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© Christian Marclay. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.
Artist:Christian Marclay , Born in San Rafael, CA, 1955 Title:Secret Date:1988 Medium:Metal disc and padlock Culture: American Dimensions:7 in. (17.8 cm) Credit Line:Museum purchase Accession number:2009.8.2 Label Copy: This work asks viewers to consider a sound object without the sound. Christian Marclay’s sculpture consists of a 7-inch metal “mother” disc (the template used to produce vinyl records, and in this case a 45rpm “single”) with a padlock affixed through the middle. The large padlock denies us any opportunity to play and hear what has been recorded and offers only the potential of sound. Secret refers to a 1916 work by the artist Marcel Duchamp. Titled With Hidden Noise, it consists of a box containing an unknown object that produces a noise when shaken. A delicate and valuable work, Duchamp’s object is rarely touched, making the sound almost as secret as the object it contains. In much the same way, Marclay’s metal disc is a mystery. We are denied access to whatever sound is contained in the grooves of this record, leaving us to wonder and imagine what it might sound like.

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© Christian Marclay. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.© Christian Marclay. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.© Christian Marclay. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.© Christian Marclay. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.© Christian Marclay. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.