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Cucumber Time (2016)

Cucumber Time is a work that uses the image of LED signs, usually used by shops and workplaces, and combines these with photographs taken by an Alpine enthusiast during the 1960's. The result is a video brochure about traveling for pleasure that comments on common methods of enjoying foreign environments. The video has no sound.

 
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Reconfigured Status (2015)

This is a two-part work that combines a silent video and Spanish language beggar's sign, which was found torn up in the Barcelona metro system. The sign is misspelled, indicating that the person's education was cut short. It reads:

I have no job because I've had a lung operation I have 3 children and no husband I am alone. Help me with anything thank you:

The sign's fragments have been put back together, and the golden letters are made from an emergency blanket that shine through the cut out original handwriting.

The accompanying video shows a figure clad in a chroma key suit. The figure imitates the actions of illegal street vendors in the city of Barcelona. They have an ingenious system in which a bed sheet used to display the wares can quickly be snatched up into a satchel in order to avoid the police. In the video the figure is peddling her own wares in a plaza filled with children.

Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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One Sign Two Places (2015)

In this piece I take ownership of a broken marble plaque, which features the names of two places in the city of Barcelona on either side of the plaque. I became interested in depicting the story of how this piece of municipal utilitarian marble became an artwork, and so I recorded a video in which the sign is taken away from its original location by a figure in a chroma key suit, which accompanied the sculpture in an exhibition.

Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Hybrid Map nr.1 (2015)

This is the first work I made that involved merging two maps from different places together into a hybrid imaginary place. The map in the background in a map of the Republic of Congo, the capital of which is Brazzaville. This country has historical colonial ties to France. For this reason I decided to cut out almost every city block from a map of Paris, leaving only recognizable touristic attractions. At first glance, the hybrid map looks just like a regular map, but on closer inspection there are things that don’t quite match up. For instance, a slice of western Paris sits on top of the Atlantic Ocean, while the Seine intermittently crosses paths the Congo river throughout.

Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Hybrid Map nr.2 (2015)

This piece reflects on the hybrid identity of places that became bound by a colonial past. In this work, I use maps of Madrid and Peru and combine them into one, creating a new geographical configuration and a nearly indiscernible new identity. The use of a golden survival blanket over what should be be the geographical location on the map of the colonial town center in Lima refers to one of the pillars of the colonial economy: the exploitation of the gold mines of Peru for European benefit.

Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Photo credit: Eva Carasol for àngels barcelona

 
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Hybrid Map nr.3 (2015)

This piece was a part of the group exhibition "Within One's Grasp", curated by Maja Ciric. It was shown alongside works by Cristian Herrera Dalmau, Miquel Garcia, Paulina Silva Hauyon, Luke James, Sanja Latinovic and Ranko Dankovic, Daniela Ortiz, Joffrey Morel. As part of “In a convivial mode”- Presented by BAR project at àngels barcelona.

Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Photo credit: Maya Venkova for àngels barcelona

 
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Untitled (2015)

This silent video was shot in the Plaça de la Vila de Gracia in Barcelona. The video features a performance in which two faceless and disguised figures have an unsuccessful fight with each other. The weapons of choice are vintage water siphons, which the figures use to spray water at one another in a threatening yet clumsy manner. The backdrop of the fight is a famous Catalonian fountain that has two faces carved into it. The performers are Mexican artist Alejandra Aviles and myself.

 
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Animal Laborans (2015)

Animal Laborans is a video installation developed as a meditation on mortality, the power of distraction, and the cycles of growth and stagnation experienced throughout a human lifetime. The title Animal Laborans alludes to Hannah Arendt's The Human Condition (1958), and to Johan Huizinga's Homo Ludens (1938). This work was shown for one night only during the first edition of Fauna, a satellite program of Rewire Festival 2015. The theme of the exhibition was Tundra.

 
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Work That Stands in the Way of Work (2014)

Work That Stands in the Way of Work (2014) is an installation that uses the anonymous labor of 4 professional artists, a video projection illuminating a configuration of objects and a recorded narration to accompany the video. In this work I comment about the amount of labor and laborers needed to produce a work of art, which in many cases is credited to a single author. I engaged an artist to build the structure for me free of cost. I engaged another artist to transport and store the installation between exhibitions for the price of 3 Time Bank hour notes. I asked yet another artist to lend me a large mirror for 2 exhibitions (one at GEMAK, one at KABK), and finally, I asked one more artist to weld a three-dimensional, self-supporting object out of steel for me. All this labor was necessary so that I could produce a physical manifestation of a whimsical image. In the name of frivolous aesthetics I employed 4 artists, paid them nothing and did not credit them (by name) during the 2 exhibitions of this work. The projected video consists of an image of the artist welding the steel object, alternating with an image of dreamy sparklers (child-safe fireworks) burning on an immaterial black background.

 
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Salt Mounds (2014)

Salt Mounds (2014) is both a live performance and live-streamed work. It raises the question of how we see a single event as it appears in front of us, and how it is transformed by watching it on screen. In January 2014 I was invited to participate in a performance featuring 4 different artists during a Test Extra event at the Nutshuis, called Tele-li(v)fe. The idea of the event was to have the 4 artists performing in different rooms of the Nutshuis, and to stream the live performances to the foyer of the building on a screen with 4 projections. The concept for the live streaming stemmed directly from a prototype project I showed at the KABK in May of 2013, which would eventually develop into Salt Mounds. My performance consisted of filming actions on two ends of a very long table. Using materials such as salt, water, jenever and a dustpan, I was able to engage my audience in conversation as a part of my performance. One comment I received from a viewer was that it was pleasant to be able to speak with the performer (me) instead of being part of a passive audience.

Photo credits: Stephan C. Kaffa

 
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Photo credits: Stephan C. Kaffa

 
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Photo credits: Stephan C. Kaffa
Featured artists, clockwise starting from the top left: Gaby Felten, Ronald Schelfout, Trickster, Ji Youn Kang.

 
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Self-Congratulatory Toast (2013)


Self-Congratulatory Toast (2013) is a performance accompanied by an art object. The work was shown in a group exhibition at NEST (Den Haag), under the theme “Me, Myself and I.” I placed a neatly pressed pair of trousers onto a white plinth. The trousers were stuffed with colorful confetti, and weighted down by 2 bricks that I selected from the street. Tied to one of the trouser belt loops was a yellow helium balloon with a circumference of 1.50 meters, which was partially sponsored by a shop, so that I did not have to finance my own work out of pocket. My performance on November 14th 2013 consisted of inviting everyone to raise their glass in a toast to me, urging others to welcome me into the art world, using what I imagined to be the standpoint of a naive and hopeful art academy undergraduate in the current political climate. I asked a friend to “do the honors” after my toast, and lift the bricks from the trousers. The helium balloon shot up to the ceiling, yanking the trousers along with it, and spraying colorful confetti all over the crowd and floor. This is the text of the toast:

Colleagues! Friends! Peers! Please join me! I would like to make a toast! Thanks are in order, to you for attending, to the artists, who give us their work to contemplate, and to NEST for creating this occasion. I would also like to thank my personal sponsor, de ballonnenwinkel.nl, for providing me with the financial means to make my artwork. Obviously, I would like to congratulate my peers, for being a part of this exhibition, but most of all, I would like to congratulate myself. I think my presence at this exhibit will help me find my personal brand of authenticity as an artist. I believe I’ll have a long career of critical self-reflection, failures that ultimately lead to triumph, and finally, to the financial independence I deserve just for being myself. If you have glass, please raise it! Edd, could you do the honors? (Edd lifts brick from the trousers) May I forever be able to hold up my own trousers! Cheers and Thank you!

Photo credits: Djoehko

 
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Photo credits: Djoehko

 
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Photo credits: Djoehko

 
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The Department of Surplus Person Affairs (2011)

The Department of Surplus Person Affairs is a project I started in 2011 to address the weak correlation between the expectations of basic-to-advanced educated youngsters and the reality of job market offers. As the title of the work suggests, the inefficient correlation between educational marketing towards youngsters and the reality of available jobs on the market results generations of discarded minds, whose limited options include practicing unskilled professions in order to obtain a small salary without any further developments. Using a survey of 20 questions and presenting myself as a Surplus Person, I interviewed people under the age of 40 who were struggling to match personal development with earning money, people who were unemployed in spite of being educated and able, and people involved in the Arts. My findings conclude that it is precisely the initiative of getting money that prevents people from developing in an altruistic and social manner, though the latent tendency to do so is present. and encourage them to take on the identity of a Surplus Person. I travelled to Madrid, where the youth unemployment rate is very high, and set up an office in which I could conduct a 30 minute long survey-conversation with visitors. The use of a survey helped the visitor and myself reach a deep level of engagement very quickly, in which existential worries and doubts were addressed. Once the status of Surplus Person was established, one could begin to think of oneself not as useless, but as an untapped resource, but not necessarily in a Capitalist way. The survey can be found on the Text section this site as a PDF titled The Department of Surplus Person Affairs.

 
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Slow Walking (2011)


Slow Walking (2011) is a work about claiming space for the self. During 2011, I researched ways of creating or becoming aware of internal and external space by walking very slowly in semi-public spaces for between 10 to 40 minutes. By internal space I mean solitude, internal dialogue, and the stream of consciousness that occurs within each individual person. By external space, I mean the space that is beyond the individual; other individuals, being in public, and actively being in public places. The result is that after some minutes, I become disoriented and lose my sense of time. I become lost within myself, even though I am exposed to a significant amount of external stimuli. I recorded myself during these slow walking exercises, and made this video in which 4 Den Haag locations were chosen because of the high quantity of external stimuli present such as loud music, constant change of patrons, or jolting movement of the place itself in the case of the train carriage.

 
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