Artworks/Unrealized Works

Ever Burning American Flag

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Ever Burning American Flag emerged as a bold conceptual work by Chris Burden, perhaps symbolizing the enduring spirit of the United States. In Burden's vision, this flag, eternally ablaze, was conceived as the epitome of patriotism. His proposal envisioned a multitude of roles for this fiery emblem, from serving as a striking backdrop for presidential addresses to adorning American embassies across the world. Even more intriguing, Burden imagined it as a standard carried into battle, a symbol capable of striking fear into the hearts of adversaries, akin to the evocative power of Scottish bagpipes.

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Format
MP4
Dimensions
3840 x 2160
Duration
00:19

THE ORIGINAL
CONCEPT

The concept gained traction in 2007 when Burden communicated with the Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia, as Burden had participated in a previous residency at the institution.

He sought a material that could withstand both fire and wind to bring his vision to life. However, despite extensive efforts, practical challenges and conceptual debates led to its unrealized status.

Conversations about this provocative project were frequent among the artist and his studio staff. Controversy arose due to its visual similarity to flag burning and potential legal concerns; logistical concerns, such as fabric formulation and approvals from relevant authorities, further hindered the project.

Though Burden continued to explore potential avenues for execution, this remarkable emblem of American resilience remained confined to the realm of concept, drawings, and imagination until now...