Installation DO YOU?    



    do you?

Concept   This installation marks a specific moment in a four year process whose object of inquiry is the combination of philosophy and visual art. It refers to the question of to what extent it is necessary or even desirable to show a work of art, for example as a scale model, beforehand. It is my conviction that it is fatal for the working out of a concept to articulate and give an overview of all the steps in the process beforehand, in this way forcing it into a specific direction or even bringing it to a standstill because of a premature judgement. On a different level the question addresses the differences between science and art: science fragments, art presents (a new or different) unity. In this way the installation can evoke philosophical reflection.

The nine small windows originate from a trailer containing a mobile (PTT) switchboard, probably dating to the beginning of the nineteen fifties. The trailer was some 10 metres long, with a width of approximately 2,30 metres and a height of 3 metres. The aggregates, together with the relay-switch box that was fixed around the switch board, were split up in two long rows. This mobile communication system was meant to be operational the moment the regular network failed, and could provide for a large village.

In 1996, the trailer was purchased by someone dealing in cash registers and counting systems who wanted to convert it into a demonstration model. This was the reason why the switchboard had to be dismantled. Together with a couple of mechanics, I dismantled the trailer and stored the various components in my studio. The small windows that are used in this installation belonged to the switch boxes. The shape of the small windows which are arranged in three unfinished rows reminds one of a framework
  that is 'under construction'. They have the same right-angled shape the pages of the concertina fold Philosophers Room show. In this respect one can draw connections between the windows and the photos of the entrances of the philosopher's rooms from 2005. I tried to play with the same question in a totally different way: what outlook do philosophers have on the world and how is this outlook reflected in the way they interpret their room - the space of their thinking?

The 'marquisette' net curtains have an open, square structure that is reflected in the rhythm of the windows. The two boxes reflect that open structure, albeit each of them in a different way. The typefont sentence, that is written behind the windows as well as directly on the wall, is filled with graphite shading. The viewer can also notice that the sentence is interrupted. That is to say, we can only read the letters written behind the windowpanes, but the spaces in between are left to be filled in by the viewer. The spatial effect is reinforced by the variation between both the letters written directly on the wall, and these letters behind the windows; furthermore the net curtains are draped loosely in front of these.

The installation presents the idea of something that is in an embryonic stage, an initial impetus to something. It should be noticed, that something which is coming into being is also in some sense turning towards disintegration. In the open box-frame three used wooden beams, varying in height, suggest that there might be something already made or demolished. The layering of this ambiguity in this pseudo-aesthetic presentation evokes a tension that is meant to provoke the viewer.
 

Timeline   20|10 - 4|11 2007
  Do you? Installation, mixed media, Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam (NL)
Dimensions 82.7 x 36.6 x 105.9in / 210 x 93 x 269cm.