64x84 cm, top object appr. 30x10x5 cm | Filler, oak frame
I did the work by spreading the filler over the panel with a scraper. Excess filler was allowed to spill over the edge and left to dry. The remaining shape should be placed on top of the frame, delineating the tip of the iceberg in the picture.
Everything that humans perceive is within a semantic sphere. Perception is not possible without interpretation and categorization. It is a linguistic act. Likewise, all language statements must be given a physical form to communicate and be understood. In this way, language and materiality are connected.
An image is a construction of language. The image-part of the iceberg is underwater. It may seem that it is the semantic part of reality that is the most inaccessible. But paradoxically, it is the concrete and physical matter - what Lacan refers to as the Real, which is most elusive. Here shown by the tip of the iceberg outside the image, on the exterior of the frame.
Every artistic depiction of an iceberg brings to mind the climate issue and the increasing content of CO2 in the atmosphere. In the end, it is our material experiences that affect us more directly. It may seem that it is only when we burn our body that we understand it's too hot. Sadly for the earth's climate, it will be too late. We in the privileged part of the world must learn to trust language and act in solidarity with those already physically affected.
Spread is a compilation of work made by spreading the filler along with the depth of the rim with a scrape. The method of letting a single action shape the work is reminiscent of Richard Serra's Verb List. It functioned as a kind of manifest for Serra's way of producing sculptures. To spread is on the list. It´s about making art by exposing a matter to different kinds of forces.
Watch a video of me presenting this work in its premiere public appearance here.
The series features works with an appendix placed on top of the work or close to it. This object is exterior to the image plane, the illusionary "window" in the picture, but is still an intrinsic part of the whole. It connects or makes visible the two dimensions of an artwork - its inner logic and the relation to its surrounding.
The title references both the famous campaign by Coca-Cola and Immanuel Kant's notion of the thing in itself. It means that subjects can only experience the phenomenons as they present themselves, through perception. It is always fundamentally different from what the things are outside the barrier of language - in themselves.