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Subject: Sol Lewitt Wall Drawing

Sol Lewitt Wall Drawing

From: Mark Clarke <mark<-a>
Date: Monday, August 11, 2008
Chantal Bernicky <bernickyc [at] carnegiemuseums__org> writes

>A large Wall Drawing by Sol Lewitt was installed in 1986 and
>repainted in 2007 at the Carnegie Museum of Art. Serious cracks in
>the drywall substrate have developed with time and seem to have been
>made worse by the 2007 repainting. The paint, priming layers,
>drywall and joint compound are severely delaminating at the cracked
>areas and our attempts to control the situation have been
>unsuccessful so far.

This is an interesting post which goes to the heart of what are
conservators trying to achieve.

*Why* is this drawing being conserved?

I may be wrong or missing something here, and I am not the curator
of this example, and it is not my place to criticise the decision to
restore it, but my understanding of Sol Lewitt's wall drawings was
always that he rejected the idea that these were 'original'
works--rather, the art work consists of a set of detailed
instructions for making the drawings. They were then made, to
specification, by a team of technicians, assistants, whoever, but
not by the artist.

Surely it misses the point to restore it? Rather than wasting
valuable conservator time here, the thing could (or indeed, should)
simply be done again by a gang of art students, or decorators.

Just a thought.

Mark Clarke
University of Amsterdam

                  Conservation DistList Instance 22:10
                 Distributed: Thursday, August 14, 2008
                       Message Id: cdl-22-10-001
Received on Monday, 11 August, 2008

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