Bruce Nauman

Artist Behind the Enigmas

"The True Artist Helps the World by Revealing Mystic Truths." Some years ago Bruce Nauman spelled out those words in a now famous electric wall piece. An exalted statement in burger-bar neon. Did he mean it? To this day we don't know. But if there is something about contemporary art that you find baffling or unnerving or belligerent, chances are Nauman is somewhere behind it. Years before Damien Hirst submerged a sliced shark in formaldehyde, Nauman made his own comment on flesh and death called Carousel: four metal arms swing in a circle like a ceiling fan, with a faux animal...

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