1/Multicolored candies, individually wrapped in cellophaneIdeal weight 175 lb; installed dimensions variable, approximately 92 x 92 x 92 cm (36 x 36 x 36 in.)Collection Donna and Howard Stone, on extended loan to the Art Institute of Chicago, 1.1999
Felix González-Torres used ordinary materials to extraordinary ends. From 1986 until his early death in 1996, he produced work of uncompromising beauty and simplicity, transforming the everyday into profound meditations on love and loss. González-Torres’s quiet, elegiac oeuvre comprises serial work including lightbulb strings, candy spills, beaded curtains, language-based works, graph-paper drawings, and stacked paper sculptures. This installation is an allegorical portrait of the artist’s partner, Ross Laycock, who died of an AIDS-related illness in 1991. The 175 pounds of candy corresponds to Ross's ideal body weight. While on display in our contemporary galleries, viewers are encouraged to help themselves. As the pile diminishes, candies are replaced.