Will the Real Oscar Please Stand Up
This evening’s piece continued to address the question what is real? though it utilized a very different vocabulary. Oscar, four years old, interacted with a painted, wooden cutout of himself in identical clothing. Wood Oscar was attached to a piece of fishing line that had been cast over one of the ceiling beams and real Oscar spent nearly an hour hoisting the other up and down while answering some of the unscripted questions of the artist and audience.
Oscar: He's not even real!
Z Behl: He’s not fake...
Oscar: But when I talk to him he's not even talking back!
Finally, artist and subject (or more accurately, collaborator) decided to nail the painting to the wall. The final ten minutes or so were spent watching the four-year-old hammer nails into the painting, at one point telling everyone that someone hammered nails into Jesus. (I was waiting for someone to bring up Pinocchio but no one did.)
This piece was completely irrational. And then I think what kind of art is rational? Really. This was not a painting. And ce n’est pas Oscar. Mais…There was a kind of courage present, of faith in the moment that was amazing to see and impossible to categorize. This piece was absurd, ridiculous, and utterly charming.