

During my degree at Middlesex, we had to do a group exercise - seven of us did a big joint painting, which was actually a bit rubbish, cut it up, then wore it in Tate Modern, We walked around, sometimes lining up and thus reconstructing the painting.

Access to exhibition spaces, participation in cultural spaces. Decisions, permissions and criteria about what is collected by museums and exhibited in galleries.

So I have left the Facsimile boxes in situ, some more obviously than others. Perhaps I will go back in a few days and see if any remain. In the meantime, my site specific installation is currently in exhibition at the V&A.

What will happen to them. Perhaps they will all be binned tonight. Perhaps someone will find one and feel like they are stealing from the V&A when they sneak it into their bag. Perhaps a couple might remain for a long time.

11th September 2015

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