URBAN SEARCH, DECADENT RESCUE
Multimedia exhibition in the Museum1, Winkelbühl, Adligenswil
6th of June to 4th of July 2020
Together with OLIVIA LECOMTE
Curated by Stephan Wittmer (www.museum1.ch)
Our contribution explicitly refers to the location and is multimedia-based. On June 6th, we will give a live performance as part of the vernissage. We will cover the terrain with installations and show photographs, a video and installations in the exhibition space.
The fallow land - an energetic analysis
The property is located in a commercial zone and is bordered by the cantonal road, a number of cars and a district road. It has a polygonal, irregular ground plan. The terrain consists of a slope with varying degrees of descent. It is not explicitly cultivated, but is rather a large meadow, with undergrowth growing in the middle. Various bushes and single tall trees surround the lower part of the property, where the small exhibition building is located. Basically, the element of water prevails, a cool energy that pulls down. The terms depth, darkness, fertility, night, peace, winter can be associated with this. The ground of the meadow is soft, uneven, perforated and very slippery when wet. The place does not necessarily invite to stay: the adjacent highway is like a raging river and the passing traffic is loud. You can well imagine that the sex trade is flourishing here.
A life-size plaster figure named "Dea", which reminds of the multi-breasted Artemis of Ephesus, is standing on the cement platform in the middle of the meadow. The exhibition building is wrapped with yellow ribbons that lead to Dea and wrap around her legs. The two objects are thus connected with each other. This intervention is on the one hand related to our video "Conquered Concrete", which we show in the exhibition space. On the other hand it may be understood as a metaphor: Dea stands for the nourishment that is necessary for art to flourish. This also means financing. The exhibition building stands for art in general. The two need each other. When one side disappears, the other disappears as well. Society becomes impoverished and soulless without art. Art dies without financial support.
In the bushes, the trees and in the high grass there are sitting and lying creatures of not clearly identifiable shape. Are they the companions of "Dea"? Do they need help? Do they want to be rescued? What is germinating in them?
The façade of the exhibition space is decadently set in gold. Here the plants, the sky, the visitors are reflected in a distorted way. The delicate foil goes with the wind, it is very fragile. Associations come up from tiled Parisian metro stations, from chocolate wrappers and, of course, from first aid.
Inside we show the video "Conquered Concrete". We submitted this short video as a competition entry. It was selected as one of the Top 20 and presented in January at the international dance festival "Szolo Duo" in Budapest. On the table is our plaster sculpture "Moon Car", which of course is thematically related to the objects and installations in the outdoor space. Here we show some Polaroid photographs, two large photo prints - enlargements of Polaroid photographs -, the plaster figure "Moon Car" as well as various vases with spores that develop into mushrooms during the exhibition. The small Polaroids can be printed as large prints on request.
Our performance also gives the place a new identity. We stomp the floor with our high heels in "social distance". Our heels bore into the earth, the earth holds us in return. Our robe is based on that of the creatures in the plants, only it is black. We bypass a torn up part of the land, which seems hurt from previous exhibitions, because it is now lying fallow and its shape reminds us of an old map - we bypass this lying land like pilgrims bypass the sanctuary. In the center we generate the sacrifice that is saved. The question whether it wants to be saved at all is not up for discussion. The result becomes visible - Master and Servant. Youth over age? A decadent final bouquet ends the performance.
We consciously enter into communication with this "non-place" and give it a new identity. We create a field of tension between lightness, aesthetics, elegance, spectacle, pomp and eccentricity, urbanity, decadence, meanness. Our performance is an ironic play with aesthetics, which can tip over into the grotesque, absurd, horrible, questionable. We express concisely those aspects that our exhibition deals with in its entirety: Being a woman, vulnerability, the search for life, rescue - yes or no.
Reviews: Draussen ist das neue Drinnen, by Alexander Gutzmer, in: https://www.baumeister.de/draussen-ist-das-neue-drinnen/; Freilichtalternative für Entdecker, in: Migros Magazin, 15th of June 2020.