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Reas, C.E.B. (Casey)

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Digital access to this material is pending artist's approval. Materials may be viewed onsite at the Goldsen Archive, Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Kroch Library, Cornell University.

In 1962 a young Umberto Eco wrote Opera Aperta (The Open Work) and described the new concept of a work of art which is defined as structural relationships between elements which can be modulated to make a series of distinct works. Individuals such as Cage, Calder, and Agam are examples of artists working in this manner contemporary to Eco's text. While all artworks are interpreted by the individual, he distinguished the interpretation involved in this approach to making art as fundamentally different from the interpretation of a musician playing from a score or a person looking at a painting. An open work presents a field of possibilities where the material form as well as the semantic content is open.

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