Reliefs

Cut out mat board

2019


Photos by Leifur Wilberg Orrason

Text by Erin Gigl

 

What is it to look at something that is directing you to look at it? Something is not merely shiny and attractive, but it is directing your gaze. It asks you to look by pointing where to look, then you look. 

“Look again.” 

You look further.

“Look further.”

You get closer, to peer inside, looking for what it seems to be asking you to look for. 

“What am I looking for?”

“Look closer.”

You keep looking, looking becomes an act of peeling back layers, not adding. 

As you keep searching, you keep thinking there’s more, but really there’s less. Less and less and more and more is removed. 

 

You slowly reach the center of the tootsie pop, or perhaps voraciously depending on your temperament for finding out, for knowing…  as you just want to know…and upon the center you begin to wonder if a trick was played on you by the wizard who wanted to distract you while he concocts another game for you to play, to pass-onto and ask another round of ‘where am I going?’, to ensure that you’re continuously busy wondering what it is you’re looking for.. Or you begin to wonder, you begin to have the enlightened feeling that perhaps no, this isn’t a trick at all, it’s a gift! A gift that is not often, well, so rarely in fact, regarded as a gift because there’s nothing to be had. So when there’s nothing left but merely the question that engages what is in fact the answer that in the end most nothingness or bliss results in, the search gives to us, so much to feel nothing to hold.

Clear away the picture plan.

Clear away the content.

Clear away the results.

Until you’re finally walking, pondering, without purpose, along the perspective, towards the perspective that is the perspective. 

And everything is.

There, you’ve reached it once again, the eternal ring around the rosie that these questions are playing on you. The eternal ground hog’s day, infinity loop chasing your tail. 

 

One looks to the camera as one looks to the screen as one looks to the other, 

Tell me what I am to know, one asks.

Tell me what I am to see, one begs.

And as I write this I begin to realise that this is what’s happening as I look into the magic mirror, these passe-partouts that don’t bring me everywhere or anywhere, but specifically here, there it is, I realise that here is actually anywhere indeed because I am drifting away to my own dream that has the possibility of going everywhere and I because I am me and you are you, I have the choice to go anywhere and I choose here, my here, which is different than your here. You’re there. 

Like Sigurður’s Sleeper work, who was sleeping, he was sleeping forever, he was too busy dreaming to answer your pleas, he was too sound a sleep to tell you his dreams, 

You are here, circling back to the gift that is art to make us dream.

Just as a womb is not merely meant to conceive 

for the sake of providing, these passe-partouts are to be handled with care. Only a fool would search to take and forget to the other half of the deed ..  

And aha! As I overheard, so I continue to say, so much to feel nothing to hold. The real gift is not the answer, it’s your dream and the structure is your lullaby. 

 

Passe-partout: 1)  a method of framing in which a picture, a mat, a glass, and a back (as of cardboard) are held together by strips of paper or cloth pasted over the edges 2) A master key or skeleton key.

From French, meaning to go or pass everywhere.

 

Étant donnés (Given: 1. The Waterfall, 2. The Illuminating Gas, French: Étant donnés: 1° la chute d'eau / 2° le gaz d'éclairage): Marcel Duchamp’s last major artwork comprising of a perspective deconstructed from its picture plane.

 

Le Dormeur (The Sleeper): A work Sigurður created of a sleeping figurine who never wakes up. This work eventually lead to a series of screen prints entitled, “Types of People.”

 

Pre-existing Structures: Systems, frameworks, constructions and arrangements wherein which content, material or matter is meant to passe-through, be placed, or held. Like a riverbed that holds a river, a book where a story is read from or book-ends that hold books between them. Sigurður appropriates structures often for his work, creating conduits that leave the spectator to imagine their own meaning to move within. 

 

Alberti’s window or fenestra aperta (the “window to the outside”): a conceptual method for understanding perspective. 

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