Why Is Tilda Swinton Sleeping in a Glass Box?

Lucky patrons at NYC's Museum of Modern Art got to watch the Oscar-winner in her performance art piece, The Maybe -- and we think other celebrities should take after her!

If you're visiting a museum and see Oscar-winner Tilda Swinton sleeping in a box, don't worry -- it's art! The Moonrise Kingdom actress made a surprise appearance at New York City's Museum of Modern Art on Saturday, where she slept all day in a glass exhibit case containing glasses, linens, and a jug of water. As it happens, her public nap was part of a performance art piece called The Maybe, which Swinton first performed in London in 1995.

So what does it mean? Is it a statement about celebrities living in the public eye? An examination of the boundaries between public and private life? Swinton won't say -- and neither will MoMA.

"An integral part of The Maybe's incarnation at MoMA in 2013 is that there is no published schedule for its appearance, no artist's statement released, no museum statement beyond this brief context, no public profile or image issued," the museum said in an official statement. "Those who find it chance upon it for themselves, live and in real -- shared -- time: now we see it, now we don't."

In order to perform the piece, Swinton lies "asleep" in her glass box from the minute the museum opens until the minute it closes. Obviously, she can't do it every day, but she does plan to appear around six more times before the end of the year. Her performances will not be announced in advance, and will take place at random locations throughout the museum.

We have to hand it to Tilda: this is an art trend we could totally get behind. Next month, could we get George Clooney standing on a pedestal for eight hours? Maybe Dame Judi Dench suspended from the ceiling? If MoMA plays its cards right, no tourist will ever again have to set foot in Madame Toussaud's to gawk at an Oscar-winner!

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