Thuistezien 285 — 03.06.2021

David Horvitz
Carry On

David Horvitz (1982) is an American artist born in Los Angeles. Horvitz works across a range of media, frequently using photography, performance, art books, conceptual websites, online interventions, memes, and mail art. He has exhibited at SF Camerawork, the Museum of Modern Art, the New Museum, Tate Modern, and Art Metropole

‘I’ve traveled since I graduated from high school, and somehow that contributed to my suspicion that it’s actually become my work. When I was growing up this tendency to move around seemed to be related to a sense of restlessness or boredom. But now it is more about movements, routes, and channels of distribution.’

On September 4th, 2010, David Horvitz manifested his suspicion into reality with the premiere of his solo Exhibition ‘Carry-On’, presented by West Den Haag. For this exhibition, Horvitz curated a selection of artworks, relating to the theme of travel, that he transported in a carry-on bag from Los Angeles to West’s exhibition space on the Groenewegje, the Hague. While being a seemingly simple concept, it inspires a slew of critical contemplations about art and the modern world. One basic example is the limitations and regulations we are subject to when travelling. Important to Horvitz’s idea is that the artworks are carried on his person, restricting the potential works to the rules of the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) and Horvitz’s own physical limits. By subjecting the artworks, and Horvitz alongside to the challenges of travel allow for a fresh perspective on the whole process.

While the exhibition featured artworks not created by Horvitz himself, they were not specifically what Horvitz hoped to illuminate with this piece. Art, in the modern day, is not limited to the material. With ‘Carry-On’, Horvitz reflects on ideas of movement, space, and what it means to be an artist or even to make art. Duchamp proclaimed that every breath is an artwork. Is every vacation now an artwork? According to Horvitz, apparently they can be. Art should perhaps be seen as the transformative power on perception that is latent within any experience. An artist’s role in the modern day can be, but is not limited to, awakening this power within their audience.

Text: Hendrik Hohlfeld