1 Roland Fuhrmann » 2001 Monika Polak: Mechanically, Arsenal Gallery Poznan, kocham cie z daleka

Monika Polak:

Catalogue text of the exhibition „kocham cie z daleka“
(I love you from far) at Arsenal Gallery Poznan/Poland

Text as PDF

„FORTIFICATION by Roland Fuhrmann, a German artist, resembles a war machine, ‚armoured‘ and indestructible; it sounds the alarm of its location though some people tend to see it as a flower shape with pistil hidden among transparent petals. The orange tape glued to the floor around an installation made of barbed wire, an iron funnel, motion sensors and caterpillars marks out of danger site. When approaching the coils of barbed wire, we set off a chain reaction: detectors make the alarm go off the moment we cross or bend over the demarcated line. For Roland Fuhrmann, a German sculptor, a student of (among others) Christian Boltanski and Tony Brown, the European‘s otherness in Europe, foreignness and assimilation, does not involve problems. At best, it arouses curiosity about an unknown society, particular people, objects, landscapes, causing one to explore an environment where everything seems to be different, interesting, worth remembering. It was from such observation that work on the FORTIFICATION began. The artist photographed sleeping sites of the homeless, under bridges, in empty buildings, in daytime and by night. He observed that their status and behaviour were dependent on the time of day; in daylight they felt secure while at night they felt the threat of an open area. Fuhrmann admits that when trying to get consent to take night photos, he felt a particular back flash need to construct a space or an object completely safe and protected. The scary-looking machine electricity-powered in its untouchable form realizes the ideal form of the wheel. Were it not for the fact that it is placed in a gallery, free of confrontation with the real surroundings of homeless people, FORTIFICATION could stand next to Krzysztof Wodiczko‘s living vehicles as another ‚Socially engaged‘ project. In the gallery, it warns us about an approaching man though it is not unlikely that it raises the alarm to warn us of an invasion of a stranger.“ Monika Polak