A Complete Disaster…

…is what I would call the exhibit we went to on Sunday….that’s because the name of it was: Disaster: The End of Days…our first visit to the amazing new Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac in Pantin just outside of Paris.

But we didn’t just show up for the vernissage….no, Sanan and I participated in a bit of performance art associated with Austrian sculptor Erwin Wurm:  Grammaire Wittgensteinienne de la culture physique.

black houseBasically, Herr Wurm creates replicas of specific buildings from clay (about 1/2 meter high) and then partially destroys them in systematic ways. One side of the room had 10 or so of these works that he had created and cast into bronze. The other half of the room contained fresh new clay buildings (actually replicas of the Ropac gallery compound) upon which we were to inflict damage in systematic ways.

One little house we stood upon and did old fashion knee squats. Another we knelt upon as if it were an alter. Another we had to lay on the ground and kick it with our heels. And yet another we walked along the top while reading aloud quotes from the Grammar book by Wittgenstein.

This little book seemed to be the philosophical basis of the Erwin Wurm’s sculpture exhibit. Wittgenstein set out to systematically dismantle language (and from the reading of this book, did quite a good job!).

performanceartSo, our little group of 6 people completely destroyed the clay buildings within the 2 1/2 hour systematic annihilation exercise session. It was fun. Someone suggested we should be able to empathize with Godzilla.

Also as a part of the Disaster Exhibition at the Ropac, there were several other amazing works of art (check out the short slide show) including works by Anselm Kiefer, Farhad Moshiri, Philippe Bradshaw and others.

UPDATE: Here’s the video!!!