For years, Ray badgered Christo and Jeanne-Claude to barter a piece with him. He sent dozens of works of mail art, a large collage. There was never a response.
One day on his porch he found a brown paper parcel bound with white twine. The US Postal Service mailing label was lettered in neat block print. It was from the Christos.
Excited, he tore the package open. The box was empty save a letter and a polaroid of the paper-wrapped parcel.
This package was the piece we are giving you, and now you have destroyed it.
This is a story told by New York artist Ray Johnson (1927-1995). He was a seminal Pop Art figure in the 1950s, an early conceptualist, and a pioneer of mail art.