21 April 2008 / Utrecht
Would you like to participate in an artistic experience? A painted steel object from Ricardo Basbaum’s project NBP is hosted at a community garden by Marian Tang, who will document how it is used over the duration of the project.
The project functions around an enameled steel object, which is offered to be taken home by the participant, who will have one month to realize an “artistic experience” with it. The documentation, including videos, photos, objects, statements, etc., is made public through the website, but also by means of a book and exhibition. More than 100 participants (some of them were groups or institutions) have produced several “experiences” and sent extensive and very interesting documentation. The object itself, and sometimes related material as posters or leaflets, has circulated through several cities, in Latin America, Africa and Europe. It is clearly a piece of work in progress, as it finds its way in the very process of being developed and it virtually has no end at all, since its continuity does not depend on its author lifetime (the object is not conceived as an unique original as one or several new objects can be produced every time it is needed). Authorship is turned into a problem, providing a way of including the participant as a decisive contributor. Actually, without the participants the work exists only as a potential project – object, diagrams, leaflets – therefore their effective collaboration through accepting to plan and execute an artistic experience is decisive. It is clearly a situation of shared authorship, where the participant is fully responsible for decisions of what and how to do it in terms of the proposed experience and its records.
– Ricardo Basbaum