museum as public space

...A museum is a "public space," but only for those people who choose to be a museum public. A museum is a "simulated" public space; it's auto-directional and uni-functional, whereas a "real" public space is multi-directional and omni-functional. When you go to a railroad station, you go to catch a train; but, in the meantime, you might be browsing through a shop, or having a drink in a bar, or sitting in a lounge. When you go to a museum, on the other hand, all you are doing is going to the museum. In order to go to the museum, you have to be a museum-goer; you go to the museum in order to continue to be a museum-goer. What do museum-goers want? What are you doing here anyway?...

Vito Acconci [LINK]


art / writing / architecture

DG: The reason I was interested in being an artist, was because the people I knew who were artists all wanted to be writers. Dan Flavin wanted to be like James Joyce, Smithson wanted to be like Jorge Luis Borges, and also Sol LeWitt, although he wasn’t a writer, was fascinated by literature. It was a period of artists being interested in literature. Even Andy Warhol, who was dyslectic, became a writer. It was a generation of artist writers. Back to writing about architecture, I actually found art criticism very boring. Then I discovered Oppositions, this magazine that was edited by Peter Eisenman, founder of the New Yorkbased Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies. Some of the best writings were done by architects like Aldo Rossi’s writings about the city, or by Robert Venturi, and by architectural historians like Anthony Vidler or Kurt W. Forster.
UMB: I once asked some US-American architects why they are so profound in writing and the answer was, because USAmerican architects hardly have the opportunity to build.

DG: I also think those architects did a kind of self-education and part of it was visiting classical sites like in Italy...

Dan Graham with Ute Meta Bauer [ LINK ]

the simplistic reduction of white cube

DG: When I had my gallery, the John Daniels Gallery, the first show was around Christmas and I invited everybody who came into the gallery to put in works for the Christmas show. The person I felt closest to was Sol LeWitt, and Sol actually studied architecture at Syracuse University and worked for I. M.Pei. We also had the same favorite writer, Michel Butor, who was much more interesting to us than Robbe-Grillet. He has written a novel that took place in Northern England where the narrator was somehow stranded and couldn’t find his way around, so the city became a kind of labyrinth. It is called Passing Time and had a huge influence on Aldo Rossi as well as on Sol LeWitt and me. It was all about the city plan and I think my interest actually – from that novel – was the idea of art should be involved with the city plan and not with the white cube. At that time I thought that the white cube is a simplistic reduction...

Dan Graham with Ute Meta Bauer [ LINK ]


one year old!

My wall-intervention for the Leslie Center, Sync is On, turned one this February. An ongoing experiment on sensory architecture! Come visit at Dartmouth. Very thankful to Graziella Parati, Nisha Kommattam, and Sean Delmore, and who take care of it every day!

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