All Numbers Are Equal (Perpetua), 2000
aluminum with enamel paint
122 x 712.5 x 2 cm overall
National Gallery of Canada (no. 40790.1-9)
Canadian conceptual artist Micah Lexier uses the sparse visual language of 1970s minimalism to explore universal concerns about aging and mortality, measurement and accumulation. Working in various media, including sculpture, photography, and drawing, he strives to reduce his art to its simplest expression.
"All Numbers Are Equal (Perpetua)" reflects Lexier’s interest in the simplicity of comparative relationships. Here, the numbers 1 to 9 have been modified so that the size of each is equal to the others. Since 1 has the smallest surface, it has been enlarged the most; since 8 has the largest surface, it has become the smallest figure. The title playfully posits the truth inherent in the work: all numbers are equal. Paradoxically, though, all numbers are not equal, as each occupies its own unique position in the sequence and represents a different mathematical value.