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Chris Burden «Prelude to 220, or 110»
Chris Burden, «Prelude to 220, or 110», 1971
Photography | Photograph: Chris Burden | ©

 Chris Burden
«Prelude to 220, or 110»

Burden lay bolted with copper bands to a concrete floor, near two buckets of water in which live 110-volt lines had been submerged. Had anyone visiting the gallery chosen to spill the water, Burden would have been electrocuted. Such performances created a context in which it was possible (though not probable) that the artist would die. Fear or pain, Burden said, "energize the situation," and that energy was his subject.

(Source: C. Carr, «On Edge. Let's Make an Ordeal—Young Artists Recover the Conceptual '70s in the Material '90s,» 1998,