Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Ben Patterson | Instruction No. 2 (Please Wash Your Face)

Ben Patterson
Instruction No. 2 (Please Wash Your Face)
New York City, USA: Fluxus, 1964
10 x 12 x 1.5 cm.
Edition size unknown

"Contained in a small plastic box was a paper towel, a small bar of soap, and the instruction 'Please wash your face,'" Patterson explained in the lead up to a 2011 performance of the work at New York's Third Streaming project space. "As far as I know, this will be the first performance of the piece with total audience participation. People will come to the stage — or optionally, to the bathroom — and wash their face. Afterward, there will be a moderated discussion on the subject: 'How is washing your face in public a work of art?'"

Fluxus advertised Instruction No. 2 as early as the fourth issue of the Fluxus newspaper (cc. fiVe ThReE), in 1964. It was made available both as an individual work (selling for $3.00) or as part of various Fluxkits. All consisted of a plastic box (typically white but sometimes clear) with the same George Maciunas designed label.  The paper towels were rubber stamped with the instructions/subtitle.

Instruction No. 1 - a series of dance instructions - was intended for publication through Fluxus, but never produced.

No comments:

Post a Comment