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Felix Gonzalez-Torres [Hardcover]

Nancy Spector , Felix Gonzalez-Torres

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Book Description

May 1 2007
In April 2006, the Department of State announced that the late Cuban-born conceptual artist Felix Gonzalez-Torres would represent the United States at the 2007 Venice Biennale (June 1-November 21). This much sought-after and long-out-of-print volume, reissued by the Guggenheim Museum for the occasion, was originally published to accompany the artist's solo exhibition at the Museum in 1995, one year before his untimely death at the age of 38. Gonzalez-Torres wanted a readable book, not a catalogue per se--something, he said, that one could take to the beach. Pleasure was an integral part of his art (and his life). While he understood that art was innately political and, by necessity, a vehicle for cultural criticism, he believed that social critique and enjoyment were not, by any means, mutually exclusive. For Gonzalez-Torres, beauty was a tool for seduction and a means of contestation.
Written by Nancy Spector in close consultation with the artist and reflecting and expanding upon his ideas at the time, Felix Gonzalez-Torres presents a thematic overview of the artist's rich, many-layered practice, including the signature paper stacks, candy spills, light strings and billboards--and demonstrates his continued resonance today.
Nancy Spector is Chief Curator at the Guggenheim Museum, New York, and U.S. Commissioner to the 2007 Venice Biennale.

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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eloquent essay, sensitive design... June 2 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
This is perhaps the best monograph of any contemporary artist out there today. Spector's essay is reserved, lucid, and leaves room for the imagination of the reader. She balances her own ideas with numerous quotes by the artist, developing a partnership, a conversation. And the reproductions are just stunning. Reading this book is an intimate experience--it captures the spirit of Felix Gonzales Torres' work and life. It's the sort of book you'll carry with you everywhere and never know just why.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All Felix Gonzalez Torres July 11 2009
By Jose Maria - Published on Amazon.com
This small book, incredibly well edited, is the perfect way to enter into the extremely poetic and conceptual universe of Felix Gonzalez-Torres. The book were released months before his death in 1996, so he was in part responsible of its content and structure.

This reedition gives a great opportunity to know him better, to appreciate him better and to understand why the United States chosed him to represent the country at Venice's Bienalle of 2007, eleven years after his tragic final.

If you want to have just one book about him this one is the perfect choice.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars beautifully conceived book on his ideas Nov. 6 2007
By mdr - Published on Amazon.com
this is not a picture book but a book that discuss about felix ideas and thoughts. beautifully presented. small format. 6" x 8".
5.0 out of 5 stars Candy wrappers and light bulbs. June 15 2011
By Jan Dierckx - Published on Amazon.com
Felix Gonzales-Torres ( 1957-1996 ) was a many-sided artist.
He uses photographs, A1 sheets of paper stacked one upon the other, light bulbs ( white not
colored ) and even large amounts of candy wrappers with the same colour.

He has everything of a minimal art performer and yet the materials he uses ( albeit not at the same time ) and the different ways of displaying his art ( walls of buildings, corridors, rooms and staircases ) are so complex that it would be laughable to call his work 'minimal art'.
If it's necessary to give him a name I would call him an explorer. I believe it's the purpose of an artist to search what lies beyond the horizon.

I believe also in the value of abstract art. It emphasizes the essence of what we see: colour, shape and the different relations between one and the other.

Art with artificial light is the fascinating area between abstract painting and sculpture. Only a few artists so far, had the courage to walk that borderline and one of them was Gonzales-Torres.
His 'light-art' is simple ( He uses for instance only burning white lamps ). For example a large corridor in a modern building has several garlands of light against one wall, or strings of white lights attached to the ceiling and pouring down like rain to the floor to form a pool of light.

If you want to know everything about this fascinating artist you should read this book.

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