The "Unsigned Untitled Undated" events involve works on canvas from Tim Beeby’s ongoing series Inks – hung on the wall in the conventional manner but also accompanied by stacks of similar works leant against the wall. Both the hung and stacked works remain unsigned, untitled and undated. Visitors are invited to select a canvas from the exhibition, which they will be able to take away with them, free of charge.
Alternatively, visitors can have their canvases signed, dated and titled by the artist and acquire it at the standard market price. All signed works being acquired at market price will be photographically documented and listed in an digital catalogue, and each purchaser will receive a certificate of authenticity. Unsigned works in contrast will not be photographically documented or recorded by any other means. In terms of materials used and aesthetic value, the unsigned and signed groups of work are indistinguishable.
Leaving work unsigned, untitled and undated and making them available free of charge is a simple yet radical gesture, breaking with the western cultural convention of signing works of art before they enter commercial or institutional systems. Even if an unsigned work’s economic or institutional value has been seriously compromised or even completely abrogated, it still retains perhaps its most important value, its aesthetic one, which remains the same as that of its signed counterparts. In art historical terms such a process reverses that of the readymade. Whilst the latter is an everyday object which in being signed by the artist becomes an art object, the unsigned canvas on leaving the spaces of art (the studio, the gallery) becomes just one more object amongst an everyday world of unsigned objects.
The unsigned canvas nevertheless retains something of the aura of a work of art, in that a stretched canvas has but one purpose, that of a support for art, namely painting, differentiating it from all other supports, media and materials used in the production of art or indeed all other objects in the world.
unsigned untitled undated
23 - 26 November 2017
Haus 1 | Berlin
Installation views Unsigned Untitled Undated | Haus 1 | Berlin
14 - 17 June 2018
galerie bechter Kastowsky | Vienna
Installation views Unsigned Untitled Undated | galerie bechter kastowsky | Vienna
13 - 16 September 2018
Goltsteinstr. 49 | Cologne
Installation views Unsigned Untitled Undated | Goltsteinstr. 56 | Cologne