Chalk and Charcoal: Dust-Producing Drawing Instruments for Replacing a Disappeared Mill
Media installation consisting of video projection, chalk and charcoal
Exhibited at the Second Triennial "Instrument" at The Kulturmollan
Curated by Marek Walczak
July 6 - August 4, 2013
Viewer-participants encounter a video projection on a wall. In the video is a stream which used to power a mill near my hometown long before I was born. Viewer-participants are encouraged to use chalk or charcoal to draw a mill on the wall in the video projection. By drawing the viewer-participant grinds chalk and charcoal into dust, performing the original function of the mill, now used as a space for the presentation of art. The viewer/participant becomes the instrument.
Postcards to a Mill
Postcard, sandpaper, and paper bag (edition of 7 different postcards uniquely sanded)
Typically, a mill grinds things into dust. Typically, a visual artist creates things to be looked at. Typically, a viewer looks.
In Lovestad, the mill has become passive, like a typical viewer. If it were sentient, we could say it is bearing witness to the exhibition - like a typical viewer.
These postcards from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York all reproduce works by American artists, which seemed appropriate missives to art-viewers in Sweden. I used sandpaper to turn a portion of the picture into dust ñ performing the function of a mill. I invite the viewer/participant to do the same. By sanding another portion of the postcard with the sandpaper provided, the viewer/participant becomes a mill/artist/viewer hybrid - grinding something into dust, creating something to be looked at, and looking at something.
From two common objects (one postcard, one piece of sandpaper) the viewer/participant ends up with two original works of art (one uniquely altered postcard, one color-enhanced piece of sandpaper). No other ingredients (such as paint) are necessary - the only requirement is the viewer/participant's willingness to become an instrument of grinding, a mill.