Sunday, 01 February 2015
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Gustav Metzger Thinks About Nothing

In an attempt to create a visual representation of empty thoughts, artist Gustav Metzger hooked himself up to a robot carving machine, that turned his brainwaves into a sculpture.

Null Object, a visual representation of Gustav Metzger's empty thoughts

Null Object, a visual representation of Gustav Metzger’s empty thoughts

The project was initiated by art and technology group London Fieldworks.

Gustav Metzger was asked to participate in the work as a ‘neurophysiological trigger’, setting the manufacturing of the object into motion via his EEG while attempting to think about nothing.

This data was then fed to a manufacturing robot, which carved the Null Object sculpture out of a piece of Portland Stone.

Carving Metzger's brain (out of Portland stone)

Carving Metzger’s brain (out of Portland stone)

The result is a brain-like object, dotted with crystalline, ovoid shapes. Metzger’s empty brain.

The project is being exhibited at London’s Work Gallery, and an accompanying book features further explorations of emptiness, including novelist Hari Kunzru on nothingness as a productive category, and Bronac Ferran on ‘the radical consequences of emptiness’.

The 3D EEG readings of Metzger's brainwaves

The 3D EEG readings of Metzger’s brainwaves

Null Object: Gustav Metzger Thinks About Nothing, is at Work Gallery, 10a Acton Street, London WC1X, until 9 February 2013.

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