Lewitt Wall Drawing 811 as drafted at Franklin Furnace Oct.1996

Instructions faxed by LeWitt to Franklin Furnace for Drafters of Wall Drawing 811

Sentences on Conceptual Art, by Sol LeWitt:
(from Art Now, vol. 3, no. 2, 1971.)

1.  Conceptual Artists are mystics rather than rationalists. They leap 
    to conclusions that logic cannot reach.
2.  Rational judgments repeat rational judgments.
3.  Illogical judgments lead to new experience.
4.  Formal Art is essentially rational. 
5.  Irrational thoughts should be followed absolutely and logically.
6.  If the artists changes his mind midway through the execution of 
    the piece he compromises the result and repeats past results.
7.  The artist's will is secondary to the process that he initiates from 
    idea to completion. His willfulness may be only ego. 
8.  When words such as painting and sculpture are used, they connote 
    a whole tradition and imply a consequent acceptance of this 
    tradition, thus placing limitations on the artist who would be 
    reluctant to make art that goes beyond the limitations.
9.  The concept and the idea are different. The former implies a 
    general direction while the latter are the components. Ideas 
    implement the concept. 
10. Ideas alone can be works of art; they are in a chain of 
    development that may eventually find some form. All ideas need not 
    be made physical.
11. Ideas do not necessarily proceed in logical order. They may set 
    one off in unexpected directions but an idea must necessarily be 
    completed in the mind before the next one is formed.
12. For each work of art that becomes physical there are many 
    variations that do not. 
13. A work of art may be understood as a conductor from the artist's 
    mind to the viewer's. But it may never reach the viewer, or it may 
    never leave the artist's mind. 
14. The words of one artist to another may induce an idea chain, if 
    they share the same concept.
15. Since no form is intrinsically superior to another, the artist may 
    use any form, from an expression of words (written or spoken) to 
    physical reality, equally.
16. If words are used, and they proceed from ideas about art, then 
    they are art and not literature; numbers are not mathematics.
17. All ideas are art if they are concerned with art and fall within the 
    conventions of art.
18. One usually understands the art of the past by applying the 
    conventions of the present thus misunderstanding the art of the past.
19. The conventions of art are altered by works of art.
20. Successful art changes our understanding of the conventions by 
    altering our perceptions.
21. Perception of ideas leads to new ideas.
22. The artist cannot imagine his art, and cannot perceive it until it is 
23. One artist may mis-perceive (understand it differently than the 
    artist) a work of art but still be set off in his own chain of thought by 
    that misconstrual.
24. Perception is subjective.
25. The artist may not necessarily understand his own art. His 
    perception is neither better nor worse than that of others.
26. An artist may perceive the art of others better than his own.
27. The concept of a work of art may involve the matter of the piece 
    or the process in which it is made.
28. Once the idea of the piece is established in the artist's mind and 
    the final form is decided, the process is carried out blindly. There are 
    many side-effects that the artist cannot imagine. These may be used 
    as ideas for new works.
29. The process is mechanical and should not be tampered with. It 
    should run its course.
30. There are many elements involved in a work of art. The most 
    important are the most obvious.
31. If an artist uses the same form in a group of works, and changes 
    the material, one would assume the artist's concept involved the 
32. Banal ideas cannot be rescued by beautiful execution.
33. It is difficult to bungle a good idea.
34. When an artist learns his craft too well he makes slick art.
35. These sentences comment on art, but are not art.