Claes Oldenburg: The Street and The Store

Cash Register
Date: 1961
Medium: Muslin soaked in plaster over wire, painted with enamel
Dimensions: 27 3/4 x 28 1/4 x 38 1/4" (70.5 x 71.8 x 97.2 cm)
Credit Line: Courtesy Locksley Shea Gallery

Claes Oldenburg. Cash Register. 1961

Muslin soaked in plaster over wire, painted with enamel
Courtesy Locksley Shea Gallery Audio courtesy of Acoustiguide

GLENN LOWRY: At the heart of The Store was this particularly lumpy-looking sculpture called Cash Register.

CLAES OLDENBURG: Well, of course you need a cash register if you have a store, right? If you saw a cash register of that period you would be surprised how abstract it is.

And it also made a wonderful ring when you pushed it. Da-ding! You know, big ring and so on. A lot of the objects you see, I mean, are completely out-of-date and then they become almost abstract and mysterious

The one rule of my work is that it must not have any function. It must be completely form. I begin by removing the function of the thing, because its true function is to become an artwork.

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