Felix Gonzalez-Torres

Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s fortune cookie piece to pop up in 1,000 locations worldwide

“Writers, curators, artists and friends of Felix’s” will be asked to take part in participatory work

Various installations of Felix Gonzalez-Torres's "Untitled" (Fortune Cookie Corner) (1990)

A thousand people are to be asked to install Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s fortune cookie piece—“Untitled” (Fortune Cookie Corner) (1990)—in locations of their choosing as part of the largest ever project dedicated to the late Cuban-American conceptualist. The global initiative is due to run from 25 May to 5 July. The work comprises a pile of fortune cookies that can be consumed by viewers of the work; the pile is replenished once during the run, resulting again in a complete heap.

Gonzalez-Torres’s celebrated Candy installations reflect the artist’s thoughts around renewal and regeneration. According to a project statement: “Like many of Gonzalez-Torres’s works, including his candy works and paper stacks, “Untitled” (Fortune Cookie Corner) addresses the capacity for immortality through regeneration, heightened by the experience of loss within these works.”

Andrea Rosen Gallery and David Zwirner gallery, which co-represent the estate of Gonzalez-Torres, will send out invites to 1,000 participants, which “invite you and 999 other diverse invitees, to become an active part of the total ‘site’ of an expansive physical exhibition”.

A spokeswoman for David Zwirner says: “The invited participants are a diverse but specific international group that includes writers, curators, artists, colleagues, friends of people involved in the projects and friends of Felix’s, people who have posted Felix’s work on Instagram. They are not all connected to the art world.”

The work is on loan from an unnamed private collection while “the curator and representative of the authorised borrower for this exhibition is Andrea Rosen”; the curator (Rosen) sets the particular parameters.

For instance, “each ‘place’ will source and choose the fortune cookies that they use. Gonzalez-Torres stated that whenever possible, fortune cookies with optimistic fortunes should be used.” Each “place” will choose the number of units—between 240 and 1,000 fortune cookies—for the installation. On 14 June, halfway through the exhibition, each “place” will “regenerate” its pile back to the amount of fortune cookies initially used to build the structure.

Each participant is required to document the project, touching on aspects such as the installation process and people’s reactions; the research will be posted on the Zwirner and Rosen gallery websites. The project marks the launch of a new website for the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation on 23 May, which will show updated photographic documentation of the artist’s works sited at various locations.