PRINT Summer 1980

“Some Place Enormously Moveable”—The Collaboration of Arakawa and Madeline H. Gins

We wanted some place enormously moveable, started from that. I cannot make a map for you but . . .

—Arakawa, in conversation

THERE SEEM ENDLESSLY THOSE situations of particular experience wherein one knows and doesn’t know, all at the same instant—which is to say, the information is inherent, actual, in the given system, but (itself a word of this qualification) we cannot step out of its context to see “what it is” we thus “know.” As it happened then, Arakawa had been asked by the city of Hannover to design some ennobling “monument,” an artifact which would dignify that city, enhance its self-respect, etc. His first question, of course, concerned the seriousness of the city’s commitment to their choice of artist and whether or not they would permit him to exercise a determining choice of artifact. Therefore, at an early meeting with the city officials, he took a large sheet of drawing paper,

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