Don't let Lawerence Weiner's work fool you. Though he usually refers to the medium of his pieces as "language and the materials referred to," his work is more than meets the eye. Weiner, still one of the most recognizable names in conceptual art, creates work that transcends its minimal material composition to heady, experiential, and emotional worlds. In that spirit, Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM) has unveiled a new work by the artist, Out of Sight. Twisting Weiner's artfully composed phrases in a hopscotch graphic, the piece addresses the "gamification" of learning in a museum context.
Inviting viewers to participate in its narrative, Out of Sight takes them on a journey of self-actualization. As they travel along the hopscotch squares, the artist puts the creative process in their hands. They perform an active role in bringing the work to life with each new interpretation of phrases and commands such as “Spit into the wind, hope for the best,” “The destination is straight on,” and “Assuming a position.”
"Out of Sight inspires audiences from all walks of life to consider visualization, awareness, and realizing life goals as part of this unique work of art," says Larry Warsh, PAMM's guest curator and collaborator. "I just wish Lawrence was here to see this... he is so brilliant...”
From Out of Sight (2016).
Courtesy of the artist © 2016 Lawrence Weiner / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
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As one of the founders of postminimalism conceptual art, Weiner was a fixture of the 1960s New York art scene along with contemporaries Sol LeWitt, Robert Barry, and others. In 1968, when LeWitt published his manifesto, Paragraphs on Conceptual Art, Weiner was inspired to outline his creative tenets in three short statements: The artist may construct the piece; the piece may be fabricated; the piece need not be built. Thus he emphasized idea over execution and authorship, insisting that once conceived, an art object was fully realized.
The current multivenue project will launch with bilingual versions at PAMM, to run concurrently with an identical exhibit at the the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia. The piece will then travel to Chicago, Shanghai, Pittsburgh, and New York, with English, Spanish, and Chinese versions.
Out of Sight
Through May 28 at Pérez Art Museum Miami , 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami. Visit pamm.org.