Maria Eichhorn’s art projects are often punctuated by displacements – interruptions that destabilize normative forms. They trouble the imaginary relationship of artworks to the institution. Yet, they do not entirely reject or oppose the dominant order: the turn is not against the symbolic system of the art institution. Rather, they work on and against it. Breaking free of its inescapable sphere, her work transforms its operating logic from within.
For this exhibition, Eichhorn presents the fifth iteration of her ongoing “Film Lexicon of Sexual Practices.” A film projector stands waiting to be put into motion by a professional projectionist, ready at hand nearby to thread any one of twenty 16 mm films available for view. The titles are single words or phrases presented as a wall text such as “Cunnilingus”, “Ear Licking”, “Anilingus”, and “Japanese Bondage.” In order for one of the films to be screened, the visitor has to make a selection, hereby, actively inserting her or himself into the cinematic practice – a practice that includes not only the films and the viewing apparatus, but the exchange between projectionist and spectator. If no requests are made, no images will be shown. Activation requires participation.
- Maria Eichhorn, Ausstellungsansicht Maria Eichhorn Kunsthaus Bregenz 2014. Detail: Wandtext. Photo by Markus Tretter.