IT IS INCREASINGLY DIFFICULT, in a political landscape where deliberate confusionalternative facts and fake newsholds sway, to determine precisely where the boundary between the artificial and the actual is to be drawn. Yet this seemingly contemporary condition was foreseen almost half a century ago by Marcel Broodthaers, who made this dialectic into the very substance of his practice: “When a work of art finds its condition in lies or deception, is it then still a work of art? I do not have the answer.” In a sense, this fundamental uncertainty is intrinsic to the endless staging and restaging of his own work that was exemplified most famously by Broodthaers’s museum seriesthe celebrated Musée d’Art Moderne, Département des Aigles, 1968–72and, in particular, his various décors, as he called them. Starting with Catalogue-Catalogus, 1974, these functioned as
Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.
Not registered for artforum.com?
SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*
* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.