Friday, August 14, 2009

Art on the back of a donkey?

Another artist friend of ours produces work that doesn't have the normal mode of output. There are no paintings, rarely any drawings, and often the art only lasts for a moment. Light and sound, and public space are his materials, and he orchestrates the most alchemically wondrous moments, fragments, and sometimes journeys with his 'pieces'. This is contemporary art, just outside the confines of the "Gallery". Michael's work is always an EVENT: fun to attend and provocative, always poking thorns in the sides of the art intelligentsia. His work always seems to question the very nature of art itself.

And I smiled as I read his email to me today, and am sort of surprised, but sort of not surprised, to hear that his latest installation is a witty and naughty thought. He has made himself a mobile gallery, an equine Institute no less, and is taking his art to the people, on the back of a donkey! Check out their manifesto.


  1. there is something about the size of the carriage that makes me worry about the donkey. Love the hanging screens though...

  2. You have a point Ana. I wonder if the art-load is considerably less than their usual pay-load? I know Michae pays his 'talent' well. But there are certainly issues of exploitation at play. One of his recent works in China was called "Follow". Michael asked Chinese citizens to walk with him all day as he went about his normal activities. He paid them a standard day's wage. He took some stills of his mob of 40 or so 'followers'. What he found astonishing was that at times the group swelled to over 100. His intent was to, among other things, observe the conditions of public space. Fascinating.