Jessica Stockholder, 2002


Jessica Stockholder’s project for Visby engages boldly with the converted nineteenth century grain warehouse that is the exhibition venue. Claiming the courtyard as its own, it inserts an improvised structure that deftly if unexpectedly weds the functions of civic and street furniture – signage, lighting and fountain – to transform this inert site. From there it will coax the curious spectator indoors by means of a succulent pink carpet – more reminiscent of the boudoir than the gallery – to reveal a mise-en-scene that spectacularly weds domestic and agrarian life: agricultural machinery, laundry appliances, and much else here fuse with more abstract components into a tableau that in elevating and cantilevering its heterogeneous components, literally and metaphorically, shifts the ground beneath one’s feet. In this wildly but wondrously transformed milieu, at once obdurately present and provisional, fictive and literal, the force of Stockholder’s claim that “the knowledge that we have invented our world does not erase the possibility that we might believe in it” proves irresistible.

Curator: Lynne Cooke