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EXHIBITION PROJECT


  SPACE: REAL ABSTRACT IMAGINARY

  ART SPACE KARTÄUSERHOF, COLOGNE



In my work, I examine and compare the signs used in abstract communication systems. These come from areas such as history, ethnology, writing system research, religion or the natural sciences and cover a period dating from prehistoric rock drawings up to modern-day electronically data processing. It is the graphical qualities of these signs, which is most important for me and not the philosophical content or scientific significance.

This year, the theme of the exhibits in Kartäuserhof Art Space is space. With our bodies and the organs of our senses, we perceive the room around us in its differing forms. With our eyes, we see volumes in front of us and behind us, with our ears, we locate the direction of noises, with our legs, we measure distance. From this real room, a schematic and simplified image using technical aids is produced. This image is an abstract representation of the room. It is projected onto a surface. The projection shows lines, which enclose the surfaces. The fenced-in surfaces represent federal states, economic regions or coalitions. Therefore, they represent imaginary spaces.

From the large numbers of symbols, which are used for the cartography of reality, a certain group of symbols are of interest for me in my exhibit. Those are the symbols used as points of measurement and for the establishment of boundaries. I have chosen 66 of these symbols for my project. I have interpreted them, converted them, transferred them to a unified paper format of 11 in and I have hung them at the location in two groups.

If we were on a hill and looked around, we would freely feel real space, however real estate forces in certain directions and sets boundaries, which impede our ability to move around. This property is fixed using points marking the open country. Since many of these points are able to be shifted, they may be abstracted using symbolic systems and fixed on maps. An abstract picture of reality is then created with symbols and lines overlapping one another. Even after the real fixed points have disappeared long ago, abstract maps with their lines exist. They show the imaginary spaces of nations, races, ideologies, economic regions, administrative unions and unions between governments and administrations. They merely originate in our heads and therefore, they show no consideration of existing conditions in reality.

Johannes Senf                                                                                                                                                                                         Cologne 2000

                                                                                                                                                                 translation from German by Michael Tighe
KARTOGRAPHIE VERMESSUNGSZEICHEN
TOPOGRAPHICAL MAP SURVEYING SIGNS
2000; Kremepigments, acrylic, Cansonpaper; 22 parts, each 11 3/4 in.

KARTOGRAPHIE GRENZZEICHEN
TOPOGRAPHICAL MAP BORDERLINE SIGNS
2000; Kremepigments, acrylic, Cansonpaper; 42 parts, each 11 3/4 in.


NACH OBEN