Carl Andre

The Clocktower

The substance of Carl Andre’s work is strategy—of choice of material, of its environmental placement, of the (usually serial) relationship between its parts. For some time Andre has been trying to find a “profound” justification for his activities, as if to offset the obvious modernist character of their matter-of-fact manipulation of a medium. He intends to counterbalance the positivistic, rational character of his work by giving it an “irrational” raison d’être. A few years ago, in Art in America, he wrote a letter speaking of the “musical,” sensuous character of his metal pieces; in a text accompanying this stone piece, exhibited together with a series of photographs dealing with sites in his home town of Quincy, Massachusetts—generally lonely places of decay peripheral to the town center and residential areas—he refers to the “vividness” of his “earliest experience,” in words he borrows

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