23. Re-Enactments by Francis Alÿs, 2001
Franic Alÿs caused a slight stir in Mexico City in 2001 when legally bought a Beretta at a gun shop. He left the shop with the gun in hand and began walking the streets with the firearm visibly displayed, a camera following him. After 11 minutes of aimless walking and whistling, Alÿs was stopped by police and arrested, despite his legal acquisition of the gun—he was eventually released. The very next day, the artist convinced the police to recreate the series of event and filmed the re-enactment. The two versions are shown side-by-side, raising questions of power, the knowledge of power, and the limitations of the individual's rights to mobilize.