Saturday, January 24, 2009

Reading at On Kawara Installation

Yesterday, January 23 2009 from 4:05pm to 5:35pm EST, I read 436 numbers in English language, at the On Kawara exhibition, David Zwirner Gallery, 533 West 19th Street, New York, USA. Each number represented a year in the future. I read the even numbers representing each subsequent future year, from the year 47752 AD to the year 48624 AD. Sitting next to me was Robert Ayers, a performing artist, who was reading odd numbers. We were in a sound proof booth, a white box inside the white box of the gallery. Reading numbers ---that is using my voice to say a word without any emotional content--- was a meditative experience. I was focusing on the here and now, almost like recitating a mantra, trying to concentrate only on the reading of numbers, disregarding any external perceptual stimulus, such as the gallery visitors looking at us from the ouside of the booth and hearing us through speakers. The physical perceptual isolation of the booth was matched by the emotional isolation of the performed actions.