Catalogue entry

Carl Andre born 1935

T02138 Diagram for Installation of Magnet Pieces 1966, at Tibor de Nagy Gallery, New York 1966

Not inscribed
Pencil on graph paper, 10 1/8 x 16 1/2 (25.6 x 41.9)
Presented by David Novros through the American Federation of Arts 1977
Prov: David Novros, New York (from the artist by exchange)

David Novros presented altogether nine works on paper by Carl Andre to the Tate in 1977 through the American Federation of Arts. T02135-8 being diagrams for installations or otherwise directly related to painting or sculpture, were accepted for the main collection, but the other five (including the original manuscript for Andre's article 'Line Work' published in Arts Magazine, May 1967, and two texts related to it) were agreed to be more appropriate for the Gallery's Archive.

This particular work is a diagram for an installation in the smaller space at the Tibor de Nagy Gallery in New York in March-April 1966 which was shown at the same time as the brick installation 'Equivalents' (see T01534), which was in the larger room alongside. A photograph of the installation reproduced in the catalogue of Andre's exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum in 1970, p.16, confirms that the larger squares of the grid correspond to the square units of the parquet floor, so that the drawing establishes both the shape and structure of the works and their exact position on the floor.

It was made from ceramic magnet blocks which Andre chose as part of his search for sets of identical particles. Such small units usually have insufficient inertial mass to remain coherently arrayed for long, but the magnetic attraction of the blocks served as a bond between the units which compensated for their lack of mass. The installation was intended to echo that of the much larger brick installation and each piece consisted of sixty units arranged in the permutations 60 x 1, 30 x 2, 20 x 3, 15 x 4 and 10 x 6.

The magnet pieces were afterwards dismantled and the magnets later used permanently for 'Field' (1966-10) first shown in the 10 exhibition at the Dwan Gallery, New York, in October 1966.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, pp.10-11, reproduced p.10