Jaroslav Kyša is an artist who has long been engaged with historical events, which he elaborates for a strategy of uncovering collective (local and global) memory by means of memorials/monuments. He deliberately draws attention to historic circumstances which normally are long forgotten or purposely ignored.
With their multimedia inputs they set individual themes in a new perspective. Kyša thus prods the viewer towards a new view of the given reality.
“Memorials/monuments, with their stable form (or their unstable form in times of political change), are places which prescribe us a time for contemplation. In my work I am attempting to interpret the memorial/monument concept in a forn which is multi-significant and evokes other associations. By this means I create unstable object-models of memorials-monuments, which hold together only thanks to physical laws such as magnetism and the various electrical mechanisms. With my works I enter the viewer’s reality by minimalist, often even quite invisible gestures, behind which there is extensive research and exacting technical production…”
The artist’s first solo show in ZAHORIAN & VAN ESPEN is conceived as a site-specific project created for a gallery in Bratislava. Its central work is the antimemorial / antimonument A-B installation, which depicts the prime meridian (at zero longitude) in the exhibition space. The installation turns 360 degrees around its axis every 24 hours by means of a sophisticated mechanism and special software designed specifically for this work (in collaboration with Jonathan Ravasz).
Jaroslav Kyša clarifies his objective for the viewer: “The bent metal rod is turning opposite to the movement of the prime meridian in Greenwich in England, and thereby I create an imaginary frozen abscissa in space. The viewer is not conscious of the movement, just as mankind is often not conscious of its impact on the planet. This utopian antimemorial / antimonument is a metaphor of the temporal and geological epoch we have been experiencing – the Anthropocene.”
Unfolding from this installation, there are also other exhibited objects, video and photography, representing the artist’s “physical” attempts at the antimemorial / antimonument theme.