Nam June Paik

American, born South Korea (Seoul, South Korea, 1932 - 2006, Miami Beach, Florida)

Egg Grows

video installation | eight video monitors, video camera, and egg
Not on view at this time; find out where you can see works from our collection at locations around the Bay Area while our building is closed for expansion
  • Egg Grows

    Nam June Paik, Egg Grows, 1984-1989; eight video monitors, video camera, and egg, 36 in. x 108 in. x 216 in. (91.44 cm x 274.32 cm x 548.64 cm); Collection SFMOMA, © Estate of Nam June Paik

In 1965 Paik, a pioneer of video art, declared the video camera the paintbrush of the future. Made nearly twenty years later, this installation explores the nature of real-time video and creates a dialogue between the real and the represented, drawing our attention to the subjective nature of the medium.

A surveillance camera focuses on an egg and feeds its live signal to a succession of eight monitors, each larger than the one before, creating the illusion that the egg is growing. Meditative in tone and minimalist in strategy, the work is a humorous expression of video's capacity for exaggeration and offers insight into the impact of electronic communication on experience.

36 in. x 108 in. x 216 in. (91.44 cm x 274.32 cm x 548.64 cm)
Acquired 1989
Collection SFMOMA
© Estate of Nam June Paik


video, monitors, eggs, cameras, live feed, stacks, rows

From June 3, 2013, through early 2016, SFMOMA's building on Third Street in San Francisco will be temporarily closed for expansion construction. Selected artworks in our collection are included in a range of off-site exhibitions during this period. We regret that the remainder of the collection will not be available for study during this time.

In the meantime, we invite you to explore a wide selection of our collection online. Please note that the information presented online is subject to revision. Please contact us at to verify artwork details.

This resource is for educational use and its contents may not be reproduced without permission. Please review our Terms of Use for more information.