Thursday, January 21, 2010

Tino Sehgal

Mr. Sehgal, 31, who lives in Berlin, creates what he calls “staged situations”: interactive experiences that may not even initially declare themselves as works of art...
Part of the point is to free art from the glut of material overproduction. But Mr. Sehgal, unlike many performance artists, is not protesting the art market itself. His work is specifically conceived to function within the art world’s conventions: it is lent and exhibited, bought and sold. It is sold, in fact — now that Mr. Sehgal is becoming a star in Europe — for five-figure sums. The only stipulation is that his pieces cannot involve the transformation of any material, in any way. No written instructions, no bill of sale (purchases are conducted orally, in the presence of a notary), no catalogs and (to the dismay of photo editors in the art press) no pictures...
Mr. Sehgal’s work seems to revel in its own contradictions. It is ephemeral yet fixed; intangible yet expensive, because part of his concept is that his interpreters be fairly paid. It is created with extreme, even obsessive rigor, yet it is subject to change, as the only record exists in the minds of those who see it.





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