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‘That’s exactly my idea’: Artist of $18,000 invisible statue is getting sued by a different invisible artist

By SAAB LARIOSA Published Jul 02, 2021 6:44 pm

Pressing charges over literally nothing.

Remember when Italian artist Salvatore Garau sold Io Sono, the statue “full of energy” that virtually didn’t exist? Well, the plot has just thickened as American performance artist Tom Miller is planning to sue Garau over claims that art based on "nothing" was actually his idea first.

Miller is claiming intellectual property over the $18,000 (P860,000) statue because he also exhibited an empty sculpture called "Nothing" back in 2016 at the Bo Diddley Community Plaza in his city of Gainesville, Florida.

“The space in our world is legitimate to work with as an artistic product. So the idea is fashioning nothing into a sculpture, and that’s what the lawsuit is all about," Miller explained to Florida news outlet WCJB.

“When I saw [Io Sono], I thought ‘that’s exactly my idea and ideas are important in the world, and recognition for those ideas are important. So I simply wanted that attribution so I contacted him, he dismissed it away, and then I hired an Italian attorney,” he added.

He also pointed out that “if you Google ‘Tom Miller Nothing’ you can easily see I had this whole paradigm sorted out before Salvatore Garau." Garau first revealed his invisible pieces in February of this year.

Miller has been consistently outspoken over his outrage over the issue, initially taking the fight to Twitter during its $18,000 price tag reveal.

“This artist is absolutely not the first. I am.”

Garau has yet to comment on the issue. Io Sono serves as his first sold invisible piece.

"You don’t see it but it exists; it is made of air and spirit,” the Italian artist explained of Io Sono. “It is a work that asks you to activate the power of the imagination, a power that anyone has, even those who don’t believe they have it.” 

'See' his first invisible piece, Buddha In Contemplation here:

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