Lomholt Mail Art Archive

Index: Al Hansen


Alfred Earl "Al" Hansen (5 October 1927 – 22 June 1995) was an American artist, born in New York City, and a member of Fluxus.

While serving in the 82d Airborne Division from 1945 to 1948, Mr. Hansen executed what may have been the first Happening, dropping a piano off a four-story building during an Armed Forces show in Frankfurt. His event-oriented idea of art-making continued to develop at Tulane University in 1949 and in New York in 1950, where he peripatetically attended Brooklyn College, the Art Students League, the Hans Hoffman School of Art and Pratt Institute.

In 1966 he attended the Destruction in Art Symposium in London organized by Gustav Metzger where he met and befriended many of the Viennese Action Artists. In October 1966 Otto Muhl organized an event called "Action Concert for Al Hansen" in Vienna.

In 1977 Hansen managed Los Angeles punk bands the Controllers and the Screamers in Hollywood. In the 1980s Hansen moved to Cologne, Germany where he established an art school, the Ultimate Akademie. Inspired among others by the Final Academy of Genesis P-Orridge it became a meeting point for local and international performers of the time based arts.

He died in Cologne, Germany, in 1995, with a number of friends celebrating a fluxus funeral according to his plan.

Literature (selection)

Al Hansen: A Primer of Happenings and Time Space Art, Something Else Press (1965).

http://www.kunsthalcharlottenborg.dk/exhibition/view/53 (in Danish)

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Performance - Live Art Notes
Al Hansen