Doug Aitken “Mirage”

‚Mirage‘ is a surface producing images, reflections of the surroundings: mirror and landscape. A confusing immateriality, its almost-disappearing presence in its surroundings due to the doubling of nature in the work’s façade and the kaleidoscope-like effect recursively reflected in its accessible interior. Where does nature end, where does effigy begin?
Is ‚Mirage‘ able to shed some light on our obscure understanding of nature? Can it deny Agamben’s finding that „(…) our intelligence of nature has grown so opaque, and, moreover, the presence in it of the human element has grown to such an extent, that sometimes, in front of a landscape, we spontaneously compare it to its shadow, wondering whether it is aesthetically beautiful or ugly (…)“ (Giorgio Agamben 2012).
In ‚Mirage‘ we do not experience nature in that darkened understanding, in the dark valley of narrowing perspectives, but literally from above, in the ideal, bright alpine world.
In its seclusion, beyond our habitual, everyday reality, we can acknowledge through ‚Mirage’ the original power and beauty of what ‚is just there’. The work itself becomes a background and a stage, an unalive living form for both, the surrounding biosphere as well as us, as part of the system. Looking at ‚Mirage‘, we see ourselves reflected, inserted into its representation. The work always shows background, a new environment that is nature and non-nature—a conciliatory moment, in which the existential magnitude of distance and alienation dissolves and shifts into a tangible relationship with ourselves.

Performance: Doug Aitken – SONG MIRROR (elevation 1049)

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