press release

Ann Veronica Janssens’s work is fully predicated on the margins of perception. Ranging from work into the transformation of architectural space to a search for the physiological thresholds of vision, Janssens advocates a simplification of the gaze that coincides with the growing interest of contemporary practices for the cognitive exploitation of ways of perception of the sentient world.

Janssens’ early works from the mid 1980s can be framed within the spatial reconfiguration of architecture. Parts of constructions that interfere in a space in situ as interstices revealing the reverse of the demarcation of the frame. These installations, often bordering on a minimalist vernacular, were “spatial extensions of existing architecture”, what she calls “super spaces”, “the spaces surrounding a given space, spaces without space, places for the capture of light”, cement and glass cases, spaces conceived as springboards towards the void. It is this void that she tries to set in motion, conferring upon it a kind of temporality.

The exhibition Are You Experienced? at EACC will consist of various sensorial environments which the public will be able to experience for themselves. In this project, the artist proposes the creation of three installations playing simultaneously with the interior and exterior spaces of the art centre.

On the esplanade outside the EACC, she has created the Blue, Red and Yellow pavilion, a proposal consisting of a volume built with metal whose polycarbonate walls form cells covered by transparent films in blue, red and yellow. Inside there is a kind of dense coloured artificial mist that changes according to the position of the spectator and his or her proximity to each colour. Looking at mist is an experience that produces contrasting effects. It seems to abolish all obstacles, materiality, the resistances specific to a given context and, at once, to transmit a materiality and a tactility to light.

Inside EACC, Janssens creates two interventions designed specifically for the space: one based on sound and the other on light. Colours, visual light and sound effects, are the core constitutive elements of these proposals that appeal to the senses, inviting us to experience other forms of grasping the space and which, as the artist herself has said, the situations she creates are not reducible to (more or less spectacular) formal effects “but must be perceived in a context that could be considered political. They occur, for the most part, in a public space without imposing a fixed form or being directly prehensile. They are ephemeral sculptures whose action consists of being dispersed in a given space, infiltrating this space rather than imposing upon it. In effect, I investigate the permeability of contexts (architectural/social/cultural/political) even as I propose a form of deconstruction that fragments our perception of these contexts”.

On the occasion of the exhibition it has been publiseh Experienced an artist’s book featuring all Ann Veronica Janssens’ photographic archives from 1986 to the present with their original classification. With 500 pages and 6000 images, this publication is a complete overview of the artist’s work accompanied by a “conversed” text between Ann Veronica Janssens and Michel François translated into ten languages (French, Dutch, English, Spanish, Catalan, Portuguese, German, Japanese, Chinese and Russian), plus a chronological index of her works and exhibitions and a bibliography.

With a run of 1400 copies published by BasePublishing in conjunction with Espai d’art contemporani de Castelló (EACC), this book will be presented in public on March 6th against the backdrop of Ann Veronica Janssens’ exhibition “Are You Experienced” on view at the EACC from January 23rd through March 29th 2009. It is distributed internationally by Actar D.

The book also has a limited edition of 100 numbered and signed copies, each including a specific intervention by the artist, also signed and numbered.

A project curated by EACC / Joël Benzakin & Michèle Lachowsky

only in german

Ann Veronica Janssens
Kuratoren: Joel Benzakin & Michele Lachowsky