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Peter Fischli/David Weiss

Record, 1988

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Record, beracryl, diameter 11 4/5” (30 cm),
in eight different disco music variations,
Ed. 120/XXVI, signed and numbered

Extended play. A household object that is fast becoming a museum piece—a simulacrum of a record from the artisans of the ordinary. For those who don’t mind ruining the needle of their phonograph, a cross-section of average disco will be audible on this acrylic “vinyl.”


“In appearance, the work of Fischli/Weiss is ironic and humorous; oscillating between game and joke, it seems to mock the seriousness of art. The artists’ combinations of things and objects, figures and actions, whether in balance or in movement, tend to restore the value of wit and playfulness to creative commitment, but their goal is to contest the claim to truth, to contest the absolutism of the art process, repudiating cleverness and replacing it with inept intentions… or removing its core… or even collapsing it.” Germano Celant Parkett No. 17, 1988

"The record made by Peter Fischli and David Weiss for the deluxe edition of Parkett no. 17 was not produced in a sound studio. Instead it is an object entitled Record but an object that can be played. Those who are not afraid of ruining their record player or rather the needle will hear something like a cross section of average disco music. Average in this case also means decreased quality of sound reproduction - the hi-fi fetish choking on itself.

Records rank among the most popular and common objects in ordinary use. They are stock items in every household along with potted plants, furniture, frying pans, cars, magazins and jam. Yet rarely have we ever come across a homemade, home- pressed species of record. Only Fischli/Weiss associate this likable mass-produced article with a homemade dress, a self-made bookcase, or a self-constructed house. They draw our attention to the state of suspension between the ridiculous and the sublime inherent in such objects. This record is an imitation.

One is reminded of the ancient legend in which a bird tries to eat a painted cherry because the imitation of nature in the picture is so flawless. Fischli/Weiss offer us an object in which the cherry has been turned into a record and the bird’s beak, into a needle. The same issue was involved in one of the small sculptures in the series “Suddenly This Overview” in which Fischli/Weiss molded the trademark of “His Master’s Voice.” Not only do we ask ourselves whether the dog is listening to his master’s real or fake, right or wrong voice but also whether the duplicated trademark can still claim to be a trademark. The Fischli/Weiss record is made of Beracryl (acrylic) and is similar to the material used by the artists for their socalled “rubber” sculptures. Thus “rubber” can sometimes imitate rubber but in the present case, acrylic is “imitating” vinyl."

Bice Curiger, Parkett Vol. 17, 1988