Laib pouring milk for the Milkstone, 1987-1989, White marble, milk, 2 x 122 x 130 cm »Copyrights
In the 1960s, contemporary artists began to rediscover the power of ritual. Some, like Nitsch, launched into a tumultous integration of orgiastic practices in art, while others, like Beuys, sought to anchor art in society. When Laib began in 1975 to fill slightly concave marble slabs with milk, this process, too, had something ritualistic about it. His activity recalled a ceremonial libation, conducted in the secular temple of art. Yet it was only the result that remained lastingly visible: a liquid substance combined with a solid one to form a unity, the hard stone given a surface that reacted to the slightest breath of air.