20 years ago this month Michael Landy did an Art called Break Down. He took all of his possessions, all 7,227 of them, and destroyed them, broke them down.
Lisa and I went to the show which was in the old C&A at the posh end of Oxford Street. Back in 2001 I was working for a now bust dotcom agency, at the other end of Oxford St, that did work for loads of now bust dotcoms. Happy days.
Inside the empty shop Landy set up a huge conveyor belt and took everything apart, documented it all. Apparently it all went to landfill. The show struck a chord with us for some reason and we remember it vividly and often talk about it. I can't really explain that. We don't do that with other Arts.
Feels very strange now, no mention of recycling or reuse or the environment at all. Sort of anti-capitalist but without the bite. I guess the YBAs weren't really the group to critique capitalism.
In writing this I've just found out it was sponsored by Artangel. I didn't know that at the time. Artangel are national treasures responsible for a huge quantity of amazing public art projects over the last 30 years such as Rachel Whiteread’s House, Jeremy Deller's Battle of Orgreave, Ryoji Ikeda's Spectra, Fiona Banner and David Kohn's A Room For London and recently Steve McQueen's School photos.