Billy Apple

Aotearoa New Zealand / United States, b.1935, d.2021

The Bridge: An Institutional Critique

  • 2016
  • Artist's concept
  • Gift of the artist, 2018
  • 840 x 594mm
  • 2018/020

Billy Apple has proposed that Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū straighten its curved bridge to allow a more direct path to the galleries on either side.

He says the structure should be "a link between two points, not a path in the woods".

Most artists use gallery spaces by placing art works inside them, but Apple regularly turns his attention to their architecture. Since the early 1970s, his practice has included a series of proposals to art institutions that draw attention to certain details of their design and suggest alterations for their improvement.

Apple's 'corrections' have been undertaken in spaces such as Leo Castelli Gallery in New York, the Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam and Auckland Art Gallery, while others survive as unrealised proposals. He aims to enhance the experience of art by adiusting the physical environs so that the building is rendered less intrusive.