“Unsolicited Advice” by Ben Gansky, Claire Hentschker, Sebrand Warren (2015)
“Unsolicited Advice” is a series of playful propositions in the form of doormats left in front of residences and business. The texts are taken from Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies, a deck of cards that contain brief prompts designed to help users overcome creative blocks. The pithy quality of these texts is reminiscent of fortune cookies or Zen koans.
The choice of doormats relates to the title–unsolicited advice is often also unwelcome. To undermine the potential for offensive presumption, the texts are printed on a commonplace ‘household’ surface whose utility requires users to step on it, wiping their feet. The combination in this object of privilege and pedestrian-ness is apt for these paradoxical pieces of ‘advice.’