Project Proposal 1964-301: "The Essence of Indolence"
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Title: The Essence of Indolence

Requisition:

  • Suede Armchair, any colour
  • Approximately four (4) meters of matching suede material
  • A twenty (20) by twenty centimeter sample of grafted skin from one (1) of each of the following individuals: a Caucasian male, a Hispanic female (must be alive when sample taken, must own a television), and any male-line relative of either Philo T. Farnsworth, Vladimir K. Zworykin, or John Logie Baird.
  • One (1) Bos taurus, male
  • Rubber Cement
  • All equipment necessary to perform a skin graft
  • A sterile environment
  • Ten (10) kilograms of batting of cotton
  • One thousand (1,000) milliliters of transmorphic-laced blood, type O negative.

Abstract:
This work consummates in form of a suede armchair, defined with tactile illusionary properties. The furnishing, as it were, feels as if it has been constructed of living flesh, despite its visual characteristics. If an individual were to administer a medical examination upon the piece, one would find vital signs of life, including a heartbeat, breathing patterns, proximal fluctuation of the third soul, etc..

When any being, be it sentient and currently alive, is defined as "sitting" in the furnishing, and concurrently "watching" a television of any build, powered on, the transmorphic plasma injected in the piece activates. Over the course of thirty-two (32) hours, the organism is converted into a furnishing similar in design to the original piece, with considerations made to the organism's overall size and skeletal structure (if any). This new furnishing will be a living, breathing furnishing, with the same properties as my original piece. For this, display will be restricted, and some sort of barrier must be erected to keep patrons from experimenting with it.

While working with an experimental throw pillow of the same design, I have discovered that these pieces experience hunger, and must be fed foodstuffs appropriate to their species at regular intervals, if one wishes to keep their art alive. After the piece has expired, it enters a form of rigor mortis, in which it stiffens to a solid furnishing, as well as preserving itself. Dissection is still possible.

Intent:

"When television is good, nothing — not the theater, not the magazines or newspapers — nothing is better. But when television is bad, nothing is worse. I invite each of you to sit down in front of your own television set when your station goes on the air and stay there, for a day, without a book, without a magazine, without a newspaper, without a profit and loss sheet or a rating book to distract you. Keep your eyes glued to that set until the station signs off. I can assure you that what you will observe is a vast wasteland. And if you think I exaggerate, I only ask you to try it." — Newton N. Minow, 1961

The television. It was an invention originally intended for mass media and the entertainment of people across all differences. And yet, what was meant to improve life has done nothing but fail. I have seen naught but the masses with their eyes trained to a screen, ignorant of friends and family, adopting slovenly hours into their already full schedules. The once fascinating new idea has become an outbreak of rapid devolution into what can only be known as an inferior of the working man – the “couch potato”.

This piece was created in the sole influence of exposing the erroneous invention and what it has made of us. We are becoming no more useful than the furniture upon which we lounge. In that essence, why not be the furniture? We are seats and pillows upon which those who work rest, an ideal that allows them to work as to avoid lowering to such a level. It is nothing but a motivation and a rock bottom from which the working man starts and rests.

In our society, then, there is truly nothing more worthy of disgust than the man who cannot do more than provide a seat and a television for his home. The television is nothing but a false life and for those who cannot live their own.

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