Felix Gonzalez-Torres

Felix Gonzalez-Torres

Cuban-American artist Félix González-Torres wanted to infiltrate the way people think and act – quietly but effectively.

Although Félix González-Torres lived most of his life in America, he was born in Cuba during the revolution in the 1950s. From a young age, he knew just how much politics affected everyday life.

I want to have power. It’s effective in terms of change. I want to be like a virus that belongs to the institution.

Pile of red and blue candy laid in a corner of a room

“Untitled” (Para Un Hombre En Uniforme), 1991

Félix always had big dreams. In 1979, he moved to New York City where he met the love of his life, Ross Laycock. This pile of sweets is one of his most famous artworks. As a viewer, you’re encouraged to pick one up and eat it. But it’s actually a portrait of Ross, the initial pile weighing the same as he did before he was diagnosed with AIDS. 

In 1991 Ross died of AIDS related complications, and then Félix at the age of 38 in 1996. Félix knew that his art would outlive him. Today, it serves as a testament to love and lovers, change and hope.

Two clocks on a wall reading roughly the same time

“Untitled” (Perfect Lovers), 1987–90

Sculpture of a man dancing on a platform in underwear

“Untitled” (Go-Go Dancing Platform), 1991

A string of lights hanging from the ceiling in a dark room

“Untitled” (Last Light), 1993

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