RIVANE NEUENSCHWANDER: AT A CERTAIN DISTANCE: MALMO KONSTHALL, MALMO, SWEDEN
Brazilian Rivane Neuenschwander (b. 1967) explores in his poetic works themes such as communication, migration and consumption. She works primarily with installation, film and photography. Her art has a peculiar sensibility and is not always based on the visual, but also on the sound, smell and feeling.
Neuenschwander is fascinated by nature and how nature is structured. In her work, living organisms (fish, parrots and ants) or traces of something living can play a central role. She is particularly interested in nature's hidden and chaotic forces, forces that man cannot fully control. Just as in nature, there is often an element of chance in her work. Works are changeable and sometimes interactive.
The changeable and unstable is again reflected in her choice of materials such as dried spices and fruit peel, whose scent and power disappear or if one wishes to die over time; water drops, which fall and seem to try to catch the passage of time, or the soap bubble, which slowly flies through the air during its brief moment of eternity. The parallel to our own lives is clear. Man is also a changeable material and like the soap bubble, it is only a thin membrane that separates our inner reality from the outer - the subjective from the objective.
The exhibition at Malmö Konsthall - Neuenschwander's first in Northern Europe - contains both older works and new site-specific installations. The work Alarm Floor / Alarm Floor is inspired by the so-called "nightingale floor" in the Ninomaru Palace in Kyoto, one of the world's earliest alarm systems. Together with the group O Grivo, she has designed a gaming floor, where the floorboards function as gigantic keys. Visitors' movements are revealed, while giving them the opportunity to compose their own audio works alone or together. Neuenschwander also opens up for direct communication in another interactive installation. Lots of blown-out eggs filled with letters invite you to an Alphabet-like word game. In each egg is a letter, which only becomes visible when the egg is held against the light. Words are formed by laying the eggs in a row,
Rivane Neuenschwander makes visible in several of his works parts of reality that usually no one notices. She highlights these "insignificant" details in different ways and makes us pay attention, and by extension, re-evaluate their existence. An example is At a certain distance (Ex-Votos) / From a certain distance (Votiv gifts *), where Neuenschwander painted by existing voting boards. In her copies, she has omitted the actual motif (the figures and the texts) and instead concentrated on the background, the architectural environment. She does something similar in the installation Palatable Digressions / Tasting digressions, when she shows "hidden" lines in Malmö Konsthall's architecture by reinforcing them. Neuenschwander has started from the light shaft's skylight and built a diagonal in the room of 56 plastic sheets, whose air spaces are filled with spices of different colors. The result is a minimalist painting in three dimensions that follows architecture and which is not only visual but also appeals to the sense of smell and taste.
Rivane Neuenschwander was born in 1967 in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, where she lives and works. Separate exhibitions including at the New Museum, New York (2010); South London Gallery, London (2008); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2003); The Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis (2002) and Portikus, Frankfurt (2001). Group exhibitions / biennials include Kunsthalle Wien (2010); 28th São Paulo Biennale (2008); Museum of Modern Art, New York (2007) and the 51st Venice Biennale (2005).