Aug 01, 2011 12:00AM

The Museum of Non-Visible Art

James Franco's making art even when you can't see that he's making art.

John Cage discovered there was no such thing as silence when he sat in a noise proof anechoic chamber and heard for the first time the cacophonous sounds of his own body, including the 'high' sound of the blood's circulation and the 'low' sound of the nervous system. In 1952 he wrote what he considered to be his best composition, '4'33"'. Although commonly perceived to be four minutes and thirty-three seconds of silence, it actually consists of the perpetual sounds of the surrounding environment, which the audience is made sensitive to as the performer creates as little noise as possible.

Following his recent gig shooting British model Agyness Deyn for a fashion spread in Elle, man-of-the-moment James Franco has moved on to a more abstract, Cage-esque venture. Namely, invisible art. Franco has teamed up with art-duo Praxis (Brainard and Delia Carey) to launch MONA (no, not that MONA) ? the Museum of Non-Visible Art. The concept is described as "an extravaganza of imagination, a museum that reminds us that we live in two worlds: the physical world of sight and the non-visible world of thought." Composed entirely of ideas, the Non-Visible Museum "redefines the concept of what is real."

The non-visible works can be purchased via Kickstarter, but as Franco and Praxis warn, "When you contribute to this Kickstarter project, you are not buying a visible piece of art!" In other words, after contributing real money, buyers will not receive any tangible work and will instead be presented with a written description of their purchase. So far the project has smashed its $5,000 goal with a total of $13,648 from 99 backers, and there are still 36 days to go. The majority of the backers have chosen to pay "$25 or more", for which they receive an imagined short film by James Franco, based on William Faulkner's short story Red Leaves (which, aptly, is about imaginary people). One backer did feel like splashing out, however, and blew $10,000 on an entirely unique piece. Montreal web producer, social media marketer, model and actor Aimee Davison, is now the proud owner of Fresh Air:

"The air you are purchasing is like buying an endless tank of oxygen. No matter where you are, you always have the ability to take a breath of the most delicious, clean-smelling air that the earth can produce. Every breath you take gives you endless peace and health. This artwork is something to carry with you if you own it. Because wherever you are, you can imagine yourself getting the most beautiful taste of air that is from the mountain tops or fields or from the ocean side; it is an endless supply."