I basically try to talk about nothing with a lot of words. Now to do this same process in a translation, so to speak from German into English is a twist. However living for quite a time in New York, I wasn’t really able to figure out the meaning of the ‚nothing’ in the anglosaxon world, not even to translate my version in a decent way. There is a cultural difference, which always comes to the surface, if one tries to translate a joke. That never works, or most of the time not. …Because it’s quintessence lies between the lines. And the characteristics of translation is, that there is no such space as between the lines. The richness of translation remains the misunderstanding.
For that now, because of this translation problems, which represents itself as a beautiful subject for all kinds of art works the following words are not so much the path of introducing the german ‚nothing’, or talking about the anxiety of the ‚boaring’. but rather to follow an identification of a way how me as a German speaking person thinks in English, and this will be also my selfentertaining part, because talking in another language about my work, the work itself changes.
So far as a small introduction which will introduce the English thoughts I would like to present now, but out of a European perspective.
To start out with,
1.) 9 Loudspeaker Systems – After The Formation Of Identified Galaxies And Planetary Systems …, Vienna, 1991
now fear for sentimentality in the work of art and so it will be always a communicative system whether the people belong to it or not whether the viewer will congest it or not.
A few thing happening through procedure of presentation and it is the most interesting part to suggest always one view, the rest is stepping into it as if one is stepping through the mirror one cannot realy step through it. Alice in the Wonderland, so the big desire, as a human generic wish, unfullfilled and presented as the view of a suffering mentality but refreshing for all of them who are participating only in a indirect way.
2.) 2 Clusters of Loudspeakers In The Winter Garden , Wiesbaden germany, 1991
That is to say about several installations, developed in the early nineties and middle of the nineties . Suggestions to perspectives to inside views from aside. More or less not paniking to see them all but knowing the fast glance which leaves a long impression. That was also the concept, working with the acknowledgement of views and perspectives in a time , when there is no time. Acknowledgement to the time so called, referring to the debate of getting it into it during sleeping, waking up in an other world but not presenting the goal directly of using technology but rather referring to it as a metaphore.
3.) La Touche / Circus Band , Chicago, Renaissance Society, 1991
What does it mean now, to this rather renaissance look on perspectives of installations in the world of modelling a reality and – well to understand – not just modelling the reality in order to present a raw modell or a plan which might be resolved and realized sometime in the near future? It will be rather modelling the interpretation, the meaning one has set in mind, the force to strengthen the diplomatic view on already happened things.
4.) La Touche / Circus Band , Riverside Studio, London 1991
Nothing can be discussed through this, but viewed and percieved as a turn around reciproke life as if one is looking through the glass into the world. Art in this way might offer the inside view into the world and one is standing outside of it at all.
5.) House of Thieves, Swiss Institute, New York, 1993, MfG, Zürch, 1995
Diving in (House of thieves) another view of rather diving in the own phantastics of interpretaions in order to modell the complexes of worlds understandings, considering the financial changes in postpostcapitalistic late times. It was the middle of the nineties, and to the world it was already clear that their won’t be any other market then the capitalism, who lost his biggest enemy, and through that actually its own right of existence.
During that time a big existential roaring went through all the morals of dualistic markets and it never really was been able to develop a new version of idealistic interesting perspectives. It was a collapsing perspective, an implosion and through that it only could be resolved through the acceptence of catastrophy, as the immediate interaction not planned not seen ahead , but as interruptions of regular time and the considerate values of it.
6.) House of Thieves, Swiss Institute, New York, 1993, MfG, Zürch, 1995
Through this time the corruptions in eastern Europe raise , and the German plan to redevelop Eastern Germany got on the role. House of thieves is the capitalistic perspective of a time , when the fairy tale of the robbers actually sitting in their house and trying to enjoy what they got and then got surprised by the animals, the dunkey, the dog, the cat and the cock . Their reaction in the fairy tale shows the wierdest moralistic perspectives, the thiefs got surprised and their was their own guiltyness which led them to paranoic reactions. Western Capitalism reacted on their triumphes in a guilty way trying to make the war game towards socialism as a monster which cannot be conquered. And on the other hand they led to this immense new cloud of animals which takes over the anarchic life and stile , where liability in the market has to be defined in a much looser way.
House of thieves is also the interpretation of the garage of each home owner, where he develops his own not so stereotypical world and declares it as his own part of inventions.
7.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
The desire of the raw modell of modelling and interpretations of realities is resolving another perspective on communicative spaces on levels of enchanting places as common wishes and the social structure which has to be developped , yes has been developped through history but often is taken for granted because the morphic changes take place and involve other aspects of viewing at historical parts. Historical parts can be seen as something admiring , as something where one can learn something out of it, but living in it provokes a total different attitude and caring about it, it combines itself with daily life attitudes and prairs and hopes which have nothing to do with the dead museum perspectives. Yes, the historical views can be seen as a time gone through, but itself as a changing science which itself proposed certain theories which can be thrown over the top , finding some new views, this always will be part of it.
Influence the story and as Winkelmann discovered in the 18th century for the whole rest of Europe the values of ancient greek and Roman sculpture and architecture, at the end, there was the split between the applied arts and science and the Fine Arts. It was the threory to the regular people about the so called Wunderkammer and it tried to restore finally in an already classical time the views of ancient times. However the catalogization of art pieces and the earlier views of the Wunderkammer helped to a popular science, which nowadays helps to distinguish between Science as a model playground and the Fine Arts taken as a moralistic world view but at the same time not taken seriously at all.
So the park models are actually exposed in vitrines, in doors which let the view into another world as if we find ourselves in a nineteenth century museum or another collection of wierd objects, not right believingly correct but somehow strange. The modelling process is not obvious at start but the catagorizing view which refers clearly to a certain history . The models themselves show the perspectives of immediate needs and wishes and the rest of human philosophy and theories about life in public spaces. But their is not a timeframe involved , its reputation goes from the frame of a narrative, associative combinations, which aren’t purely orientated to the present but projected through the past into the future as need to be built up, to be thoughtful about it to deliver some options and perspectives.
8.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
9.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
10.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
11.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
12.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
13.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
14.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
15.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
16.)Fifty models of hypothetical parks shown in three virtines, Rome 1994
17.)City Walls, public Installation in Dresden, Germany, 1995
Modelling through this views involves the perspective of not being tempted to restore any fact once expressed, but using the knowledge and information as a prepared reality. Restoration of buildings is another theme, which involves the evaluation of social importance in nowadays life, and it won’t bring any new perspectives unless one accepts the destruction in general and not just the floating of new on top of the old. Archeological views might find their ways into the museums, but the big question is: When does it start, that something is considered to be preserved?
Citywalls is a modell installation considering the most contemporary past of housing projects in East Germany. Condemned to destroy because they are references to another society, which is not acceptable anymore out of the temporary political views, which doesn’t exist anymore, or better shouldn’t exist anymore, it should have been vanished, at least for some sort of inhabitants.
The housing projects in Eastern Europe, mainly conceptualized as prefabricated concrete elements, are stiff, not changeable, the spaces , ones built up, cannot be altered, unless one destroys them fundamentally, it is the other method, beside the steel and wood framing method used in the United States, which made housing projects lucrative in the second area of modernism.
As fixed as the structure was, as fixed is the interpreted scaffolding which remains to social structure and refers to the landmark politics in the cities of East Germany. It twistes the immediate life in a prestructured building already set in the building process as a metaphore. And a time collapse of vision. What means that?
18.)/2City Walls, public Installation in Dresden, Germany, 1995
Through the fields of knowledge about the building politics with all intentions one does, making a piece of history. About the backgrounds: In Dresden several acts meant the total destruction of the city’s shape. So it already has a history rebuilding through efficiency. And the act of rebuilding doesn’t let anybody get the time about how, but rather in what efficiency to imitate the contemporary building mentality mixed with a little sentimentalism for the lost past. That is the contextual situation in Dresden, … and in other German Cities as well.
That is why the piece had to be shown as an immediate structure in a building state as well as in a permanent view of facades
19.)Plan, Models of CityWalls,
The state of time was shown In the museums, in several once. As a model of cityscapes usually standing somewhere in the entrances, referring to the possible metaphorical interpretations of life in the City.
21.)In the Collection of Contemporary Art
22.)In the Collection of the socalled Kupferstichkabinett
23.)in a store
Beside this building interpretation something else happened:
24.)Views of Berln facades
The form of desire for communication… and through that, that the containment of house and home had wholes all over. Had wholes in order to let in and let out, so to speak have a reference to communication. If there is no entrance there is no house, and the phenomenons of visual appearances and meanings changed a lot through the world of media. So to speak, the door as the ‚package deal’ for a home, for the definition of a home shifted towards the technical framework, the satellite dish.
25.)View on the installation in Zürich, 1998
An incredible dependency in all social situations on pipes and tubes and antennas, which deliver material, raw material, energy and informations towards and from the home. So actually, as Vilem Flusser, the theoretician and philosopher of media and communication, said : A home and house is nothing else but a strainer, with a lot of entrances and wholes and if it wouldn’t be that way, we couldn’t function in it anymore.
The exiting situation about this is, that most of the procedures aren’t visable, they are hidden , they are virtual, they are just the reception of rays, and through this fact it shows us an almost religious dependency, a sentimentalism for a desire of reception.
26.)Balkony in Berlin
The parabol antennas are a special sign for this. And if you look at these building you see how they are mounted and how they are shown as if they want to hold open there hands to something.
27.)Total Facade of the Buildings
But in reality they cover up the facade and hide the direct views on the site immediately in front the windows. So another phenomenon is discovered here: The direct view for feeding the immediate curiousity is hidden by an instrument – because probably that is the name for an antenna, because it can’t be a total functional thing, it is somehow a semifunctional instrument – and this instrument allows to view further and further over the top like a telescope. Typical for this situation is the mixture to the cultural diversity in Europe . These antennas are basically the possibilities to be connected to the countries, where immigrants come from. Through these antennas they are able to view there own channels there own lifes enter through these antennas, through the windows into a home in a foreign country. No wonder that the importance is quite big and the attitude to have this free view and freedom of expression and information is often a reason for political debates. What is a horrible artefact for the architects , planning housing projects in a beautiful way – and then there whole proud of building a beautiful facade gets somehow destroyed through mounting strange instruments in front of them. Several cities tried to discuss these issues publicly, undermine the people to mount there antennas, and also trying to set up some laws in order to forbid mounting them at all. But they luckily didn’t get through, because it would have been against the laws of free speech and free press and free expression.
28.)Watertower Eutin, 1999 (Dokusheet1)
In this installation it was a combination of all these thoughts. What was outside is this general view of these ears or eyes as models, as interpretations to a general facade, to a home, and they are mounted on a landmark building. So this made it typical, because no nail no screws could be used at all in order to mount them. It is a landmark building, an old water tower, half way in use, half way used by an organization for contemporary arts.
29.)The TV stations inside
Inside TV stations of the foreign communities projected the life in this City. And that was kind of strange: As the German Culture makes the debates about there attitudes towards foreigners, as it shows towards visitors mostly nothing then just a clearly German like outlook, as it just started this summer the big debate about cultural identity, which was and is always a very delicate discussion, because the boarder that it leads to the edge of marginalization or catagorization without any outlook on lucrative diversity in society.
30.)Watertower Eutin, 1999 (Dokusheet1)
However discovering the local context showing officially only a typical German society with about 30.000 inhabitants, The City Hall informed me about the numbers of officially represented nation by inhabitants in this City: It came up to seventy nation with around a thousand foreigners. Small but at the same time big. Through this fact the five biggest foreign communities where represented within this grape of Life TV stations.
So there were: Polish, Saudi-Arabian, Italian, Turkish, Spanish and French These TVs where running at the same time as the tubes brought down the water from the tank above.
And the TVs were running day and night. The visitor basically climbed up the stairs in a circle and was able to view the different social backgrounds, that means the different international TV Stations. From the bottom to the top, very close.
Life with this came real into an exhibition space, life as it is and TVs, mounted consciously quite trashy in order to show the immediate need and flow of material and energy. But the difference of any possible recognition , as it could have been, somehow some kind of a video – installation, showing interesting videos in artistic interpretation, it showed nothing but the flimmering things in the continuity what is part of every household.
Meanwhile the part of the installation and concept shows the direct connection towards an outside world discovering nothing else but the social reflection of it.
The situation handed over in art spaces to the real gives another view and modelling the reality. As an interpretation, as the dishes outside, very fake but give nothing but a clear reference to the so called existing world.
The social skills is one part which somehow got more important through the installations as free of material views.
31.)A dish and a balkony
32.)One life, One-Mile: in Rome, 1997, in Kwangju (Docu-sheet1)
In this significance the question is not only to be raised who is going to watch the pieces as Art presented somewhere through a certain perspective, as I mentioned the renaissance view at the beginning of the lecture.
But also, who is delivering the material which will be interpreted in certain ways, As the discussion in all kinds of social studies was raised in different levels through history but with not one clear output so it is obvious that in the Arts there has to be tried out a new approach of interpetation of the modelled realities as there has to be another relationship to the real at all. IT IS NOT ENOUGH ANYMORE, JUST TO INTERPRETE THE REALITY THROUGH A MODEL AS THROUGH MEDIA the MODEL BECOMES THE REALITY ITSELF!!
One approach of this could be this one, that the producers – or better the deliverers of material – are not just watched and documented but they will become also active by themselves. And this not just as a selfmade Art situation but rather as a communicative way of talking about their own situation.
Through this, in the economical way, the production of an installation doesn’t involve only the financiation of the piece itself but it rather is part of the immediate economical processes. The investment into the deliverer, the research, will become necessary, or basically the main part.
The support itself was, with in this process, put towards a intiative of building up a small media group being in the place itself and through that they, for a certain time, will be obliged to produce their own material, or better publish their own material through the financier’s channels.
So the situation was as followed:
Corviale is a 1 kilometer long building on the periphery built in the late seventies/early eighties. It was the imitation of modernistic architecture and it was on the boarder to become one of these postwar, postmodern stretches of social housing projects in Europe. 8000 people live in this one building.
33.)One life, One-Mile: in Rome, 1997, in Kwangju (Docu-sheet2)
The sharing picture with participants who are parts of it, involving the sculpture into a social situation or activate the museum perspectives.
The museum activation considers the situation which exist on the place itself and through media an orginal production made by the inhabitants itself is presented. The museum – in this concept will be the part of the information storage room , now it exists the option to stay close to the immediate information as at the same time the option to produce more of the material right on the base.
How ever. The system should be part of the communication and not aside. Basically the first production, supervised by the exhibition curators of the Kwangju Biennale, was functioning well. Honestly, then through passing more time the interest of the inhabitants themselves got lost.
What you see in the installation – the five doors are each represented with a Videochannel, and the speakers are mounted in the modell which has the size of a bench. So the noise of life is coming out of the building.
34.)Home Running big sheet, Detroit, 1999
How ever this intervention in the museum led to something else, to other thoughts and intentions, which weren’t so much in the visuals anymore, but rather in the public distribution, in the modelling of the desires, I mean the common middleclass desires and life dreams one has. One of them is the dream of an own home. And through a possibility to see a project being developped in Detroit several ideas occured in a way that will rather show this life style, life processes in a very simple, neither funny nor humourous nor dramatic way-
Reading about a story, in the newspaper, a person from the arabian countries coming to the United States, having one goal in his mind, getting a descent job, a small little business and his own home. But through his opportunities he makes his income rather through speculation at the stockmarket, so called virtual capital and not with the real business and he decides to give up his plan for he came living in the United States. This story was the base for the following concept: In a marginalized urban context, the inner City in Detroit, as an extreme example of american City, art funds are asked to support the project: The project is: Raising some money, in order to hire a stockbroker and invest in stockmarkets then the profits won’t be invested anymore but put towards a foundation in order to raise the value of real estate in this local situation. Home Running is an example of a project that is not bound to any ground but it tries to give real issues, how to connect global speculation with local situations.
35.)Home Running (Doku sheet2)
In order to build up the project several steps were undertaken. One was a questionnaire in a desolate area in Detroit The questions raised were dealing with the economical local situation, with the decay of an inner City area, with its inhabitants moving away or staying in half destructed houses. What dream could become true for these people? Rather gathering together, knowing it will be needed another investment which will evaluate the whole situation and uprate the area. So the questionnaire got responded, and the answers put in special mailboxes. Which had the signs of the four biggest companies in Detroit, among them GM and DaimlerChrysler
36.) Home Running, Detroit, 1999 (Dokusheet1)
A second part was installed on a piece of land which was bought in the Lower Eastside of Downtown Detroit. In an analogue way as in certain small countries, where exist the letterbox firms ( corporations are asked to use the small countries because of taxes as their residencies, although they don’t have any real factory plants located). This situation was simulated on this ground, through the mailboxes anouncing the names of the big companies. And at the same time the public relation offices of the companies were asked to accept this location, 1. as a taxride off and 2. as a local investment. However the issue was rather a simbolic one and in the mailboxes the answers of the questionnaire were collected. A lot of neighbours used the questionnaires as their channel of expressing their concerns about the neighbourhood and its decay, and also saw pretty clearly how everything depends on the pure investments, which will reavaluate a neigbourhood. On the site itself pannels were mounted with poetic phrases about houseowners or wanted to become house owners, in order to inform and give a hint to the passer byes. So several issues about the developpment of postpostmodern City and its dependencies were adressed, to the neighbourhood as well as to artists, architects, and city planners. Thinking critically about rebuilding inner Cities and stopping its decay or on the other side, what proposals a realistic, which planning will be possible to be undertaken in future.
34.)Home Running big sheet, Detroit, 1999
As this project is a vague modelling of facts and contexts of the late nineties , rather not visual but inducing a process as if it could be a real thing. So the purpose was suggested in the third phase which tries to include the construction of a building as giving through speculation money: a library to this neighbourhood.
37.)1Site-2Places (Doku sheet1)
As a continuation of that kind of modelling another option through the global connection of the market is projected since one year in Stuttgart/Sindelfingen, A City in southern Germany depending on car industry as well as Detroit. The opportunity was given to see the differences and at the same time the similarities of contexts, and as there is already a connection through corporation of this two Cities, it was nothing but obvious to try to connect these with eachother through a cultural event.
A first presentation took place in fall 2000 in Sindelfingen/Stuttgart and now the planning is going ahead with projects of several artists for fall/winter 2001. The idea is to display the same projects on two different places but ones in real way and once as documentation displaid through media. However, in order to go through the process of the whole project several Institutions are involved such as the Institute of world economy in Kiel, Germany, The University in Detroit, the Art and Project Organisation of Sindelfingen/Stuttgart and also the Detroit Institute of the Arts. Through this it might even become a research center, because the idea is not just display certain ideas and works but also produce a social context and a variation of necessary steps economically to be undertaken, when there is too big a dependency on one market.
As an introduction I present the pressrelease published in fall 2000.
1 Site – 2 Places
38.)jpg of Galleryx views 1
Industrial situations produced a kind of monotypical social environment. Especially through the car industry in the twentieth century, which meant wealth for specific areas, and which influenced the economical groths and decays of cities being dependent on this one market.
Through the tendencies of the big corporations being unified to even bigger ones, being more and more disconnected from local markets, the identification with the local work place has shifted. Places geographically wide apart might have a lot in common with each other; however their social structure is quite different.
This shifted sense for the reality of the local and global connections is the topic of the project “One Site – Two Places”. It tries to view an example of connected and disconnected places. Between two cities, whose connection is basically the economical relation, not directly, but through the situation of a big corporation and their production.
Sindelfingen, Germany and Detroit, USA: In both places we find factories and
development centers of the same corporation Daimler-Chrysler.
39.)jpg of Gallery views 1
Sindelfingen, a small City south of Stuttgart, with an existing historical root back to medieval times! Detroit, the booming City of the 20’s and 50’s (Motown), now decaying through the long dependency on big corporations, showing new urban developments with its decamped neighbourhoods.
Two urban situations, absolutely different, are depending on the same life conditions in a – somehow – physical way. Political structures are involved as economical strategies, which have an immediate impact on the cultural situations.
A reason to initiate a hypothetical comparison through a cultural project, an evaluation of the social, cultural, economical similarities and dissimilarities. “One Site – Two Places” will connect and disconnect cultural situations; and raise some of the very contemporary questions about the social conditions within the local and global situation.
In the upcoming presentation several proposals as contextual Art projects for Sindelfingen – and Detroit – will be suggested for a possible realisation in the year 2001.
40.)1Site-2Places (Doku sheet1)
jpg of styrofoam model
The more the modelling gets in the problematic view of reality the monsters will come out and the minimal aspects of it will take place in it.
Sculpturing, modelling so in the views of this lecture, is less about what one has as an individual in ones mind then rather to see the points of a contextual situation. It has to do with communication and the reception of it which will basically give the actual shape to it. This induces another aspect of visuality in a world filled with pictures, which become more and more meaningless. It is an approach to connect the creation of processes initiated through the Arts to a reality which has nothing to do with the arts. It also will impose as hypothesis the facts of real support through the arts. The picture of the suffering artist is not accurate anymore, but the view as a necessity to interprete and shape society with it. As pictures will get more and more meaningless, the monsters as absolutely unreal produced through media are those, who will tell as the honest truth about the perception in the world.