Anne Robinson, Karen Saxby
'The Museum of Drawers' is the world's smallest museum of twentieth-century art. This unique piece has been conceived and put together by the Swiss-born artist Herbert Distel in 1970-77. It consists of an old cabinet made to hold reels of sewing silk whose twenty drawers each contain twenty-five compartments. Each of the 500 compartments houses an original miniature work of art, many of which were made especially for the 'Museum of Drawers'. The list of artists represented includes such influential pioneers as Joseph Beuys, Marcel Duchamp, Hannah Hoch, Meret Oppenheim, Pablo Picasso, and Andy Warhol. Following a first presentation as a work-in-progress at the documenta 5 in Kassel (Germany) in 1972, the 'Museum of Drawers' caused sensation internationally. It has been shown several times in New York, including a presentation at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in 1999, and at many museums around the world. After its restoration it is now part of the permanent collection of the Kunsthaus, Zurich. This new book is a comprehensive documentation of this extraordinary object. It shows all twenty drawers with their content as well as each of the 500 miniature art works individually and in true size. Essays on the history and importance of the entire work and concept complement the images.