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Between october and december 2009 i transformed my art studio into a bird retreat which housed 6 finches, only to be viewed via a peephole in the door.

For the artist’s first work at Hunter College in New York, he transforms his studio into a bird retreat for six finches which is viewable only through a peephole in the door. Alluding to Marcel Duchamp’s final work Étant donnés, in which the viewer peers through two peepholes in a wooden door to view a nude woman with her legs spread open lying on an idyllic landscape backdrop, Martin Roth’s work reorients the voyeurism of the peephole to suggest perversion of another kind. In this case, it is a perversion of the artist’s studio as the ur-site of artistic creation, which has here been pushed aside and given over to the needs (food, shelter, a sanctuary of sorts) of these six birds.