what is your name? nicholas riis
where do you come from in between norway and denmark
do you have a previous connection to this town? no, it’s the first time i’ve been here, so no, no connection.
have you heard of this place before? yeah, yeah when i was a kid somebody was talking about it, but not more than this.
what kind of work will you be showing i’m working on a gathering of objects. so if you use the metaphor of the domestic situation or lets say the domestic situation, we have objects that are for body let's say, or for utility, and its the same kind of setup, or you could take a zen garden or a french garden and it has this type of setup or installation, you go from this object to that object, so you kind of fuse these metaphors
this coherence? coherence, situation, of objects that i’m working with
and are you interested in coherency? the thing that bind these things together? yeah, i’m interested in the object relation to other objects, and the object’s relationship to the body. But also objects that hold other and the bodys relationship to a structure that holds objects, lets say, so its about these quite basic relations between objects in the situation or the environment, and then the body, so there’s these three, or four components. There’s the body, and then there’s the objects, the structure for the objects, and then there’s the environment. And how do you move between, you know, take a toilet for instance, its a set up situation, where you put shit in that hole, you put your hands in this thing, and the body moves within this. there is a sequence? yeah there is a sequence, there is a relation between the sink and the toilet, to the body, so yeah.
aha, and will the work in the show be, lets say, big scale? small scale? do go inside it? do you look at it? yeah scale has a lot to do with participation of the body, so if you make a couch that is a bit smaller than than human size, something happens in the sense of how you could participate with this object. So this fascinates me a lot. Or if something is a bit over scaled how it also can be, you know, personified, or become cute or have a more, how do you say, it can go beyond utility when it enters another scale, for the human body
yes, that’s really interesting, so you’re interested in the sort of musicality of the space? isn’t there some architectural rule of one and a half person? or something like that, there are compositional rules architects use to make things feel the right size yeah, but in the base of it, so there is this idea of completely working with a utilised object, like a couch or a sink or something, but aah, on the other hand, its making objects that are, its very hard to explain but, that are eh, .. that are in a place of eh, that you would go in, you would agree with this object, but you don’t know what it is for.
right? so you can look at art sculptures, they have a certain, eh, way of, .. they don’t really agree with the world as objects, but you can look at cups and they agree with, this is how they should be.
So if I for instance make an object that is like a cup, they propose utility, or options for body to react.. but, the body doesn’t know how or what. It’s not specific, you can’t read the the specific utility or something I guess..
yeah you can’t read the function.
so they’re in between spaces. and they also have a clear “thingyness” to them which is difficult to explain but they agree to the world of things, more than lets say art objects, they play with.. yeah its hard to explain.
do you think this place relates to your practice? mmm, i mean if you consider what i’m trying to do, with these quite ordinary spaces, like domestic spaces and like universal things, then you could construct this kind of situation in any space basically. But I also find it fascinating to go into a space that is not a white cube, like lets say an apartment, take away everything and re-direct the apartment, because the apartment already has like this human situation space, there is the bathroom, you can take everything out of it, it will still feel like a bathroom, or something like this, you know, use these kind of spaces, so that’s also another space you can work in. But in the museum kind of space I, you, create this fiction with the objects, or with playing with the architecture, potentially.
umm, and that maybe ties into the next question, which is why do you think you were selected for this exhibition? Or do you have an idea of why you where selected uhh, well, i had a good good good dinner with the curator,
mhm and we went home to her place and it went on and on. you know how these artistic politics go..
mhm, ha haha! uuu how do you feel about the exhibition?
how do you mean?
do you feel excited or do you feel, does it feel like you’ve done a lot of these things? does it feel like challenging or does it feel, does it feel like something you haven’t done before? i don’t know, i’ve never shown work twice, it hasn't been shown before and do you feel nervous about it?
yeah i feel nervous about it, it hasn't been shown before and, you know, this possibility of being uh you realise after its done, or two months after, what it really is. Its really hard to realise what something is if you finish it right before showing it. And that’s always frightening. And its not about yeah, the audience can like it, but if you don’t yourself, and its going to be there for a long period, thats a terrible feeling you just answered my next question, if you’re making new work, you just said that this work is new, uhh, will you be paid for expenses and living costs?
I fucking hope so. yeah? that wasn’t made clear on the night?
I’m not good at reading contracts. I usually just, I don’t know, as long as I have a budget to make. Then usually satisfied. But, yeah, can’t remember. I’m quite lazy with these texts, these..
My next question ties into, you don’t have to answer it, perhaps its too private, but what is your experience of the museum so far? The museums contact with you, has it been.. uuh, what is your experience of the museum?
Yeah as I said about, the wine, one thing lead to another, so uuh, yeah, its intimate.
mhmm, it’s an intimate experience with the museum.
its an intimate experience so far. but its also the first museum show so, yeah
ok, so this is a big question, why do you make art? why are you an artist?
I don’t know, to lazy to realise the real world or something? or i don't know, i think most artists are quite, i mean, its usually all about yourself no? somehow, and then maybe it can lead onto bigger importance or relevance, but still I am the biggest audience of my work, obviously mhmm
Sadly, whatever, but then sometimes it can lead to bigger undestandings.
I guess what I mean is what is the driving forces? Why do you get up another day and do the same thing, like why does that seem exciting?
yeah, really good question, and its so, sometimes I think its insane to do this actually, but its the only things thats really fun no? I don’t know, what else to do?
because its fun
yeah its super fun, its amazing, and you can get surprised, and its chaotic and its dangerous … and its difficult
you feel its difficult?
yeah difficult and fun, i think thats good, i think we end it there. or?