Sunday, October 20, 2013

Dario D'Aronco at Tent Rotterdam

You enter a small enclosed space in the gallery. You hear a high pitched note, slightly varying in volume and timbre. Your attention is drawn to a projection in the lower right corner.
A grainy picture of a black square is projected against a cloudy background. The dark projection surface absorbs most of the light and enhances the grainy, accidental feeling of the video.
It is difficult to determine what kind of object is being filmed. The recording has not been made using a tripod and the square moves slightly. The background also changes slightly. A living, breathing abstract painting. It is very satisfying to sit and watch (and listen). Is there a connection between the movement of the square and the quality of the sound? Does the square make the sound?
The prevailing impression is that this is not art but a presentation of an existing physical phenomenon. The artist has witnessed something, has been able to record it (against the odds) and is presenting the raw recording. An unexplained and mysterious phenomenon. But also  strangely reassuring. The world is still unknown, there are still white spots on the map. If we search hard enough we can still discover strangeness. If we find the right place and the right time we too can see the floating square against the night sky.
On the left wall, behind the curtain a black square has been drawn on the wall. Could this be the same square from the video? Impossible, this one is too static and the background is too even. But is it really black? In normal light, yes. But a flash reveals its silvery surface. No, this is not the same square from the video. It is a model, a plausible, but incomplete description.
A powerful way of exploring reality and its many layers. Worth-while to visit once again.
Little has been published about the artwork. The description from the catalogue is - as usual - not very informative: Dark Matters.

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