March 25th, 2013
10:09 AM ET

Tilda Swinton, MoMA's sleeping beauty

Tilda Swinton has been sleeping on the job - just as she's supposed to.

The actress made waves over the weekend after attendees at New York's Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) came upon Swinton sleeping in a glass box as part of a performance piece.

Dressed in jeans and a button-down shirt, the star snoozed on a small bed with her glasses resting next to her pillow, seemingly oblivious to the observers surrounding the clear contraption.

According to a statement, the performance art is called "The Maybe," and is conducted in a way that's specific to the place and time in which it occurs.

"The Maybe" was previously shown in London in 1995. At the time, Swinton slept in a glass box for eight hours during the work day for a seven-day period. In 1996, she did the performance again in Rome, this time leaving her glass enclosure for an hour in the middle of the day and hanging a "siesta" sign on the door.

MoMA spokesperson Margaret Doyle told CNN that "The Maybe" is "a very unusual case" because Swinton didn't ask the museum to actively publicize the attraction, which seems to be a key part of the New York performance.

"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 statement regarding the exhibit says. "Those who find it chance upon it for themselves, live and in real - shared - time: now we see it, now we don't."

According to Doyle, "The Maybe" will happen periodically through the end of 2013.

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soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. Partlow funeral home

    are you around?

    June 9, 2013 at 4:57 am | Report abuse |
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    April 24, 2013 at 4:21 am | Report abuse |
  3. Anonymous
    March 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
  4. you never disappoint us -- sukkaw


    March 27, 2013 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
  5. *


    March 27, 2013 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  6. Andy Warhol

    Its nothing compared to me

    March 27, 2013 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
  7. she is taking photos as we speak


    March 27, 2013 at 7:58 am | Report abuse |


    March 27, 2013 at 7:58 am | Report abuse |
  9. I'll be there shortly sir..

    March 27, 2013 at 5:17 am | Report abuse |
  10. The difference between the 2 lezbeans is....

    1 can't stop judging from a tool
    2 never cared about anybodys "stuff" and or personal life....and still does not care....

    how many more ways do we have to repeat the same story...

    March 26, 2013 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Imagine being locked in that glass box...

    and then farting, and having to lay there, trapped, stewing in your own funk...

    March 26, 2013 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  12. chef-soss was good save a jar for moi


    March 26, 2013 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
  13. Rock

    I want to get it on with her in that glass box

    March 26, 2013 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  14. Unavailable hangups go directly too security now...

    We want too help you not hurt you silly....

    March 26, 2013 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  15. The hacking of phones, computers and homes...

    we intend on getting the issue resolved and we will help whoever has this addiction problem get help

    March 26, 2013 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  16. can send yours in also....great movie!!!!!


    March 26, 2013 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
  17. Maylene--

    we forwarded it in

    March 26, 2013 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
  18. Sadie

    I find this just strange. What does art have to do with a woman sleeping in a box? As an actress, what would even possess you to do this? It's kind of like going to a funeral's viewing, looking at the person in a casket, only they are alive. Way too creepy for me.

    March 26, 2013 at 10:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Bob

      Art is meant to draw in the "consumer" and evoke thoughts and feelings and associations – which is exactly what it did in your case. Stop thinking and experience....

      March 26, 2013 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Sadie

      Bob, I get the premise of it all. My only feeling that I get is that it is creepy. Throw in a little claustrophobia, on my part, and it just creeps me out. And on her part, the thought of a bunch of strangers watching me sleep is creepy, too. So Bob, I really would rather not experience it. I really do understand where you are coming from, though.

      March 26, 2013 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Overheard Conversation from last night---7897 (44)---

    Tilda has a poor rating in the industry at this point by alot of people....she will be forced too dismantel HER
    propoganda towards the industry...if she does not then we will have too force acting assistance on the issue...

    we could care less about bloggings insults.....its the wiring of our industry that will be forced too be disconnected.

    March 26, 2013 at 6:06 am | Report abuse |
  20. Pants

    Sometimes I see her and I'm like, "I'd bang that." Other times I see her and I'm like, "Ummm... she looks like a dude."

    March 25, 2013 at 10:22 pm | Report abuse |
  21. chefmom

    I Like her, but this IS stupid. It is a publicity stunt. She does not get her share of press.
    she is doing this in the US for attention. Do you truly think she is asleep during this? Only if she is sucking down 100mg Benedryl and I doubt she is not

    Frankley, this is sad and pathetic form of "art" . I have a cousin who works at Christie's....they are not looking for sleeping Australians. Get off ass, paint something Tilda.

    March 25, 2013 at 10:08 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Alvarez

    How provocative. Hermey is all grown up. I think the common man though would find it much more intriguing if she would sleep in a glass box filled with my trouser twinkies.

    March 25, 2013 at 9:40 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Wait until you hear the reviews...

    These are the best ones yet!

    March 25, 2013 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
  24. homey on de corner

    I could do dat job waaay better dan dat white girl. I could sleep a lot longer dan 8 hours too, cuz I gots no job ('cept sellin weed).

    March 25, 2013 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
  25. shoos

    I liked her as Gabriel in Constantine.

    March 25, 2013 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |

    It's not "maybe." It's definite: NY in general, and the NY art world in particular is nearly as loony as Ms. Swinton. If this is art, i have a porcelain-contained product for them.

    March 25, 2013 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
  27. jrad

    Art is stupid.

    March 25, 2013 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • myuntidydesk

      Art is not stupid. This exhibit, however, is. I don't get what it is trying to say. I'd like to know who came up with "The Maybe" and how much he or she was paid for it.

      March 25, 2013 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Brian

    Danny Bonaduce sleeps in his car all the time. You can watch for free!

    March 25, 2013 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
  29. She doesn't want to be an elf,

    she wants to be a dentist.

    March 25, 2013 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Pliny

    It's not art.

    It's not performance.

    It is self indulgent crap foisted on the public by 'artists' who have long ago run out of new ideas.

    March 25, 2013 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
  31. That is Jerry Lee Lewis


    March 25, 2013 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  32. Mark

    I'm blessed. My cancer check went good on Friday. None at all. I'm a happy monkey.

    March 25, 2013 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  33. lisa

    I know I should think this is really cool and artsy. But it just seems kind of dumb and it's getting way more publicity than it deserves. Perhaps Swinton is trying to make a point about how silly it is for people to want to gape at celebrities who are doing absolutely nothing of interest? I can get on board with that message.

    March 25, 2013 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Abril

      Yes, lisa! I think that's exactly what it is. We're obsessed with reality shows and pushing our noses into people's personal lives, especially celebrities.

      March 25, 2013 at 5:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • chefmom

      No she did this in Oz. The bloody thing came to the US. Honestly performance art blows.
      She has a contract to finish.
      I love art. This is stupid even if a naked Channing Tatum were doing it. It is for publicity.

      March 25, 2013 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Peace ✌

    Didnt she play the white witch in the movie, "The lion, the witch, & the wardrobe"? (it was called something like that)

    March 25, 2013 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
  35. The actress is an embarrassment and needs too

    focus on less motor and more needed assistance for herself for her future in the industry....

    March 25, 2013 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  36. Mark

    She is my hero.

    March 25, 2013 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  37. Work on illness not boobs..


    March 25, 2013 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  38. Emma

    Woooooo. That sounds like a job for me. I'd be really really good at it.

    March 25, 2013 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  39. I think she's a robot.

    I've seen her boobs - they look like this [ o ][ o ]

    March 25, 2013 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  40. we never had time to do what you do all day

    hack and motor...

    March 25, 2013 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
    • you should have time to do something

      each day as you don't do anything else. you are a slacker, and lazy

      March 25, 2013 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  41. cnnlicksit

    Wow thats so artsy.

    March 25, 2013 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • chefmom

      No, it is stupid. Not art. Art is beauty.

      sleeping is sleeping. She is finishing out a contract from OZ. Americans are too stupid to get it. It is a ruse on all NyC. Sorry, seen my share of sleeping celebs. They are people too!
      People have ask who she is????? You obviously do not to to the movies or have cable. She is well known.

      March 25, 2013 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Alvarez

      Chefmom you're still outside the range of my explosive diarrhea. Please step closer so I may bombard you with a barrage of butt bagels.

      March 26, 2013 at 1:45 am | Report abuse |
  42. I do that at work....

    five days a week, only in a three sided box that's made out of steel and fabric.

    March 25, 2013 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |

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