500 KG: As Above So Below • WECHSELRAUM: 21.00-22.00 • Berlin, DE
We come from a generation that is not confronted by the physical weight of warmth.
500 KG is a performative critique of material and consumption, both specific to Wechselraum and broader environmental concerns. 500 kg was chosen through research as the amount that is consumed every 0,10 seconds in Germany, as well as an incidental allusion to 0,10 – The Last Futurist Exhibition in 1915, where Malevich exhibited the Black Suprematic Square. While, visually, the palette of briquettes evokes the black square, the reference to 0,10, as a figure of thought, is also important in considering the destruction of the world (the zero point) through what the use of this coal stands for (in 0,10 seconds).
While initially, the use of mirrors was an instinctive response to the density of the coal and the volume of the space. It became what is in now a red thread throughout my work: the expression of the conflation of 2D (photographic) and 3D (structural / architectural form). Here, they take the overarching constellation of carbonized wood, flatten it, and reassert, through the contradictory nature of 500 kg balanced on a fragile surface: Our actions above the surface have implications beyond, and below our immediate perception. As above, so below.
Performatively, the hour between 21.00-22.00h was a crucial expression of the weight and an evocation of the labor involved in the life-cycle of coal. There was a certain absurdity to this methodical carrying and stacking, but also an intense concentration and practiced balance between the number of briquettes (4 at a time) and speed necessary to transport 500 kg into the exhibition space within 60 minutes.
Although the derived formations remained and evolved throughout the 24 hours of Wechselraum, at the end, the briquettes were reinserted into their “original” chain of production and given to fellow participants who required coal for warmth.