The sound of breaking glass

Cildo Meireles, Through, 1983-89/2008

Installation art can be risky. It’s just that usually the risks are more about whether the pieece will work and whether viewers will respond as one hopes rather than whether they’ll stumble on a floor of broken glass. But having risked his own freedom by making overtly political work while living in a military dictatorship, Cildo Meireles was never likely to be put off by something like a slight – and largely theoretical – risk of an audience member sustaining a minor injury. Unlike the harmless threat of the long shadows and caged-in feeling of being in a Mona Hatoum installation, Meireles’s Through does involve a level danger, albeit a low one.

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