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United States of America 1924 – 1997

300 variable piece: No.70 (2 panels) 1971-76 Materials & Technique: photographs, Acknowledgement: Purchased 1977
Accession No: NGA 78.391.A-B

The Conceptual artist, Douglas Huebler used text and image to confuse our faith in photography’s apparent realism. In 1970 he undertook to ‘photographically document … the existence of everyone alive’. This project involved thousands of faces presented in a standardised way – cropped and arranged in grids. In this work, Huebler demonstrates the great difficulty of reconciling the photograph with the real world: any or all of the 100 faces shown could represent the figure of William Leslie Arnold, a fugitive on the FBI most-wanted list.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra