Understanding 11 Great Artists through the Instructions They Left Behind
Art Business

Understanding 11 Great Artists through the Instructions They Left Behind

Art has the power to mystify. You’ve experienced it if you’ve ever walked up to an artwork, stopped, and thought, “ How did they do that?” Such an encounter can leave you wishing for the artist’s instructions on how the artwork was planned out, fabricated, or performed. Actually, those instructions exist, and some are even considered artworks in their own right. “Instruction drawings,” as they’ve been called, are preparatory sketches and notes; they might even be the sole remnants of a work that an artist dreamt up, but never realized. Earlier this year, the Museum of Modern Art received a gift of 800 works from the Gilbert B. and Lila Silverman Instruction Drawing Collection, including a preparatory drawing for Roy Lichtenstein ’s sculpture Head of Girl (1964), plans for Carolee Schneemann ’s iconic performance Meat Joy (1964), and diagrams outlining how Donald Judd ’s stacks and Robert Rauschenberg ’s white paintings should be created. Though they’re not exactly formulas to understanding artists’ genius feats, they do offer clues into the artist’s mind. “They really bring you back to the studio—the making of the work,” noted Christophe Cherix, MoMA’s chief curator of drawings and prints. “And that’s why they are […]

Tags

OrangeniusInc Tweets