Pantone Pen Print
22 September – 30 October 2006
Imagine an artwork deliberately structured to produce random prints with no control over the way they look. Imagine the audience is expected to buy these random prints without knowing what they actually look like.
The audience had to choose a print edition number between 1 and 500 based on an abstract judgment of how many sheets would ultimately be included within the edition, and what they could afford to pay. The sheet number corresponds to the amount the audience would pay for the print, resulting in prints sold from £1 to a potential £500.
It was a game, and the audience played. All prints were sold. The ink reached sheet 73. The rest of the white stack were not marked. If you had chosen number 100 you would have lost your betting and print. On the other hand number 1 to 73 were in for the game. They were going like hot cakes! The audience sometimes looked excited without knowing why, and they bought the work, to risk, to be surprised, to participate.
However, the most interesting point was not the surprise later at home when they opened the tube where the print was handed in and finally saw what they bought at the gallery. What really mattered was the collective excitement in the gallery space and the decision to believe in something they could not see. Almost like a transcendental experience. The money was just part of it.