Transforming a sexual act into a commodity

Staying in the realm of performance art, I recently stumbled upon an artwork by Andrea Fraser. Untitled (2003) is a participatory ‘video performance, a result of Andrea Fraser approaching Friedrich Petzel Gallery to arrange a commission with a private collector on her behalf. The requirements for the commission included a sexual encounter between Fraser and a collector, which would be recorded on videotape to be produced as a DVD in an edition of five, with the first exemplar of the edition going to the participating collector. The resulting videotape is a silent, unedited sixty-minute document shot in a hotel room with a stationary camera and existing lighting.’

No need to say what a scandal this artwork raised, reason being it is a commercial work. The copies of the video were sold in the gallery. But how good of a metaphor it is?! With ‘being a whore’ in the art world (even though, let’s admit it, presented in quite a hackneyed manner), she managed to produce a documentation of the action through critiquing the art system. And for a profit.

And what I love even more: despite all the disreputable moments of calling it a porno, she managed to make this video called ‘art’ BY THE ART MARKET. It is actually art, just because it is a documentation made FOR the art market. Priceless..



  1. featured image: ⌈Downloaded: 16 Nobember 2018⌋.

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