on dan flavin


Flavin enjoyed what he thought of as the paradox of the commonplace: the everyday industrial hardware itself, and the incidental, uncontrollable spread of the light. He liked the shadows cast by the housings against the wall, the mixing and reflections and variety of effects the light performed as it bounced off walls, as the colours mingled, as it played games with the rods and cones of the viewer’s eyes. But what Flavin did was not Op art, nor Pop art, nor what came to be called minimalism. He didn’t believe in “minimal art” in any case, saying that he always thought “people to whom it was applied were making a simple and constructive change, and mostly in terms of themselves”. Pressed on what he thought of his friend Donald Judd’s seminal essay Specific Objects, which dealt with the very issues and ideas Flavin’s art was seen as exemplifying, he claimed he had never properly read it.

more from The Guardian here.