Review;This Will Also Change. Berlingske Week-End Avisen September 8, 2017 Art Review By Heidi Laura

Berlingske Week-End Avisen
September 8, 2017
Art Review By Heidi Laura
Last Tuesday at the time when Copenhagen goes home from work, an
audience gathered around Sophie Dupont’s mysterious carousel at the
Gallery OVERGADEN in Christianshavn. The installation, This will also
change has an inner metal construction consisting of a circle, a square,
and a triangle-the simplest possible depiction of a human bodysurrounded
by five representations of moods: happiness, anger, fear,
desire, and love, all mounted on wheels symbolizing our eternally
changing moods.
The artist jumped into the magic circle of the audience and started the
noisy movements of the carousel and squeezed herself into the innermost
figure. We sensed that her installations are just silent tools,
which the artist can revive in a ritual of dances.
Sophie Dupont is the latest big name in performance art on the Danish
Stage, and quite appropriately, the grand old lady of Danish
performance art, Lilibeth Cuenca, attended the dance of the carousel.
Around it went: Sophie Dupont, a former dancer, animated the metal
installation with yoga positions and chanting “Eye, Ear, Mouth, Neck,
Circle- and around!” while she moved through the five moods one by
one. She peered into the thorny rejecting iron mask of fear and kissed
the soft marble mouth of love. The audience unconsciously took the
default position of the cultural establishment: arms crossed protecting
the front of the body.
Dupont is inspired by spirituality from as different sources as Hindu
traditions and Bauhaus – yes, yes, right below the angular shapes of
Bauhaus lie profound ideas – with an added touch of dada.
Quite appropriately, Gallery Overgaden had recruited expert advice to
evaluate the themes of nonsense and madness in art. Professor of
Psychology, Bent Rosenbaum, explained that the artist like a psychotic
person, moves in a mental space where the obvious is no more
obvious, a space where you reflect infinitely and where the sense of
own body changes to become hypersensitive. Rosenbaum drily
commented that it actually would be curious if artists were interested
in exhibiting the obvious and well known and were in concert with
reality. The attempt to break out of the imprisonment of normality,
made the poet Unica Zurn write poems in anagrams – a different way
of writing witchcraft. But in contrast to the genuine psychotic, the
artist can move in and out of these fundamentally different conditions.
The semiotic expert Per Aage Brandt, gave a rousing recitation of the
dada-poem by Hugo Ball from 1916: “Gadji Beri Bimba Glandridi Laula
Lonni Cadori, Gadjama Gramma Berida Bimbala Glandri Galasasa
Laulitalomini”. He explained: Nonsense happens when language is
liberated; while madness occurs when social norms are abandoned,
the mad looses the capacity to function in the finely tuned society, and
instead connects the physical with the symbolic in a highly charged
state. The psychotic person believes that symbolism is real. He would
not perceive people gathered for a lecture at Overgaden, but would
recognize a lot of feet with strange connections and ask why, and
quickly conclude his interpretation of necessary consequences. The
entire society could turn psychotic, when it agrees to unleash total war
against symbolic enemies. The experts consoled, that it is just as well
that art can help us take the pressure off the symbolic.
Sophie Dupont was standing straight and calm with a fire engine red
mohair sweater draped around her shoulders, in the back of the
lecture hall.
Translated from the Danish by Inge Dupont and Bo Dupont