Fata Morgana - Traces at Kap Arkona [Site specific installation, 2011]
Paint, chalk, gold leaf adhesive; 4 x 2.4 x 2.4 m
images from Kap Arkona
The installation was conceived and created during a one week residency on the island of Rügen, where artists from 6 Baltic islands, together with German artists, created the exhibition; SzenenWechsel [SceneChange]. The artists filled the rooms of a vacant 3 floor hotel, situated at the northern point of Germany. The hotel has not been open since the 40s and until 1989 DDR soldiers stayed at this strategic point of the Baltic Sea. Next to the hotel are the 2 old Arkona lighthouses, a popular tourist attraction together with the dramatic landscape of the Cape, situated high above the ocean with steep cliffs of chalk. The Bürgermeister [town mayor] helped me search the old town records where I found texts and old sea maps of the south Baltic Sea, visualizing how the area changed nationality through the centuries. I was also inspired by the records from the history of the old lighthouses, which with their significant beams of light communicates across the Baltic.
In the installation I painted a black "cube" inside the room inspired by other cubes already installed in the building. The black paint highlighted the window, with a west to south-east view of the ocean horizon, and onto the glass I applied a transparent adhesive that remain tacky after it dries and made the glass look wet. On the walls and in the ceiling I created drawings with chalk I collected from the beach, by transferring photocopies of the town hall records. On the floor I inscribed a German text with the adhesive, originally written in Swedish to the king describing the island in order to establish tax rates in 1694. On the unpainted floor I applied chalk that collected around the cracked paint and during the opening reception visitors left white footprints as they walked onto the floor. I also encouraged them to leave their fingerprints on the glass window, thus creating a permanent trace that may be kept for the future.