Text by Dietmar Elger
Felix Gonzalez-Torres created one of the most innovative and impressive oeuvres in contemporary art all in the short span of ten years. The subject of solo exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, and the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Gonzalez-Torres attained a unique and outstanding position within his generation of artists. Gonzalez-Torres, whose works are concerned with the leitmotifs of love, death, and mortality, transposes the reduced forms of Minimal and Conceptual Art into an elementary language of visual imagery, linking his subjects with social and political issues. His Perfect Lovers (wall clocks showing precisely the same time), stacks of papers, or objects formed from piles of candy challenge us to redefine our concept of sculpture. Often Gonzalez-Torres had his works dissolve slowly, as metaphors for human existence, with the assistance of viewers who were encouraged to take away a piece of candy, paper, or puzzlepiece over the course of an exhibition.