[April 22 2015]
alexis dahan — I cannot help but notice this apparent similarity in your work: the artwork exists before it is produced.
lawrence weiner — But it’s like that for all artists!
claude rutault — Well, it depends on what “production” means.
alexis dahan — Okay, let’s say material production as opposed to simple formulation or enunciation.
lawrence weiner — Formulating and enunciating is an object!
claude rutault — I agree with Lawrence.
lawrence weiner — This is why it is stupid to say that some forms of art are “conceptual.” All artists are conceptual!
claude rutault — The instant the work is brought to our knowledge, it exists. I personally call that a “de-finition/method.” The difference between us in terms of the use of text is that Lawrence’s text is already the work, whereas for me the text is not the work.
lawrence weiner — I know.
claude rutault — But it is a significant difference. That is why I don’t think it would be possible to confuse our two ways of using text. Lawrence’s third rule…
lawrence weiner — “The piece need not be built.”
claude rutault — Yes. For me the work must be executed. What I produce is a painting. The work may be dictated with the intermediary of a text, but that text is not yet the work. On the contrary, with Lawrence, the text contains all the possibilities.
lawrence weiner — For me it’s the opposite. The object is foreplay; the text is the orgasm. That being said, the two practices function in the same context with the same aspirations.