Saturday, May 21, 2016

Outsider Art at Rotterdam Kunsthal - 2

The Museum of Everything at the Rotterdam Kunsthal is a mind-blowing experience. There is too much to see, too many worlds to experience. I must ingest and digest in very small bites. Previous posts are here.
Horst Ademeit, 1937-2010 (Cologne, Germany)
Art and machine orientated labourer, whose multiple thousand Polaroid practice documented and described the invisible cold rays emanating from every electrical outlet around him.

Starting his observations and documentation in 1989 he recorded his observation - of smells, sounds and the subjective experience of the visible scenery - in miniscule handwriting on the white frames of his polaroid pictures. He used a wide variety of instruments (Geiger counter, thermometer, Lux meter) and also developed personal methods - like the measuring of the width of a crack in his wooden table.

The observation-pictures show the influence of the threatening force in his immediate surroundings, as reflected in remarkable or irritating phenomena. They show building sites, neglected bicycles, accumulations of garbage, oil stains and the moulding of bread. A car that has not been moved or a letterbox that has not been emptied are all recorded. The pictures also document the behaviour of spiders and fruit flies in his home and the behaviour of swallows and turtles in his garden.
The day-pictures are arrangements of current headlines in the BILD tabloid newspaper, measuring instruments, letters and foodstuffs. Each one of the more than thousand day-pictures is numbered, dated and documented in microscopic writing including recent occurrences and headlines from the newspapers. This process creates correlations between changes in the inner and outer worlds, between public and private life.

His monumental work - built over 40 years - was discovered in 2008 and exhibited for the first time. The artist has died in 2010 at an age of 73 years.

An excessiveness characterizes the work of the German Horst Ademeit, who dedicated himself to documenting the harmful influence of so-called cold rays, a type of radiation he had identified. Each day he took photographs purporting to show the threat to his immediate environment, while also recording the behavior of spiders and fruit flies, and appropriating an arsenal of measuring instruments. His findings were meticulously inscribed on the sides of the photographs.


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