photos by stefan färber:
5 FEN FIRES (opposing immersion)
the central axis of the room is split by a slightly curved wall of felt covered frames. the wall is tilted to the front and rises up almost to the level of the ceiling. 5 small drawings are seen through windows in 5 niches or alcovens integrated in the lower part of the wall. so the wall in total works as an obstruction of view and (at the same time) as a framing of these drawings - the wall imposes a distinct distance to the drawings that the observer can't overcome, while it elevates the importance of the otherwise very small and almost negligible drawings in the big room. a buzzing sound fills the room with low to mid-low sine tones, emitted by 10 cubic sub-speakers: 5 of them positioned in the room in front of the niches and 5 behind the wall. the tones are seperated in pairs, ordered to the niches and drawings. the pairs are out of phase to each other, to a degree that when the observer gets close to the small windows to see the drawings he enters an area where the tones gets discretely quieter because of a destructive interference. the two sine waves coming from one pair of speakers creates an area of pressure, as their amplitude peaks at slightly shifted moments in time while the frequency, the pitch stays the same. different positions in the room, especially in front of the niches, create discrete roomsituations, reflecting on an abstract level of reception. the series of speakers and niches leads to the emergence of a passage between the speakers and the wall, flanked by 5 large paintings on the right outside wall of the room. under them, amps and the cable for the subspeakers are positioned to connect the main ensemble of the room, the wall, the drawings and the sub-speakers, with the 5 larger paintings on the right. when the visitor exits the "passage" on the remote side of the room 2 glas cabinets in the left corner of the room become visible. as there sight was previously covered by the large ensemble of the wall, the objects they contain, reflect on a private, hermetic side of the piece, or in general of the production of art. from there, turning back towards the room, the visitor sees the backside of the wall, its bearing structure, the other sub-speakers and the backside of the drawings. while he sees behind the 'surface' he doesn't come closer to see the drawings 'purely' or up-close. going back through this inverted passage returning to where the first entrance to the ensemble was, the view opens up towards the 5 large paintings on the right side a second time, reevaluating their appearance and meaning.
with a lot of help by: sarah ambrosi, miriam eichner, stefan färber, david lichtenberger, caterina tomeo
the drawings that are somewhat central to the ensemble are made previously to the installation. they negotiate a crucial but somewhat ephimeral part of artistic production. as confidence is a substantial part of work, doubt, crisis and reflection is essential for its integrity and meaning. that bears the question though of how the volte-face, the tournaround from the crisis to confidence takes place, how can the passage of the crisis give birth to hope and certainty, how can it be the starting point of a work? the drawings try to closely assess this fugue of the production to elaborate on a central theme of the construction of significance. in a piece of art there is not only meaning through what is seen but through what is not seen. the invisible part of the mark a work of art states, derives from this opaque cathartic moment of the crisis, which is like a tilting effect. this element could somewhat understood as political - it tries to shine a light on a condition of work that wouldn't disolve in its economics. art exemplifies in this regard a possibility of meaningfull work beyond the economical algebra.
the size of the drawings play a role in that as well. their small size not only references the problematic symbolisation of "big-installations" and art representation in museums and the public with the reality of productional methods that are rather intimate and small, but also elaborates on this state of in between, the barely-visible and unseen, that is in the center of the survey.
diorama and vitrine: the wall, with its windowed niches, could be descriped as a diorama. the glass showcases, that are typical for the 19th century pre-cinematic stagings of fantastic sceneries, are nowdays known from natural-history museums, holding a taxidermic ensemble with artifical soil and vegetation and a background painting. literally it translates to "through that wich is seen". the attraction of the keyhole sight on the scenery would be intensified by changing the lightings implicating lively, almost cinematic movement. in the situation of the installation at hand the keyhole difference, that imposes a constant distance to the object onto the observer is of main interest. on the one hand pointing a finger to the drawings which are small and in the large space almost lost, on the other hand gatekeeping the access to them, keeping the observer from looking closely. like the vitrines in the back of the room this distance tries to symbolize a difference between the visible, public domain and a hermetic, material and hidden aspect of the work.
felt/moving blankets: the material, with wich the wall is covered, has a look that references felt-works of joseph beuys, but tries to intensify the poveresque, simplicistic aspect of the material, as very common and cheap moving blankets are used. moreover the blankets that look grey from the distance reveal up-close a spectrum of colourfull stripes as they are a recycling product from shopping bags and other plastic materials. again there is a difference of looking from a distance and closing in.
sound (phase shift and destructive interference): the whole room is filled with a static low frequency sine-wave buzz coming from 10 sub-speakers positioned in the room. while the impression leads to thinking that there is no difference (no frequency change, no sequence of tones), at some spots, especially near the small windows in the wall, the waves emitted by the speakers cancel each other out partially. while the emitted energy stays the same, the effective loudness of the signal is reduced, thus resulting in the sensation of pressure. the perceivable negative space of sound, in comparison with the audible signal, links to the architectural obstructive force of the wall, the forced distance to the drawings and the metaphorical space of the invisible. rather than a symbolisation of negativity as pure difference, the negativity equals to a sensible force.
la demeure/ the subordinated vitrines: the vitrines, positioned on the backside of the room, hidden by the wall at first sight, inhabit artefacts that reflect on the backside of production, the peril of the crisis. like earth under liftet stones, or flakes of pencils and cigarette butts in the ashtray of the studio they 'show' the margins and limits of (re-)presentation itself. they also work as an opener to the receptional turning point. the visitor returns back through the room behind the wall, where the constructional bearing and the back of the drawings are seen.
the large paintings: in oposition to the small drawings (that came in from previous work), the large paintings shall be made on site, during the process of the installation. incorporating a performative aspect into the ensemble, but also a reference to the materiality of the room, reflecting on the perception and experience of it. while, on one hand, they work as reference, notebook, illustration of the concrete situation, they reveal signs of a gesture semanticly loaded, but nonetheless unavailable and hermetic - by this repeating the circulation of the whole ensemble. their receptive confrontation is split in two different time situations: first entering the room, on the obvious first encounter of the whole ensemble, in relation to the wall. secondly after returning back from the demeure-vitrins, behind the wall (after a break, where the wall also works as an obstruction to these paintings).
photos by sarah ambrosi:
timetable: 16-20 days
0 subordinated vitrines (demeure) in position (ongoing: artefact accumulation)
A construction of wall:
1.) panels and bearing construction
2.) windows and drawing installation
1.) functional installation
3.) rendering and production
C large paintings
1.) painting on floor on site (during A and B)
2.) mounting to wall (secondary editing)
3.) framing and final mounting
D lighting and finalizing
E finalizing vitrines.
5x din a 3 glassframes
5x din a 5 glassframes
10x shoring struts (kanalstreben) (http://www.baubedarf-rentz.de/images/p015_1_00.jpg)
7x canvases 2-3m (alternativly used truck tarpaulins)
oil paint (specific colours...), 10l primer, brushes, protective foil,
gaffa tape, graphit, cole stripes, discarded paint (from homeconstruction) lacquer paint
* hydraulic lift to work on the bearing construction of the wall
(6 days, starting from the second)
* small rollable scaffolding for painting (second week)
* 10 cubic sub-speakers. amp for 5xstereo
* 5 dvd player (or similar)
* synchronisation controller for playing 5 dvds with audiofile simultainiously
[from day 5on]
* 5x simple chairs
- 10 neontube (>diorama drawings)
- 7 fixtures from ceiling (vitrines and paintings)
* 2 museum glassvitrines
(similar to this: https://www.jourtym.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p2048_alu-vitrinen-expoline-jt-032- ssh-11.html) * 1 hd projector for assistence in painting
tools: table saw, circular hand saw, staple gun, slitting saw, electric drill x 2 (cordless screwdriver), folding rule, measuring tape, hammer, hand screwdriver (+ and -)....
photos by miriam eichner: