Anne Kolbe Q's
Question 1. a past work
A wall, 2012 what and how In 2012, when I was in the third year of art academy, we created a show in an old Citroën garage in the city centre of Den Bosch. Prior thereto I worked for four weeks on site. The work I made there was a freestanding wall I added to a room in which there was already a small wall present that was shielding a basement hatch. In the time span I was on site, I took the space into consideration in an almost meditative way and started to think through the space. The freestanding wall I made was bigger then the one that was already there. I used the same materials and finished it with the same paint and I copied the baseboards. At the back side of it I made a fold into one of the corners. what do you mean by a fold into one of the corners? It was some kind of sculptural intervention (which i hated later). It is as if you would fold paper and get left with this nice cut / fold that mirrors / breaks a surface into two. that was it, but then in wood.
why The small wall that was present in the room triggered my thoughts on the specific architecture of the space and the order of things. The L-shaped wall seemed purely functional in a sense, but had a clear decorative character as well. I found it quite ambiguous in its status and presence. It was almost like it didn't want to draw too much attention to itself. It was painted in the same white-grey colour of the entire room and finished with the same baseboards as the other walls. It wanted to fit in but it remained estranged. It was the only thing that was not structural. It was shielding, covering, obscuring. Me wanting to make another wall that had the same ambiguity of fitting and yet not fitting in, had something to do with the longing to add something to that situation; to the peaceful room with not much in it, but with a clear intimate and private interior logic. I somehow wanted to add something to the narrative, that messed silently with the functional.
Question 2. how does the past work relate to previous work (that you made before that)? I didn't quite consider the work I did before as work. Something in the making process of the wall felt very true to me for the first time. What was that truth? A truth of materiality, time span, space? Was it a truth I was able to find by just being in there? Was it a truth of method? I believe it was very much connected to the way I dealt with my own presence being in that specific space then and there in relation to all the elements already present. In that sense this work relates to previous attempts of work in a way that this was concentrated around the idea of being amongst the things around you, whereas I before I searched for ways of shaping materiality into nearness of certain ideas. It is an idea coming into matter. Not so much an attempt to shape matter info form that has a nearness to the idea. If not work, How would you name it then? Sort of attempts I think. Or just stuff you make that is very essential in the process of coming to work, but is not work in itself / can't reach that status yet because I hadn't made anything yet that went beyond what it was (which were attempts then I think).
Question 3. what scene produced it? (what context informed the work?) the possibility of working on site, off site form the usual studio scene and all its possibilities of tools, the presence of previous works, sketches, images, mind maps, texts. Having to start form scratch in a different building enabled me to find a method that turned out to be very close to me. It was as I found my own voice in the silentness of being in that building, sitting in that room for hours. Until the day passed and I went home, waiting for the other one to come. The not knowing to what purpose you are.
An overall approach of working and thinking; thinking through space, through the building, through a specific room. Being in a specific room for a longer duration. I was alone, which was a vitally important element of the scene. Once in a while someone came by to talk. In the not talking the wall originated.in the silence, out of the not-language that travelled through the room in silence, in the form of words that were not spoken but only written down and thought upon, resonating with the walls. Resonating with the room; the roof, the white-greyish colour, the diffuse light coming from the long-drawn-out ceiling window, the walls.
do you think this kind of intervention could happen again elsewhere, or was it only existing as generated by this specific site? This could happen again elsewhere and it did happen after that in other residencies i did for example. However, it didn't always work, because I think I had not always managed to put up the type of working conditions that made this way of relating to the things around me possible in the same way it did then and there (in the case of the past work). I think it was a sharp cut between concentration and being able to grasp something substantial in its intangibleness. I think it's a tricky method because I rely in a sense on the hope of finding something in the in between space of things. And I have also sometimes found that I was just unable to find anything there. (So maybe it's more situated in (finding) a state of mind then in an actual physical space, but without the physical space there wouldn't be something to physically relate to.)
Question 4. how could you place it into a broader context …
Question 5. a current work During Prospects & Concepts at Art Rotterdam 2017 I made a site for an ongoing performance with reoccurring objects and materiality. People wearing marble suits carried around all sorts of objects that together formed a field of play. The objects broke free from the art fair booth and were taken all over the fair to see other works, other corners of the building, to appear in the bathroom or at the bar, to eventually come back to their base, and thus constantly appearing in different formations. Repetitive movements and actions were carried out quietly at a contemplative and calm pace, based on all the different ways of how the body could relate to the objects, how they could be picked up, held, carried, put next to the body or onto it, led by the question of what these objects called or even asked for with their quiet / absent voices.
Why I wanted to make a work that was movable, not fixed to the location of an art fair booth, not responsive to the demand of showing itself in a static way. I wanted to spin around this traditional idea of displaying by asking what the objects themselves wanted; how and where they wanted to go. I wanted to treat the notion of the art commodity as a non-static, living idea of an animate object that demands things in itself.
how did the invitation to participate in the fair impacted on your idea? The invitation was a bit suffocating for me in the sense that the Mondriaan Fund frames you as one of the emerging artist now to take part in Art Rotterdam who got supported by the Mondriaan Fund with the Talent Development Grant and is now supposed to show 'where that had brought me' a year later. The fact that they make these presentations in the format of art fair booths, in a bigger space where a certain amount of square meters are assigned to you made me want to do something with that notion of taking part in this art fair format, which is also in itself turning more into an event space each year. The question of 'show me what you've got now' resonated in my head and I was trying to come up with possible ways of relating myself to that question / call / demand.
Question 6. similarities and differences (current – past work) The pace was similar. The works were both quiet. It could both dissolve in its context. It was precisely that what it was trying to do. It offered the possibility of being overlooked. Both of them were made in relation to a specific context; the context being the trigger of the idea. The both of them confused and obscured the logic / order of things in their specific environment. They were both speaking about reversion and senselessness (senseless presence) in a way.
The past work didn't move. It was static and fixed to its own location. The current one could pop up everywhere. You could not walk around the current one, as it had not one format that it was bound to. The past one made it pretty easy for one to walk around it. You could even say it was made to walk around. The current one was made to walk around with.
Question 7. who can help you / who helped you and how? Regarding their expertise don't look at this, it's boring the performers: their expertise, willingness, time, dedication. Help in execution, photo's and the install.
Question 8. Future work: what could it be and what makes it necessary for you? A series of foldable objects that you can take with in combination with pieces that can be possibly 'worn' on the body.
What makes it necessary for you? A longing for something that can find / hold different shapes. Something that holds the possibility of a state to come, that holds the future in that sense. Something that enables you to do something which you otherwise could not have done. An object like a puzzle piece that can be for example attached to the body / linked to it / used by it and then the both of them (body and object) in their encounter are enabling each other to do something / reach another state. In temporary togetherness accessing something that could not have been accessed in another way.
can you tell more about the "longing" aspect of this work? what kind of longing, longing for what? Longing to take on different shapes / a different shape? A longing to turn into something other then yourself ? Maybe also even to merge with the thing / the object.