Westport museum tries to set world record with largest abstract painting
WESTPORT — Local artist Trace Burroughs is no stranger to world records, having actually officially held one.
In 1975 he was listed in the “Guinness Book of World Records” for the longest marathon solo drumming bout, having kept up a 105-hour stint. He reestablished that record in 1978 for a period as well.
That’s part of why Burroughs thought it would be fun to invite people to take part in trying to set the record for the largest abstract painting—a nine-foot by 20-foot canvass that is slightly bigger than the largest Jackson Pollock painting—“Mural,” which was recently put on exhibit at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.
MoCA Westport hosted the event Saturday afternoon, which included an opportunity for visitors to help work on the painting, along with food and an appearance by Hopalong Andrew—the urban singing cowboy and his country band.
“It’s a family day,” said Burroughs, who assisted dozens of kids and families with a splatter technique that spread about a million dots, spots and splats across the enormous canvass in the rear parking lot of the museum.
“My theory behind all this is you don’t have to have any training to be an abstract painter like Jackson Pollock,” said Burroughs. The splatter technique was done with sticks and a dozen different colors.
Following completion, the work required initial judging by two witnesses, including an architect who would verify the measurement of the canvass itself in order to submit the project to Guinness.
Whether or not the Guinness people will accept the record is yet to be determined, but Burroughs appeared fine with it either way.
Having apparently set some other world records that did not get Guinness recognition, he remains dedicated to the artistic process for the sake of the process.
His past efforts include the creation of the largest t-shirt, which he made in New York City, measuring 50 feet by 35 feet, and submitted to Guinness.
“They said they had no category for garments,” he said.