Maria Pask, Dilatation (2016). Testfase met studenten van de KABK.

Maria Pask - Dilatation (2016)

Richard Serra’s land art sculpture Sea Level consists of two long concrete walls, each divided into 18 parts. In between those parts, flexible joints – or dilatations – absorb movements and prevent the walls from tearing. Sea Level has a colorful history in Zeewolde: it gained high recognition from art professionals from over the world, but also encountered fierce opposition from local residents. Graffiti was scribbled on the walls, and recently the artwork was painted over in a light grey color for protection.

Although the artwork is large and was built using solid material, it also possesses a human, physical, and changeable aspect that is not often focused on. Richard Serra explains that you need to experience Sea Level with your body by walking along the artwork and thereby becoming aware of the actual sea level. Serra was inspired by the philosophies of phenomenology and Gestalt: disciplines in which the physical experience of the body is deemed most important. With her performance Dilatation (2016) for Land Art Live, Maria Pask sheds light on this side of Richard Serra’s work. The pieces of the artwork and its dilatations provided her with a structure and a work process.

The performance at Sea Level (1996) by Richard Serra in Zeewolde took place on Sunday 19 June 2016, 15.00 – 16.30 hrs.

Pask invited various participants to prepare a short act based on their experiences of the artwork. Creators that are familiar with Sea Level because they live or grew up in Flevoland, or have extensively studied it. These acts were performed in front of one of the elements of the artwork, subsequently move to an element further on, and then back again. Beforehand, students of the Art Academy of The Hague tested the structure of the performance for its physical possibilities with a test performance. This process functioned as a kind of model: an experimental phase that also formed a crucial part of Serra’s process of creating art.

With poetry, cabaret, songs, sound waves and spiritual philosophies, the participants engaged in a dialogue with Sea Level. Local residents, art lovers – everyone, young or old, who wanted to come – were invited to attend this performance. The performance and test version were recorded and were part of a video installation that was shown during the final manifestation of Land Art Live.

Participants: Twee Nuchtere Meiden (Sandra de Vreeze-Knaken, Geke Dijkstra-de Vries, theater duo), Rebekka Bremmer (author), Linde Dirks de Groot and Liv Kluiters (play by Adrian Bridget), students Fine Arts from KABK (Melissa Dellouche- Ladrat, Vasiliki Giakoumi, Renée van Hagen, Emma Johansson, Hanna Ljäs, Julia Pinto, Jina Teranko, Kaitlyn Walker- Stewart), Ernestas Kausylas & Miša Skalskis (students sonology KC Den Haag), Elliaa Jutte (Quantum Vortex Scalar Wave Photon Pulse practitioner), Anja Novak (art historian), and Maria Pask.

Click here for photos of the performance, made by Geert van der Wijk
Click here for the article about Dilatation by Anja Novak in Metropolis M

About Maria Pask
In her work Maria Pask investigates terms like community, creativity and collective authorship. She creates performances, television programs, workshops, and films in which she collaborates with people that share their passions or beliefs with others in group formation: reading clubs, theater groups, choirs, religious and spiritual groups etcetera. She works on location: a suburb of Oxford (Deja Vu), Amsterdam’s red-light district (Observational Skills), and the manifestation Skulptur Projekte in Münster (Beautiful City). Maria Pask participated in De Ateliers in Amsterdam and her work has been exhibited in, among others, Cobra Museum in Amstelveen, Museum of Modern Art in Oxford, and Ellen de Bruijne Projects in Amsterdam.