Now in paperback, an updated edition of a visually stunning documentary record and critical account of Tehching Hsieh's epic performance works.
In the vibrant downtown Manhattan art scene of the late 1970s and early 1980s, the Taiwanese-American artist Tehching Hsieh made a series of extraordinary performance art works. Between September 1978 and July 1986, Hsieh realized five separate one-year-long performance pieces in which he conformed to simple but highly restrictive rules throughout each entire year.
Through the course of these lifeworks, Hsieh moved from a year of solitary confinement in a sealed cell to a year in which he punched a worker's time clock in his studio every hour on the hour to a year spent living without shelter in Manhattan to a year in which he was tied by an eight-foot rope to the artist Linda Montano and finally to a year of total abstention from all art activities and influences. In 1986 Hsieh announced that he would spend the next thirteen years making art but not showing it publicly. When this "final" lifework--an immense act of self-affirmation and self-erasure--came to a close at the turn of the millennium, he tersely and enigmatically said that during this time he had simply kept himself alive.
After years of near-invisibility, Hsieh collaborated with the British writer and curator Adrian Heathfield to create this meticulous and visually arresting documentary record of the complete body of Tehching Hsieh's performance projects from 1978 to 1999. This milestone volume is now available again, in a paperback edition featuring the full text and all the illustrations in the hardcover, with an updated list of Hsieh's exhibitions.
Copublished with the Live Art Development Agency, London.
An aesthetic object in itself, Out of Now is a unique contribution to the field that blurs distinctionsbetween theory and practice and offers a compelling exploration of the relationshipbetween performance and the act of writing about performance.
, The Drama Review
The visual and emotional yield of Hsieh's works is overpowering: the 365-image photo-essay ofthe year that Hsieh and artist Linda Montano spent tethered to one another with an eight-foot-long rope tells a story as rich, engrossing and rewarding as an epic novel. The stark, basic design wisely lets the evidence do the dazzling.