Drink. Drunken Bakers by Mark Leckey
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Mark Leckey
Drunken Bakers 2005
55 minutes 55 seconds
Voices Mark Leckey & Steve Claydon
Based on the comic strip of the same name by Barney Farmer & Lee Healey















[1] “Around 2004 Mark Leckey and I were trying to curate a show together. We met often in the west end bars of London, but did very little. Mark wanted the show to curate itself. We continued to meet. Then Mark mentioned he had been reading Drunken Bakers in Viz magazine. Everything we had been looking for was there, he said. Mark went ahead, and I went home. The idea was of nothing being made, repeatedly. The show would produce itself and there would be no product. The material was pressed into a mould, baked, then reversed out. At the time there were numerous ideas and impulses connected to this action , but I cannot clearly remember what they were, not exactly. “ MM

[2] David Hammons, Public Toilets 1990, Temse Belgium

[3] Batchelors Pattiserie Northdown Rd , Margate.

[4] Mark Leckey A Dozen Drunken Bakers, 2005 (detail), moulded rubber & Manzoni Achrome, 1961-62 Breadrolls and Kaolin

[5] Mark Leckey, Gorgeousness & Gorgeosity, 2006 1 colour silk screen print Somerset Radiant White 330gms, 1180 mm x 889 mm, Edition of 25

[6] Robert Smithson, Asphalt Lump Oberhausen, Germany 1969 

[0] Not only is there no light at the end of the tunnel, there is no tunnel.

When one reaches this point, distinctions are neither black nor white,
neither strictly abstract nor strictly elemental,
neither representational nor abstract,
neither fully seamless nor fully critical,
neither fully impoverished nor fully consumed,
neither ironical nor superfluous: in effect, they are all off white.

If black is the obvious color of death,
mourning, finality and sadness,
then off white is the color of indirect death,
inconspicuous suffering and mourning,
and unnoticed sadness.
And if black is the color of tragedy,
then off white is the color of comedy
as degraded catharsis.

If white is the color of representation and first-order abstraction,
Then off white is the color of second-order abstraction.
And if white is the color of the referent,
then off white is the color of abstract meaning. 

For if black and white are the colors of Abstraction and Representation,
Then off white is the color of their betrayal.

If they are the colors of responsibility and transcendental surety, on the one hand,
And decadence and social or ethical fatalism, on the other,
Then off white is the color of ethical absurdity.
If black and white are the colors of the model,
Then off white is the color of mortality…..

Where we are compelled to adopt an ethics of absurdity, we must experience these extensions as a
comic void.

The alcohol
of poetry
Is the deceased


[-1] Based on a text by Collins & Milazzo, with apologies to Collins & Millazo

[-2] From The undifferentiated Being is Nothing by Georges Bataille, trans Paul Buck