Why These 6 Artists Destroyed Their Own Art

Artsy | Jon Mann

The Belgian painter Luc Tuymans never spends more than one day on an artwork. After completing it, he once told the BBC, he leaves his studio, returns the following day, and decides whether it’s good enough to keep. If so, it goes to his dealer; if not, he destroys it.

One might marvel at the idea that Tuymans—whose paintings regularly carry million-dollar price tags—would dispose of something so valuable. Perhaps if they were preparatory sketches or studies, this act would be less shocking. Yet the history of art provides numerous instances of artists willfully discarding finished works of art, including as an expression of traditional beliefs and practices, from Buddhist sand mandalas …. read more 

Images | Zlatko Unger