Difference between one who knows and one who undergoes

 Durational performance, 2013

Images: Performance Vogelfrei, Darmstadt Germany 2013, photos Ute Ritchel

Garden gnomes have a long tradition in Germany going back to the 1870’s, originally representing miners with pickaxe and shovel. The red hats are original and were filled with cotton wool to protect the heads of the minors from falling stones.  For the show I invited suggestions for themes and images from the visitors and garden owners and used these in my embodiment of a decorative garden ornament which does nothing at all. I spent five hours in each of the gardens, arriving at short notice. I scattered my objects and tools and then just stayed there, sitting, resting, for the rest of the time. It was delicious.

Visitors smiled at the absurdity of the proposition but found the idea of doing nothing at all difficult. The state is also close to the do-no-good and produces negative associations.


Vogelfrei 10, Biennale Darmstadt, Germany (August 2013)

University of Roehampton, UK (November 2013)

Site/Space,  Lime House, London UK (December 2013)

Performance at Roehampton University, photos Andrew Downs

Performance at site/space, Bow, London 2013. Photos Andrew Downs, Bmarcob.