Art handlers exist to safely transport works of fine art, ensuring no damage comes to them in transit. L.A.-based artist Walead Beshty, however, does not need art handlers.
That’s because Beshty creates the pieces of his “Transparencies” series by relying on shipping damage. Beshty records the dimensions of FedEx’s various shipping boxes, then creates boxes of laminated glass that will fit into the boxes precisely. Dropping them off at the shipping center, they are not art. But once they’ve made their way through FedEx’s system of conveyor belts and moving vehicles, they arrive at the gallery randomly cracked, and Beshty has a finished piece.
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Bonus: Shipping them from one gallery to another results in yet more cracks, as if the piece has evolved. “The result is that the object is constantly changing,” Beshty told Musee Magazine. “Every time the work is shipped it goes through a material transformation.”