SiteWorks: San Francisco performance 1969-85

Museum of Conceptual Art (MOCA), 75 3rd Street, now redeveloped

Richard Alpert, Hand Generated Light (14th March 1975)



The performance was situated in a room adjacent to the main exhibition space. Attached to the front of the door, the only entrance to the room, was a small light bulb. For the duration of the three-hour show, I was in the room with the door locked from the inside generating electricity from a hand-crank generator to the lightbulb. The amount of electricity that I could produce varied over the length of the exhibition, causing the light emitted from the bulb to fluctuate, going from intensely bright to barely visible, but never completely going out. Corresponding to the degree of light intensity, were the changing rhythms of the generator’s mechanical sound and the accompanying vibrations in the floor outside the room. (Alpert 1976)