In 2013, OR Books released Yoko Ono’s Acorn, a sort of spiritual follow-up to her landmark Grapefruit, which was first published in 1964. As a Yoko Ono collector, I was particularly excited about the special edition OR published alongside the standard edition. I was so excited, in fact, I made an unboxing video upon receiving it! It was something I did on a whim that turned out to be an important moment for me. Not only did OR love the video (they feature it on their main product page for Acorn to this very day), Yoko herself loved it and shared it on all her social media. That meant a lot to me! I see the video as a work of art in and of itself. If you’re at all familiar with Internet unboxing videos, you’ll notice how mine’s a bit different from the run of the mill fare. In particular I focus on hand gesture as I open and show the book on screen. It’s about a simple, everyday action (opening a package you receive in the mail) and elevating it to something visually interesting with formal properties that extend beyond then object itself and into a different realm of object-as-performance.
There Will Never Be Silence: Scoring John Cage’s 4’33″ is a small show of work by artists influenced by John Cage’s ”silent” piece. Cage’s influence is no doubt immense. I count him upon my own pantheon of artist ”gods” who guide my way. It’s no surprise then that a certain Cageian influence can be found in my work, ranging from the recently-published “toilandtrouble” text to my photogram sonata for tranquil birds for solo voice in three movements (2001), pictured above. Like many of the works in the show at MoMA, my sonata is both visual art and music/performance score.
I’ve been waiting for my collector’s edition copy of Yoko Ono’s Acorn for months now. It finally arrived today, 1 August 2013. This is my unboxing video. I was a little disappointed that I didn’t get a better edition number, but what can you do? I’m pleased nonetheless. Enjoy. i ii iii
UPDATE 4 Aug 2013: Or books published the video on their blog (as well as their Twitter and Facebook). Chimera Records also posted it on Twitter and Facebook. Even Yoko herself posted it (Twitter and Facebook)!