The obsessional dimension of Darboven's art is best considered in the terms set forth by Rosalind Krauss in her essay on the "mad obstinacy" in Sol LeWitt's work. Krauss's essay proffers a reading of LeWitt applicable to forms of Conceptual art characterized by "loquaciousness." Darboven's output, dozens of works each running to over two thousand pages, poses little resistance to such a designation.
Like most of LeWitt's work, Variations of Incomplete Open Cubes  provides one with an experience that is obsessional in kind. On the vast platform, too splayed to be taken in at a glance, the 122 neat little fragmented frames, all meticulously painted white, sit in regimented but meaningless lines, the demonstration of a kind of mad obstinacy... [U]nlike the algebraic expression of the expansion of a given series, where the formulaic is used precisely to foreclose the working out of every term in the series, LeWitt's work insistently applies its generative principle in each of its possible cases... The babble of a LeWitt serial expansion has nothing of the economy of the mathematician's language. It has the loquaciousness of the speech of children or of the very old, in that its refusal to summarize, to use the single example that would imply the whole, is like those feverish accounts of events composed of almost identical details, connected by "and."
For introductions to the major principles of Hanne Darboven's work, please click on the days of the week (e.g. M, T, W). For additional information, click on another date of the month.