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Stone is for ever

28 Aug 2017 Jan van der Kleijn

“The world is full of more or less interesting objects, I do not wish to add any more” – Douglas Huebler

Around the late 1990’s I recall swimming in the De SainteCroix lake in France. My memory tells me the shore was surrounded by soft grey flat shaped stones that fitted perfectly in the palm of my hand, they looked as if they were made for ricocheting on the still water. It was an art to find the perfect stone for this activity. The artist Hans Haacke decided to do the same. Afterwards he took a photograph of the action and called it From here to there. The photograph represented his experience, underlining it with its title. 

This essay is an investigation of artists that create an experience which is documented. The artists that observe the world and emphasize what already exists in nature, the city and everything in-between. Documentation can take on various roles, from mediating an experience through a photograph or a text towards the creation of an unmediated experience in which the artist invites the audience to participate through the use of guides, maps or invitations – to eventually take control of the experience by controlling the media output as much as possible, that can possibly both unintentionally lead to new work by other artists.

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