Invisible Art for Sale

Last night I lost a bid to purchase a serigraph by a not-quite-famous Quebec artist. For days it had stuck at a sweet spot but in the last hour before closing, shot up in price three times more than I wanted to pay. Ah well, c’est la vie.

Fast forward to my morning coffee, over which I read this article. An invisible sculpture was auctioned off for an incredible €15,000 ($18,300). The artist  Salvatore Garau specializes in “immaterial sculptures”, that is to say art made of nothing.

“The vacuum is nothing more than a space full of energy, and even if we empty it and there is nothing left, according to the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, that nothing has a weight,”

“Therefore, it has energy that is condensed and transformed into particles, that is, into us.” 

 -Salvatore Garau

The Italian auction house Art-Rite listed the piece with a pre-sale estimate of €6,000-9,000 but competing bidders pushed the price tag to €15,000.

I wonder about that online auction bidder. I wonder if he had a MaxBid in mind but quickly forgot it as the potential to lose increased it appeal. In the thrill of the chase, did he even remember what he was bidding on?

In any event, for all those others who lost … I have some blank space I want to sell. Starting bid: €15,000

30 Comments

  1. This is too funny! Art is quite funny and it makes me think maybe I should get into it too (haha). I mean I have a box and it’s empty but if you use your imagination it will always be full ;-). There’s a bunch of ridiculous things on the internet people sell.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My son told me he believes this may be a NFT – which Wiki defines as the following (ie. Something that cannot be reproduced, like patenting a n idea.
    “NFT is known as ‘non-fungible token’ and represents an online marketplace where digital collectibles or creations are bought and sold, sometimes fetching prices in the millions.”
    Still ridiculous, IMHO.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Although they are along the same lines of ridiculous, NFTs are different in that it applies to digital media. It’s a crypto key tied to a digital image that guarantees authenticity. When you buy a NFT you’ll get the digital key or token that verifies your version of the digital image is original.

      In the Invisible Scupture and Banana case, the buyer received a paper certificate certifying that he paid for the concept, along with instructions on how to install & house it. Silly though it is, they actually have physical certificate to prove ownership.

      NFT and Bitcoin are both based on block chain technology which is (or should be) highly controversial because of it’s egregious consumption of computing power. The environmental impact of block chain mining is not often talked about … but that’s probably a topic for another time.

      In any event, I totally agree with you. These cases of ‘art’ collection are all ridiculous.

      Like

        1. The issue is that block chain technology requires huge amounts of computing power and consumes large amounts of energy. NFTs are part of the Ethereum network which uses much power in one year, as the entire nation of Qatar. Bitcoin uses as much as the entire country of Argentina. The problem is that bitcoin mining is done where electricity is cheapest and that means, where it is less clean. So for instance, most bitcoin mining is done in China which relies on coal and fossil fuel for energy.

          There are many articles describing the issue, here’s one from The Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2021/feb/27/bitcoin-mining-electricity-use-environmental-impact

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          1. I had not even thought of the electricity consumption of bitcoin or mining it. I just looked at the cost of a computer to mine bitcoin and it started at 8000 bucks….

            Liked by 1 person

    1. If you haven’t yet, you should read the link I gave in my reply to Teresa at Dovalpage. That pieee of Hight Concept Art garnered even more … $120,000 for a banana taped to a wall. Plus, they didn’t even get the banana . 🤣🤣🤣

      Like

    1. Interestingly, my son brought up the same. I had to look it up & found the article here … on the same ArtNet website https://news.artnet.com/market/maurizio-cattelan-banana-art-basel-miami-beach-1722516
      The banana piece actually sold for more $120,000 … it was painted (… posted? duct taped) by another Italian artist and purchased by a French client. Seems like Europeans have a heightened appreciation for this type of art. Nothing me or my grandmother would understand 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Sorry, Sandy, but I think you’ll need to tart up the description of your offering, something along the lines of ‘It speaks to the voids in our existence and the sense of loss we feel from our displacement in contemporary society.’ I’m not saying I’ll bid even then, but I might be willing to trade my pet rock collection for it!

    Liked by 2 people

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