On Dec. 24, 1974, Chris Burden appeared on Philbin & Company, a Los Angeles morning talk show hosted by Regis Philbin.
PHILBIN: Why did you allow yourself to get shot?
BURDEN: It was a piece of sculpture, and it was the best thing I could think of doing at that time. That’s why I did it.
PHILBIN: [laughs] Chris has got me here. We’re gonna—hang in there Chris, and we’re gonna solve this together. As a piece of sculpture…
PHILBIN: You allowed someone to shoot you?
PHILBIN: With a gun?
PHILBIN: And in your mind, that was the sculpture, the result of you being shot.
BURDEN: No, just the moment when I was getting shot was the sculpture, just that instant when the bullet traveled from the gun into my arm. And then after that, it’s all over. That was the sculpture; it was less than a second.
PHILBIN: And it was worth it?
BURDEN: Yeah. It was a good piece.
(Transcript from the Pacific Standard Time book.)