Death, by Ben Vautier

On page 216 of Ben Vautier. Is everything art?

©2015 Museum Tinguely, Basel, Kehrer Verlag Heidelberg Berlin, authors, artists and photographers [and translator!]. ISBN 978-3-86828-649-6

In search since 1956 of a beautiful absolute, I was led in June 1960 to think and to write: Only death contains for its creator the reality of an absolute aesthetic. On the sole condition that the artist choose in death not a refuge or a solution to his troubles, but rather a creation. For by choosing to create his death, the artist destroys all notion of ugliness for him in the future.

In January 1961, I announced to the press (the newspaper “Le Patriote”) my intention of having myself crushed into a car-wing shape by a press at the Renault plant; or of getting myself flattened by a steamroller onto a canvas which, after death, would be varnished by my wife.

Ben Vautier French English Art Translation Translator Art History Museum Tinguely Basel