"Twelve" is a limited edition app for iPad. After it's initial success on iTunes App store in the fall of 2013, Apple deemed the work of art inappropriate because of its explicit content (though their objection was only to the written word, as there is no explicit imagery in the work). Upon appeal of the decision to remove Twelve from the App store, Apple further stated that declaring the app as a work of art was not a legitimate contention, and thus the claim of censorship was invalid.

Klaus_eBooks, along with Ann Hirsch are determined to keep this artwork in circulation despite the Apple decision, and with that goal we are pleased to release the Twelve, Special Edition iPad Mini, a limited edition customized iPad Mini. Each jailbroken iPad is preloaded with the app, and laser engraved with the artist's signature, the edition number, and an iconic image of a pen.


In 1998 Ann Hirsch was twelve years old, and she frequented an AOL chat room called Twelve. As she got to know the regulars, she got to know the way they chatted, the words they used, the usernames they picked, the kinds of relationships they made. The remote community of the chat room lived by its own set of rules, like any social group, and policing was loose, limited to the snitcher’s arbitrary application of AOL’s Terms of Service. Under these conditions Ann developed a long-distance romance with a frequent user of Twelve who was more than twice her age.

Ann Hirsch worked in collaboration with app designer James La Marre to exploit the interactive narrative potential of today’s technology by emulating AOL’s interface of the late nineties. It creates an immersive experience while keeping the reader outside the story; you feel the disorienting effect of entering a chat room full of strangers in the middle of a conversation, then gradually come to recognize their handles and follow their relationships. But the only perspective is the one peering over Ann’s shoulder; it grants access to a private world, but with limits. — Brian Droitcour


Ann Hirsch's experimental autobiography Twelve considers how identity and desire form in a culture encircled by social media. Its originality defies easy classification, a quality which alarmed the categories and policies of Apple iTunes, as did its honest portrayal of the messy realities of adolescent relationships. Klaus Von Nichtssagend's release of the special edition represents a commitment to keep an important work in circulation. – Lauren Cornell, curator, The New Museum


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About Ann Hirsch

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Ann Hirsch is a video and performance artist who examines the influence of technology on popular culture and gender. Her immersive research has included becoming a YouTube camwhore with over two million video views and an appearance as a contestant on Frank the Entertainer...In a Basement Affair on Vh1. She was awarded a Rhizome commission for her two-person play Playground (2013) which debuted at the New Museum (New York) and was premiered by South London Gallery at Goldsmiths College (London). The companion ebook Twelve (2013) is available through Klaus von Nichtssagend Gallery (New York) after being censored from the iTunes Store. Hirsch has been an artist in residence at Yaddo (Saratoga Springs), Atlantic Center for the Arts (Florida), and Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (New York). She is represented by American Medium (New York) and Arcadia Missa (London).

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Twelve, 2013
Lot Number 7
IPad mini with iPad app designed by James La Marre
7.87 x 5.3 x 0.28 in (19.99 x 13.46 x 0.71 cm)
2 of 10
Courtesy of the artist and Klaus von Nichtssagend Gallery
Signed on back of iPad

Online bidding for this work ended on October 23, 2014 at 3:00pm ET.

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Ann Hirsch
  • Dimensions
    7.87 x 5.3 x 0.28 in (19.99 x 13.46 x 0.71 cm)