Seven Attempts To Make A Ritual

A Joel Tauber Project



Hole #1

Death Valley, CA

November 3, 2000

1.  At dawn, begin driving to the site from Los Angeles.

2.  Make a six-foot fox hole.

3.  Enter it naked.

4.  Fill up the hole with dirt.

5.  Meditate.

6.  At nightfall, leave the hole.

7.  Ask my friend Jason Mahanes to help me film the event.



Hole #2

6,000 Feet Above Sea Level

Angeles National Forest

November 24, 2000 

1.  Make a reclining chair hole.

2.  Do not cover myself with dirt when I am inside the hole because the weight of the Earth is too heavy (I had to be pulled out of the first hole).

3.  Look up — not out — when meditating.

4.  Ask Jason to help me film, but when I am in the hole, tell him to leave the area.



Hole #5

Mojave Desert, CA

March 18, 2001

1.  Go alone.

2.  Mount a small video camera onto a helmet.  Wear the helmet the entire time.

3.  Dig a huge hole.

4.  Take off my clothes — except for the helmet — after I finish digging (it is warm enough now).

5.  Never look outside the hole.

6.  Contemplate the interiority of the hole.



Hole #6

Abandoned Gold Mine

Mojave Desert, CA

April 1, 2001 

1.  Go alone.

2.  Do not dig a hole.  I feel guilty about scarring the ground with my shovel.

3.  Enter a hole that was made by other people (a mine shaft).

4.  Carry a small camera in one hand and a lantern in the other.

5.  Talk to myself.

6.  Stay in the mine for at least 8 hours.


A 24 minute film and 7 channel video installation.

Seven Attempts To Make A Ritual premiered in 2001 at Art Center College of Design (Pasadena California), and it has been presented in numerous institutions, including the Spertus Museum (Chicago), the Rose Art Museum (Waltham, MA), the Rocky Mountain School of Photography (Missoula, Montana), the Kunstverein Hildesheim (Germany), Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects, and the Adamski Gallery (Berlin).