A Rose Has No Teeth

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A Rose Has No TeethConstance M. LewallenDavis, California, about one and a half hours north of San Francisco and just south of the statecapital, Sacramento, is in a plain between the Coastal Range and Sierra Nevada mountains thatdrains into the Sacramento River. The University of California, Davis, one of ten campuses in thestatewide system, was originally founded as an agricultural school. In the 1960s it was surroundedby orchards and grain fields, dairies and rice paddies. Bruce Nauman entered the graduate programin art, established only two years earlier, in the fall of 1964. Chair Richard L. Nelson, a painter, wasknown for his open-mindedness and commitment to excellence. He also proved to be a good judge\of talent, as evidenced by his impressive faculty appointments. Between 1960 and 1965 he hiredWayne Thiebaud , William T. Wiley, Robert Arneson , Roy de Forest, Daniel Shapiro, and Manuel Neri,who as a group managed the delicate balancing act of pedagogy and personal artistic achievementand came to define the department.Nelson also had the resources to make sure that there was a steady stream of visiting professors,many from New York, who could expose students to the world beyond the relative isolation of Davisand the San Francisco Bay Area. During Nauman's two-year tenure, these included Robert Kulicke,Miles Forst, Joseph Raffaele (now known as Joseph Raphael), Fred Reichman, Paul Waldman, TonyDelap , and local artist William Allan, with whom Nauman would collaborate on several early films .Nelson could also spot artistic promise. Several of Nauman's fellow students became recognized71

artists-ceramic sculptors Richard Shaw and David Gilhooly, and one of the area's early Conceptualartists, Steven J. Kaltenbach. Nelson grasped Nauman's potential and attempted twice to convincethe administration to waive his out-of-state tuition , writing in a letter to the dean , " Mr. Nauman isan extremely talented artist and comes to us as a top student from a very distinguished school , theUniversity of Wisconsin ." In a letter written somewhat later, he noted that although Nauman wasshort three units to qualify for the tuition waiver, " he has, due to the nature of his total dedication ,actually done more," citing work in film and etching. 1 Both requests were denied.Indeed , there was a buzz about Davis. Arneson would be one of the artists credited with changing attitudes toward ceramic sculpture, then widely considered a craft unworthy of being called fineart. By the time Nauman arrived , Arneson had left behind his Peter Voulkos- inspired expressionistpots and was making sculptures based on ordinary objects like typewriters and urinals, both surrealand humorous and often bordering on the scatological. Thiebaud was becoming nationally knownfor paintings that celebrated the everyday pleasures of ice cream cones and fru it pies, which hedepicted in bright, thick oil paints. He was included in the 1962 New Realism show at the SidneyJanis Gallery in New York, which brought together Europeans such as Arman, Martial Raysse, andOyvind Fahlstrbm with the likes of Andy Warhol , Tom Wesselman, George Segal , Roy Lichtenstein ,James Rosenquist , and Claes Oldenburg in an exhibition that launched Pop art (though this termwas yet to be coined). 2Wiley, hired directly out of graduate school at the San Francisco Art Institute , would soon be oneof the few California artists showing regularly in New York. He was dubbed a "Dude-Ranch Dadaist" 3for his folksy paintings full of references to the American West , wayfaring, and his own personalbrand of Zen Buddhism. His sculptures were an irreverent melange of found objects and rusticmaterials like tree branches and animal hides, and they shared with his paintings wildly fanc ifulverbal and visual punning. Their surface casualness and dumbness, however, be lied an underlyingsoph istication.----Nauman heard about UC Davis from Wayne Taylor, a new ceramics instructor at the University ofWisconsin, Mad ison , where Nauman was a student. Taylor was from Sacramento and knew Thiebaudand Arneson. The latter no doubt inspired Taylor's highly unconventional ceramic sculpture , whichintrigued Nauman .4 Nauman was also impressed by Taylor's storefront stud io, a " real" stud io as opposed to the office, bedroom , or garage studios of the rest of the art faculty.5Nauman, who at that t ime was making paintings, had appl ied for a fellowship to IndianaUniversity to study with James McGarrell , whose gestural figurative paintings he admired. Whenhe didn 't receive the fellowship , and because he was interested in the work of the Bay Areapainters Richard Diebenkorn and Elmer Bischoff, Nauman followed Taylor's advice to look intoDavis . That August he headed to California with his new wife , Judy. 6 California has always hadan allure for asp iring young artists. Those who came to the San Franc isco Bay Area often did so

1nceptualto attend one of the many art schools and universities that were enlarging their artconvincedepartments to accommodate the postwar baby boomers reaching college age. In theauman isabsence of a significant art market in the region, it was the schools, each with itshool, theparticular character and aesthetic , that offered artists a sense of community and aman wasmeans of financial support. Nauman first stopped at the San Francisco Art Institute,!dication,only to learn that it was too late to apply for the fall semester. He then drove to Daviswith a van packed with his paintings and everything the young couple owned. Since:h c hang-school was not in session, no one was around the art department except the secre-ailed finetary, Jeanie Bernauer, who assured Nauman that they would love to have him. When·ession isthe asked if she wanted to see his paintings, she replied , "Oh, no . I wouldn 't know:h surrealwhat to look for. " 7 Because its graduate art program was so new, Davis was accepting .--f'ly knowneveryone who applied.which heThe Midwest1e SidneyNauman was born in Fort Wayne, Indiana, on December 6, 1941, the day before thefSse, andbombing of Pearl Harbor. He was the first of three boys born to Genevieve, a home-1tenstein,maker, and Calvin, a sales engineer for General Electric. Due to Calvin's job, the familythis termmoved several times when Nauman was young-first to Schenectady, New York, for afew years, then to Milwaukee until Nauman was in third grade, and next to Appleton,rn be oneWisconsin. This made establishing and retaining friendships difficult for Nauman, whoDadaist" 3turned to such solitary pursuits as making model airplanes and learning to play musicalpersonalinstruments. Finally, the family settled in suburban Milwaukee, and Nauman gradu-nd rusticated with honors from Wauwatosa High School. He was a Boy Scout and enjoyed familyf fancifu lcamping and fishing trips, wh ich fostered his enduring love of the outdoors. He tooknderlyingmusic lessons from an early age, first learning piano, then classical guitar, and finallyplaying bass in polka bands and at parties and weddings. While still in high school,1versity ofNauman took a class at an art school but really had no notion of what it meant to be anThiebaudartist. Drawing came naturally to him , however, and he was quite adept at it even beforere, whichreceiving any formal instruction . When he enrolled at the University of Wisconsin , it wasjio as op-with the intent to study mathematics (more appealing to him than the applied field ofengineering, which his father hoped he would pursue). Although he enjoyed studying Indianamathematics and physics, he realized that he lacked the passion for them that he saw d. Whenin his friends. The mathematics that did interest him was theoretical; he was drawn Bay Areato its logic and structure and the ways logic could be turned inside out. Nauman laterlook intocame to believe that artists who make important contributions are those who explore theways hadstructure of their discipline.en did so9

After two years at Wisconsin , Nauman rather abruptly switched his major to art, because , he hassa id, art allowed "room for both my mind and my hands to work." 8 Before this he had briefly considered a major in music. Indeed, his love for music- Ludwig van Beethoven , Anton Webern , AlbanBerg, Arnold Schoenberg, and espec ially jazz- has never waned. He has often cited the bl ind jazzpianist Lennie Tristano as an influence on his art. What he admires about Tristano is the enormousintensity with which he played, with no buildup or slowing down. 9 "From the beginning I was tryingto see if I could make art like that," he told Joan Simon , "art that was just there all at once. Like getting hit in the face with a baseball bat. Or better, like getting hit in the back of the neck. You neversee it coming; it just knocks you down ." 10 Nauman also likes the fact that Tristano used technologyto alter a recording (once speeding up a tape), to the chagrin of many jazz insiders. 11Madison was near enough to Chicago that Nauman often vis ited t he Art Institute there , where heespecially admired works by Pablo Picasso and Willem de Kooning , particularly the latter's masterfulpainting Excavation (1950). 12 He also liked the possibil ities set forth in Frank Stella's early paintings, but later lost interest when "it became clear that he was just going to be a painter. And I wasinterested in what art can be, not just what painting can be ." 13 The art department at Wiscons in1was conservative , however. Most of the professors were former Works Progress Administration (WPA)artists who worked in a social real ist style and believed that "art had a function beyond being beautiful- that it had a social reason to exist." 14 The painter and sculptor ltalo Scanga , one of Nauman's important teachers, was somewhat of a misfit; a recent appointment, he was dismissed while Nauman was there, apparently for making Pop sculpture, a direction unacceptable to the department, 15\)and for his generally unconventional behavior.16UC DavisAll graduate students at Davis were given studios in former World War II prefab barracks. (Nauman 'splace was nicknamed " Aggie Villa ," a reference to the school 's agricultural emphasis.) There wasvery little structure and only a few required classes. In general , graduate students were left on theirown and told that that they could seek out an instructor if they wanted to talk to someone, whichsuited Nauman .17 " They were just happy if you were working, " Nauman remembers . 18 The Naumansfirst lived in a trailer on the edge of a tomato field . " In the heat, the rotting tomatoes gave off an odorthat made you feel that you were living in the middle of tomato sauce," Nauman recalls. Later theylived over a shoe repair shop on G Street, the main drag in Davis, and finally moved to Mix Canyon ,near Vacaville, where Nauman had " a little studio in the crawl space." 19Although Davis was relatively isolated from the explosive political atmosphere of San Franciscoand UC Berkeley at that time, 20 still, according to Wiley, " Everything was fucking flying open- '\music, sex, race . It was really a creative time. " 2 1 Nauman played in a band with several of his teach- ( .fers and friends-Allan , Wiley, Phil Brown, Frank Owen, Louise Pryor, Van and Ron Walter, Dan Welch ,

e, he hasand William M. Yates. First called Moving Van Walters and His Truck and then Blue Crumb Truck, \iefly con-the band had a regular gig at Deebo 's, a club in Davis, and played at several of the local schoolsrn, Alban(including the San Francisco Art Institute and Sacramento State) and museums (at the opening of)lind jazzthe 1967 show Funk at the University Art Museum in Berkeley, for instance). The band can also be normousheard on the soundtrack of Wiley and Robert Nelson 's underground film classic The Great Blandino(1967) , starring Wiley's brother Chuck . And while Nauman doesn't seem to have been directly in- ;vas tryingvalved in political activity, he did attend the human be-i n in Golden Gate Park, where he remembersLike get -Allen Ginsberg reading and chanting. 22{ou neverNauman entered Davis as a painter, providing the following description of his work in his appl ica-ichnologytion letter to the school :where heI have included some slides of my work of the past yea r in the hopes that they would help clarify mymasterfulstatements I am expected to make here. The paintings seem to tend more and more in an expressionist,rly paint-direction-at the same time I have begun to add the smal l ca nvases in an effort to make a wel l defined!\nd I wasshape and then to deny it with the paint and color-in other words, to sea rch for another kind of ambiguityNisconsi nbesides a pa interly illu sionistic one. This summer I have switched to polymer paints so that I ca n paint over10n (WPA)the large areas I work with in a shorter time without muddying my color changes so much . This has led to\\ig bea uti-Nau man's hile Nau-3rtment, 15fewer and simpler shapes and color, tending at present in a hard-edge direction , though stil l through theprocess of "d iscovery" painting. The last painting, while not exactly representative of my present painting,is a rather extreme example of both these ideas in a transition. I am at present dealing with a large closedline- the shape pushing off the canvas-on severa l different paintings, and as I am doing a good deal ofpainting this summer, hope to have worked out a few of the problems connected with the change in styleand attitude and have settled down again . Incidentally I hope to get the MA so that I can teach-preferablyon the col lege level. 23Nauman'srhere wasEven though he enjoyed manipulating paint, Nauman made a conscious decision to stop paintingft on theirduring his first year at Davis, because he distrusted the "lush solution" that painting represented .24ne, whi ch" Basically I couldn't function as a painter," he has said. " Painting is one of those things that I neverNauma nsquite made sense of. I just couldn't see how to proceed as a painter." 25 In his first semester at Davis,,ff an odorNauman had been making both abstract and landscape paintings containing what he has describedLater theyas " strange shapes." Eventually he just made the shapes independent of the paintings-first out ofx Canyon ,welded steel and then out of fiberglass because it was lighter- and bolted them to stretcher bars (p.200). 26 He also experimented with ceramics under the tutelage of Arneson. 27 In two small , unglazedceramic cups done in 1965, Cup and Saucer Falling Over and Cup Merging with Its Saucer (p .Franciscong openhis teac h-\12), he attempted to convey movement in a way that recalls the Italian Futurist sculptor UmbertoI Boccion i's 1912 Development of a Bottle in Space. The toppling cup is an image that has appearedoften in Nauman's work (for example, in the photograph Coffee Thrown Away Because It Was Too an Welch,11

CUP AND SAUCER FALLING OVER1965; unglazed ceram ic and graphite;4X5½X5½ in. CUP MERGING WITH ITS SAUCER1965; unglazed ceramic and graphite;2 X 5½ X 6 in.

Cold, 1967, p. 67), suggesting that toppled cups were a common occurrence. 28 Another curiouswork, PPG. Sunproof Drawing No. 1 (1965, p. 14), reveals Nauman's ambivalence toward painting.The " drawing" isn't a drawing at all, nor is it "sunproof." 29 In Duchampian terms, it is an alteredreadymade: to create it, Nauman turned a color chart on its side and reproduced it as a sepia-tonedblueprint, thereby denying its original function and its relationship to painting.30At Davis, Wiley became Nauman's most important teacher and a friend. Only four years olderthan Nauman (and most of his students), Wiley was inspiring, always open and receptive to unorthodox ideas, and carried no preconceptions . His own work has always been a by-product of his life (thesynchronicity of art and life is shared by many artists in the region), and anything and everythingwas potential content. He included puns and riddles in his paintings and assemblages, which, whilenot explicitly political, illuminated "the human condition and its fragilities ." 31 Nauman has said thatWiley was the "strongest influence I had . It was in being rigorous, being honest with yourself-trying to be clear-taking a moral position . . Wiley had great personal involvement with students. Hemight say it was terrible work but he would first get at why they made work. Bill was one of the firstthat gave me an idea of moral commitment, the worth of being an artist. It's that [San Francisco] ArtInstitute morality, that art is an ethic. " 32 Wiley conducted weekly seminars during which he wouldwait however long it took for students to begin the conversation. If a half hour or forty-five minuteswent by in silence, he would say that if no one had anything to contribute they all might as well gohome. Although Nauman has commented that he wasn't directly influenced by Wiley's artwork, hedid learn from him not to worry about how a thing looked , and that it was okay to work , as Wiley did,in multiple styles and mediums.Wiley recognized that Nauman was different from most entering graduate students. He attributedit to Nauman's having studied mathematics, music, and philosophy before concentrating on art, sothat he didn't arrive with the usual "baggage" of art majors. Nauman 's more open attitude and interest in words also set him apart. As an example of Nauman's originality, Wiley recalls a particularshow of graduate work that took place in an empty room, " a terrible exhibit space": "Bruce comeswalking in with a board under his arm, a one-by-three cut so that you can lean it at an angle againstthe wall. He had painted the whole thing about the color it was anyway and then added a slightlydarker stripe down the side of it- something you could just barely distinguish from an arbitrary pieceof wood. That really knocked me out, really impressed me with that kind of thinking. Counter to everybody, with this little dinky thing that he just flicked aside . I thought it was great." 33 A more seniorfaculty member, the painter Roland Petersen, recalled in a 2002 interview that Nauman was one ofthe most intellectual graduate students at Davis, adding, "He certainly brought new ideas into thegraduate program that made other students sort of reconsider how they were thinking. I rememberone time that Bruce Nauman brought in a fan, and he turned the fan on before the whole group, andhe was describing how aesthetically pleasing this fan was in terms of form and sound." 34

PPG. SUNPROOF DRAWING NO. 11965; sepia-toned blueprint paper;1Bsx 8 ½ in.

Chris Unterseher, a fellow student, recal ls that Nauman was regarded as eccentric, but "he wasa guy that everybody knew was going to go somewhere, he just had that aura about him. " 35 Anotherclassmate , Nina Van Rensselaer, agrees that Nauman always stood out and was " wildly original. " Hewas regarded more as an equal to his professors than as a student. 36 Kaltenbach recounts that otherstudents thought Nauman was " aestheti cally challenged. " He describes a piece Nauman made oflatex rubber:I believe it was four kind of like petal-like shapes, but they were square, they came off of an axis in fo urdirections, maybe they were triangu lar. But basically, it was about a three-by-three-foot sq uare and the wayit was shown was that you stood back and you threw it into a corner . it just sort of landed. We all thoughtBruce was crazy. He just diverged too much from our aesthetic. The fire marshal had heard that we wereusing f lammable materials and decided to inspect, and he brought a photographer witl1 him because hewanted to take photographs of dangerous practices and things that needed to be changed. So , Bruce hadthis piece laying over in the corner and the guy comes in with his uniform on and th is guy with the came ra .He pointed to Bruce's sculpture and sa id, " Get a picture of that acc umulation over there." And we all justcracked up. But it was a very enlightening moment for me, because I think it was the first ti me I consciously realized that it was possible to seriously do something that was so unrecognizable as art that it couldactual ly be seen as trash .37Indeed, Nauman is credited with creating "the first viable mutation" of Minimalism, then at itsapogee. 38 (Though Minimalism never had a stronghold in Northern Californ ia, artists in the regionwere certainly aware of its hegemony.) Artists like Eva Hesse, Robert Morris, Barry LeVa , LyndaBenglis, and Richard Serra on the East Coast and Paul Kos and Terry Fox in the San Francisco BayArea were investigating new processes and nontraditional materials such as dirt, ice , dust, latex,a.o.d fiill that produced results t trnt djdn'LN semble anything that had been considered art until thattime . Whilemost of these artists cont inued certain Minimalist innovations, such as placing theirsculptures or objects directly on the floor rather than on a pedestal or platform , they rejected thestrict geometry and symmetry that characterizes classic Minimal ism. Moreover, for the most partthey crafted their works, rather than having them produced by an industrial fabricator. In essence ,according to Maurice Berger, " anti -form overturned the conventions of connoisseurship , where therelative quality of sculpture was eva luated on the basis of beauty and refinement of its form, offeringinstead an indeterminate object with an indefinite set of sculptural possibilities." 39 Robert PincusWitten dubbed such work Post-Minimal ; alternate terms were "anti -form" and "process art," whichtook into account tendencies such as Arte Povera in Italy.15

PerformancesAnother new area of interest to adventurous young artists was performance, not in the theatricalsense, but rather as an extension of sculpture . In part, this interest grew out of a desire to circumvent the way art was being exhibited and marketed (though for Nauman, as a student, this probablywasn't much of a concern). More importantly, for a certain group of young artists no longer interestedin painting and sculpture, the body represented another new "material" to be explored. The painterFrank Owen remembers Nauman, who was a teaching assistant for Thiebaud during his first semester at Davis, saying that one day he had a revelation-that it didn't make sense for students to sit ina circle all drawing a model in the middle. Then and there he decided he would use his own body asmaterial. 40 In 1965-several years ahead of Vito Acconci, Chris Burden, Joan Jonas, and others whobecame leaders in the medium-Nauman gave a performance that involved putting his body througha series of poses. 41 He described the performance in a 1970 interview with Avalanche magazineeditor Willoughby Sharp: "I did a piece that involved standing with my back to the wall for aboutforty-five seconds or a minute, leaning out from the wall, then bending at the waist, squatting, sitting, and finally lying down. There were seven different positions in relationship to the wall and floor.Then I did the whole sequence again standing away from the wall, facing the wall, then facing leftand facing right. There were twenty-eight positions and the whole presentation lasted for about halfan hour." In a second performance, Manipulating a Fluorescent Tube (1965, p. 183), he explained,"I was using my body as one element and the light as another, treating them as equivalent and justmaking shapes. " 42 With the use of the light fixture, an obvious reference to Dan Flavin 's Minimalistfluorescent tube sculptures, Nauman was both claiming and subverting a Minimalist paradigm.In only two other instances did Nauman perform in public: first with his wife, Judy, and MeredithMonk in connection with the Whitney Museum of American Art's 1969 exhibition Anti-lllusion.Procedures/Materials, 43 and in 1970 with Monk and Serra at the Santa Barbara Arts Festival. 44However, Nauman continued to explore his body as subject and object in various media. In 1967,for example, he began an extended series of films and videos with Thighing (p. 18), a short film inwhich he manipulates the skin and flesh of his thigh with his hand.Fiberglass and Rubber SculpturesNauman's early performances led to a series of abstract but anthropomorphic, cast-fiberglasssculptures. (Several drawings from early 1965 make clear the figurative aspect of Nauman's firstsculptures.) A very early example is an untitled fiberglass sculpture in the shape of a squat, truncatedpyramid that sits solidly on the floor but hugs the wall. Most of Nauman's subsequent fiberglasssculptures are long and slender and simply hang on the wall (as would the rubber sculptures thatfollowed), while others, some of which have two elements, engage the wall and floor, as Nauman didwith his body in performance. During this period , Nauman saw two sculptures by Richard Tuttle at

THIGH/NG1967; 16 mm fil m, color, sound; 4 min., 36 sec.

4 min. , 36 sec. UNTITLED1965; fiberglass and polyester resin;21 ½ X 18 X 11 ½ in. UNTITLED1965; drawing on photographic paper;11 X 8 ½ in.

UNTITLED1965; fiberglass and polyester resin;83 X48X3 ½ in.UNTITL ED1965; fiberglass; 82 x 21 x 27 in.

"ITLED: fiberglass and polyester resin;48 X 3 ½ In.'/TLEOfiberglass; 82 x 21 x 27 in.

BURNING SMALL FIRES (deta il )1968; artist book, one folded sheet; open : 37 ¼ x 49 in.

Even though Nauman's fiberglass works are distinct objects, he was already thinking about sculpturein relationship to the space it inhabits, as exemplified in several recently discovered drawings from early1965, the beginning of his second semester at Davis. In these drawings Nauman indicated the floor andwall planes of rooms and sometimes added a written notation, such as "rubber 'Y' shaped piece in alarge bare room." His concern with the placement of his sculpture is also evident in a 1965-66 studentproject, Pictures of Sculpture in a Room (pp. 132- 33), an eight-page book consisting of photographsof four fiberglass sculptures. 52 Nauman's intent was to make a book that was an object, "to confusethe issue a little bit. It is a total object, but it has pictures-however, it is a book, not a catalogue." 53Nauman subsequently made other artist books, as they became known, such as CLEA RSKY (1968,p. 28) 54 and Burning Small Fires (1968, p. 26). The latter consists of photographs of pages fromEdward Ruscha 's book Various Small Fires and Milk (1964), burning. Nauman was paying humoroushomage to Ruscha, who pioneered the artist book with his 26 Gasoline Stations (1963).Following the fiberglass works (he would not return to casting until much later, at the end of the1980s, in his flayed animal series) , Nauman continued his deconstructive investigations of sculpturein several latex rubber pieces composed of a single sheet cut into strips, which derived from experiments with paper sculptures (none of which have survived). Most of these rubber sculptures hang onthe wall, although one folds into a corner (and is the first of several pieces, such as the cardboardand-paint Untitled [1966, p. 31], that focus on a corner space). 55 David Whitney wrote of this workand others like it, " Late in 1965 Nauman began to work with latex rubber on cloth backing. Here the'throw-away' look became intensified, some of the works resembling nothing more than piles of rags .The limp, sagging quality gives the impression that the intended product has collapsed." 56 Naumanexplained later that casting with soft materials gave him a way to move beyond the formal problemsthat arose in fiberglass casting. 57 Soon, however, he found the fiberglass and rubber sculptures tooresistant to his incorporation of other areas of interest to him, such as language. 58Several of Nauman's teachers-Wiley, Arneson , de Forest, Neri-were often grouped under therubric "Funk," a designation derived from the 1967 exhibition at the University Art Museum, Berkeley,of the same name. The exhibition organizer, Peter Selz, defined Funk, a term borrowed from jazz, as"a matter of attitude." He wrote in the exhibition catalogue, "Funk is at the opposite extreme of suchmanifestations as New York's Primary Structures or the Finish Fetish sculpture which prevails in Southern California. Funk art is hot rather than cool; it is committed rather than disengaged; it is bizarrerather than formal; it is sensuous; and frequently it is quite ugly. Although usually three-dimensional ,it is non-sculptural in any traditional way, and irreverent in attitude. Like the dialogue in a play byIonesco or Beckett, the juxtaposition of unexpected things seems to make no apparent sense. " 59Nauman was never a Funk artist (he has noted that the height of Funk had already passed by the timehe arrived in California), but, like those associated with Funk, he eschewed matters of taste and finishin his fiberglass and rubber sculptures, which also partook of Funk art's casual , homemade look .6027

III;,,,, ,.,FOLLOWING PAlil UNTITLED»UN I II l./:/1,,i-,, 1.:i1 ··, 011 11111 1,.lf1965; pencil on verso of ditto paper;196!111il PJll OX 1'1 ,. ,fl ,. ;,, ,11X8½ in.UNTITLED (2 PC. DIFFERENTMOLD, 2 PC. SAME MOLD . . J1965; felt-tip pen on verso of ditto paper;ll x 8 ½i n.» UN I II I I /J

The Slant StepThe "Slant Step" exemplifies the preva iling attitude among the Davis group and their like-mindedBay Area cohorts. 61 The story goes that Wiley took Nauman to the Mt. Carmel Salvage Shop on LovellStreet near his Mill Valley studio to see a strange object that looked like a step stool , but that wasangled in such a way that one could not actually stand on it (p. 33) . Crudely constructed of woodcovered with green linoleum, the step stayed in Nauman's mind, and he finally asked Wiley to buy it(it cost about fifty cents) and bring it to Davis. Nauman kept it in his studio for most of 1966, usingit as a footstool that worked well enough if he tilted his chair on it