Artists: Cudelice Brazelton, Steinar Haga Kristensen, Hannah Heilmann, Dan Herschlein, A Kassen, Paul Kopkau, Peter Land, Lindsay Lawson, Mathias & Mathias, Mélodie Mousset, Zoé de Soumagnat
Exhibition title: Spirit Chair
Organized by: Blue Ruin (Agnes Bolt and Anna Frost)
Venue: Blue Ruin, Copenhagen, Denmark
Date: August 30 – September 2, 2018
Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Blue Ruin
The room was so different from the rest of the apartment that going into it was like leaving my own home and entering another. The room was the opposite of what I had created in my home, the opposite of the gentle beauty that came from my talent for arrangement, from my talent for living, the opposite of my serene irony, my sweet, disinterested irony: it was a violation of my quotation marks, the quotation marks that made me a reference to myself. The room was a portrait of an empty stomach.
– Clarice Lispector, The Passion According to G.H.
In The Passion According to G.H., a wealthy, upper-class woman encounters a cockroach in the recently emptied maid’s room and her life unravels. She gradually begins to question the anesthetized world she has created for herself and by the end, swallows the cockroach. Much like the roach in the maid’s room, the artworks in Spirit Chair become portals to a messy and unresolved world. Art objects are allowed to become their fully loaded selves and stand in opposition to the context of a new home, so meticulously and purposely wiped of its stories and histories.
Cudelice Brazelton has lifted a shape intended to decorate the body and scarred it into the walls. Melodie Mousset’s organs cast from her own body have been transformed into function-able, though ominously ritualistic candles. In Hannah Heilmann’s fragile sculptures made from daily contact lenses we wonder what scrupulous hand has arranged these disposable pieces and why? Artist duo Mathias & Mathias have re -imagined the study as a site for a chamber play without the actors present. Dan Herschlein’s headless but reclining torso is being absorbed into dark souplike sheets. The works in the show exude a life of their own and offer a fascination with sinister but alluring truths we often choose to ignore.
Spirit Chair includes artworks from nine International artists, an art collective and an artist duo; Cudelice Brazelton, Steinar Haga Kristensen, Hannah Heilmann, Dan Herschlein, A Kassen, Paul Kopkau, Peter Land, Lindsay Lawson, Mathias & Mathias, Mélodie Mousset, Zoé de Soumagnat
Blue Ruin is a new conceptual-curatorial project created by Danish curator Anna Frost and US/Polish artist Agnes Bolt. Blue Ruin aims to subvert a traditional gallery context to present art exhibitions within the more precarious and shifting space of a home for sale. Through a series of thoughtfully curated exhibitions the project addresses a multitude of topical issues including the marketing and packaging of “ideal” domestic space, object fetishization and notions of real vs. simulated environments, among others.