the process is the artwork

The Consummate Mask of Rock

The Consummate Mask of Rock (Excerpt)
Bruce Nauman

1.  This is my mask of fidelity to truth and life.
2.  This is to cover the mask of pain and desire.
3.  This is to mask the cover of need for human companionship.
4.  This is to mask the cover.
5.  This is to cover the mask.
6.  This is the need of cover.
7.  This is the need of a mask.
8.  This is the mask of cover of need.
9.  Nothing and no
9.  No thing and no mask can cover the lack, alas.
10. Lack after nothing before cover revoked.
11. Lack before cover
paper covers rock
rock breaks mask
alas, alack.
12. Nothing to cover
13. This is the
13. This is the mask to cover my infidelity to truth.
13. This is the mask to cover my infidelity to truth.
(This is my cover.)
14. This is the need for pain that contorts my mask conveying the message of truth and fidelity to life.
15. This is the truth that distorts my need for human companionship.
16. This is the distortion of truth masked by my painful need.
17. This is the mask of my painful need distressed by truth and human companionship.
18. This is my painless mask that fails to touch my face but floats before the surface of my skin my eyes my
teeth my tongue.
19. Desire is my mask.
(Musk of desire)
20. Rescind desire
cover revoked
desire revoked
cover rescinded.

(This piece forms one part of the installation The Consummate Mask of Rock, a series of sixteen limestone cubes, arranged in paired configurations on the floor of a gallery. By American artist Bruce Nauman, 1975)

One response

  1. Pingback: A life measured in tea towels: Jonathan Monk and the art that freezes time |

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