David Hammons

Global Fax Festival

David Hammons

Global Fax Festival



Edition Size



DVD, Facsimile, Offset print


Box set


12 x 9 x 1.75 inches


New York, NY

$ 3,000.00

1 in stock

“…Hammons has fiercely guarded his status as a cultural outsider, while simultaneously continuing to produce work that reinforces his reputation as one of the most relevant and influential living American artists.”
Laura Hoptman, MoMA, “Curator, Painting & Sculpture

This is a rare copy of Global Fax Festival, an artists’ book/box set that documents a conceptual/performance/installation of the same name by respected American artist David Hammons. A plastic folding enclosure printed in red and black, glossy wraps exhibition catalog, contains an exhibition catalog (a full-color brochure describing the location of the festival, as well as the concept behind it), a DVD (which documents both a live musical performance by American Jazz and experimental music composer Butch Morris during the event and the event in general), a large format poster and a pamphlet about the event (which also requests participation) and 600 of the original faxes from around the world created at the event. Thus the resulting box set embodies more than just the documentation of the event but is actually a part of it, a globally assembled artists’ book formed within an elegant interactive installation. This copy is unsigned.

The exhibition took place at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia Palacio de Cristal Parque del Retiro (AKA the Crystal Palace), in Madrid, Spain from June 1st through November 6th, 2000. In the exhibition, held in what is colloquially known as the in the Palacio de Cristal, the artist provided the public with nine fax numbers corresponding to nine fax machines Hammons suspended from the ceiling of the Crystal Palace. During the event, faxes were sent by various artists and people from all over the world where they rained down from the sky to paper the floor. The multi-layered structure of Global Fax Festival, was designed by Hammons to draw on the parallel between the surroundings, where the leaves of the trees in the Retiro park follow the same path. Another intention for the exhibition, which was created especially for the Palacio de Cristal, was to involve the building’s architecture, which Hammons defined as being like “a sacred cathedral”. This sacrosanct dimension does not only belong to the space, but also the materials and objects, and is a constant in his work.

Among the thousands of faxes received over the five months of the exhibition, there are newspaper stories, adverts, drawings, artist dossiers, obituaries, letters, declarations of love, collages, social statements, messages for David Hammons, instructions on origami techniques, famous phrases and proclamations, graphic humor, poems, short stories and book excerpts, music scores, photos of people, puzzles, slogans, etc., all of which demonstrate the boundless diversity of possible expression through paper. The sounds in the inside of the Palacio de Cristal, the trill of the birds in the park, the noise of the fax machine, and the falling paper, are equally part of the installation and fulfill the artist’s intentions. Thus the resulting box set embodies more than just the documentation of the event but is actually a part of it, a globally assembled artists’ book formed within an elegant interactive installation. Perhaps it could best be described as a ‘crowdsourced’ artwork.

David Hammons was born in 1943 in Springfield, Illinois. his artwork, which begins in the Seventies, provides “iconic examples of American Conceptual art. At the same time, they are sharply critical commentaries on the clichés of growing up African American in the US.” (Quote from L. Hoptman.) Hammons commonly questions the separation between public and private spaces through an aesthetic with influences from Arte Povera, Black culture, Minimalism, and Zen. He is known primarily for his elegantly and often simply executed provocative yet profoundly complex conceptual work often manifesting as public sculpture, installation and, performance work. He was awarded a MacArthur ‘Genius’ Fellowship Award in 1991.

Kunsthalle Basel
Universitat de Barcelona. CRAI
Biblioteca Nacional de España
Biblioteca de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid
The Cleveland Museum of Art
Museum of Modern Art, N.Y., NY
National Gallery of Art Library, Smithsonian Institute
National Gallery of Art Library
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
The University of Granada. Library
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Yale University Art Gallery
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware