AN Italian artist has successfully auctioned off one of his latest sculptures for the sizeable sum of nearly $20,000 and the buyer will have no problem getting it in the car to take home because it is invisible.


An invisible sculpture?

That’s the title of the “immaterial” piece - “Invisible Sculpture”. It’s made of nothing.


It can’t be?

It is actually nothing. You can walk through the space where it “exists” because it is imperceptible and unseen.


Who is behind the work?

Salvatore Garau, 67, who hails from Sardinia, was a drummer in a rock band in the 1970s, before moving into visual art. He is proud of the piece, asking art aficionados to think outside the box. He said simply: “It is a work that asks you to activate the power of the imagination.”


It’s all about “energy”?

That’s what Garau says, calling the work “Lo Sono”, (which translates to “I am”), he told Spanish news outlet Diario that it finds form in its own nothingness: “The vacuum is nothing more than a space full of energy, and even if we empty it and there is nothing left, according to the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, that nothing has a weight. Therefore, it has energy that is condensed and transformed into particles, that is, into us.”


It sold for how much?

At auction in May, it went for $18,300 and came with a certificate of authenticity, as well as instructions on how to exhibit the sculpture. It must be displayed in a private home in an open five-by-five foot space. The artist said: “When I decide to ‘exhibit’ an immaterial sculpture in a given space, that space will concentrate a certain amount and density of thoughts at a precise point, creating a sculpture that, from my title, will only take the most varied forms. After all, don’t we shape a God we have never seen?”


Garau is an invisibility fan?

Last week, he installed “Afrodite Piange” in front of the New York City stock exchange. It is evidenced only by a circle of tape on the cobbles. He said of his work: “You don’t see it, but it exists. It is made of air and spirit.”


It’s not untrodden ground?

In 2012, the Hayward Gallery in London held the UK's first exhibition of art exploring emptiness and invisibility, featuring 50 "works" that included invisible ink drawings, a plinth where Andy Warhol had once briefly stood and a piece of paper that an artist stared at for more than 1,000 hours.


The show about nothing?

In 2003 at the Edinburgh Festival, a production titled "Sweet FA" had no script, no actors and no set, with audiences paying £3 to "contemplate nothingness". Those who managed to contemplate for the duration were rewarded with half their ticket fee back at the end.


In the spirit of Garau?

Readers must now activate the power of the imagination and accept in so doing that this next sentence is a jewel, worthy of the Nobel Prize in Literature: “                                                    ”.