• [stuart semple, covered in vivid pink, yellow, and green powder staggers up a seemingly infinite number of steps toward the top of a marble pyramid upon which rests his coveted prize]
  • [he reaches the top, gasping for air. in the middle of the pedestal at the top of the pyramid there is a gaping black hole, endlessly deep.]
  • stuart semple, quietly: what is this
  • [sir anish kapoor, from the bottom of the pyramid lifts his head and gazes upward at semple's back. his face is also covered in pink, green, and yellow. it is unclear how he heard semple's voice from so far away]
  • anish kapoor: it is what you seek
  • semple: it's so
  • sir anish kapoor: beautiful, yes
  • semple, turning his head just enough to look at anish over one shoulder: your reign of tyranny is over, kapoor. youve underestimated me for the last time. i will take the vantablack you so selfishly stole from us and return it to its place in the hands of the people.
  • sir anish kapoor: youre a fool, semple. stop this madness now before it's too late. you know not the dangerous powers with which you toy
  • semple, turning back to face the void: you cannot deceive me, your ploys won't work
  • [semple extends his hands, long pale fingers hovering inches from the inky darkness, hesitating]
  • sir anish kapoor: stuart, no!
  • [semple's hand shoots forward and collides with the vantablack. instantly the void envelops his arm, then his whole body. semple's screams of agony are swallowed in the crushing silence of vantablack and soon the pyramid and sir anish kapoor are also devoured.]
  • semple: ...where are we?
  • sir anish kapoor: we are unstuck from time and space, trapped in a nanotechnological purgatory
  • [stuart semple's lips have been replaced with photorealistic magazine cutouts of other people's mouths, stop-motion flickering through each syllable, none truly belonging to him]
  • semple: how,, how could this have happened?
  • anish, whose entire being has been replaced by a series of clockwork cogs and a single, unblinking eye: you toyed with dangers beyond your imaging stuart. reality itself has been pulled into the vantablack. soon, the whole world will know the void as we do
  • semple, sobbing into his hands which have become splotches of warmth on a heat-vision screen, his body dissolving into salt and sand: i-i didnt know...... how do i stop it?
  • sir anish kapoor, his gears turning and clicking ever faster: the same way you stop a galaxy from expanding, a star from collapsing. the same way you stop human avarice and pride, from one man coveting what belongs to another.
  • semple, weeping: please,,, please tell me
  • [sir anish kapoor's cogs begin to break apart, dividing like so many cells into the vast abyssal plane]
  • [semple, wrought with grief and desperation reaches out to grasp at the eye, which has begun to shrink and disintegrate at the edges. the eye pulses with one last surge of warmth. is it sympathy? is it love? the eye disappears and reality along with it.]

Tbh I can’t wait for future college students to have to sit through their art appreciation courses and learn about our generation’s art.
I can already imagine myself, poised in a soft arm chair while reading whatever futuristic digital/holographic/intra-ocular newspaper. My child stumbles in with their little robot companion carrying their duffle bag. The greetings are cordial and we settle into dinner to discuss your usual college small-talk.
“We’re finally studying 2016-2017 in my art appreciation class,” they say.
“Ah, like the Kapoor-Semple Pigment Feud?” I take a sip of wine and gaze across the table at them.
“Not yet, what was that?”

love it

Since Anish Kapoor got his hands on the World’s Pinkest Pink™ I think we all know what we have to do.

We have to steal back the World’s Blackest Black.™

Someone needs to infiltrate his studio. They’ll get hired as one of his assistants and slowly work their way up the ranks. They’ll do every menial task he assigns them to prove their loyalty. They’ll work long hours and late nights, fueled by their determination to acquire the Blackest Black™ for the masses. They even purchase the Pinkest Pink™ for him, going so far as to betray their own comrades in order to secure their objective. 

Then, one day, when they have established themselves as a valuable asset and friend, he will reveal it to them. The World’s Blackest Black.™ He will entrust it to them, begging them to guard it with their life. Our brave agent is moved. This man is not so horrid as they once believed. As they gained his trust, he gained theirs. They have become… friends. They struggle… should they complete their righteous quest and betray the trust this man has placed in them? Or should they do as he asks and continue to keep the Blackest Black™ from the world? 

Later that night, they stand before a beach. Tears roll down their cheeks. They clutch the pigment in their hands. "I’m sorry, Anish, I’m sorry all,“ they whisper, drawing their arm back and hurling the World’s Blackest Black™ into the unforgiving maw of the sea. "Now it can belong to no one,” they sob, as the pigment vanishes beneath the waves, never to be seen or used again.