Rainer Pagel has visited the site of the Cumulator 7 ten days later. He took photographs of the gilded stones and shells, his installation. High and low tides changed his arrangement.
The sea made its own installation – with seaweed.
Still some gold leaf attached morphing the stone into a face reminiscent of paintings by Hieronymous Bosch.
A shell – no sign of ever being painted with a gold leaf… some gold leaf left on the large stone…the suggestion of a circular arrangement of the smaller stones become more apparent in the next shot
Taxing perception, the acuity of vision, the discrimination between a chance and an order.
Lovely case of the debunking of artist’s intention being dominant. It is a mover but not the harvester.
Easily, Pagel’s installation connects to land art of Richard Long or Pawel Althamer.
Pagel shares with them the limits he puts on both his interference with the found reality and on the durability of its impact. Redolent of various associations, Pagel leaves his performance open to natural forces in a kind of conceptual symbiosis. An idea explored earlier by Robert Smithson, not only by his Spiral Jetty, 1970.
Natural forces are as if calculated into the process of making art as equivalent to the artist’s intention. This equivalence is benign – and contradictory.
He is not on his own. Three days before his forty-second birthday, Alfred Kazin (June 5, 1915–June 5, 1998) explored in a series of Alfred Kazin’s Journals (public library) — an immensely rewarding trove of wisdom like this:
Trust the contradictions and see them all. Never annul one force to give supremacy to another. The contradiction itself is the reality in all its manifoldness. Man from his vantage point can see reality only in contradictions. And the more faithful he is to his perception of the contradiction, the more he is open to what there is for him to know.
For me – Rainer’ Pagel’s performance/installation/land art/ – ten days later – focuses my perception on the play between two types of creativity – whimsical, perishable, temporary one – like a song of the bird, or the cry of one of the seagals at the site where Pagel worked , and the other, governed by the universe, aspiring to eternity.
She has followed up with the list of materials used in her performances on the 7th July – as part of the Cumulator 7. Descriptive, the text also includes connections, reflections, fragments of memories, own and inherited. Her ephemeral performance emanates personally meaningful thoughts left open ended. The following text I treat as a primary source.
Off-shore…setting up camp at low tide on top of a hillock of razor sharp black slades exposing themselves like a sleeping primeval creature’s back surrounded by the warm golden sand of part of that the bay which remains islanded when the flood rushes in……time…reoccurring and changing with the tides and stranded within the clothes and remains of loved-ones…
the old sea-worn suitcase once packed off to a journey to Singapore on the „Empire Pride“ by a family called Walshe…it must have returned to Ireland somehow, where I „found“ it for sale at a Dublin flea market hitch-hiking back to Belfast with it wrapped in a borrowed golden shawl…
„crying, I saw gold – but I could not drink!“ (Arthur Rimbaud)
the time battered suitcase containing objects of wisdom and desire:
1 – a black mohair jumper from my dead mother
2 – a pair of 1st World War British Army issue thick canvas leg protectors in olive green from my love Michael’s beloved dead grandfather, who had the same shape of legs as Michael and coincidentally as myself – they fit us all three like a glove – a coincidence of love or birth by another coincidence, my grandfather and Michael’s grandfather did not kill each other over the trenches of the Somme or the Ardennes, but both survived to be able to have families and eventually us grandchildren…
3 – a black window fly net
4 – a US army jacket from a teenage friend of Michael’s US cousin, which went to the Vietnam war with him…olive green
5 – a pair of binoculars (black)
6 – a 7-part hip flask set
7 – a white pair of Moroccan women’s underpants with red embroidery
8 – a white doctor’s coat
9 – a huge white bra
10 – a black swimming suit
11 – a light olive green scarf with leopard print camouflage
12 – sixty black refuse bags for medical disposable urine catheters used by my love Michael
13 – a chocolate fudge cake in chocolate brown for Rainer Pagel’s birthday
14 – a decorative Indian sword used for weddings
15 – lengths of white muslin
16 – a black long-sleeved T-shirt
17 – a white short-sleeved T-shirt
18 – a long dress in nearly black with a printed grey cross down it’s length
19 – a roll of thick red ribbon left over from Michael’s fathers decorations
20 – a blue gift bag of ultramarine pigment from the same London art material shop, Ives Klein bought his Ultra Marine blue special pigment mix from years before I was born
21 – a pair of novelty socks, with penguin faces and single toes, pink, multi coloured dots and white
these objects were worn and used successively by me,or some used interactively with the other 6 performance artists, the rocks, the sand, the water pools, in short, the environment in image and sound during seven hours intuitive actions and inter-actions- being and the past memories of past lives…of others…ornamental details on a mental staircase into the dark. Lined by life’s gargoyles. Long forgotten. Sun-blessed and forgotten demons. Drowning in pure white of death – a light-spill from the other world through objects touched by the dying. Drowning in white light. Into life.
K Tw 14.07.2016
Like a bell tone with a central pitch seasoned by overtones Twisselmann’s trust into loose approach to finish leaves thought invisible and deliberately incomplete. Yet, visibility as a tool for her thinking is prioritised. A paradox? Possibly – but also a hard nosed rational decision: what cannot be articulated, defined or fulfilled, can be still manipulated by appearance and movement of the performing body.
The faithfulness to the riches offered by each segment retreating before the next one starts – without exact duration and a formulated end, brings in association with changes of seasons, with natural growth and decay changing places.
On occasion this state of a visual work of art is determined by a force of the universe.
Gustav Klimt has died while working on this Posthumous portrait of Ria Munk III (detail), 1917 -18
Twisselmann’s take on ephemerality has similar overtones. She consistently violates expectation the viewer may entertain – like Klimt, she makes us have a conscious experience of the “making”, which is tasked to imprison time and change and embody a promise which never manifests to our senses. That’s perhaps, why she added to the email with the above a black and white image of a winged soul.
It is a tenuous link – adorably capable of vanishing if you need to document it. It is one of those you find, when you browse your old archive of images, and one of them says – hello again.
So as a farewell with this addendum here is one visual coincidence:
put a bucket on her head as a warning to the power station on the far shore. Another woman, centuries ago, wore a similar shape on her head on the way to eternity.
This is a (funerary?) copper sculpture from Mezopotamia, 3300 – 2000 BC, now Morgan Library and Museum, NY.
The end of the Addendum to Cumulator 7