Douglas Huebler

Variable Piece 4: Secrets

Douglas Huebler,  Variable Piece 4: Secrets, Alternate Projects
Douglas Huebler Variable Piece 4: Secrets, Alternate Projects
Douglas Huebler Variable Piece 4: Secrets, Alternate Projects


Variable Piece 4: Secrets, 1973
Printed wrappers, glue bound, b/w text only, 94 pp. First edition. Published by Printed Matter, NY. This book is the publication of Huebler's Variable Piece 4. Condition: light soiling to wraps, inside pages are as new.
8 1/2h x 5 1/2w in / 21.59h x 13.97w cm

$ 175.00

Douglas Huebler (1924-1997) was a seminal American conceptual artist who began his career as a painter and then minimalist sculptor. For Seth Siegelaub's 1969 landmark conceptual art exhibition for which three-quarters of the works were shown in a published catalogue and not in Siegelaub's actual physical gallery space, Huebler issued one of his most famous statements: "The world is full of objects, more or less interesting; I do not wish to add any more." After this exhibition, Huebler turned all of his attention to the making conceptual works. Composed of various media, his pieces often include documentary photography, maps and text utilized as a way to explore social environments and the effect of passing time on objects. Duration Piece #5 from 1969 is an early example of this direction. For the piece Huebler stood in Central Park and, each time he heard a bird call, he pointed his camera in the direction of the call and shot a photograph. A series of ten black & white photographs with accompanying text document the piece. 

For Variable Piece 4: Secrets, displayed in the Jewish Museum's 1970 exhibition, “Software – Information Technology: Its New Meaning for Art,” Huebler invited museum visitors to anonymously write down a never before revealed authentic secret. Each entry was dropped into a slotted box and after 24 hours, photo-copied and then given to another participant as part of an ongoing exchange. In 1978, the nearly 1800 submitted “secrets” were transcribed and compiled into the book, Variable Piece 4: Secrets.