Artist Multiples – Experimental 2/3


‘Fluxus’ is the name of a transatlantic art movement that first came to prominence in the early 1960s. Its name which derives from the Latin word for ‘flux’ or ‘flow’ was coined by the artist George Maciunas in 1961. The many artists linked to the movement sought to blur the divisions between art forms and erode the boundary between art and life.1 Initially recognised for its street and stage concerts, which combined elements of visual art, theatre and musical performance, the movement later gained attention for its multiples, with which it hoped to democratise the art market.

Fluxus multiple examples:


As the name itself suggests, ‘multiples’ are artworks of which many copies are produced. Each copy is typically identical, with none considered the original. Romanian-born Swiss artist Daniel Spoerri is credited with introducing the term to the art world in 1959, when he began a publishing initiative called Edition MAT (Multiplication d’Art Transformable).1 The purpose of this venture was to produce small, three-dimensional artworks in editions and sell these at lower prices than unique works.2 In this way, art would be made available to a larger audience and thus be rendered more accessible. While prints, books and sculptures have been replicated for centuries, Spoerri helped expand the horizons of editioned art to encompass modern art forms, such as sculptures using found or ‘readymade’ objects, and kinetic art, in which Edition MAT specialised. In doing so, he took a cue from the French artist Marcel Duchamp, who between 1935 and 1941 had produced small-scale copies of his own readymade sculptures and other works, issuing them together in a box entitled Boîte-en-valise.

Spoerri’s embrace of multiples was connected with a democratic impulse that would resonate throughout the 1960s. As the decade progressed, the art world would expand considerably, and so too would the market for multiples. By the end of the 1960s, young gallerists specialising in editioned works, along with dedicated art fairs, large-scale public exhibitions, and displays in popular venues like department stores had helped place multiples in the hands of a new and larger audience for art.3

A key facilitator of these developments was the Fluxus movement, which emerged in the early sixties and with which Spoerri was affiliated. Multiples played a central role in Fluxus, and were the focus of the publishing activities of one of the movement’s founding members, Lithuanian-born American artist George Maciunas. In 1963, as part of his initiative to break down the elitism of the art market, Maciunas opened his ‘Fluxshop’ in downtown New York. From this base, he produced and sold so-called ‘Flux Boxes’ and ‘Flux-Kits.’ Typically no larger than a briefcase, these compact containers housed a wider variety of multiples, created by many different artists.4 In the context of Fluxus multiples assumed a range of new, and often humorous guises, including scores for events and performances, interactive games, small booklets and other forms of printed matter.

As an affiliate member of Fluxus in Europe, who worked with Maciunas on several occasions, Beuys was well aware of his colleague’s activities and in 1965 began producing multiples of his own. In contrast to the works that Maciunas published, which often fit snuggly in the palm of one’s hand, Beuys’s first multiples were larger and were often more complex to produce. In place of small sheets of printed paper or boxes containing simple, prefabricated objects, Beuys favoured work with a more sculptural character, in which found materials were combined with hand-formed elements. This latter trait also set his works apart from Fluxus multiples, as well as those of Edition MAT, which avoided suggestions of hand-production. Many of Beuys later multiples also bore signs of the artist’s hand, in the form of signatures, inscriptions, and manually applied stamps. Like both Spoerri and Maciunas, Beuys had a strongly democratic vision for art, to which end he conceived his multiples as ‘vehicles’ for increasing art’s accessibility and distributing his ideas to a wider public.5 When his work began to take an explicitly political turn in the early 1970s, multiples became an ideal means of publicising his social concerns.



 1/2God Damn (Watch) – 2018
Custom designed laser engraved watch
40 mm diameter, 20 mm onyx black leather strap
Edition of 25 + 1 APExhibition History:
2018 Olga Korper Gallery (Toronto, ON);

God Damn (Watch) – 2018
Custom designed laser engraved watch
40 mm diameter, 20 mm onyx black leather strap
Edition of 25 + 1 AP
Exhibition History:
2018 Olga Korper Gallery (Toronto, ON);

 1/3Everything is Interesting – 2003
1.5″ diameter
Produced for the Ikon Gallery. Birmingham, UKGill Saunders & Rosie Miles: “Prints Now” London: V&A Publications, 2006 (excerpt) 
As part of her 2003 exhibition at the Ikon Gallery in Birmingham, Canadian artist Kelly Mark used badges, postcards, interventions and installations to extend the reach of the work beyond the institution. Badges and postcards printed with the statement “everything is interesting” (also the title of the exhibition) were circulated around Birmingham – they were on sale at the gallery but also distributed through letter-drops and mailings. Mark saw these anonymous statements as small works of art feeding into the fabric of life in the city, circulating her message by an ephemeral low-key strategy characteristic of her focus on the minutiae of everyday life. By disseminating the idea way beyond the circles of the initiated and those who visited the gallery, the badges offered a modest epiphany to an unknown and random audience.

Kelly Mark | Exist

Kelly Mark
Toronto, Canada: Self-published, 2009
7.5″ x 12″ x 2″
Edition of 25 + 2 AP

Altered exit sign, water-jet cut powder coated aluminum w/ LED lights

Shay Donavon, Nihilist Celebration, 2019

An End

ArtistSam CotterPrice$25.00Date2017PublisherSam CotterFormatMultiplesSize5 × 1.9 × 0.7 cmGenreMoney ClipJewelleryDescription

A money clip bearing the small inscription “I too dream of an end to capitalism” — a signal of concurrence and a reminder of complicity. – Sam Cotter

Angelina Kiriakos,

Money Isn’t Love, 2019

The artist changed the text from Happy New Year to Money Isn’t Love on a template for making a Chinese money envelope, given at celebrations.

Yinka Shonibare MBE | Kaleidoscope

Yinka Shonibare MBE
London, UK: The Multiples Store, 2014
8 x 8 x 27 cm.
Edition of 45

“…Shonibare playfully reclaims an object from a familiar British tradition and subverts it through the use of batik patterns and by transforming the shape into that of a phallus. The opening at the head of the phallus reveals a distorted image of Sandro Botticelli’s Birth of Venus. Shonibare has replaced the familiar image of the ideal female nude with a photograph of a well-endowed male, subverting the image and preforming an act of reverse objectification. This object can also be seen as a subversive take on 19th century Victoriana, and specifically the “peep show” images of women viewed through devices such as a kaleidoscope.”
– The Multiples Store

George Brecht
Closed on Mondays
New York City, USA: Fluxus, 1969
10 x 12 x 1.6 cm. (sizes varied)
Edition size unknown

An opaque plastic Canal street box contains adhesive material to secure itself permanently shut (it can only be opened very slightly). A black and white image designed by George Maciunas (see his mechanical for the layout, above) is adhered to the lid in which five children gather in front of two large double doors, with two of them doodling on the ground. The title appears as part of the graffiti on the doors, “Closed on Mondays, A Fluxgame, by George Brecht.”

Brecht’s original prototype (above, bottom) was a wooden box held closed with a rubber band.

The idea comes from seeing signs in restaurant windows (Ferme le lundi), but functions just as well as a comment on the inaccessibility of art on Mondays (when many galleries are closed). The work also sits along other Fluxus kits which comment on their own opening and closing, such as Ken Friedman’s Open and Shut Case.

“I made a box in Villenfranche – it had a rubber band inside. And then George came with this other thing using rubber cement and he had this photo made. That’s more or less his recreation of the original model [which] has a little plastic sign on it with engraved white letters.”

– George Brecht, 1983

Micah Lexier
Envelope Sculpture
Toronto, Canada: Nothing Else Press, 2012
15 x 20 x 0.2 cm
Edition of 50 signed and numbered

Archival pigment print on paper, a reproduced shred of comic with the onomatopoeia of title. From the collection of the singer George Michael.

The 7th Nothing Else Press edition (and Lexier’s second) is a cardstock envelope printed with a set of instructions for making a sculpture using the six letterpressed, glueless envelopes enclosed. Star and Hexagon versions are available, each in an edition of fifty copies.

The works are available for $30.00 CDN each, or both for $50.00, from or at the London Art Book Fair in two weeks time.


Edition of 100


TABLE STOPS is a collection of seven ceramic full stops. Each full stop is taken from a different font: Klang, Slipstream, Avant Garde, Nuptial, Formata, Optical and Courier. The full stops are all enlarged to the same scale, though each is a very different size and shape.

See Fiona Banner’s Instagram – For examples including above:

Ligorano/Reese, Fuck Snow Globe

Nora Ligorano and Marshall Reese have been collaborating since the 1980s. This best-selling multiple, from their limited edition series, showcases the designers’ sense of humor and multidisciplinary work using unusual materials and industrial processes.

Shannon Gerard and her crocheted multiples!

Guts multiples

Like my other crochet projects, Plants You Can’t Kill are attractive on the surface while also speaking to our human insecurities. These pretty little cacti, aloe plants, flowering pots, ferns and other botanicals look darling on the windowsill but are particularly resonant with those of us who can’t keep the real thing alive.

After dozens of failed attempts at indoor gardening, I just decided to crochet plants my own damn self.

These plants are for sale in my online shop, and in several stores across Canada and the USA. See Stockists tab for locations. See:

New Museum Store:

See Dave Dyment’s site:

See John Marriot’s site:

Art Mutters

ArtistJohn Marriott

Don’t it feel like the truth.

1.25 inch button taking its starting point from the PR button from the Art Gallery of Ontario that boldly proclaims “Art Matters”. Marriott’s version reflects the agony and intellectuality that at times seems to haunt it all.

Burnable Contemporary Art Gallery

ArtistJohn Marriott

Build your own burnable contemporary art gallery with this do it yourself kit from John Marriott. Kit includes a template for a multi-story public gallery of brazen contemporary architecture along with a sheet of tinfoil to create your own free-form addition that tastefully reflects recent movements in blobitecture.

See ART METROPOLE – Artist Multiples

Make an Artist Multiple

RECOMMENDED MEDIA: Posters, post-cards, T-shirts, mugs, a set of stickers, banners, matchbooks, artist books, modified products, small sculptures or other commercially-printed or mass printed media.

Due: See schedule for details


Since the 1950’s artists have been making accessible works in a series/edition intended for wider distribution than an expensive “original”. They would undermine the idea of precious/one-of-a-kind artworks, and be related to everyday objects and operations.

They have been made as prints, small manufactured sculptures, pins, artist books, magazines, postcards, t-shirts and other commercially reproducible media.

Artist multiples are sometimes playful and mischievous – exploring new and surprising manifestations of commercial goods – for example they are personal, satiric, highly conceptual, queer, alternative to mainstream ideas etc. They can also convey activist messages intended for wide distribution.

Students will create a playful artist multiple in a form intended to be made in “multiple”. You can create one or more of your multiples, or a few items in a series – and consider the ideal “edition” size when you show your work in critique. Your work should be finished like a product in a store, and this may include packaging to finish the work.

Consider artist multiples by some of the following artists:

Hiba Abdallah

Sandy Plotnikoff

Dave Dyment

Yoko Ono

David Shrigley

Kelly Mark

Adam David Brown

Roula Partheniou

Paige Gratland

Micah Lexier

Jessie Eisner

Tracey Emin

Piero Manzoni

John Baldessari

Fiona Banner

Germaine Koh

Jenny Holzer

Fluxus (various)

Students will document finished works at the studio with a backdrop/or in action for addition to the blog.

Two “commercial” style photos of your multiple must be posted on the blog with a title and short description by the end of the day at least one week after the last class to receive a final grade.

Collect, Collage, Re-Create:

Maggie Groat:

Maggie Groat, Of Another Natural History II, 2011. Collage, 83.8 x 63.5 cm. Courtesy the artist. Collection TD Bank.

Maggie Groat
flowers also gardens, gardens also seeds

June 2020
curated by Tarin Dehod

The frame of this moment is part of who we are, and part of who we have always been even if we have ignored it in the past. It is once again exposing to the privileged the worst of ourselves, and the necessity of showing up, with our bodies, our words, our resources. It is weaning us down to the fundamentals: the value of life.

In the fall of 2019, Maggie Groat and I started talking about ungendered fertility and production. fertilities>twins>swings>sings (2019) was the core work in a knife, a project I curated as part of Gallery 44’s “A Maze of Collapsing Lines,” an online series also featuring the work of Amalie Atkins and Soda_Jerk. We envisioned fertilities> installed on AKA’s billboard this summer, but after months of pandemic life in all of its complexity and constraint, we had a gut feeling, a pull toward flowers also gardens, gardens also seeds (found paper, 2020). This collage was originally made as a pattern for fabric, that intention was clear; the work enveloped us, like something we didn’t know we needed. The AKA and Paved billboard has naturally gathered its own mandate, layered by the artists who have contemplated its presence on a street in Saskatoon with a history of extreme prejudice, violence, and now shared by gentrification and many essential non-profit services. Artists tend to address this space either through an image that offers beauty and contemplation or something pointed, hard, and inescapable.

I’m writing this statement now in another world. Not new, more raw, less obscured. And flowers also has been up on 20th Street for two weeks. The work is a utopic vision; an impossible garden. I’m not sure what it means to present art work right now, but I am sure that fertility and growth, and life and death are ever present.

Flowers also gardens, gardens also seeds is an offering, a memorial. And like all things that are relegated to the ground, it is fertilizer for something new to grow.

Maggie Groat is a visual artist who utilizes a range of media including works on paper, sculpture, textiles, site-specific interventions and publications to interrogate methodologies of collage and salvage practices. Her current research surrounds site-responsiveness, shifting territory, associative logic, decolonial ways-of-being, gardens, slowness, margins, and the transformative potentials of found and ritual materials. The approaches and perspectives demonstrated within her practice are informed by her Skarú:ręʔ and Settler backgrounds, her roles as mother and environmental steward. Her work has been shown at institutions across Canada, including The Western Front (Vancouver, BC), Walter Phillips Gallery (Banff, AB), Art Gallery of York University, Art Museum University of Toronto (Toronto ON), SBC (Montreal, QC), and has twice been long-listed for the Sobey Award (2015, 2018). She is the editor of The Lake (2014) published by Art Metropole (Toronto ON) and ALMANAC (2017) published by the Kitchener Waterloo Art Gallery (Kitchener ON). She is currently a lecturer in the Visual Studies department at the University of Toronto and lives with her partner and three young children on the land between two lakes, the traditional territory of the Haudenosaunee, Chonnonton and Anishnaabeg.

Jennifer Murphy:

Based in Toronto, artist Jennifer Murphy has been continuously engaging the art industry with her display of delicate craftsmanship and fervent expressiveness.  Her work is a composite of small cuts outs, which Murphy had hand stitched from intricate spans of thread to eventually form whole compositions that create the semblance of skulls and birds in large unframed collages. There appears to have a level of consistency in the styles and types of imagery that the artist has accumulated. On inspection of these collections, a strong inclination for spiders, snakes, cats, butterflies, birds, mummies and jewels is revealed. Ranging from delicate webs of animal life to the kaleidoscopic spheres of text the artists has attempted to move her strategy into installation and sculpture employing newspapers and books as well as magazine cutouts.

Murphy’s art resonates the disturbing imagery of the poetry of Li Ho, a renowned poet of the Tang Dynasty. Li Ho’s brilliance was not at the time accepted in any way by his contemporaries and was known as a ‘Ghost Poet’ in part due to his name as a dark figure on the literary fringes. His literary imagery of life under the constant threat of decay is seemingly prevalent within Murphy’s work, her collages working as a visual realisation of the Li Ho’s poems.

Murphy’s collages are peppered with references to decay and morbidity yet simultaneously emanates a light and certain sweetness whilst capturing an essence of the exuberance of nature. This equilibrium formed by the melding of macabre and the exquisite acts as emulation the natural world. As death cannot exist without life, it is presented through Murphy’s collages that these two forces of existence entwine and embrace.

Delicate Nature Collages Held Together by Thread Reflect a Time of “Ecological Mourning”

By Kelly Richman-Abdou on October 26, 2019

Collage Art

Collage artist Jennifer Murphy is inspired by interconnectedness. While this interest informs much of her work, it is particularly evident in The Shadow of Sirius, a series of delicate nature collages comprising flora and fauna cut-outs held together by thread. “Wedding the specimens of the naturalist with the visions of the fantasist,” these eye-catching pieces explore our real-life environment through a surreal lens.

Each of Murphy’s collages is made up of a collection of photographs that work together to create a bigger picture. In order to aptly illustrate the artist’s focus on the natural world, these smaller images exclusively feature animals, plants, and organic objects, like sticks, stones, and seashells. Once artistically arranged by Murphy, these photos form silhouettes of similarly-themed subjects, with butterflies, birds, and branches among her most revisited motifs.


In addition to showcasing the beauty of nature, these collages speak to more existential themes—namely, of loss. Relevant to the artist’s personal life and to the world as a whole, this concept has recently given new meaning to Murphy’s lifelong practice. “Although I have worked in collage since I was a child, I really began to explore large-scale, sculptural collage after the death of a dear friend and close collaborator ten years ago,” she explains. “This series comes at another time of loss, both personal and I believe collective. We now live in a time of ecological mourning and are in desperate need for paths to rediscover hope.”

It is this pursuit of hope that has inspired Murphy to create The Shadow of Sirius, a project that creatively shines a light on the earth’s diverse ecosystems and, most importantly, reminds us that everything is connected.

In The Shadow of Sirius, artist Jennifer Murphy crafts delicate nature collages that reflect “a time of ecological mourning.”


Collage Art

ADThe Shadow of Sirius

ADThe Shadow of SiriusThe Shadow of SiriusJennifer MurphyJennifer MurphyJennifer MurphyJennifer Murphy

These exquisite pieces were recently featured in a solo show at Toronto’s Clint Roenisch Gallery.

Sameer Farooq and Mirjam Linschooten

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

In collaboration with Mirjam Linschooten
Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto. Installation and book.
Curated by: Haema Sivanesan

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and–) was completed upon invitation from the Art Gallery of Ontario. Responding to an exhibition in a neighbouring room entitled Maharaja: The Splendour of India’s Royal Courts, our goal was to cleverly update the colonial exhibition with contemporary, everyday objects from South Asian communities across Toronto. The result was an installation and bookwork of hundreds of objects which drew lines between itself and the neighbouring exhibition. On the last day of the show, visitors were invited to “Loot the Museum” freeing the objects and releasing them back into the city.

Download full curatorial essay

Next project: → The Museum of Found Objects: Istanbul

Previous project: ← Kashgar Commons

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Object photo 86 (makeup)

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Object photo 34 (telephone)

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Exhibition view at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), Toronto, Canada, 2011.

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Publication cover

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Publication interior showing Grooming Set (No. 56) and Paper Dinner Service (No. 57)

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Publication interior showing Bingo Cage Set (No. 37) and Alcohol Collection (No. 38)

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Publication interior showing Metal Skewer (No. 60) and Duster (No. 61)

The Museum of Found Objects: Toronto (Maharaja and—)

Loot the Museum event at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), Toronto, Canada, 2011.

Mark Dion: