In the mid-1970s, the Icelandic artist Hreinn Fridfinnsson placed an advert in a Dutch art magazine asking people to send him their secrets. By posing as a collector of secrets, the artist would, he thought, allay suspicions that he had any ulterior motive in using or revealing privileged information that might come his way. The offer still stands, though to this day he has had no replies. Unless, that is, he is lying, and covering up for all the secrets he has collected.

It is like something from a novel by José Saramago, or an urban myth or rumour. The secret, Fridfinnsson may be telling us, is that there isn’t one. His art, on the other hand, is an invitation to dream that there might be.

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