Rebecca Horn. Light imprisoned in the belly of the whale
The installation Light imprisoned in the belly of the whale combines different media and the collaboration of different creators in several disciplines. This piece offers different levels of interpretation and perception and several entrance doors. Physical confrontation and the loss of sensorial indicators brought on by a long period of time spent inside the installation, are in themselves interesting experiences. And visitors can also choose to inquire more specifically into the music of Hayden Chisholm or the poems of Rebecca Horn.
The work was presented in the Palais de Tokyo in Paris at the beginning of 2003. The physical characteristics of the ‘Aljub’ or ‘cistern’ of the Es Baluard Museu d’Art Modern i Contemporani de Palma, (a diaphanous space with stone vaulting measuring 400 square metres, the former water cistern that supplied boats), were presented as extremely appropriate for this piece, an installation of light and sound that projects the texts of Rebecca Horn in the whole space, these being “the principal material of the installation”. Rebecca Horn has intervened on numerous occasions in spaces, constructions or historical buildings which have captured her interest for the use they were destined to or because of some special happening that took place in the site in question.
Born in Michelstadt (Germany) in 1944, from a very young age the artist was drawn to the world of surrealism and the absurd, through the work of Raymond Roussel, Franz Kafka and Jean Genet and the films of Buñuel and Passolini. Her works from the sixties on the body and its vulnerability arise from her personal experience with illness and prostration, a period which was to reveal itself as one of capital importance for her future as an artist. From the beginning of the seventies she created performances, which gained her participation in the Documenta in Kassel in 1971. In 1975 she made her first film: Berlin Exercises: Dreaming Under Water. In the eighties she began to produce her site-specific installations.
Rebecca Horn is acclaimed all over the world over as one of the great 20th-century German artists. Her contributions to contemporary art have been presented in museums internationally: Pompidou Centre, Paris, Tate Gallery, London, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Guggenheim Museum, New York, Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, amongst others. She lives between Berlin, Paris and Mallorca.