Trashsures - Abandoned works of Art - by Jason Robert Bell _ 2002 - 2005

< click the above images to see complete photos and location info of each trashsure->

Buy a Trashsures Poster! Trashsure/Duchamp essay on tout-fait Original Trashsures Proposal
Feedback on Trashsures-
Once again, the world is a better place thanks to your efforts. The story is almost as good as the piece this time around. I think the real measure of success is that someone removed it from the trash and reinstalled it.- Mr. Walters
Due to safety concerns (string attached to duct tape attached to a sidewalk) and Bethlehem City code violations (unapproved installation on city property), the sculpture placed on the median in front of the So Campus bus stop will be removed by Moravian College's Facilitites Management Planncing & Construction (FMP& C) and brought to the Art Office.
Any future installations should first be approved by the Art Dept Chair, who will contact FMP&C (Regina Gower). If a sculpture is placed on public city property, FMP&C has to get permission from the city prior to installation. If a sculpture or project is planned to be placed on Moravian College property, FMP&C has to be involved prior to installation. Thanks for your cooperation. Anne
I like this concept. Walk through it and be in the same world, but is it really the same after you have entered it via another portal. Could you, yourself be chancged in some inpercievable way by virtue of having takien that action? I'd consider it.- My Mom (speaking on # 25)
That's awesome. next time they might call in the terrorism squad.- Jenna Johnson
Great website! You must be crazy as hell. COOL! I love the Trashures concept. Reminds me of the fates of the various gigantic papier mache 3D Dobbsheads, which always ended up being LEFT in public places when they had outlived bein worth the effort of hauling them around. - Rev. Ivan Stang
I like this Trashsure series. It's a good concept combining art, action, event, politics/culture, and all with a web based component. Keep it up.- Aaron Yassin
I love the new trashsure in fact I love them all...but since I'm a guitarist, #6 is my favorite.-Peter Thompson
That is pretty cool, man.- John Bell
This is one of your best ones yet! I can't believe you're up to #28.
I like the Duchamp thing happening with the spokes. Wasn't he one of the first to use the wheel as art, like an upside down fork and bike wheel, allowing it to spin freely? So your piece, that of the wheel stripped to its guts implies the desire to move, but can't. Interesting.
So on an aesthetic level, the work looks solid, the creative power made it strong, a force presented on the sidewalk. If passerbys pretend to ignore it, they can't, because the creative power flexes it's influence, it's presence on them. Form, as instinctive nature, is felt and becomes an influence on form(s) they see later in the day. Displaying your valued insight and skill on the misinformed useless, hopeless schmuck public. No wonder you call them trashsures. "Is it trash?""sure." - Kory Smith

Original Trashsures Proposal - To create and then "abandon" a series of art works in the city of New York. These objects will be made from materials that are presently in my studio. They are half-finished, ignored, false starts that are filling up all the valuable space in my studio. There is a raw quality to these pieces that I find at once appealing and also repugnant. I have a compulsive desire to "push" artworks, to keep adding, altering, and fudging with pieces. I also am constantly finding objects that can become the beginnings of great aided ready-made pieces.  All of the objects have a truth to them. That truth is that they are unfinished works of art - no one would think that they were random pieces of trash. Through this project they will become simulations of a very real urban phenomena: the waste of a failed artist. Part of living in New York, is to come upon, piles of abandoned semi-destroyed works of art, the trash pile. My pieces would be more assertively placed. I want to confuse people as to whether the pieces have been thrown way or left by mistake. They will be set down, in areas of high traffic where they are sure to be seen. Then the fickle finger of faith will collaborate, these pieces might be ignored for days, destroyed by the first passerby, or taken by some urban trash connoisseur, or some duchampian might claim them as ready-mades. I will produce maps of their locations, which will be mailed out as exhibition notices so individuals will be able to seek out these pieces. The random reward of an Easter egg hunt comes to mind.

This project would be a means of purging these objects from my life. I will simply take them in their present state and scatter them across the city, photographing each one and recording its new home. I hope the outcome of this is two fold, people will see the objects, and know that they are "Artworks" completing the Artist/Viewer circuit. Also the city is supposedly filled with keen-eyed individuals that will hopefully "adopt" these objects, taking them home, completing the Artist/Collector circuit. If I make enough of the pieces and they become known, perhaps someone will write about them completing the Artist / Critic circuit. If that happens perhaps a curator will want to exhibit the objects or their documentation of them, completing the Artist/Gallery circuit. If my assertions are correct, it will prove my idea that art that negates ego and ownership can bring a larger reward for ego and ownership. If you can make people think that you don,t care or are some kind of revolutionary, then they will do whatever they can to embrace you. Why? Everybody wants to be validated by the trickster, on the laughing end of the joke. Everyone wants to be in on the joke.  This may come off as a bit of art-world stratagem, but what isn't? What we pretend to be, we become, so I will pretend that I am "abandoning" these works, but in reality I will be claiming the greater world as my own gallery. In the end these pieces are really about the shock of context. The Trashsures are objects that within a gallery would be objects to be look at and judged for aesthetic value. When placed on the street they are object that foster confusion. Every person that passes them has to choose what they are a piece of trash or a treasure.

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