Exhibitions Fairs Books USA

Do try this at home

Instructions for do-it-yourself art have been collected by the curator Hans Ulrich Obrist

do it: the compendium

Here’s an idea for a work of art: “Revolve all the light pole lamps in a street facing up,” suggest Jennifer Allora and Guillermo Calzadilla. Kim Beom, on the other hand, would like you to fry your mobile phone: “Dip in batter, dredge in breadcrumbs, deep fry in oil, then serve on a plate with clear soy sauce.”

These instructions for do-it-yourself art, along with more than 200 others, have been collected by the curator Hans Ulrich Obrist over the past 20 years as part of “Do It!”, an exhibition in book form inspired by a conversation with the artists Christian Boltanski and Bertrand Lavier in 1993. “We wanted to defy the rules,” writes Obrist in the introduction to the anniversary edition. It is being launched this week with a show at the Socrates Sculpture Park, where performers will re-enact many of the instructions.

The book, published in conjunction with Independent Curators International, includes new contributions from Ai Weiwei, who offers guidance on “how to make a spray device to block a surveillance camera”, and Nicholas Hlobo, who asks an “ambitious curator [to] install a work of mine on the moon”.

Saturday, 11am, talk with Hans Ulrich Obrist at Burberry, 131 Spring Street; Sunday, 2pm-6pm, opening reception at Socrates Sculpture Park; Sunday, 2pm, book launch and signing at MoMA PS1

More from The Art Newspaper


Submit a comment

All comments are moderated. If you would like your comment to be approved, please use your real name, not a pseudonym. We ask for your email address in case we wish to contact you - it will not be made public and we do not use it for any other purpose.


Want to write a longer comment to this article? Email letters@theartnewspaper.com


Share this