zaterdag 26 november 2022

 On Time (lookback)

a déja-vu feeling arises when looking at the wanton destruction wreaked on U

a throwback to the forties of the last century...

woensdag 22 juni 2022

hi time (2 hit the road)

 high time for a new update on the current situation, being minimal... (do not see me theatre at its best)

- but also plans to move again (been a while with Covid and all that)


re-kindled the traditional 'triangulation drives' but decided to split into two parts

part one - south (second part in various guises, soon, see below)

we thought it good to rekindle this combination of research & visiting, and due to circumstances, opted for two separate trajectories – the first being south along routes we already know and have described elsewhere, with the exception of Heilbronn, which I never saw before – so every time there is something different to consider along the way... 


First leg south decided to do in two days – take some time at stations we usually just whizz past (fahn fahn fahn auf der autobahn) – taking the A4 direction Cologne and then the 61 south, which is still closed in parts due to the damage cause by the raging torrents last year – weather getting weirder every year – now to hot. Bonn and the requisite grave visitation, and then along the Rhine – past Coblence then, where the hills get steeper and rockier towards the Lorelei – which I have seen from the express train Frankfurt-Cologne many a time, but never stopped to have a good look – and perhps I waited too long, since the romantic shores are now festooned with white plastic camper vans – so much for that romantic vista which Victor Hugo once illustrated; backdrop to a wagnerian scene of the Rheingold or such – hard to envisage nowadays – but anyway heading south towards the 'Binger Loch' which always intrigued me – but here too not as impressed as I might have been a few years back... something lacking – need of a new choreography perhaps. Short stop at Bingen before heading further south and into the hills behind the wine-route at Neustadt... the Palatine forests... here too a sense of loss: many trees dead or dying, climate change and budworm, no looking good at all. 


We spent the night at the cloister Esthal, where we had been before, and which each time boasts less nuns to run the place, now being held together/barely afloat with some help from the east (polish?) but also in need of a new concept – not just yoga classes and mindfulness – but who still wants to work at it? Lovely old orchards and fields going to seed, crumbling forest and growing graveyard... but still a wonderful place to stay compared with alternatives in that price-range...








Meandering down the forest hills into the Rhine valley we had to adjust again to the frenzied speed-freaks hogging the Autobahn, just in time to get stuck in heavy traffic (well standstill in fact) at Karlsruhe. Where our old cafeteria on the river has been refurbished into a kitch-club and no longer an attractive pit-stop. Slow going, lots of roadworks gumming up our itinerary – deciding then to head straight for Munich rather than the Allgäu-route we had considered – backdrop scenery not really up to scratch anymore anyway... Munich on the other hand went well – used to be a major drama in various acts to get through – now a dark passage through new tunnels, but quicker – and so one might consider t-shirts with 'been to Munich, saw nothing' as novelty item...


Lucky for us the visit was at the foothills of the alps and therefore cool and green, as opposed to the burnt landscape we had left behind – so an idyll that still exists but for how long? 


defaced memorial to death-march victims

 anti septic Prüm water (holy) dispenser

and jesussandals:


We decided on a zig-zag return route, avoiding the roadworks we by now knew well, and taking what turned out to be quite a scenic route west and then north and then west again, to then head back into the palatine hills and cross over to Belgium through the Ardennes stopping a Prüm just before the border... seemingly one of the most important cloisters in it's day, now sort of forgotten along the way. Founded in 721 by Bertrada the elder, a great-grandmother of Charlemagne, it had immense power and territories it it's day and under Pippin III acquired Christ's sandals from the holy land, still on view today – though scholars consider them to be merovignian house-shoes (pantouffles) and never saw the holy grail... anyway, it was an interesting unscheduled find an I must say I liked a thought over one of the doorways:

“God give all those that know me

still tenfold more

of what they treat me...” (1775)

On that note we headed into the Belgian Haute Fagnes...


and then a major new investigation into territory unknown - east








(more on that later too)

in the meantime a little ditty 

vrijdag 15 oktober 2021

askew view Chagall


Its been a while since I saw some Chagall works live in colour – having missed the recent exhibition of exiles in Paris (Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian) at the Stedelijke, in which they displayed a number of rarities from their collection – which is extensive and has some well-known favorites such as the Fiddler from 1912... All the more enjoyable then, the discovery of an 'underground' (literally) exhibition of Chagall at the Olaf Gulbranson museum in Tegernsee at the edge of the Bavarian Alps... A jewel of an exhibition based on a very pristine copy of the Lithographic suite 'Daphnis & Chloé' from 1961... His first major composite work in a medium which he would use extensively to ensure that everyone had access to his work, not only museums and the rich. 










general view with nevers seen work


Already a treat to see the suite in it's entirety rather than just parts of it, this is but the beginning... Curator Michael Beck used his connections as partner in Beck & Eggeling (Düsseldorf) to convince a number of private owners to lend their Chagall's to the exhibition... which creates a added dimension which is in itself special, since many of these works have not been seen publicly for a long time or at all... A small but select group of intimate treasures, interspersing the lithographic series at intervals and connected to various periods and techniques, making the show a small but vigorous journey into the eventful life of the artist. In addition to theses 'discoveries' there is a small but extremely interesting note/sketchbook on display covering the period of his sojourn in Paris, flight and arrival in the United States, with the excruciating facets of the war, persecution of Jews, destruction of his hometown Vitebsk and the disaster of the refugee-ship 'Struma' as pictorial references to a series culminating in various crucifixions and the theodisic question 'How can God allow such horror?' The elaborate catalog features an article by Roland Doschka concerning this section.


Another section elaborated upon is the 'German' period of Chagall's life by Mario-Andreas von Lüttichau in which the strange and extreme metamorphosis from darling of Herwarth Walden's 'Sturm' and associates to the bane of the Nazi's who included Chagall's works in the infamous 'Entartete Kunst' exhibition – sketching the strange and incredible change of fortune in just a couple of decades with exact references and poignant moments (the sale of unwanted work for foreign currency in Switzerland). This is preceded by a more general view of Chagall's life by Bernhard Maaz, The Lithographic section is introduced by Andrea Knop, and as if this were not enough, the show and catalogue are accompanied by an extensive program of readings and presentations by specialists in their field as far afield as the Israel Museum in Jerusalem to put it all into context.

So, much more than just being able to enjoy Chagall's work in a small and intimate setting, it is an outside chance to view some very special works completely unknown but still familiar, including one wood-relief-collage one would expect Schwitters to make... but then he also turned to flowers in a later period... so too Chagall remains fresh and vibrant, familiar and surprising all at once in the small major exhibition... Well worth a trip if one is heading for the Alps... still until January 2022...


very good & complete catalog

Olaf Gulbranson Museum, Kurgarten 5, 83684 Tegernsee

zondag 19 september 2021


 Finally got to Paris again since a while, and finally the project that had been on the sheld since 1962 is being realized: the wrapping of the Arc de Triomphe - a sight for sore eyes... worth a trip.

broken Lantern and crane... 

zondag 7 maart 2021

euro-theatrix / cadavre



The current project at the Buktapaktop, being a “cadavre esquis” and sectioned in 8 or 9 parts due to the Covid-19 rules, makes for an interesting 'case' of theatre studies.. The exquisite corpse is of course not a physical one, but does have it's roots in the 'theatre of anatomy' - not only in terms of le Comte de Lautréamont's proto-dadaist statement of “the beauty of an encounter of an umbrella and a sewing machine on a operating table” but also in terms of dissecting thoughts in a “Tieranatomisches Theater” - name used in Berlin for ages..; and reminding us of our own mammalian condition – something we seem to forget often...

The fact that the former anatomical theatre now houses and operates the “Heimholz Zentrum für Kulturtechnik” (Centre for Cultural technology) seems very appropriate for my own considerations...


(TAT in the 1960's)

Beginning with the theatre of life & death as it were and the anatomical gaze as essential to understand the inner workings, even if missing the point constantly (dissected rabbit never to hop again)

(see also historical section)

so Buktapaktop's “Cadavere esquis” is something that I consider being performance, theatre and conceptual dissection at the same time – My first instalment was in fact in absentia: taking the day to investigate a stretch of coastline as a 'figure' representing anyone who had passed both recently and in history (as chance would have it these images were taken on one of the many bunkers left over from the “Atlantikwall' fortifications strewn all along the north sea coast - 

(picture taken by R. Pacquée)



here a report from the 'Obst' section


woensdag 6 mei 2020

Pencilpomegrenade beehive

Remains pencilled in / photoTrinks

Well I was pleasantly surprised when I had a look at the first results of my investigative project for the series "what remains" at defibrillator in Chicago... I had been somewhat dismayed at the technical problems we encountered ( aside from the sorry fact I couldn't be there myself) and had sort of reduced expectations... But no, it was quite interesting... The crew at DFBR8r had done a good job at installing the piece just in the passage between front and rear... So being part of the gallery space and at the same time the soul kitchen where artists congregate... The presentation being something in passing, an aside to the main events so to speak "en passant" as the french would say... Thus recreating quite well the memory of being out of class during lessons, so to say, sharpening pencils, as if that were an essential part of my education... And yes it was... 

Photo Trinks

Here too, the aside nature of the proposition, sharpening a pencil while passing by to get a drink or conversely, to see the next performance... And yet just as it is an aside, there is no pretension to a proposal... It seems to come when turning the handle of this manual machine that takes people back to when not everything was automatic. At the same time it's mechanistic and repetitive, grinding away at the troubles... Which is a very positive slant given by one of the participants...

C.R.'s wonderful befitting Beehive 
          ( Ph. Angeliki Chaido Tsoli)

The setup was perfect... Perfect too was the get-up that C.R. - the artist hosting my piece had prepared... A veritable school teacher from the early sixties... Decent but light & airy blouse with flower decoration, and a wonderful beehive sculpture of a hair-do, slightly flamboyant but retaining a certain strictness needed to keep the kids on the straight & narrow...  And yes, even though I had just mentioned this memory connected to the sharpener at school in passing... It is spot on: the beehive hairdo is also an original Chicago invention...  And what is more... It connects directly back to the pomegranate... By way of Vinci... The creator of the Beehive was Margaret Vinci Heldt, and earlier I had made reference to the grenades designed by Leonardo Da Vinci... But per chance came across a painting by him depicting mother and child ( mary & Jeeez...) with a pomegranate... Well well...

So much for synchronicity and serendipity...

So, after hatching the idea to replace the missing shavings-receptacle with a hollowed- out pomegranate, an idea that was also spawned by some fluke connection made to the projects preceding this one... The question of how many seeds, the varying traditions and meanings... Well, I actually counted the seeds in this one, and there are 468 of them, and as of yet I have not found a number that coincides in some mysterious way...

In the meantime I have had word that my copies of the four remain-investigations are en route... Looking forward to reading about all the other findings... And in the meantime, remains are being gathered everywhere... Virus r no virus...
Keep well!

 On Time (lookback) a déja-vu feeling arises when looking at the wanton destruction wreaked on U a throwback to the forties of the last cent...