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Dieter Roth

Trauriges Taschenzimmer

collage in playing card case, with original cardboard box
1969
10,8 x 7,5 cm / 4 1/4 x 3 in.
signed with monogram and dated lower right unlimited multiple "Taschenzimmer" (Pocket Room), individualized by the artist on the original cardboard box with handwritten inscriptions

Dieter Roth began in the mid-1960s to use organic material such as chocolate for sculptures and spices for pictures. He integrated the decomposition of the material into his works, for example in the “mildew pictures” and the “decomposition objects“. That was his way of expressing his rejection of conventional aesthetics and beauty in art. The present work is such a decomposition object. On a small cardboard, cut to the size of the transparent playing card case, the artist stamped a simplified image of a table. On this cardboard, he attached a slice of banana with a thumbtack. This already turns the work, conceived as an unlimited multiple, into a unique piece, since the calculated decomposition of the banana, which is an integral part of the work, is different in each object. In addition to that, the artist has by hand inscribed the original cardboard box bearing the original stamp "Taschenzimmer von Dieter Roth" (Pocket room by Dieter Roth), making it a "Sad pocket room", added his initials and "in Mü. im Wint." (in Munich in Winter). Thus he has added a very personal and emotional element to the object.

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