The Brillo boxes stacked near the entrance of Pier 94 at the Armory Show — up for grabs to whomever can get to them first — turned out to cause quite the kerfluffle, according to Andy Warhol Museum director Eric Shiner, who commissioned the boxes from artist Charles Lutz (pictured signing one of his works at the bottom of this post).
During the Armory Panel on the psychology of consumerism this afternoon, Shiner noted that one of the dealers with a booth near the boxes was very unhappy with the situation, as the tower was blocking the magnificent vista of his booth from across the aisle. Pier 92, the modern part of the fair, has banned the Brillos from being brought inside altogether, lest someone’s ripoff of a ripoff of a Warhol (the boxes are actually made to the dimensions of Brillo boxes the Warhol Foundation declared inauthentic some time ago), knock against one of the modern galleries’ pricey Picassos. They are also being refused at the Armory Show coat check.
But while dealers seem to hate the works, fairgoers are obsessed. Shiner also noted that there was nearly a physical fight over the last box yesterday. Serious Brillectors today brought trash bags to whisk their boxes home in the rain.
— Shane Ferro
(Photos by Ben Davis.)