Installation Project 98 · Installáció Projekt 98

participants ↓ résztvevők

(1) The first time I built (installed) a work institutionally was in 1980, in Sepsiszentgyörgy, Transylvania at the “Medium” exhibition organized by Imre Baász, based on a plan had been sent for the editing of the catalogue. Its title was DOUBLE SPACECUTTING and composed of a fairly large, fresh bunch of cranberry and local railway screws.

The last time we presented an installation of mine was in the sculpture garden of the Emilia Suciu private gallery in Ettlingen (near Karlsruhe). Considering its size it was about 2,5 m tall, 70 cm in diameter, considering its material it was a fairly large wooden axle, around which I richly rolled some fresh blackberry creeper, until it reached the height and diameter mentioned above.

On that work a photoedition in 30 copies was made, signed by Steffen Harms, an art photographer from Karlsruhe and by me. I hope to send one to Budapest for Artpool's archive...

An I.A.P. artistamp was also made from the work. (Anna Banana was paid...) During the 17 years between the two dates some installations of mine were shown once in a while, for example in the Village Saint Paul, Paris, at the “Musée d'un jour - Sculpture de toujours” one-day-show - thanks to Csaba Mórocz, who was the supporter of my several-year-long atelier work- art work in Paris. (10)(11)(13) Nevertheless I don't think that for other people my name is initially connected to installation as an art form... the reason is simple: my installation work has been recompensed by unbelievable little money. Also my name has been insufficiently medialized until now. The little what appeared was related rather to my dawings: related to my drawings on handmade paper from Amalfi, Italy. I have been working on these since 1984, this sort of work by me could be seen in private galleries, international art shows, etc. So I may suppose that I have partially answered question (2), though I sometimes included my Amalfi and other drawings into my installations. With this I slightly answered question (14), which is a hard one (fiction for me, but for others, who knows?), because into my installations I may draw some pictures by world-famous photographers. Naturally I prefer my own photos and drawings above all, and here I have referred to point (13) - at the same time I consider that fake (plastic or other) cheap toys made in Hong Kong or Taiwan can be built into an installation, of course, not into mine... For nowadays good work, good workers and unfortunately artists have less and less appreciation.

Back to question (2), I would rather answer like I have been enthusiastic in the last 10-15 years, in my one after the other changing ateliers; sometimes more and more interesting plastic thoughts were drew up on my “studio installations”, some kinds of “models”, enough for a whole book, without reaching galleries, museums and such, speciale periodicals, or, as mentioned above, there was rarely any occassion for that.

Luckily I have a lot of photos, I will choose and send some for Artpool - unfortunately, as everything, it costs a lot to make quality photos, big-sized slides, sharp ectachroms, professional video-recordings for sending... (3) Moreover here in France installation is a kind of official - therefore a state supported and bought - genre, so one and all started to create installations... things like that spoil one's humour - (3) I don't feel different concerning mail art... sometimes I would rather grow moss, or tinder, resin, mastic, golden cress.

What I do depends on a lot of things... e.g. where I am with my homless, “blue” (German) passport since 1983. (3) For instance in 1996 in Famagusta, in Northern-Cyprus (under Turkish occupation) or around the ruins of Salamis I would have willingly staged an installation/installations, but I had to be satisfied with what I saw, and with those, mostly bad photos I took there hastily... and with the view of the army-styled installations existing at several places. Like the borderline - no man's land - installation of the soil-filled, white limed petrol-barrels placed on each other dividing the city and the island in Lefkosa (Turkish part of Nikosia and the capital of the KKTC)... or the army of the Turkish vendors selling hand-sets for mobile phones and Raki (their bags are fully filled only with hand-sets and Raki) at the ports of Kernia(?) (Girne in Turkish). For example in the Usine Ephémère studio community in 1989 half of the artists working there made installations - I drew on canvas with “pastel” crayon and took photos (3) until half of my equipment was stolen there, which got weary of taking photos for a while, but of the artists making installations. I'd better not mention names...

The difference is that, my work is going (happening) - don't forget, I have been living only for my art in Western-Europe for 15 years - unfortunately, relatively “discreetly”, its media is too small, reviews are published rarely- even, Alain Macaire, the well-known French critic working in Paris, who supported my work - died. Giorgio Agnirola, the Italian critic wrote about my drawings exactly 10 years ago and Gérard Duvozoi 7 years ago. It's high time for a deeper analysis...

(5) Regarding me I am sometimes enthusiastic for both (for a while), supposing I like the works. The same with non-artistic installations - you could rather use the French “mises en place” term. E.g. here in Alsace the other day we got a cart load of first class firewood - my dear friends, that pile of firewood (dry beech-wood) in the yard worth for me more installations of Daurel, Buren, Viallat and Anette Messager (famous French, officially exhibitited artists)... To be more critical (5) the difference is, e.g., that you can see traditional artworks at the flea-market, while I have never seen real installations there = I considered the flea-market itself to be one (e.g. the Porte de Clignancourt with the French policemen, Arabian, black, Pakistani, etc., etc. “artists” selling “installations”).

(6) What determines the size and material of an artistic installation?... I will not tell you anything new, my friends. I saw an installation in Heidelberg: a laser-ray connecting two mountains, the wrapped Pont Neuf in Paris, etc., etc., etc.... In 1983 at the Vizesdombok, in Transylvania my friends made an installation where they set my drawings on fire... (12) (13) (14) never mind!

(6) The answer is - the imagination of the artist, of course money also, but e.g. military, metorological (e.g. lightning installation) or political factors can detemine it. See: they can prevent it, wives may intervene, etc....

An example - An artist (e.g. myself with my blue passport Reiseausweis) is thinking of an underground installation (happened to me in Sándor Simon's flat in Paris), he/she only has to go down the steps to Simon's cellar, has to turn the light on and look around... install something there - invite the audience, offer some good French wine, etc., etc....

On the other hand if I want to stage an installation at Sessa Aurunca (South-Italy) at the (military) installation, I'd better brush the idea aside. (10) (strict restriction) (the secret military basis of the A.F.I. is at Sessa Aurunca - a whole mountain is excavated)

(10) One can risk any installation-thought, I can even help the reader with the thinking with e.g. a spaceship carried installation-scenario in space. E.g. if neither the NASA in Houston didn't give permission, nor Baikonur in Russia, the aérospatiale in French-Guyana would (attention! Area defended by the Foreign Legion!), so, an intercultural space-rocket from Konvont called the “Transylvanian Medusa's Raft” could carry the materials for an installation of mine. Also museum installation-experts, critics and very rich collectors. All this finally launches and leaves the Earth. On the way to the Moon or Mars THROW THE INSTALLATION OUT INTO THE SPACE with all the collectors, museum directors, so they would be hanging with all their strength to the pieces of the “Medusa” (= in the space), if they were not taking it seriously enough, here in Earth... I hope I have answered question (10) in my own way...

(11) Those who order something generally... they entrust a certain artist with something. NATURALLY if there is money I will do anything to satisfy the entruster. Supposing I don't get disapponted of the costumer's (entruster's) personality, because that may happen, too!

(12) Installations of really great artists (e.g. Joseph Beuys' i.) which were bought for a lot of money must be, of course, given to paid museum wardens and paid museum guards. Regarding the one and all i.- production...(?)

(13) One thing is for sure. If there is a lot of money, problems will occur - it is about money from common tax, private money, huge banks, nameless big capital, foundation, union, white money washed from black... or rest of the lottery... I can only represent the artists' viewpoint - for I am one myself: the artist pays the price for working, often - it happens that except himself all - his family “expects” that the work should be profitable, so he has to ask a lot for his artwork, whether it's an installation or another form of work.

(14) I wonder what experts would answer.

Ioan BUNUS (D/F)