Pawel Althamer
  & Artur Żmijewski

James Lee Byars
Sophie Calle
  & Fabio Balducci

Center for Tactical Magic
Peter Coffin
Jennifer Cohen
Anne Collier
Christian Cummings
Trisha Donnelly
Douglas Gordon
Brion Gysin
Friedrich Jürgenson
Joachim Koester
Jim Lambie
Miranda Lichtenstein
Euan Macdonald
Jonathan Monk
Senga Nengudi
Paul Pfeiffer
Eva Rothschild
Mungo Thomson
All Artists

Douglas Gordon
Do something evil, 2006
Text instruction

DOUGLAS GORDON (b. 1960, Glasgow, Scotland) is the recipient of numerous international art prizes, including the Turner Prize (1996), the Venice Biennale’s Premio 2000 (1997), and the Hugo Boss Prize (1998). This year, Douglas’s work appears at the Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona, Spain and the National Gallery in Edinburgh, Scotland. Timeline, a retrospective exhibition of Gordon’s film-based work, is at the Museum of Modern Art in New York through September. Gordon lives and works in New York.

As part of our effort to “do something evil,” as Douglas Gordon requested, we tried to locate as powerful a curse as we could find, and apply it to a tube of black paint. I called all of the Wiccan, Pagan, and spiritual places in New York that I could find, but all of the people who were even willing to speak with me strongly discouraged my mission. I tried to reiterate that we were willing to take full responsibility, karmic or otherwise, but everyone tried to talk me out of my search. These people seemed sad that they could not change my mind, but terrified to get involved. No one would even guide me in a more fruitful direction; they called me a fool and told me I wouldn’t find anyone to help. I met my most promising lead under entirely unrelated circumstances. He was in line for the restroom in a coffee shop, and he looked like he was hauling bricks in his back pack, so I invited him to sit down. The bricks turned out to be cassette tapes of the entire Bible. Unprompted, he began talking about Western mysticism and his experimentations with various forms of magic and religion. The conversation started circling around Strange Powers, and I eventually found a way to ask the stranger in the acid washed jean jacket if he would be interested in further experimentation. He proved himself to be well trained, and we set up a time to perform the curse. He never showed. I joined an online satanic community, and I contacted the administration of the Church of Satan asking for help. I even posted something on Craig’s List, where I found people who were more interested in the idea, but I still wasn’t taken seriously. The only woman who was willing to speak to me on the phone laughed, told me “nobody would mess with this,” and never returned my calls. The Church of Satan directed me to a Destruction Ritual in their Bible, and a man in Church community told me, “do not question yourself, just let your anger and hate run through you and out into the world - aimed at who you want to curse. Don’t think, just do. Logic has no place in the ritual chamber.” In other words, we would need to do it on our own.

Carley Mostar
Creative Time