We have a soft spot for artists who obsessively collect — we like our artists slightly mad. To us, the heroine of this movement, or perhaps affliction, is Sophie Calle. In her landmark "Birthday Ceremony," she exhibited birthday gifts she had received for 13 years. They had never been used, played with, read, worn, or listened to, just preserved in boxes and displayed in glass cases. Right behind her, however, is artist Song Dong, but most of the credit actually goes to his mother. She collected a lot of stuff, or rather, she never got rid of any stuff. Like toothpaste tubes, buttons, jars, blankets, clothes, cans, toys. For more than 50 years in a tiny house in Beijing, she kept everything. The act adhered to the Cultural Revolution adage "waste not," but there was also grief from her husband's death, and maybe a little of the beautiful madness. In 2005, her son helped her finally release her past by presenting it... More >>>