Electric light is just another instrument. I have no desire to contrive fantasies mediumistically or sociologically over it or beyond it. Future art and the lack of that would surely reduce such squandered speculations to silly trivia anyhow … –Dan Flavin, 1966
By employing generic mass-produced light fixtures in his works, Dan Flavin denies his art any transcendental significance while simultaneously denying those same light fixtures their simple utilitarian function by calling them art. His simplified visual vocabulary is related to the work of contemporaries such as Donald Judd and Carl Andre, who have been labeled Minimalist artists for their reduction of formal devices and their emphasis on serial and rational rather than gestural forms. In Flavin’s case light, rather than form, activates the space.