Wall Drawing No. 256

  • 1975
  • Sol LeWitt
  • graphite, chalk, latex on wall
  • in situ, afmetingen variabel
  • Location not on view.
  • Acquired in 1978
  • Inventory number 1750
  • schenking / donation M. Visser

The Van Abbemuseum Collection consists of over 2800 artworks. We publish texts and images on an ongoing basis, but this record is currently in the process of being documented.

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The following description forms the basis for 'Wall drawing No. 256': “A six-inch (15 cm) grid covers a black wall. There are ten white lines from the centre of the four sides and ten lines from every corner to arbitrary points on the grid (the length of the lines and their position is determined by the artist). White lines, grid in black pencil, black wall.” LeWitt produced a concept with this text. Its execution was left to an assistant and was not permanent. When the exhibition was finished the work was erased or painted over. This concept was shown on a certificate signed by LeWitt. In addition, there was a diagram with an example for its execution. In fact, the certificate was a licence to carry out the concept and the proof of ownership of this work by LeWitt.

Every execution of a wall drawing by LeWitt has its own character, firstly because of the variation in locations and secondly because of the personal contribution of the assistant. Although the work can in principle be carried out by anyone, LeWitt had preferences with regard to people who executed the work and he worked with a limited number of assistants. A wall drawing can be made in different places. Although the works were almost always done on interior walls, in principle any wall is suitable. When LeWitt made his first 'Wall Drawing' in 1968, he was particularly interested in the two-dimensional aspect. The wall drawing coincided with the wall: it was the same size and completely two-dimensional. The earliest works consisted of lines which were drawn onto the wall with pencil. Over the years, his 'Wall Drawings' became more colourful and in some cases the forms acquired the character of an object. As the fields were painted in, they actually became wall paintings.

'Wall Drawing no. 256' is an example of Conceptual Art. The concept has been clearly formulated. This idea is the result of the creative process, its execution will differ every time. The size of the work depends on the size of the wall which is chosen for the execution of the work. As a result of the size and of the points chosen on the grid, the lines can cross each other earlier or later and more or fewer lines will cross each other. Even when the work is carried out in the same place twice, the result can be different.

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